This past weekend, Scott and I visited the newest restaurant to open up on York in Highland Park, Maximiliano. It’s just east of the York, HP’s great gastropub and is on a stretch of street not particular hipster-ified or trendy. Started by Andre Guerrero the mind behind Max in Sherman Oaks and the insanely popular Oinkster in Eagle Rock, Maximiliano claims to be “kinda old school Italian”. I would say, it does the job.
Saturday was the second day it was open. It took a bit of convincing to get Scott to go since restaurants usually have a lot of kinks to iron out in their first week. Maximiliano, though, had a laid back vibe. Our waiter was chill and recommended some great beers and even had Scott sample them gratis. We started with a porcini muschroom rissoto, and baked fennel and moved on to the Bianca-Verde pizza with preserved lemon. All were delicous and served piping hot (Scott’s only comment was that the crust on the pizza could have been thinner). For dessert we had the olive oil ice cream with sea salt carmel which was surprisingly smooth and subtle (we were a bit skeptical after a mishap with some parmesan ice cream I’d tried to make a few years back, but this was delicious).
There was a nice variety of patrons – families, hipsters etc. The decor was simple but well thought out – graphic, slightly industrial. And the menu was similarly refined – classic, easy to read and well priced. I always love seeing new restaurant concepts come into my neighborhood. Can’t wait to see the back patio when they have it completed and bring the babe there for family meals once he is restaurant-ready.