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Spago exterior

Wolfgang Puck's Spago gets a $4M facelift

The iconic Los Angeles restaurant has an updated look and a new menu

Spago received a $4 million facelift for its 30th anniversary this year.

Wolfgang Puck’s iconic Los Angeles restaurant, which for years defined upscale California cuisine, closed in July for a complete overhaul and menu redesign, estimated to cost about $4 million, the company said. Spago reopened earlier this month with a décor that is sleeker and more sophisticated.

Spago first opened in Hollywood in 1982, but Puck moved the restaurant to its current Beverly Hills location in 1997. The design there, created by Puck’s then-wife and the restaurant’s co-founder Barbara Lazaroff, was colorful and almost whimsical, with hand-blown Italian glass chandeliers and etched glass panels opening to the intimate enclosed patio.

The new design by Waldo Fernandez is more formal, with hues of grey, brown and white. A retractable roof now covers the patio, and a two-sided fireplace separates it from the main dining room.

The menu has also been reworked, losing classic dishes such as the spicy tuna tartare in sesame miso cones; the house-smoked salmon pizza with shaved sweet onions, dill crème fraiche and salmon “pearls;” and veal wiener schnitzel with fingerling potatoes and mâche salad.

The new menu includes dishes such as veal filet mignon tartare with smoked mascarpone; grilled whole Dover sole with shrimp, mirugai saltwater clams, chorizo, saffron and artichokes; Colorado lamb chops with Moroccan spices, charred eggplant and labneh; and seasonal desserts, such as caramel bourbon pain perdu with vanilla- and maple-roasted pear with “50-bean” Tahitian vanilla ice cream.

Puck has brought the Spago concept to three other locations — Las Vegas, Hawaii and Colorado — but the Beverly Hills restaurant remains the flagship of the fine dining group, which includes 19 restaurants. Puck also operates or licenses about 80 limited-service restaurants, including Wolfgang Puck Express outlets in airports, and his company includes a large catering arm, as well as a line of licensed retail products, cookware and cookbooks.

Contact Lisa Jennings at [email protected].
Follow her on Twitter: @livetodineout

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