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Going Gallic

BY Krista Simmons | September 17, 2018 | Feature Features

The Sunset Strip gets the French treatment at Tesse.
Tesse's hamachi crudo is served with sudachi, melon and crispy wild rice.

Since parting ways with the successful restaurant group he helped to create—which was responsible for critically acclaimed spots like Bestia and Republique—restaurateur Bill Chait has been quietly plotting his next move. The first is with Tesse, a new Euro-centric eatery on the Sunset Strip. (He’s also a partner of The Manufactory project opening at ROW DTLA this fall, in collaboration with chef Chris Bianco of Pizzeria Bianco and Tartine’s Chad Robertson and Liz Prueitt.)

Similar to Chait’s other successful projects, Tesse has a solid chef at the helm, but that’s where the similarities end, conceptually speaking. Rather than existing as standalone space, Tesse is part of a larger development in partnership with Fred Segal, put together with investors from Evolution Media Partners at CAA. This includes a bakery that will take over the Fred Segal cafe as well as Boutellier, a high-end wine shop curated by Jordan Ogron.

The menu at the 125-seat Tesse, which gets is name from the French word delicatessen, was created by Belgian chef Raphael Francois, who cut his teeth at establishments like Le Cirque in New York and Hélène Darroze at Connaught Hotel in London, the latter of which was awarded two Michelin stars during his tenure.

True to its name, the menu is stacked with charcuterie offerings, naturally, including housemade terrines, pates, cured meats and various styles of sausages that can be ordered a la carte or in a chef’s selection gorgeously presented on a wood carving board. The charcuterie alone is enough of a reason to visit, and paired with a bottle of wine can be the perfect centerpiece for a jovial evening spent nibbling different bits and bobs while indulging in freshly baked bread. Large jars of pickles are paraded around and plucked out with tweezers and added to your board in a procession of tableside presentations that you’ll see for several other dishes on the menu.

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