Kit Marshal’s Le Sous-Sol is the very model of a Left Bank boite. It’s down a winding flight of stairs below his Au Petit Café restaurant where Marshal pioneered many French dishes in our area when it first opened in the early sixties. Le Sous-Sol is new (since January 1st, 1972), and has been an instant success, attracting the likes of the Rolling Stones, Sergio Mendes, artists Larry Bell and Dwayne Valentine, Warren Beatty and Julie Christie, musicians and producers—and, it too, is a tablehopper’s scene, where diners wave or get up to greet friends with effusive greetings and the obligatory showbiz kiss. (As to whether there’s an etiquette to tablehopping. I can only answer, do what you feel comfortable doing. If you want to nod, smile, wave a hand, over to a table to get into a brief conversation, then do it. But don’t intrude on a table that that has just been served food; allow them time to enjoy their lunch or dinner. Quite often, what’s comfortable is to have an after-dinner drink together, or leave the tables if the restaurant is jammed, and have a drink at the bar.)
It was Marshal who pioneered the mushroom salad in southern California, and at Le Sous-Sol it is perfection. Thin slices of white mushrooms are gently bathed in a fine oil-and-vinegar dressing $1.75. Or, if you prefer a richer first course, there is a duck pate $2.50 at dinner, $2.00 at lunch—blended pork and goose seasoned with herbs, white wine and baked, and lovely chilled artichokes $1.50 served with a thick vinaigrette sauce.
Le Sous-Sol, downstairs of Au Petit Café, is at 1230 North Vine Street in Hollywood. Telephone: HO 97176.