Desert Rose Restaurant Restaurant Review:
This charming Los Feliz restaurant offers sophisticated food in a casually elegant dining room. A smattering of Lebanese émigrés, Silver Lake hipsters, and local families make themselves at home on the verdant patio, which makes up the greater part of the place, sheltered alternately with market umbrellas and heat lamps, amid blooming roses and a rather jaw-dropping giant glowing rose sculpture. Inside, crimson Murano lamps lend warmth to a sleek, modern glass-walled room and bar. Owner Ziad Richa draws on his family’s Beirut restaurant experience and recipes to bring refined, upscale Lebanese specialties to the table. A fritto misto of calamari, shrimp and artichoke offers a crispy texture next to that of spicy roasted eggplant soup with its velvety tone. Beef tenderloin carpaccio has a rustic Mediterranean tang of capers, Reggiano and wild arugula. Mains include pistachio-crusted halibut and seared scallops, double-cut pork chop with braised kale, and free-range Jidori chicken with polenta fries. But diners flock for the grilled kebabs — tenderloin or chicken — that one can wrap in a thin herbed “Lebanese pizza” with thick homemade hummus. Signature cocktails, a lengthy wine list, an organic brunch and extensive vegan menu deftly broaden the Eastside appeal.