Friday, May 09, 2003


I've always found Puran's a bit of an odd duck. First, there's the weird Farfalla congruence: both restaurants have locations on Hillhurst in Los Feliz and La Brea near Hancock Park. (True, the Farfalla on La Brea changed it's name ... n.b. I've always found that the Farfalla on La Brea to be mediocre, while the Los Feliz location to be pretty good... weird) Then there are some of the low-budget details of the place -- the laminated menu, which offers cheeseburgers in addition to pastas and grilled items. Want wine? There's a larger list at the Los Feliz location, but on La Brea, where I dined the other night, there are two choices: red and white. We ordered the red, which, lo and behold, was the J. W. Morris merlot, familiar to all Trader Joe's fans as a $3.99 special. (Much better than you'd expect for $3.99, but still...) The mark-up wasn't too bad, to 10 bucks. Fine.

That said, it's a nice neighborhood atmosphere, and I liked the waiter a great deal. But what was a pleasant surprise at this last visit to Puran's was the food I ordered. Namely, the peppercorn steak. Amazingly tender, smothered in a dark sauce with onions. And only $15.99. Hard to find cheap steak, and even harder to find good cheap steak. I'll be back.