Beverly Hills Icon Gets a Nip/Tuck
Turning the big 3-0 makes one positively ancient in restaurant years, so few would deny Wolfgang Puck’s iconic Beverly Hills spot Spago was in need of a little sprucing.
But rather than opting for the odd subtle tweak, Puck went for the full facelift – undoubtedly a risky move considering the breadth of the landmark’s fanbase.
Fortunately, the sophisticated overhaul has proven a winner, hitting the right note between current and classic, and retaining the ingrained Spago feel within a thoroughly modernised space.
Accented with deep blues, greens and browns, the bright white, cool contemporary interior dreamed up by Soho House designer Waldo Fernandez is a far cry from the 80s-inspired power-diner setting of yesteryear.
Velvet banquettes and über-now art pieces (including a gigantic smashed iPhone) line the walls, ceiling-high glass dividers expose an in-room, 7,000 bottle-cellar and bustling open kitchen, and a there’s a loungey patio sure to be a hit with scene-sters and romantics alike.
Plate-wise, the fad gourmet pizzas are gone and in their place is an Asian-inflected modern Californian menu, where Colorado lamb chops and veal filet mignon tartar share pride of place with a whole Chinese roasted duck, xiao long bao (dumplings) and sambal-laden BBQ skate fish. Add in a cocktail list handcrafted by Puck’s chef and partner Lee Hefter, and this is one nip/tuck that’s left us cooing ‘darling, who does your work...?