Ground Zero Performance Cafe Presents : Food Friday!
“I’m sorry,” I said to the bartender. “Can I have this dish again?”
The bartender looked at me with a confused smile on her face as she glanced down at my spotless plate.
“Was something wrong with it?” she asked, although she knew the answer before the words even exited her mouth.
“No, not at all. It was awesome. I just want it again. Oh, and maybe with a glass of milk this time.”
She offered me the kind courtesy of a giggle as she turned around to go put in the order.
“Of course, of course.”
Thus marked the first and only time I enjoyed a dish so much that I ordered it twice in one sitting. The location was Animal, Vinny Dotolo’s iconic, so-hip-it-hurts restaurant in Los Angeles’ Mid-City and the dish was their Bacon Chocolate Crunch Bar.
The Bacon Chocolate Crunch Bar is perfect. Initially, it sounds like a cheap shot – a chef’s attempt at getting press by throwing pig into a carefully constructed chocolate creation. However, the Bacon Chocolate Crunch Bar is really an ode to chocolate. The bar consists of dense layers of different types of chocolate ganache, from deep dark to nutty gianduia.
Sprinkled on top are salty, crunchy, porky handfuls of Nueske’s bacon and it is served with creamy, delicate “salt and pepper” ice cream. Although seemingly offbeat, these additions serve only to exalt the rich yet sophisticated sweetness of the high-quality chocolate. And that’s what one walks away thinking – damn, I forgot how much I love chocolate.
At Ground Zero Performance Café we have our own way of reminding our patrons how much they love chocolate. It’s called the Ah.Com and it is simplicity at its finest. In this shake, it’s not bacon that exalts the marvel that is chocolate – it’s coffee. Our coffee’s subtle bitterness plays excellently with the chocolate, leaving the palate in cocoa paradise.
Tables at Animal might be booked for months to come. But our doors are always open, and (more importantly) our blenders are always blending, so stop on by. But be warned – you might be tempted to order more than one.