Allumette's Quiet Revolution In Echo Park

Allumette reinvigorates the Echo Park dining scene

Miles Thompson, the 25-year-old chef at Allumette, is leading a quiet revolution in Echo Park.

The neighborhood may be home to numerous hip locales, but a genuine cross-the-city destination restaurant has been missing–until now.

Armed with creative and intricately plated dishes, an aggressively flavored cocktail list and an intriguing build-your-own-tasting-menu concept, Allumette is primed to change that.

So far the restaurant is off to a brilliant start, if our recent meals are any indication. Those who attended the restaurant's precursor pop-up, Vagrancy Project, will notice a distinct maturation of both food and service at Allumette.

Start with a lozenge of fried oyster dressed with kimchi ranch dressing and pickled Asian pear ($6), a Korean twist on a fry-shack staple, or a swig of the You Only Live Twice cocktail ($11), made from gin, falernum, Szechuan peppercorns and tangerine juice.

The best dishes balance elements of soulful American cooking with more complex additions, such as the wicked smoke-and-vinegar punch of bacon-wrapped pork shoulder with pickled crosnes and feuille de brick ($16), or bitter lettuce mixed with avocado, orange, macadamias and smoked soy cream ($8).

Even the cheesecake ($7), adapted from Thompson's grandmother's recipe, is artfully deconstructed: cream cheese mousse swirled with frozen cookie dough, then decorated with crumbled graham-cracker crust, red walnuts and maple syrup.

The revolution may not be televised, but it will be delicious.