THE FEDERAL BAR
NOHO GASTROPUB TURNS INTO WEEKLY ‘POUTINERIE’
I’ve been a fan of The Federal Bar North Hollywood for some time now. It’s a solid spot for eats in NoHo even if its cocktail program is from from stellar—although it is a good place to drink some fine beer on tap, including my go-to Allagash Curieux. And now every Monday and Tuesday starting at 6pm it’s a must-visit for any fan of poutine.
One of Canada’s best exports, maybe since Rush, poutine is a French-Canadian dish and culinary trend that originated in Quebec that traditionally combines French fries, cheese curds and a light brown gravy on top. The ultimate in pub or “buzzed” food, it may sound sickening to some but it is a tasty and overindulgent dish. And at the NoHo Federal Bar, which morphs into a “Poutinerie” twice a week, diners can enjoy a variety of poutines or create their own.
During my recent visit for poutine overload, I did start with a specialty drink—the only cocktail on the menu that didn’t seem overly sweet for my taste. And go figure, it was a tiki libation. And props to the bar for its Painkiller, a satisfying mix of Flor De Caña Dark Rum, Mahina Coco, De Peche, fresh jalapeño and fresh lime juice.
Newcomers to poutine should really start with the classic version, although at The Federal Bar you can choose between French fries, sweet potato fries or taters tots as your base. But if you’re going with the classic, then make it regular fries, cheese curds and gravy. And while the portions are generous, it’s best if you can share in order to get more bang for your buck.
Toppings including blue cheese, short rib, soyrizo, crispy onions, bacon, and crispy brussels. With more than 100 varieties for meat-lovers and vegetarians alike, the combinations are endless.
Menu options include Classic Poutine (cheese curds with grain mustard gravy over house fries); Poutine Cabrones (avocado, bacon, cheddar, red onions, chipotle over tots); Angry Chicken (blue cheese crumbles, wing sauce, ranch dressing over house fries); Breakfast (cheese curds, bacon, avocado, hollandaise with a fried egg over house fries); Texas Poutine (pulled pork cheese curds, BBQ sauce, crispy onion over house fries); and S’Morestine (chocolate sauce, marshmallow, graham cracker crumbs over sweet potato fries). This special menu will be featured both downstairs in the restaurant and upstairs in the lounge, where there is live karaoke every Monday and Tuesday (21+).
The Texas Poutine and Poutine Cabrones are both satisfying and solid selections. The pulled pork in the Texas treat is so tasty, and the Cabrones was splendid and spicy. I just loved the tater tots as a topping.
Creating our own poutine, we went with the combination of sweet potato fries, short rib, blue cheese, grilled corn, crispy brussels, and beef gravy. Now that was a crowd pleaser. The sweet potato fries, short rib and beef gravy is a winning combo.
Valley residents really need to get their poutine on at The Federal Bar and it’s really worth visiting for residents of LA proper. Go by train (the pub is just down the street from the metro station), drive or uber if you really want to make a night out of it. But since we’re talking Mondays and Tuesdays, it’s an easy way to start your week with a pretty delicious and decadent dinner.
The Federal Bar is located at 5303 Lankershim Blvd in North Hollywood. Call (818) 980-2555.
Some Photography Courtesy of: The Federal Bar
Story by Jose Martinez