Last night I had the pleasure of attending the 20th year anniversary of Joe’s Restaurant in Venice, California. It was both inspiring and exciting to see a passionate chef, Joe Miller celebrating what many would call an anomaly in this current upscale dining landscape. He, with the assistance of staff, investors, and a devoted clientele have accomplished the fete of creating a time-honored restaurant serving high-end cuisine in a not always, but often fickle town of diners seeking what’s new and hot rather than what’s consistently good and solid. After 20 years, Joe's has proven itself to be the go-to white tablecloth, French technique culinary experience in a laid back, Southern California beach town.
Chef Miller graduated from the Culinary Institute of America, and in the past, has worked in many respected L.A. dining establishments. His own restaurant launched in 1991 with a modest kitchen and a 60-seat dining room in what at the time, was a not-so-popular area in Venice on Abbot Kinney. Throughout the years, the restaurant has morphed into the current Joe’s that now features a larger kitchen, multiple-seating areas, and an address on one of the most well-known destination streets in the area.
Ocean Trout w/Pine needle smoked tea, young shiitake, barley, ogo
Many recognizable L.A. Chefs have worked in the Joe’s Restaurant kitchen including Dan Barber (Blue Hill Farm), Josiah Citrin (Mélisse), Trey Foshee (Georges At the Cove), Raphael Lunetta (JiRaffe), Jason Travi (Previously of Fraiche), Jason Knibb (NINE-TEN), Mark Gold (Eva Restaurant), Michael Bryant (Palihouse), Rory Herrmann (Bouchon), Philip Wojtowicz (Big Sur Bakery), Tim Cushman (Boston's O Ya), Josef Centeno (Lazy Ox Canteen), Andrew Kirschner (soon to be opening Tar & Roses) and Joshua Gil (Milta).
"The chefs that have been through our doors have been incredible contributors to what Joe's is today," says Chef Joe Miller. "The transformation of our space has always been with them, and that's why Joe's menu has always stayed fresh. Our philosophy has always been to locally source our ingredients and present them in a casual but elegant way. Everyone who has worked here has always known it's about one plate and one soul, and they've all worked hard to maintain that," notes Miller.
Olive Oil Poached Chantam Cod
Cavatelli w/Arkansas Rabbit, Fine herbs, Brioche
Prime Beef Ribeye w/White bean sunchoke, lobster mushrooms
Current Chef de Cuisine, Kris Tominaga, Sous Chef Greg Zanotti, and Pastry Chefs Courtney Reed and Glenn Lara were on hand to prepare a wonderfully well balanced, special six-course tasting menu to commemorate Joe’s Anniversary. The staff at Joe’s is dedicated to using fresh, locally-sourced ingredients and along with close ties to local farmers, they grow their own ingredients at a nearby garden plot.
Chef de Cuisine Kris Tominaga & team
Plum Tart paired with N.V. Henriot-Brut-Souverain-Reims
Dinner included exemplary wine pairings by wine consultant Christopher Keller, which began with a distinct 2003 Schloss Schlonborn Riesling Kabinett, continuing with a 2009 Joe Miller-Grenache Blanc from Santa Barbara, a 2008 Ostata-Crianza-Rioja, followed by a 2007 Emanuel Tres-Tinto Roberto Syrah from Larner Vineyards. And like any worthy celebration would, the Champagne was flowing all four-plus hours long.
Happy 20th Anniversary Joe’s Restaurant and cheers to many, many more…
Joe's Special Anniversary Offerings:
–September 20th, 2011 to Wednesday, October 5th, 2011 – lunch special for $20.00. Each day at lunch, Joe's will offer a special three-course prix fixe menu with a special amuse from Tominaga, and a complimentary glass of wine from Miller.
-September 20th, 2011 to Friday, September 30th, 2011 – dinner special includes a four-course prix fixe menu for $48. Each evening at 7:00 and 9pm, Miller and his staff will gift each guest with a surprise beverage and make a special toast as a thank you to everyone who has dined at Joe's.
1023 Abbot Kinney Boulevard
Venice, CA 90291