Josiah Citrin is one of the biggest names in the L.A. food world and his restaurant, Mélisse, is a temple for fine dining. But his hot new restaurant, Charcoal Venice, is devoted to the kind of cooking he does at home for his friends and family–backyard cookouts where a pile of coals and seasonal ingredients are all a home cook needs to create an unforgettable meal. In Charcoal, Citrin presents completely fresh ways to cook with fire and charcoal, not only grilling over the coals, but cooking inside them and finding inventive methods for searing and smoking.
Whether Citrin’s grilling barbecue classics like J1-Marinated Skirt Steak and Salt-Baked Whole Maine Lobster or West Coast-inspired vegetable sides like his signature Cabbage Baked in Embers, charcoal is the dynamic center of this cookbook. Unlike other grilling books, vegetables get equal billing with meat. For Citrin, the color, texture, and flavors of vegetables are endlessly inspiring. With almost 100 recipes for savory main dishes and sides, as well as desserts and even cocktails, Charcoal shows that the satisfaction of smoky flavor and a good char knows no bounds. It is a celebration of the universal human craving to gather together and cook over a live fire.
Lastly, please eat at Charcoal and do order the cabbage and wings amongst other things. Local tip: Happy Hour is very reasonable.