From Walter Manzke - the man who gave Church and State it's joie de vivre - comes LA's hotly anticipated République. She's a cafe by day and sexy bistro by night, and Manzke's wife, Margarita, is wholly responsible for the bakery's mean assortment of desserts and pastries. The space is open and elegant and was built by Charlie Chaplin in 1929 as a place to conduct his affairs - business and otherwise. Not surprisingly, Chaplin lost the building in a bitter divorce to 19-year-old Lita Grey before ever using it. Hollywood history aside, Boss will recognize the location as the old Campanile and can eat in a beautiful building at Charlie's expense.
Fresh bread is warm, delicious (and free), but you have to ask for it. Seating in the front room is largely communal but feels more friendly than intrusive; bosses with big elbows can sit at individual tables in the more formal back room - available upon request.
When Boss is hosting a hip and private affair, suggest the upstairs, mezzanine-like dining area that seats up to 30... Not many know about it and the menu can be specially prepared. If that's not enough, a private wine room will open in early March with room for 14-16.
Because it's Friday, my favorite move: the not-quite-dinner, not-quite-drinks. Share a charcuterie board, order a fun cocktail (try the mezcal-based California Carrot, pictured above), walk away feeling like a skinny French bitch.
République, menu below. $$$ Corkage: $30 p/bottle 624 South La Brea Avenue Los Angeles,CA 90036 310.362.6115
Walk-ins encouraged, reservations accepted.
CAFE BAKERY HOURS Mon-Sat 8am to 3pm
BISTRO HOURS Mon-Wed 6pm to 10pm Thur-Sat 6pm to 11pm