Twelve guests, approximately four courses, once a month, under the stars in the hills of Hollywood. The food is seasonal and sourced primarily from local farmers' markets and whatever I can yank from my garden. Guests arrive for a cocktail and then dinner is served.

For reservations or inquiries email Dinner at Eight. Confirmation will be sent immediately upon receipt of e-mail reservation, and a reminder (address included) will be sent one day prior. Whether you decide to collect your most special friends and make a reservation, bring a date, or fly solo and meet a pile of new friends is entirely up to you. Either way this culinary adventure will be sure to satisfy and delight the taste buds. Just a suggestion: wouldn't this make a great surprise birthday or anniversary present?

Saturday, June 5, 2010: Dinner at Eight's Maiden Voyage

“Such a special evening and I can only praise your food.”   - J. Westerberg

“You have a sophisticated palate paired with a comforting cooking style so that makes for a great combination.”   - Y. Davis

“What a wonderful evening - fantastic wine pairings and it's hard to imagine a more beautiful setting in the heart of LA. That is not even mentioning the food - the nuanced, well-loved and flawlessly presented food. Elliott really pulled out all the stops and I would say that I didn't want the meal to end, except the 'meal not ending' would have meant no strawberry shortcake.”   
- D. Stern



Vichyssoise atop one raw Hama Hama oyster & garnished with caviar
2008 Domaine de la Fruitiere "Cuvée Petit M," Muscadet Sevre-et-Maine

Endive salad with roasted garlic, walnuts and oil cured olives with Meyer lemon cream
2007 COS "Rami," Sicily

Grilled lamb chops with mint and lemon over spring pea risotto and heirloom carrots braised in vermouth, sweet butter & sage
2008 Pithon-Paille "Graviers," Bourgueil

Fresh strawberries, chocolate mint & Chantilly cream with cornmeal shortcakes
NV Terres Dorées "FRV100," Beaujolais

Executive Chef: Elliott Shaffner
Pastry Chef: Kathy Emerson

Wine Pairings by: Jill at Domaine LA
6801 Melrose Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90038
(323) 932-0280

After weeks of planning, sweating, shopping, prepping and stressing, Dinner at Eight’s maiden voyage is now behind us. Although my personal experience with the actual party was almost entirely from within the confines of my tiny kitchen, I do believe it was a surprising success.

The guest list consisted of six of my friends, my lucky taste testers. None of them really knew one another very well, their only real connection was that they know me. I thought it best to have somewhat of a trial evening before the real deal. This way I could test out my methods, timing, well, everything, and get their input, feedback and suggestions. Plus, it always makes me happy to cook for my friends. And, ultimately they all had a hand to play in helping me out in some small way. Sigalle hooked us up with La Brea Bakery bread, Doug did the lighting, Yvonne made the menus pretty and printed them out, in addition to designing the playlist of music for the evening.

The back of the house consisted only of myself, chef and brains behind the operation, my mom, helper in every way, designer of the table setting, and pastry chef, and Jill from Domaine LA, our sommelier. My oldest friend, Heather, was the server for the evening – and apparently really added an exceptional flair of professionalism to the process.

The guests began to arrive at 7pm for Aperol aperitivos, bread, olives and introductions/reaquaintings prior to seating at 8pm. This is about when I went from nervous and scared into The Zone. And for the most part, that is where I stayed for the next 3 hours (felt like 5 minutes), until the dessert course was served.

Everyone loved the night. Including me. I got some great feedback and I know a couple of things to tweak for future Dinner at Eight parties. Most of all, I am really excited about what is to come. Food to share, fresh conversation under the stars, wine, new friendships being formed, an Evening. 

For pictures of the food, recipes and more fun details visit F for Food!

Photos credits: Kisma Baker, Yvonne Davis and Heather Mathews.


Kisma said...

I had such a lovely time & the food was stellar! Thanks so much for including me on the maiden voyage.
Can't wait to be a paying attendee. Well done Elliott!

SinoSoul said...

Looks like a FAAABULOUS time. That table looks like something I wanted from World Market.