Caulfield's In Beverly Hills Pays Homage To A Classic American Novel

"Crummy" and "lousy "are words that Holden Caulfield uses in the literary classic, Catcher in the Rye, often.

Fortunately, they can't be used to describe the character's namesake restaurant in the swanky Los Angeles neighborhood of Beverly Hills.

The vintage-style restaurant, located on the first floor of the SIXTY Hotel in Beverly Hills, was conceptualized and designed based on owner Ron Marino's favorite book.

"We're paying homage to one of the greatest classic American novels and Hollywood's troubled but golden years," he said. "The mural on our wall is a tribute to the writers, directors and actors who were persecuted and blacklisted in the late 1940s and 1950s, which is the time period of Holden's adventure."

Marino worked together with executive chef Eric Key to design a menu reflective of classic American fare with European influences and modern twists.   

Raised by a family of soulful cooks in Upstate New York, chef Key was first introduced to the culinary world in high school, when he worked as a line cook at a local burger joint named Buffalo Joe. His culinary journey eventually led him to California, where he continued to cook alongside award-winning chefs like Sandro Gamba of NoMI in Chicago and E. Michael Reid of The Huntley Penthouse in Santa Monica, California.

Each dish I had from this menu was fresh, flavorful, and arrived exactly the way I wanted it to.

The vegetable lasagna is out of this world — they nail the flavor and the cook time, serving it just the right amount of al dente. The roasted chicken with Brussels sprouts and mascarpone whipped mashed potatoes is juicy and succulent, and the crab cakes are perfectly seasoned.

Lastly — even though we ate it firstly — the kale salad is an absolute must. The textures vary between crunchy, sweet (made with dates, not raisins or cranberries), and bitter, creating a harmonious medley.

"I like it when somebody gets excited about something. It's nice," Holden's character famously said.  

He'd definitely love it here.