Parents always say they love all of their children equally, but they're not fooling anyone: Chet sucks, and they know it. Now opening in Santa Monica, Fraîche
Having decided that they might as well put all their focus on their best child, the owners of Fraîche decided to kick Riva out of its room and are turning it into a second location for their ultra- Mediterranean-via-California gastro-operation gussied up with new dishes, a broader bar, new light fixtures, and a fresh paint job, which feels a lot better when it's wet. Dishes exclusive to the new location include a foie gras terrine w/ prosciutto, black fig puree, orange gelee, and campari gastrique; tagliatelle w/ lobster, salsify, chestnuts, peas, and a lobster glace; and a pearl onion/baby turnip/baby carrot/toasted brioche crumbed St Pierre, a Northern European fish described as "small and ugly," meaning eating it'll make you a cannibal. They've also got classics from the original location, including branzino w/ roasted peppers, black olives, and fennel; the dijon creme fraiche/marinated lentil "Boudin Noir"; and a monkfish Francaise that wears flowing robes and thinks Zinedine Zidane was a hero
This Fraîche's also got a sweet new cocktail menu ("Winter Sage" w/ gin, green chartreuse, lime, cucumber juice, sage leaves) and they're using Riva's old built-in wood fire oven for a small bar-only menu (roasted moulles w/ flash-roasted Merguez sausage; meatball sliders), because with the room comes the toys.