I am a person who enjoys a well-lit, organized atrium space, and on a sunny LA afternoon, Tavern is a good spot to grab a quick lunch and soak in the abundance of natural light.
One little detail that I liked was that the butter came with a bit of sea salt. I’m a sucker for sea salt.
I ordered a white bean puree as an appetizer, and then the market fish (a pan-seared salmon with black rice, pine nuts, and roasted beets). Simple bistro-y dishes, well-executed.
The service was an improvement on past Tavern forays, and while not superb (certainly compared to some of its friendly Italian neighbors like Osteria Latini and Palmeri), better than its reputation for sometimes being neglectful. Plus, the power lunch and well-heeled dinner crowds that Tavern attract made for fun people-watching. Lots of big sunglasses and cashmere sweaters and valet’d cars and big smiles, like the slow parts of a Bret Easton Ellis novel.