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Sona Restaurant


chefwoody
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Has anybody been to Sona recently that can either give a detailed review, or even some general impressions about the food, service, and atmosphere?

Should we consider Sona a "heavy-hitter," or another hip, L.A. restaurant that will be extinct in five years?

Opinions?

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Thanks, Mike. Good information there that I hadn't seen before. However, I was looking for something a little more up-to-date. I am certain that they have matured (hopefully) over the past year, so I wanted to see if they are on a positive track.

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I'm from Chicago and had dinner at Sona last Thursday, July 8, when we were visitin LA. It was absolutely wonderful. So much so that I asked for a copy of the menu, which they gladly provided. Unfortunately, the menu's at home now and I'm at work! I'll check back in with a detailed report later today.

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With apologies to chefwoody for my tardiness (my hayfever decided to kick in during the last couple of days), here's my experience at Sona:

Click on logo for website

logo.jpg

The room is stark and modern, dark carpeting and white walls. A very soothing place to dine.

Six- and nine-course tasting menus are offered ($79 or $109), but we opted to order larger courses.

We sampled two appetizers, two entrees, and two desserts. Four our appetizers, we had the seared foie gras with rhubarb chutney, almond milk foam, pain d'Epice, and cilantro syrup; and the Maine lobster risotto with English peas and lobster emulsion. For the entrees, we had the Liberty Farms' duck breast with braised cherries and plums and black olive spaetzle; and the Prime beef short ribs served with crispy bone marrow, mushrooms and potato puree. Our desserts were the Mara de bois (wild strawberries) with nectarines, lavender ice cream and brittany pastry (not unlike a tart); and "Mikado" Banana split made with caramelized baby bananas, marshmallow fluff and peanuts - a deconstructed banana split of sorts.

Accompanying our dinner, after cocktails, was a wonderful bottle of Vosne Romanee from Clos des Reas, fairly priced at about $150.

The service was professional, knowledgeable, and efficient. We spoke with the manager, Joseph, for a while, who turns out to have done a stint at TRU, here in Chicago.

We hadn't heard much about Sona before trying it, but it looked like the kind of place we like: serious food, relaxed atmosphere, and just enough formality to justify the ambitious menu.

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Was just at Sona a couple of weeks ago, had the nine course tasting menu with wine pairings. Walked out giddy.

May easily be the best restaurant in LA. I recommend opting for the wine with your meal. Although there were a lot more whites than I normally would have chosen, it was well thought out and truly complimented the meal.

I was impressed with the service, which was impeccably professional. The staff seemed very young to be so knowledgeable.

Jeni Britton

Jeni's Fresh Ice Creams

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  • 5 months later...

We had dinner at Sona a couple weeks ago. Thought I'd post some pics...I apologize that the descriptions are lacking. Sona doesn't provide guests with a copy of the 9 course menu (and the followup email by the dining room manager was full of mistakes and missing items.)

01.jpg

Big Eye Tuna with Yuzu Soy Emulsion

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Bread

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Potato and Leek Soup

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Pumpkin Soup with Fresh Maine Lobster

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Clams with squid and squid ink pasta

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Confit Salmon served with Spicy Grapefruit, Orange Braised Cauliflower, and Grapefruit Syrup

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Tuna with mushrooms

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Foie Gras two ways

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Squab with Crisp Pig's Feet, Red Wine Braised Cabbage, Chanterel Mushrooms, and a Bearnaise Sauce

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Rabbit and Bacon Tourchon with Beluga Lentils, Baby Turnips, and Herbed Creme Fraiche

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Millbrook Farm Venison with Chestnut Agnolotti, Black Trumpet Mushrooms, Red Pearl Onions, and a Venison Bordolaise

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Hanger Steak with Shortrib Pierogi, Leek Fondue, Kolhrabi, and Orange Compote

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Cheese course

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Meyer Lemon Granitas

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Mille-feuille with brown butter ice cream

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Sour cherry strudel with chocolate ice cream

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Mignardise

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Mignardise

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Mignardise

I thought the platings and concepts were the restaurant's strong point. Execution was lacking at times...various components were often too cold or too gummy (probably had been sitting a while). Service was a total bust...they have a lot of ground to cover before the restaurant can claim even decent service. To their credit, after pointing out a serious flaw, the sommelier provided me with complementary tastes of some incredible wines including a 1999 Château Haut-Brion and a 1981 Loosen-Erben Spätlese Riesling "Ürziger-Würzgarten. The room was a little too noisy and the vibe was a bit too frenetic for my liking. Overall, the restaurant has good "bones" but I'd like to see it refine its rough edges.

View more of my food photography from the world's finest restaurants:

FineDiningPhotos.com

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Great photo report! We nearly went to Sona for my birthday last year but decided at the last minute to switch to Patina (because the employees were so great in accomodating us and reserving the chef's table). I've been meaning to get to Sona but things just keep coming up and we end up some place else. Seeing these photos makes me really want to go now.

R. Jason Coulston

jason@popcling.com

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  • 2 years later...

Bump! It’s been a while since there’s been an update on Sona Restaurant.

I have waited too long to dine here. With new restaurants opening up, other restaurants that you haven’t tried yet get pushed aside until you realize you haven’t eaten there yet!! Then, there’s trying to schedule a time in for that restaurant. To me, Sona was one of those places ... until now thankfully ...

I ordered the six-course Découverte menu, which included courses not from the a la carte menu:

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Amuse bouche: Soft-poached egg in a Japanese broth

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Pressed baby halibut with pickled tomatoes

The following was an extra course, compliments of the chef

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Tuna “ravioli” stuffed with sliced octopus & Swiss chard, curry seasoning

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Swordfish topped with sliced daikon, kumquat

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Kurobuta pork slices with heirloom beans & boudin (blurry)

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Beef tenderloin with daikon underneath, surrounded by pomme puree

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Grapefruit granita and Greek yogurt

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Pain perdu (still warm) with cherries, citrus reduction and tarragon ice milk

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Pistachio waffle sticks, market strawberries, “frais du bois”, topped with a chamomile chocolate sauce, and chocolate sorbet

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Migardise: Peanut butter macaroon, strawberry shooter with coconut and mint, lavender truffle (already eaten)

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Lemon verbena madeleines (still warm)

The dinner was excellent. The Asian influence was quite evident in a number of courses. My favorite was the tuna “ravioli”. To me, it was quite creative and very impressive. The service was wonderful and professional. My server was engaging without being officious. The decor was modern and minimalist, with a formal ambience. I definitely want to go back!

gallery_24802_4528_85094.jpg

Russell J. Wong aka "rjwong"

Food and I, we go way back ...

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I guess it's time for me to get my act together and get up to Sona. I read the chef/pastry chef team were opening another restaurant? I forget the name now but it's a very French title, no?

R. Jason Coulston

jason@popcling.com

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My business partner and I arrived 20 minutes late to our reservation which was 8:30 but everything was perfect when we stepped into Sona. We went for the 9 course degustation and also the cheese supplement ($30). We also enjoyed a white wine to pair with the first 3 or 4 courses and a red for all the meat courses. Then they brought out a dessert wine which was insanely good. I'll have names later on hopefully.

I definitely recommend this restaurant to anyone who is going to be in the area. My experience there was the best a mobil 4 star rated restaurant has ever given. Unfortunately the chef had just left before we got there we did meet some great people at the restaurant. The service was excellent and the food just seemed to work throughout each course. They do a great job of implacing asian flavors gently throughout the meal, no fusion-confusion fussy business here.

Pictures are on my Flickr. I should have more descriptions soon with those pics.

"cuisine is the greatest form of art to touch a human's instinct" - chairman kaga

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