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First Look: Little Pine, a Vegan Restaurant by Moby

[dropcap size=big]V[/dropcap]egans aside, you rarely hear about anyone getting excited over a new all-vegan, organic restaurant opening, even in LA. Well, electronic music pioneer and LA resident Moby is here to change all that. Moby’s new restaurant in the trendy Silver Lake neighborhood was highly anticipated among vegans and non-vegans alike, with tons of press and pre-opening buzz. Just days before the opening, his menu showed exciting, non-traditional vegan offerings that are hard to come by anywhere with a strict vegan product. From vegan cheese ricotta-stuffed pasta, to vegan cassoulet, house made vegan “milks” and vegan biscuits and gravy, the ambitious fare is intriguing whether you’re a meat-eater or not.

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From the first day of opening until now, you can tell the restaurant is bound to become a hot hipster destination. While waiting for a seat, you can browse through Moby’s tiny store nook section located to the right of the entrance. Here, you’ll find some of Moby’s top selections from books, art, music, stationary, even little decorations for your home.

It’s a small space that gets filled up pretty quickly. The good news is they’re open as early as 7:30AM, and close at midnight. They have a variety of menus available for the different hours of day. Breakfast, Weekend Brunch, Lunch, Tea, Dinner, Dessert, Wine and Beer and an impressive non-alcoholic drink menu consisting of espresso beverages, tea, kombucha, smoothies, and even cold-pressed juices. There’s literally something for everyone.

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During the daytime you’ll find a bright, cozy space with pillows and cushions to make you feel comfy. Once you’re seated you’re free to order from the breakfast menu until 11AM, where they serve frittatas, a variety of pastries (even vegan pop tarts!), french toast, biscuits and gravy, and various healthy drinks. Lunch service starts at 11AM where the menu switches over to various veggie starters (most of which are also available during dinner), salads, and sandwiches.

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The servers are extremely attentive and will make sure you have a good dining experience. Since the menus are pretty big, don’t be shy to ask for suggestions. I ventured in for a solo lunch and wasn’t sure which sandwich to order, but was sold when the server recommended the sausage and fennel sandwich, comprised of a mushroom-seitan housemade sausage, fennel, pickled red onion, and romesco aioli. It has an incredible satisfying, savory herby flavor, and is accompanied by a light side salad. It’s also a generous portion that will fill you up for lunch. Intrigued that they make their own nut milks, I also tried a cashew cream latte, which was very satisfying. It’s so smooth you won’t even miss the whole milk.

As good as their lunch is, dinner is the most exciting time to visit, both in terms of the atmosphere and the food. In contrast to the sunny, bright lunch, the ambience at dinnertime is kept very dim and makes for an extremely intimate and warm feel. The menu is made up of stuffed shells, mac and cheese, 'meatballs' and polenta, roasted tomato agnolotti, and cassoulet. All vegan. Cheeses are all housemade, mostly from nuts, while the meatball recipe is kept secret. The wine list is extensive and was helpfully curated by wineshop Domaine LA. On the other hand, the beer list is fairly obscure and predominantly French. Understandably, Little Pine is working out their kinks during their opening, so for this time around they were only offering bottled beers and were out of the the meatballs and polenta dish. I opted for the wild mushroom bruschetta starter, mediterranean salad, and cassoulet entree.

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The mushroom starter was definitely one of the more flavorful dishes I tried at Little Pine. Made up of a a caramelized onion spread that tasted very cheese-like, and arugula on perfectly toasted bread, I would order this again. Second came the salad. As you might expect, their salads are superb. Perfectly dressed and hefty portions, you won’t be disappointed with any of them. The mediterranean salad was bitter and tangy. Beware if you hate olives, however, as they’re plentiful in this one. Lastly, the cassoulet came as a little comforting dish made up of white beans, housemade sausage, tomato confit, and garlic breadcrumbs. A fine fall dish for a cozy evening.

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Little Pine is still working out their hours and kinks during opening, so be sure to keep an eye out for any changes on their social media outlets. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to pop in for a taste of their various menus. Who knows, you might even bump into Moby himself or his many celebrity and artist friends.

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Little Pine Restaurant
2870 Rowena Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90039

Hours -

Monday – Friday:
7:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. pastries, tea, coffee
11 a.m. – 3 p.m. lunch
3 p.m. – 5 p.m. pastries, tea, coffee
5 p.m. – midnight dinner

Saturday – Sunday:
7:30 a.m. – 10 a.m. pastries, tea, coffee
10 a.m. – 3 p.m. brunch
3 p.m. – 5 p.m. pastries, tea, coffee
5 p.m. – midnight dinner

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