7494 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90046
What a strange, light, and utterly enjoyable evening I had at Salt’s Cure.
Strange entered into it when my plans to go have a big, heavy meal at The Gorbals got waylaid by an opportunity for some surprise evening entertainment plans. I needed something much closer than my downtown dinner reservation. Salt’s Cure wasn’t really on my short list going into my trip, though it certainly was on my longer list. It was in the running basically because it was only 10 minutes from the Pantages.
The more I read, though, the more I was excited. As other reviewers mentioned, there’s no printed menu. A chalkboard is your only guide. In a gastronomic world that prizes seasonal, you can’t get a nod toward dishes being created around what is available much more clear than there being no menu.
That said, I’d had an absolutely gullet-cramming afternoon at UMAMIcatessan. So, I was looking for something on the lighter side of things. That’s not to say that these guys are known for light fare. One of the chops came out to a table and it was beautiful, decadent, and enough protein to feed four people.
I started out wanting something akin to a salad and that’s all. My server helpfully suggested the ham, honeydew, and farm cheese. It was a perfect dish, full stop. The classic pork/melon combination was beautifully executed, with the fresh, wet cheese that was all of the right notes of a cottage cheese to compliment the other two ingredients. The ham didn’t really need the extra unctuous feel, but it certainly did gild the lily beautifully.
The dessert options weren’t floating my boat, so not wanting to waste that leftover bit of stomach room, I ordered a second dish, marinated sardines and cherry tomatoes. Sardines are generally not my thing, but the opening dish was so well executed, I figured that I’d give them a chance to change my mind. They came very close to succeeding: huge portions of oil-drizzled fish on crispy grilled bread with a nice bite of acid from the tomatoes. I doubt I’ll order sardines elsewhere, so it’s not like the dish changed my mind completely. That said, I’d consider doing it again here.
Service was quick and friendly. It’s a pretty small venue, something worth keeping in mind when it comes to reservations. I wish I’d asked to sit at the bar so that I could have watched them work. I’ll be back next trip for brunch.