We’ll Take the Grilled Cheese!


Rolling Stone magazine
unveils the Rolling Stone Restaurant & Lounge in Los Angeles. Guaranteed to be “edgy-yet-elegant.”


By Blurt Staff


Sometimes we get press releases of such magnitude-inous
importance that all we can do is stand by and gape at the computer screen. Such
is the case with the one below, which we now bring to you, dear readers, as a
public service. (Emphasis marks, ours.) Make sure you are sitting down…




Capturing the edgy-yet-elegant spirit of one of the
world’s most iconic music magazines, Rolling
– a new restaurant and lounge concept – will open its flagship at Hollywood & Highland
by hosting the VIP afterparty for the American Music Awards (AMAs) on Sunday,
November 21.  Previewing the space
through the official launch event planned for early 2011, Rolling Stone/Los Angeles (RS/LA) marks
the first-ever licensing of the Rolling Stone name for an American restaurant.


“The Rolling Stone restaurant
and lounge captures the essence of the magazine and is the ideal extension of
our brand.  We are excited to open up the
venue by hosting the AMA afterparty and sharing this new Hollywood
destination with some of the top names in the music community,” offered Jann
Wenner, founder and publisher of Rolling


In partnership with Rolling
magazine, and with the design acumen of Gavin Brodin (Crown Bar / Los Angeles, The Abbey / West
Hollywood), RS/LA embodies a fusion
of classic and modern, stylish and casual

The 10,500-sq. ft. space is distinguished by a “vintage chic” design, a
facile interplay between 19th-century European bohemia and modern American
bravura.  Its first impression comes from
the street: a gleaming, two-story, half-cylinder of paned glass that rises from
Highland Avenue,
allowing natural light to flood through during daytime hours.  Patrons enter at the top, from the mezzanine
rotunda off Highland,
into a lobby highlighted by posh pendant lights, cobblestone-like floors in
chevroned limestone, and an antique floor cart salvaged from a defunct citrus factory that serves as a reception


Its 5,900-sq. ft. upstairs
dining room welcomes up to 140 guests, an additional 40 on its verdant
patio.  RS/LA’s dining room exudes lush comfort with its walnut-hued hardwood
floors, 1950s-style leather chairs and tufted red-leather banquettes.  One area with five British-style lampposts is
illuminated by a leaded-glass ceiling, giving the impression of a natural
skylight, another section lit by octagonal ceiling fixtures cradling amber
LEDs.  Its playful blend of styles is ample: from the main bar, its shelving a
mix of leaded glass and reclaimed
plumbing pipes
, to the wall design, which integrates elegant sconces with
candid rock photos.  Two separate
sections provide semi-private dining for large parties.


The American heritage of Rolling Stone magazine, and its global
reach, is celebrated by Executive Chef Christopher Ennis (Fig & Olive, One
Sunset, Stout, Crown Bar, Vibrato Jazz Grill, Astra West).  An upscale menu offers a “melting pot” of
cultures, with an emphasis on mixed small plates, American preparations, and
flavors infused from Asia and Europe.  Snacks
include warm bleu cheese popovers
with caramelized shallot butter; soft pretzel knots with beer cheese
fondue; and three cured meats, cornichon, olives, three mustards, herb salad
& grilled country bread.  Starters range from tuna tartar with
crispy potato, pineapple, coconut & spicy avocado; to sweet potato
agnolotti with toasted marshmallow and pecan brown butter; to glazed pork belly
& grilled shrimp with corn pudding and tamarind sauce.


Along with an imaginative
range of salads, grilled flatbreads and “mini sandos,” main courses include
pan-roasted wild striped bass with preserved lemon, capers & raisins;
organic herbed chicken, cannellini beans, pancetta and spinach; pinot-braised short rib “osso bucco,” with whipped potatoes and chard; as
well as an array of grilled and roasted meats and fish.  RS/LA’s full menu will be available in the
restaurant, with small-bites served in the downstairs lounge.


A winding oak staircase
takes guests to the street-level lounge, a two-tiered space with a circular
upper landing lit by a grand chandelier whose inset projectors bring the
adjacent walls to life.  A half-dozen
private booths and publicly accessible lounge chairs and banquettes populate
this zone, which can also be configured as a stage for live bands.  Near a dedicated lounge bar and an area for
bottle service in the lower zone is a suspended DJ booth, the musical focus of Rolling Stone evident in close to 80
speakers and 40 computerized lights installed throughout the venue.


RS/LA was developed by Aaron
West, CEO of An American Dream, in partnership with Dwight Freeney of the Indianapolis
  An American Dream is a
diversified entertainment company with evolving strengths in music production,
artist management/development, and television programming.  With the vision to expand into hospitality,
West and Freeney partnered with Rolling
magazine and are bringing RS/LA to life with Salvatore Feli, former
VP of operations for The ONE Group and manager of Tavern on the Green, Rue57,
Tao, The Box Tree and Bolzano’s; and Stacy Colbert Feli, human resources and
marketing executive for such luxury consumer brands and venues as Estée Lauder,
Tiffany & Co., Tao, Café Gray, Tavern on the Green and The Russian Tea
Room.  Jason Edmonds, An American Dream
executive VP and an acclaimed producer and songwriter whose songs have been
recorded by such artists as Whitney
Houston, JoJo, Boys II Men and Babyface
, will support West in bringing
entertainment to RS/LA.


“Our licensing agreement
with Rolling Stone magazine marks a
great achievement.  With the strong team,
coupled with the iconic publication and the RS/LA brand, we will rock the hospitality industry with a sexy, modern and hip venue,” stated
CEO Aaron West.


Stone’s restaurant will be open Sunday, Monday and Wednesday from 11:30
a.m.-midnight; Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 11:30 a.m.-3:00
a.m.  The lounge is open Tuesday,
Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 9 p.m.-2 a.m.


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