At long last, my own neighborhood joint…in my neighborhood…
After all these years of going to neighborhood joints in other neighborhoods, maybe just maybe it was time to go to one in my own backyard.
Glendale is big town. A BIG big town. One could be forgiven for thinking that the only part of town that mattered is the space around the Americana Center. But there’s a whole lot of Glendale on the North side of the 134. It figures that there is where I would find Recess.
Recess is a…is a well…a neighborhood joint just like I said. Elegantly appointed, but casual at the same time. It’s got a bit of a market vibe to it, some cares displayed in a refrigerated counter as you walk in. It’s got that homey touch as well, wines, pots, pans on display, as well as chalkboard menus…and you know I like chalkboard menus. Like I said, it’s a nice space. Cool. Even. Inviting.
That’s what you want when you walk into a place like this.
Recess is pretty damn spacious, seats out on the sidewalk. A Patio area off by the Parking Lot to the right. The main dining room where I’m sitting in.
But the food’s the reason you’re coming right. So how best to describe the menu?
In truth, I really…don’t…know. And that may be a good thing.
Recess is charting it’s own way. Chef Sevan is doing his own thing.
I see some Asian on this menu, some Mediterranean, some Italian, lots of fish…and a selection of Burgers.
Like I said doing his own thing.
The path to a place like this always begins in someone else’s kitchen, serving as a line cook, or a Sous Chef, and working your way up. When the call comes, too many believe that you have to work in a certain kitchen, under the tutelage of a certain chef, who himself has the right kitchen lineage to have your Restaurant considered worthwhile.
You know I don’t consider that the case.
Chef Sevan’s made his own way, and made his own restaurant. He’s actually done some food Television, like the Taste and Chopped. I like what he’s done here, and I like that it’s so close to home.
WHAT SHOULD I GET?: The Lamb “Dodgeballs” (see? “Dodgeballs”…Recess, get it? GET IT?) were the first thing to arrive. As much as I liked my Vice Principal (which we’ll get to next), this was amazing. I am writing this review days later, and I still remember how these suckers taste. They were that good.
Now, in Glendale, you best have your Lamb together, otherwise…
The last Lamb Meatballs I had were the ones I had at Dune. And Dune was a respectable joint.
The ones here at Recess were @#$%ing amazing. The Lamb “Dodgeballs” are covered in a Tzatziki sauce and Harissa essence. Not sure what a “Harissa essence” is, but the Tzatziki…from my 10 second Googling is basically Greek Yogurt. All these flavors together, just make a party going on in your tongue that’s nothing short of amazing. There’s a part of me that wants Chef Sevan to make this a full on Entree, because I would so get these over and over again.
Yeah, that good.
I mean just look at this plate. How can you resist this…(unless you were a vegetarian or vegan or something.)
Then came the Vice Principal. Still not sure about the playground references, but hell…it’s Chef’s place. I’m just here to eat.
Again, a simple thing, like the Lamb Dodgeballs, just done really, really stinkin’ well.
The Vice Principal is a Steak Sandwich. Panini-toasted bread, Blue Cheese mousse, Mizuna, which is a Japanese Mustard Green…and a very good taste with this sandwich, and House Chips…which were to die for. Hell, the whole Sandwich was to die for. I was shocked (shocked I tells ya) how good this Sandwich was. Delicious, toasted bread. Melt-in-your-mouth, savory-like-it’s-going-out-of-style Filet Mignon, and those greens. Those greens!
Yes, I left here amazingly happy. Happy to not only have a neighborhood joint in Glendale, but a really good neighborhood joint in Glendale.
IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP, PEOPLE: You know I read some reviews that said the service wasn’t good. Not to take away what those folks experienced, but the staff was very friendly to me. Then again I came for a super late lunch, early dinner. That staff has my respect. They were still on the ball even at that late hour.
PARKING: Again, I came at a late hour, so the Parking situation was awesome and a half. I parked right in front of the door…which I imagine will be more difficult during busier times. Still, there should be ample street parking around the restaurant. At worst, you’ll walk a block to get here.
1102 N. Brand Blvd.
Glendale, CA 91202
Tel: (818) 507-0592
Monday-Friday: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Saturday-Sunday: 9:00 am – 10:00 pm