Valerie
 

Photo credit: Kelly Bone

 

Photo credit: Kelly Bone

Valerie

By Kelly Bone

Sugared rose petals sparkle atop Valerie Confection’s delicate petit fours. These treasure boxes of layered cake and flavored ganache come seductively finished with ivory white or bittersweet chocolate. Valerie Gordon and partner Stan Weightman, Jr. have made their sweet mark on Los Angeles with superb desserts like these since starting back in 2004. Through subsequent years of catering, Gordon’s recipes developed beyond desserts, and in 2013 her full repertoire unfurled into two outposts: The modern tea house of Valerie Echo Park, and the bakery and coffee stop of Valerie Grand Central Market.

Morning through afternoon at both the Echo Park and Grand Central Market locations, you can wake up with soft scrambled eggs with smoked salmon and breakfast bowls brimming with roasted potatoes, veggies, crème frâiche, and fried eggs. At lunch you'll find salads curled with tender leaves of baby kale and butter lettuce alongside slabs of fresh baked bread slathered in avocado or burrata. Subtle accents like pickled asparagus and lemon confit tickle dishes while plump caper berries and anchovies punch up salads.

Gordon’s fondness for teas is also evident in the bakery menu. In Echo Park, the tea list offers her favorite blends by the cup or pot, and can be served hot or over ice. Santa Barbara's Verve Coffee Roasters fill out the darker brew offerings with everything from perfectly made cappuccinos to smooth drip coffee. Served in a casually refined setting, both the breakfast and lunch here establish a prowess for the savory that matches the mastery displayed in Valerie Gordon’s renowned desserts.

hours

Echo Park:
Mon–Thu 8 AM–4 PM, Fri–Sat 8 AM–6 PM; Sun 9 AM–5 PM

Grand Central Market:
Mon–Thu 8 AM–4 PM, Fri–Sun 8 AM–6 PM

price range

$5 (toast and preserves) to $13 (smoked salmon tartine)
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