This trendy yet traditional Italian restaurant is located in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles’ arts district. The Factory Kitchen is a friendly and inviting place, with a menu which changes daily, but retains certain dishes.
Behind a glass partition there is a view of the kitchen, where fresh pasta is always being made. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner. Be it for this or that, a must-try dish is mandilli di seta – handkerchief pasta, ligurian almond basil pesto. It will send you to the moon (or Italy, whichever you prefer) and then back to your seat.
Chef Angelo Auriana knows his stuff. He was born in Italy, and he brought the magic of the Boot to L.A. in a way that, while it cannot be said that it has never been done, certainly stands out. Some dishes there, like the sanremese – local calamari salad, veggies and herbs – make you wish you knew how to make this kind of food at home.
The focaccias are great. Warm and satisfying. For entrées, whether you go something from the sea, or from the land, you are in for a treat. The rolled pork belly with aromatic herbs, red onion, carrots, fennel, and celery really amazing. Mouth watering, juicy, and not at all over the top.
Another favorite is the pan roasted chicken breast & thigh, luganega, crushed tomatoes, and onions. It is a dish that stays with you long after you leave the arts district.
The side dishes are also worth taking a look at, and a bite of. The oven roasted potatoes, served with crushed chili and oregano are a revelation. I enjoyed every single bite of it. The best side, though, has got to be the roasted asparagus, with its hazelnuts, parmesan and brown butter.
For dessert, I went for the cannoli. Sure, it is the obvious choice, but not necessarily. Looking over the dessert menu was quite a task. It all sounds amazing. So amazing, that I am sure it is worth it coming there just to taste the desserts. Another one I tried was the grain pudding with cherries, chocolate, and big cherry gelato. Wow. There are no words that can help me explain how this dessert tasted. Next time, though, I am going for the tiramisu. Something tells me I may have made a mistake not ordering that one.
The wine list and cocktail list is not huge, but it is definitely satisfactory. I didn’t get to sample any wine or alcohol this time around, but I have no doubt that I will be at the Factory Kitchen more than once, or twice, or five times, in order to try all of the things which I missed last time.
The Factory Kitchen is a relative newcomer to the DTLA eating scene. It opened in 2013, and it looks as though it is going to be around for a long time. Thank God for that. I would love to be back there every day. Or at least every other day. Hey, I ain’t greedy.