Nestled within an industrialized jungle of rundown buildings and warehouses, Majordomo shines bright like a diamond. The crowd’s humming vibe alongside the facade’s nod to LA’s graffiti street art and industrialized motif perfectly set the ambiance.
We were quite pleased to be seated on the patio. Elements of the natural wood and lush greenery contrasted perfectly against the industrialized feel of the cement. I couldn’t help but smile when I looked at the lights adorning the pergola.
Majordomo, feed me already!
First Drinks First
Majordomo’s drink menu offers a massive selection. The number of pages is more or less equivalent to a full-blown Chinese restaurant menu. The upside: they will likely have anything your heart desires. If you are a wino, Majordomo’s wine list will guarantee 100% satisfaction. As I flipped through the menu, there was one drink that really caught my eye…
Makkoli (Makgeolli) is a Korean rice wine. It’s lightly sparkling, milky-ish, off-white in color, and has a hint of sweetness. It’s quite low in alcohol content ranging from 6-9% and is an easy-going chill drink. Normally, they serve it from a huge makkoli “teapot” family style and drank from makkoli bowls. Unfortunately, at Majordomo, it came from a can. While it would’ve been incredible if the presentation took a bit of a nod to its traditional roots, my first sip of the makkoli instantly whisked me away into a nostalgic ride back to my Seoul drinking adventures.
A Forgettable First Bite
At first sight, I was super intrigued by the delicate flavor profile of this dish. Summertime watermelon partnered with fresh scallops against the earthy flavor of kombu – yes, please! Perfect harmony in my head but reality didn’t quite deliver. There was an unexpected bitterness from the watermelon rind that threw off my taste buds. The chunky quartered cuts of the scallops also made the dish feel super clunky. Regrettably, my first bite at Majordomo was easily forgettable.
BEST BITE of the Night – “Bing” me all night long
YOU MUST GET THE BING! If there’s one thing you have to eat at Majordomo, it’s definitely the Bing. Bing is Majordomo’s bread. It’s got a great structure and holds up quite well. But, it’s still soft and easily rips apart. There are many different pairings with the bing bread. We opted with the eggs and smoked roe and I couldn’t be happier with our choice. The creamy egg yolk and bursts of egg roe popping in my mouth were utterly delicious. Their in-house made crispy potato chips were a wonderful touch which brought a nice crunch that I was consistently in search of/ battling my boyfriend for. Same difference really, right? My only wish was that there was more than one bing per dish because my boyfriend and I ended up fighting for the last couple of pieces.
OMG, I’m on a Bing High… What’s next?
Next, we got the stuffed peppers. I love stuffed peppers especially when they’re deep fried. It’s light and crispy batter coated the jalapenos perfectly. Not entirely sure what kind of sausage was in it. Whatever it was though, it was real gooooooood!
Alongside, the stuffed peppers, the Tapioca Lo Mein was served. I was super excited to try this noodle dish considering Dave Chang became famous for his noodles at Momofuku. While the texture and chewiness of the noodles were great, the flavor was not to be desired. It had a slight kick, but the flavor and aroma of garlic were sadly absent. For a noodle dish by Dave Chang, I was certainly underwhelmed.
The Main Event: Ugly Delicious???
To say that I was excited to eat the short rib is a complete understatement. I was dreaming of this for days. After all, this dish captures the entire essence of “ugly delicious”. Majordomo’s boneless short rib is Dave Chang’s twist to the Korean dish, galbi jim.
The tender meat is served with carrots, daikon, rice cakes, topped with raclette cheese tableside, and finished off with scallions and red chili peppers. Sounds awesome, right? Well… While it breaks my heart to say this… it was just meh. Wasn’t really the “ugly delicious” I was looking forward to. Not sure whether it was how they mixed in the cheese to incorporate it that muddled the flavor, or how bland and uninspiring everything was. For a dish that costs $88 and was the main event, I was expecting to be wowed. Instead, for a second time of the night, I was sadly underwhelmed.
Majordomo: Ugly Delicious or Nah?
While Majordomo offers a great space and amazing ambiance, the food left me feeling torn. With all the amazing restaurants in LA, I don’t know when and if I’ll be hitting up Majordomo again. But if we do end up going again, we’d probably just order all the Bing dishes. Maybe then Majordomo will finally fulfill my ugly delicious dreams.