When The Restaurant Is Named “Animal”, Best Believe It’s Gettin’ Wild

You know you’re doing something right when the restaurant has no streetfront sign, is always totally packed, primetime dinner reservation spots are booked weeks in advance, and the only leftover reservations available the week of are for 9pm on a weeknight! This restaurant is absolutely perfect for your next food adventure and in a moment, you’ll see why! Our only gripe was that they ran out of the chicken liver toast (one of the things we were DYING to try) literally right before our order was taken, but that’s okay; this just means we’ll have to come back to try it and the rest of their menu soon! 🥰

One of the most memorable parts of dinner was the exceptional service. Talking to the waiter felt like talking to one of our closest friends 👫 and we were well taken care of from the moment we stepped in, to when we walked out the door 😌

Special thanks to Selena for going on this food adventure with us and being a stellar production aide who helped us get these quality food pictures 📸💖

Our Orders:

Dish 1: Spicy beef tendon chips with charred onion pho dip

Kindly comped by the restaurant since we had to wait well past our reservation time for a table to open up 🙌 While the chips reminded us of Filipino chicharron 🐖, we could taste the delicate aftertaste of the beef tendon 🐄 The creamy dip also surprised us because it was bursting with pho flavor 🍜! A great start to dinner – we loved their fusion of pho with chicharron ☺️

Dish 2: Pig ear, red chili, lime, market egg

At first we thought this dish was going to be just OK, but when Selena did the honors of mixing up the bowl, all of the amazing, savory smells came out from hiding under the egg 🐣 We really loved the crunchiness of the pig ear 🐷 and it even had a nice little spice kick to go along with it 🌶 (Don’t worry – if you’re not about spicy food, this dish doesn’t come even close to setting your tongue on fire) Overall, this dish tasted very similar to sisig, so while we weren’t shook by their pig ear, we would definitely eat 3 bowls of it if given the chance 🍚🍚🍚

Dish 3: Dungeness crab, tomato, kombu, shiso

Elijah was craving seafood 🦀 and really wanted to try one of their crab dishes. This freshly made plate was a welcome surprise after eating the pig ear 👂 The crab was soft and super tasty, especially when mixed with the tomato, kombu, and shiso. Each bite transported us to the beach where we were hit by the cool ocean spray 🌊 Our palates were definitely refreshed after eating this dish and ready for our next course 👍

Dish 4: Marrow bone, chimichurri, caramelized onions

Okay, fine. We’ll admit it. We’re a sucker for bone marrow 🙋🏽‍♂️🤷🏽‍♀️ The marrow-bone was delicious (of course), but the chimichurri was the low-key gem of this dish. We’ve had good chimichurri before, but Animal has GREAT chimichurri which excelled at adding another dimension to the dish without overpowering the star of the show. The toast was perfectly toasted and went from a 5/5 to a 6/5 with the bone marrow and chimichurri spread on top. Eat. This. Dish. 🦴🍞😍

Dish 5: Poutine, oxtail gravy, cheddar

DO NOT SKIP THE POUTINE. We were on the fence of getting this dish as we have yet to find mind-blowing poutine anywhere outside of Canada, but we were so glad we did! We expected their fries 🍟 to be perfectly seasoned and fried (they were), but the move to use oxtail 🐂 gravy took everything to the next level! 🤯 They were able to highlight both the soft and crunchy textures of poutine which was complimented by the rich and savory taste of the oxtail gravy. We were amazed at how light the dish was (for poutine), but we’re not complaining 😊

Dish 6: Sweetbreads, creamed spinach, hen of the woods, caper, brown butter

In case you didn’t know, sweetbreads are a type of organ meat (oftentimes coming from the pancreas and/or thymus gland from veal or lamb), not a type of bread🙅🏽‍♂️ 🍞 that is sweet. While some people may shy away from eating another animal’s organs, we sure didn’t! And you shouldn’t either! 😎 This course had so much going on but thankfully, we didn’t get lost in the sauce. This florentine dish was savory, creamy, delicious, and oh my god we finished it already?!? 😭 Haha, get this dish if you are feeling a little bold as it is a prime example of how amazing food can be made without needing to use the best meat or a prime cut of an animal 🍖

Dish 7: Veal tongue, pickle, apple, salmon roe, black mustard

Out of all of the dishes we tried, this one was the best by a MILE 👅 Aside from the fantastic plating of the dish, the ingredients were intrinsically high quality and they absolutely nailed the tastes of everything. Each ingredient had its own unique texture so we found our mouths to be quite entertained 😉 in addition to enjoying all of the fantastic flavors 😋 The overall taste and presentation were both flawless and we couldn’t have asked for a better dish to end on. If you only have the opportunity to get one dish from their star-studded menu, get this one 😍

Overall ratings:
Elijah: 5/5
Noelle: 5/5

Price range: $50-70 per person (We recommend ordering at least 2-3 dishes per person)

Drinks: Beer and wine only.

Reservations: If you want to go here between 5-8 pm, book your reservation well ahead of time on Resy. There are usually reservations available day of, but they will likely be very early or very late at night. Walk-ins are very unlikely to get seated.

Parking: Street meter (free after 8pm) or $8 valet

Noise level: Medium

Attire: Casual

  • Other Tips:
    Chef 👨‍🍳👩‍🍳 likes to take your orders all at the start so they can put them in an enjoyable sequence that keeps your palate engaged throughout the experience.
  • TRUST YOUR WAITER. They know what’s up.
  • They can get you started with your drinks while waiting for your table to be prepared.

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