If you’re not feeling that hungry when you enter *Milo & Olive, don’t worry. It won’t last. First, you’re greeted by the sight of a display case filled with gorgeous pastries. The temptations continue as you pass patrons feasting on pork belly sausage pizza and plates of potato gnocchi and pasta artfully arranged in towers. My counter seatmate is moaning about the burrata panzanella salad with heirloom tomatoes.
But what intrigues me, as always, is something I’ve never had before. It’s a garlic knot featuring, get this, plentiful whole garlic cloves roasted in confit fat, wrapped in pizza dough and then cooked in a wood-fired oven till slightly blistered. I tear this trussed treat apart with my hands, dipping chunks of the soft bread in the warm extra-virgin olive oil and a little dish of fresh tomato sauce they give me to try. Oh, my God, is it good, and only $7 for one of the best new things I’ve eaten in a long time. As I watch a chef in the open kitchen make French toast with amazingly thick slices of cinnamon brioche for his cooking buddies, manager Rosemary slips a loaf of said bread into a bag for me to take on my journey. As if I’m ever going to make it out the door.
2723 Wilshire Boulevard, Santa Monica
Daily, bakery opens at 7 am, restaurant 8 am-11 pm
Sounds like Milo and Olive is reason enough to visit Santa Monica – pleased to see that you’re elevating the status of the lowly garlic bulb, Bill! It looks terrific!