I should have known better. When talking local restaurants with my aesthetician, she was shocked I hadn't tried Dusty's--"it's really fab" she said. However, a knack for well-shaped eyebrows does not a restaurant critic make. To put it bluntly? Dusty's was disgusting.
Regular readers of Erin's Kitchen know I don't make a habit of skewering restaurants. Usually if I have a bad meal, I don't bother to write it up--there's too much good stuff out there to focus on, and perhaps it was just an off night. However, our Saturday night dinner at Dusty's was the worst restaurant meal I've had in ages--bad food, bad service, bad wine. I'd rather no one else have the yucky feeling of dropping $80 on such a sorry supper.
Our food was so bad we made up names for it: I had Moules Frights and J dined on Rubber Ducky. My mussels were mushy and flavorless, sitting in about 1/2 a centimeter of watery broth. I ate about 6, consoling myself with my overdone french fries. J's duck breast was cooked to death, rubbery and, like my mussels, flavorless. As I chewed (and chewed and chewed) a bite of his dish, I thought wistfully of the many perfectly servicable $14 duck breasts we'd enjoyed at Madame Matisse when it still did dinner, a full $11 cheaper than this pathetic affair which was accompanied by what had to have been frozen vegetables.
I might have actually sent my mussels back (something I never do, I think it's the Midwestern Protestantism in me), if I would have been able to catch our elusive waitress. She zoomed past our table ocassionally, always averting her eyes and never asking how things were. When I finally flagged her down, she barely broke stride, and snipped "Yeah" when I asked if we could get our check. Excuse me? I thought about chucking my industrial strength wineglass at her quickly disappearing backside, but instead I sucked up my courage to leave a bad tip (something else I never do) of 10%.
As we wandered out to the valet, we wondered about the people packing this restaurant. Who are they? Why, in a city of never-ending gustatory pleasures, are they willing to spend so much money on such crappy food and lackluster service? I guess I'll never know, because I'm certainly not going back to Dusty's to ask.
3200 W. Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90026