Friday, January 30, 2015

Tomato, Sauced

Pick up a grownup happy meal at Ketchup

You're not interested in another loud, touristy theme restaurant on Sunset.

Try Ketchup. It
delivers the quintessential Sunset Strip experience with a difference: memorable food.

Look past the ketchup-splattered wall art and tomatoes encased in Plexiglas. Enjoy tasty (if pricey) comfort food kitsch you won't find anywhere else.

From the menu of postmodern twists on lowbrow classics, order several small plates to share. Splurge on Kobe beef chili-cheese dogs or sweet-potato tater tots served with five homemade ketchups including mango and chipotle. Keep it simple: pistachio chicken works, but avoid the conceptually flawed mac-and-cheese with crabmeat and truffle oil.

Desserts include homemade Ding Dongs — made from what, we don't know. And get your buzz (Aldrin) on with some Tang in your cocktail. Or try Oh Yeah! (with Kool-Aid) or American Psycho (Yoo-hoo).

Take a low-maintenance date or friends from out-of-town looking for a fun start to a long evening.

It's busy, the sound level rarely creeps below 11, and the servers occasionally get distracted by the eye candy everywhere — but who can blame them?

8590 Sunset Blvd., between Alta Loma and Sunset Plaza Dr., West Hollywood; (310) 289-8590

Price: 3 (out of 4)  Noise: 4 (out of 4)
Scene: young Hollywood talent; a smattering of tourists
Best Bets: Kobe beef chili-cheese dogs; beer can chicken; BBQ baby pork ribs; anything dunkable in ketchup
Nearby: Red Rock Bar & Eatery; The Grafton Hotel (bar); Katana (sushi); Skybar in the Mondrian Hotel; Saddle Ranch (bar/club)
Insider Tips: Request a booth to counter the deafening din in the dining room. Check out the 70s TV clips airing at the bar.

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