The goods: Bistro e is Downtown’s newest power lunch spot. Located in the Viceroy and helmed by Michelin-starred chef Michael Psilakis, the daytime-only restaurant features a $15 continental breakfast buffet and a rotating line-up of $15 three-course lunches.
Ambience: Bistro e is housed in the Viceroy’s swanky Greek fusion dining room designed by West Coast socialite Kelly Wearstler. Think Art Deco-meets-James Bond interiors outfitted with black and white marble floors and salmon-colored chairs. The dining room is located on the 15th floor of the posh hotel, with plenty of outdoor seating by the pool patio. Each table comes with a 60-minute hourglass, ensuring that you can be in and out in an hour. Valet parking is $5, another nice touch.
The grub: Global cuisine with a focus on local ingredients and Mediterranean flavors. Chef Psilakis is known for Greek cuisine but the menu darts around the world with items like Korean BBQ prawn salad, a brisket sandwich and spicy shellfish paella. Prices are wallet-friendly given the venue and the chef: starters average $8, snacks are $6 and mains range $13-$22. The best deal is the $15 daily special composed of a starter like corn jalapeno soup, a main like the grilled cheese BLT, a full size dessert like the airy vanilla cheesecake and a pint of beer.
Start off with homemade potato chips and addictive onion dipping sauce. The bloody Mary ceviche is a blend of red and yellow gazpacho and black grouper ceviche while the white asparagus salad is showered with a truffle vinaigrette. Mains like the brisket sandwich with a side of twice-fried potatoes are generous and sized for hefty appetites. The lamb burger is a juicy standout, topped with a feta sauce while lighter dishes include the simply grilled branzino with cherry tomatoes and olive oil and the chopped Greek salad.
Verdict: The power lunch gets a makeover with Michael Psilakis’s well-priced globally-inspired cuisine.