There are a lot of cool shows in Los Angeles, and a lot of great restaurants too, but Monkey Town in DTLA combines them both. Monkey Town first popped up in Brooklyn back in 2003 as a video art show. After spending 10 years in New York, Monkey Town traveled to Denver (2014), Barcelona (2015) and just wrapped up a 3-month run in Austin. The latest incarnation has made it’s way to Los Angeles. It happens inside the old George M. Fabric upholstery warehouse on the corner of 111 West 21st Street and South Main Street (yes, it’s south of the 10. Don’t freak out). Inside the 10,000 square foot space is a giant 27-foot cube, and inside that cube 40 people watch a two-hour multi-screen video art program while dining on a 4 or 5-course meal prepared by Chef Nick Montgomery.
We visited Monkey Town on Tuesday night during the 5-course offering. The menu:
- Lightly Cured Hamachi | kohlrabi, cilantro, yuzu dashi
- Heirloom Tomato Salad | roasted torpedo onion, baby zucchini, wakame
- Gnocchetti Tirolesi & Berkshire Pork Ragout | cauliflower, almonds, ricotta salata
- Red Wine Braised Short Rib | roasted radish, crispy shallots
- Toasted Rice Custard | strawberries, shiso, sesame brittle
The food was great, especially the Gnocchetti Tirolesi & Berkshire Pork Ragout. All the meats are organic and all the vegetables are sourced from local farmers markets. Throughout the night you are also served three different wine pairings. There are also vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free menus. The 5-course meal (including wine) is $50 until July 3rd, after that the price increases to $70. The tip is not included.
The show was a series of funky videos. Some were abstract animation. Others were more traditional videos (although there was nothing really traditional about the story lines). Halfway through the presentation there is a live performance. We got to see the performance artist Jeepneys. She was awesome. The live performer changes throughout the run of Monkey Town, so you never know what you are going to get (unless you check the schedule in advance).
Monkey Town is in DTLA until October 1st. Tickets to Monkey Town go on sale a few weeks in advance. The August tickets go on sale July 15th and the September tickets go on sale August 15th. If you are looking for a unique new experience, you need to head to Monkey Town.
Monkey Town 111 West 21st Street (at So. Main Street) monkeytownhq.com