“Food is our common ground, a universal experience.” -James Beard
On January 21, my 11th birthday, I decided to go to MB Post for dinner. As my early readers remember, I toured this restaurant at cooking camp, and I have been inspired to eat there ever since. There was only one way to make it better, and it happened: My grandma flew out to our house and surprised me on my birthday! So, she joined my friend Angie, Dad and I on my birthday dinner experience.
MB Post is a unique restaurant in many ways, including seasonal harvest changes to the menu, the chef’s instinct of the day, and its family-style seating. But something that stood out to me was the one-of-a-kind decor. The entire restaurant is themed like a post office, because that is what MB Post’s building used to hold.
I think it is important to write about MB Post because it is “all the hype” in the South Bay right now. As my dad said, “David LaFevre (MB Post’s chef) is practically a legend.” So stay tuned for an extra special birthday post. Let the culinary adventure begin…
I walked into MB Post with high expectations. I knew this place was great. Legendary. Unbelievable. But what I didn’t know was that I would leave far more satisfied than I expected.
Our server hand-delivered an envelope addressed to us, containing the evening’s menu, which had “Happy Birthday” written across the top. As we scanned through a menu like I have never seen before, they were already on my good side. MB Post serves only small plates, so we could order many different dishes to try.
First Parcel of the Night: Bacon Biscuits. I saw it on the menu and it screamed out my name! Angie was with me – we just had to get them, so we did. Our bacon biscuits were obviously concocted by an accomplished baker. The biscuits were crunchy but flaky, melting but solid, with a perfect balance of all pastry textures. The bacon was cooked to a crispy, dissolving state, and worked in unison with the crunchy dough to create what was probably the best biscuit I have ever had.
Next on the list was the Salumi Cutting Board. A wooden cutting board supporting piles of cheese and cured meats, this was perhaps the most impressive selection of meats I have ever laid eyes on. Cabacero, also known as “Literally The World’s Best Pork!”, was “literally” unbelievable. Served like salami, it surprised me the way it was prepared, but I loved it anyway. It was not too fatty, but was still moist and well-loved at our table.
We also ordered Speck on our Salumi Cutting Board, which was prepared with a little bit more fat than some other cured meats. In my opinion, it truly tasted like heaven. Cold and smooth, it melted in my mouth and brought immense joy to my taste buds. I would definitely suggest the Speck — and the entire cutting board — from MB Post.
Also for our cutting board, I chose a delicious cheese called Challerhocker. It was on verge of SHARP, but that is how I like it! It wasn’t too firm, but it wasn’t creamy either. I enjoyed it, and it was a good choice. Also, on the side of the cutting board was a cup of pickled grapes and selection of luscious honey. I wasn’t so sure about the pickled grapes, but I tried them and fell in love. I guess it was an acquired taste, one that I enjoyed though. I was so sad when the cup was through, and I would suggest to you to try the pickled grapes if you order a cutting board.
The honey assortment was excellent. There was chestnut honey, truffle honey, and honeycomb, and it ALL blew me away. Who knew honey could be so darn delicious?
Next we drifted into the real dinner course. We started by ordering Thai Marinated Shrimp Ceviche. The shrimp were, unfortunately, lacking much flavor, but the acidity of the limes made up for most of that. It was not the best ceviche I have ever had, but it was not bad either. I cannot say I would order this item again, but I would not disapprove of it either.
The Diver Scallops, on the other hand, were incredible. The seared goodness was placed directly in front of me, as if they were intentionally meant to be. The scallops had a perfect crust, and they were moist and well-seasoned. I hate scallops that are seared to perfection, but tasteless or fishy inside. This, however, was not the case at MB Post. They were rather large, but I ate my share gladly. The cabbage and bacon butter on the side were tasty and approved of.
Next, Romanesco took flight to our table, or “Broccoflower,” as they called it. I practically shoveled it in my mouth, savoring each splendid bite. The Broccoflower was perfectly cooked, well-seasoned, and about as good as veggies can get! Yum, yum. The Broccoflower definitely earned our stamp of approval!
Then we had the sausage linguini. it was delicious in every way possible, and the sausages’ kick flavored the entire concoction. It was not unbelievable, but nonetheless enjoyable and always welcome in my stomach!
Ready for some mussels? Angie and I ordered the steamed mussels, with green curry, Chinese sausage, and coriander rice. They were perfectly cooked and the chef who created these obviously had some good taste and contrasting flavors. The mussels were exceptional in combination with the bacon, and I would definitely order it again.
Last for the dinner course were the pork ribs, smothered in a pungent mahogany sauce. These were pretty good ribs, but could definitely be beaten. I was not head-over-heels for this entree, but it was not bad.
NOW … for dessert! We ordered panna cotta and “The Elvis”. “The Elvis” is “a wonderful mess of chocolate pudding, peanut butter mousse, and bacon brittle,” as described on the menu. It was wonderful, yet it was a bit too rich for me. Me, can you believe it?!? (Thank you to MB Post, for making this dessert their birthday present to me.)
The chocolate pudding was like taking a bite out of heaven. Just perfect. But the heavenly chocolate, luscious thick peanut butter mousse, and crunchy bacon brittle were a little too much. Individually, they were all amazing flavors, but together they overpowered each other. Overall, it was a so-so dessert, but filled with spectacular flavors.
The panna cotta was really good. It was the first time I had ever tried panna cotta. The fruit was sweet, and the cream was a bit tart. They matched together, and it was a unique flavor that my taste buds had not yet been introduced to. When they finally met, my taste buds were pleased, but I don’t think they will be meeting again very soon.
Overall, my experience at MB Post was exceptional, fantastic, and very memorable. Thank you so much to Angie, Dad, and Grandma for such a great night!
Go MB Post!
1142 Manhattan Avenue
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
Tel: (310) 545-5405