When Buff Bear said he had some days off to hang out, I said, “YAY, let’s go somewhere new!” He was willing to come to my neck of the woods, but I wanted to check out what was cooking in his hood, Long Beach. Yeah, I guess nobody thinks of Long Beach as a food destination, but I was hopeful. Downtown Long Beach is more of a destination than a place to drive through as quick as possible with your windows up and doors locked. Yelp guided me to BO-beau, while my stomach did the ordering. Buff Bear didn’t mind one bit.
Crispy Brussel Sprouts pancetta, parmesan, balsamic
The much lauded Brussel sprouts were actually a disappointment. Despite being fried, so presumably unctuous while crispy, they just were somehow dry but mushy. I’m not sure how to describe it really, but the texture was just off in my mouth. Flavor wise, I can see how they were going for some punchiness but it missed the mark. The presentation was really pretty though!
Chorizo + Serrano Ham marinara, five italian cheeses, basil
The flatbreads were supposed to be a must-try, but I was again disappointed. I like my flatbreads to be on the denser side, but these were too airy and dry. We probably ordered the wrong flatbread because this just tasted like a mediocre pizza.
Creamy Truffled Polenta roasted mushrooms, lamb and short rib ragu, crushed walnuts, chives, lemon zest
Ragu and polenta are a perfect combination. The truffle aroma was intoxicating. So everything was pretty spot on but I didn’t like the walnuts much.
Braised Lamb Pappardelle butternut squash, jalapeño yogurt, shaved parmesan, eggplant, oven roasted tomatoes, candied sunflower seeds
The pappardelle was fine, but nothing spectacular. This is not the place to go for fresh made pasta.
Moules Molina saffron broth, creamed leeks, potato, kale, pancetta
I’m not sure I’ve ever had bad moules. Yum yum yum here.
Mixed Berry Cobbler oatmeal crumble crust, bourbon-vanilla ice cream
I’m a sucker a cobblers and this was pretty standard fare.
So it probably seems like I’m ripping BO-beaux a new one. In the moment, I enjoyed dinner but it was probably because the company and conversation were the star of the show more than the food. The food wasn’t offensive or improperly prepared. They are obviously serving food that A LOT of people like, but it wasn’t for me. Their location in San Diego has also garnered quite a bit of attention and praise. Maybe if BO-beaux were closer to me, I would give it another go. However, I’m not hustling back to Long Beach anytime soon.
10 – You NEED to eat here