Matthew Kang and Matt Biancaniello collaborated on a thoughtful culinary pop-up.
Market-driven bartender Matt Biancaniello joined forces with Matthew Kang (Scoops Westside) and Tai Kim (Scoops) to create ice cream “cocktails” in Los Angeles. This was the second time these palate-bending individuals teamed, and there’s no guarantee it will happen again, so I made sure to arrive right as Biancaniello was finalizing the bar for a 3 p.m. start.
Biancaniello featured bowls of fresh picked ingredients on the counter, just like in his Library Bar days, including Oro Blanco grapefruit, arugula flowers, and Himalayan sea salt.
Biancaniello’s mise en place also included pistachios, borage, and bumpy Kaffir limes.
Biancaniello provided Kim with infusions to incorporate into ice cream. Scoops Westside charged $8 for a single cocktail, and $25 for the full quartet. Of course I ordered all four “cocktails.”
Candy Cap Mushroom Infused Bourbon featured a pronounced maple flavor, organic walnuts, homemade nocino (walnut liqueur), and decorative rosemary flowers that Biancaniello sourced from a community garden just prior to service.
Coffee Infused Cynar was a bittersweet play on what Biancaniello called an “inside out affogato,” with cold “coffee” and warm purple sage infused cream. A crunchy dehydrated orange slice and cacao nibs completed the cup.
Curry Infused Campari was Biancaniello’s play on a tropical drink, with oro blanco pieces, wort infused homemade beer, Himalayan sea salt, apricot pit infused Aperol foam, and decorative arugula flowers.
Mochi Infused Sake joined rice milk, Kaffir lime zest, pistachios, wild bay leaf infused Cocchi Americano, and borage flowers.
Biancaniello has been experimenting with different culinary mediums since leaving Library Bar in 2012. It will be interesting to see what happens when his tornado of creativity finally touches down at his proposed Westside bar. In the meantime, it’s great to be able to experience compelling collaborations like his ice cream “cocktail” appearances at Scoops Westside.
Address: 3400 Overland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90034