Design Dish: Food For Sharing At Kismet In Los Feliz



Food photos: Jake Lindeman. Restaurant photos: Joshua White.

Middle Eastern meze is designed for sharing. The myriad of small plates are meant to invigorate the senses. Taste, of course, but also the eyes, satiated by the table, crowded with tiny dishes exploding a riot of rainbow of color: garnet pomegranate seeds, yellow peppers, red tomatoes, green cucumbers and creamy hummus. It’s in this spirit that the Brooklyn-bred team behind Grand Central Market’s popular MadCapra — Sara Kramer and Sarah Hymanson — have opened Kismet.  

On a street that’s suddenly sparking with delicious things to eat, a simple gray storefront with the restaurant’s name in neon, telegraphs that the emphasis here is on the food. Under the guidance of Los Angeles’s culinary dream team — Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo of Animal and Son of a Gun and Ludo Lefebvre of Petit Trois and Trois Mec — Kramer and Hymanson have taken the meze concept and run with it, giving it a Southern California twist that takes traditional flavors and, with the help of local produce and international influences, presents something light, airy and unexpected. 

The slender dining room is bright and light and decidedly minimal. Plywood chairs, benches and tables are almost schoolhouse prim in their simplicity. Jeff Guga, a Frank Gehry alum who also designed the equally spare Jon and Vinny’s on Fairfax, shows similar restraint here. Though in this space, it’s relieved with playful touches — Claire Hungerford’s rose napkins; Heidi Levi’s ceramic lamps and dishes; and casual, colorful flowers — and the sparkling bustle of the open kitchen, churning out delightful dishes. Open all day, seven days a week, the restaurant’s menu has been drawing fans since the day it opened. While vegetables are the star here, with special shout-outs going to the flaky Barbari bread, the meat dishes, especially the rabbit, designed to be split between two, has also been drawing raves. Go with friends who like to eat and make a meal the celebration of the senses it’s meant to be. 

Kismet, 10 am to 11 pm daily, 4648 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA, 323 409 0404

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