Video clip from The Cooking Channel's "The Best Thing I Ever Ate: High Steaks"
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Some chefs are notorious for their dazzling tricks with liquid nitrogen, their exacting technique or their new approach to long-forgotten grains. Suzanne Tracht is famous for her pot roast. And her deviled eggs. And her banana cream pie. If Gene Kelly danced through a time tunnel from 1953 into Jar, he would be able to have a tomato and onion salad, a broiled rib-eye with Béarnaise sauce, and a chocolate sundae for dessert; his martini would be bone-dry; and he could get a bowl of creamed corn if he wanted it. But Jar isn’t precisely retro — Tracht’s gift lies in her ability to reproduce the old tastes within a modern context, so that the sautéed pea tendrils with garlic make as much sense as the creamed spinach, the duck-fried rice as the mashed potatoes, and the char siu-style pork chop as the prime filet mignon.
Dining scene at Jar Restaurant, a still from La La Land
Since opening, her brick-faced spot at Beverly and Harper (you remember it from the scene in La La Land when Emma Stone runs into the night to meet Ryan Gosling) has seen restaurants come and go; it’s become a beacon of stability, allowing Tracht to develop treasured relationships with staff (food runner José Luis Escobar is not the only one who’s been there from the start) and customers alike.