Taste buds were vital to the survival of early humans, allowing them to determine which fruits were fit for human consumption and which fruits comedians with sledgehammers should smash. Reward your tiny tasters for eons of service with today’s Groupon: for $18, you get $40 worth of upscale international fare at Barbarella Neighborhood Bar & Kitchen in Silverlake.
Captained by executive chef Sean Poplar, Barbarella’s kitchen dishes out a seasonal menu of highly sophisticated, eclectic cuisine. When possible, dishes contain local, organic, and hormone-free ingredients sure to please carnivores, herbivores, and their hybrid omnivore offspring. Start off a supper with a rich burrata bruschetta loaded with prosciutto and sun-dried tomato pesto ($11) or a satisfyingly savory hummus with teriyaki mushrooms and hot loaves of pita ($11). Protein-packed platters, such as a braised short rib with crispy polenta and brussels sprout chips ($15) or Pacific salmon with rice cake, shitake mushrooms, and ponzu ($15), stifle deafening belly roars, and veggie dishes such as the mushroom risotto with shaved scallions and truffle oil ($8) lightly tickle the appetite into a blissful slumber. An assortment of pizzas, including a delicious discus topped with chicken sausage and parmesan reggiano ($16), are created using egg-free dough whipped up by Barbarella’s cooks in-house, not in the car on the way to the restaurant.
Wash down a meal with any of Barbarella’s 24 draft microbrews, a choice from the ample wine selection, or one of the bar’s signature cocktails, such as a citrus-vodka-and-Cointreau-drenched Jane Fonda Cosmo with house-made ginger syrup ($10). A DJ regularly spins on a high-tech EV sound system, and the interior features sleek, modern design tastefully contrasted with fancy chandeliers and overstuffed leather benches, creating an aesthetic that’s stylishly archaic and confident in its anachronistic coolness, like a prehistoric Elvis.
Barbarella Neighborhood Bar & Kitchen was featured in the Los Angeles Times and Los Angeles Weekly. More than 230 Yelpers give the restaurant a three-star average, and more than 800 Facebookers like it.