Local Seasonal Organic. There aren’t many restaurants that adhere more firmly to that oft repeated dictate than Farmshop, the restaurant and market in Brentwood Country Mart from chef Jeff Cerciello and front of house business partner Michel Darmon. The rotating menu might as well be a shopping list from the Santa Monica farmers market. Still, the menu does showcase some surprising preparations and combinations, including Whipped La Quercia Lardo Iberico ($12).
Lardo, Italian-style cured pork fat, is something I’ve come to expect from restaurants like Sotto and Chi Spacca, and I’m happy to see this gain inroads throughout L.A. At Farmshop, the whipped lardo, more or less pork butter crafted from prized acorn-fed pigs, is seasoned with ingredients like salt and rosemary. The lardo spreads easily and melts into soft, warm, ciabatta-like petit pan. Better yet, the Farmshop lardo comes with sweet tart bread and butter pickles made with onion and zucchini, and the spreadable Calabrian sausage spiced with smoked paprika and garlic. This multi-faceted starter is a sure kickstart to your dinner.
Dose of Vitamin P spotlights my favorite pork dish from the previous week.