Quietly, with few people noticing, one of L.A.’s most exciting and innovative chefs has taken residence in Pasadena. His name is Laurent Quenioux, and some of you no doubt tried his food back when he ran the on-the-edge (for Pasadena) Bistro K in South Pasadena. Next came the chic Bistro LQ in L.A., which didn’t make it. Now chef LQ is shaking things up a bit at Vertical Wine Bistro, although so far what we’ve seen is not the pushing-the-envelope, offal-heavy cooking he’s been known for—it’s his take on modern French-Mediterranean-American cooking, and it’s easily some of the best food east of the 2. The quality of cheeses and charcuterie is now superb, and the $29 Sunday supper (this month it’s baby-back ribs) is one of the finest deals in town (as is the happy hour).
To stop being so quiet about this transition, as well as to show off its large new dining room overlooking Raymond Avenue, Vertical is throwing a party on Tuesday. It’s $25 a head, and that includes craft beers (the tap-beer collection has been expanded), cocktails and lots of tastes of the new menu. If you’d like to go, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Vertical Wine Bistro
70 N. Raymond Ave., 2nd Floor, Old Pasadena, verticalwinebistro.com