The restaurant itself is relatively small with an upstairs room that can be rented out for large parties. The decor is elegant without being overly stuffy. Chandeliers hang from the ceiling and there are small candle votives on top of white linen tablecloths. Cozy and elegant, Jiraffe is the perfect place to go for special occasions as well as whenever you crave for delicious, simple food.
amuse bouche: mushroom soup
These shots mushroom soup were small but packed with flavor. They were light yet earthy with the perfect amount of seasoning. I love mushroom soups, so I definitely wanted an entire bowl of this.
assortment of bread
french onion soup
My dining companion ordered off the prix fixe menu and got the french onion soup as his starter. This was an amazing bowl of soup. I cannot remember the last time I had french onion soup that was really delicious. I've had overly salty ones to cheesy yet bland ones. But, Jiraffe's french onion soup was perfect.
almond-crusted rainbow trout, sweet corn, roasted peppers, capers, lemon-brown butter sauce
On the recommendation from our server, I chose the trout. What a great recommendation! This dish was fantastic. The fish was so moist and flaky on the inside with a nice even crust on the outside. The slightly acidic sauce was light but full of flavor. The contrast in flavor from the tangy relish of the corn, peppers and capers went really well with the fish. Being my favorite dish of the night, this will be my number one recommendation for new diners at Jiraffe.
pan-roasted filet of beef, warm fingerling potato salad, wild arugula, Shitake mushroom sauce
My other dining companion ordered the filet of beef as her entree, which I think could have easily fed two people. The portion was large and very filling. The beef was cooked medium rare and quite juicy. The sauce was sweet and I enjoyed the use of the peppery arugula to break up this heavy dish.
roast Jidori Chicken breast, white mushroom strudel, jumbo green asparagus, sour cherry-chicken jus
This entree was my least favorite. While the chicken was definitely moist and tender, I just really enjoyed my trout a lot more. I am a sucker for asparagus, so that was definitely an extra plus.
chocolate truffle cake, fresh whipped cream
For his dessert, my dining companion ordered the chocolate truffle cake. Of course, we all had our bite or two. The cake was incredibly moist, but my favorite part was the freshly whipped cream. It was light and creamy - delicious.
I am extremely excited that Jiraffe is participating as our VIP restaurant for Plate by Plate this year. If the meal that I had any reflection on Chef Raphael's amazing style of cooking, sense of precision and love for his food, I am confident that this year's VIP reception will be the best out of all the years past. That is a bold statement, I know. Anybody want to bet me? ;)
502 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90401