'LudoBites America' pops up at Casa Pulido in Redondo Beach tomorrow (you can call for reservations today)
LudoBites is returning to L.A. This time it's for TV. "LudoBites America" -- the coming television series based on Ludo and Krissy Lefebvre's pop-up restaurant LudoBites -- is taping its final episode at Casa Pulido in Redondo Beach (the show is set to start airing on the Sundance Channel July 19). Want in on Ludo's "tapas French Mex dinner"? The reservation line opens today at 5 p.m.
The premise of the show is to transform a local restaurant in a new city, whether in New Mexico or Nebraska, into LudoBites for one night. The Lefebvres work together with their host restaurant to generate buzz, fill seats and cook dinner -- a combination of Ludo’s high-end cooking with American classics. "It's very challenging," says Ludo. "We're in a different city, with new staff, new kitchen, sometimes there's no computer system. Sometimes they're not even real cooks. That's something. That's for real."
Cities visited so far: Mobile, Ala.; Raleigh, N.C.; Santa Fe, N.M.; Denver, Colo.; and Omaha, Neb. Next up, Redondo Beach, where Casa Pulido -- a more-than-40-year-old, family-run Mexican restaurant -- becomes Casa PuLudo with the theme "tapas French Mex."
Ludo says he's planning dishes such as ceviche with cucumber water and purslane; "French-style" fried tacos filled with brandade; squid with chorizo;; crispy octopus with smoky chipotle; beef with black rice and lemon; and foie gras quesadilla with caramelized choucroute, radish, cheese and mustard vinaigrette. "I've always wanted to do a foie gras quesadilla," says Ludo. (You may recall Ludo's pig ear quesadilla from "Top Chef Masters.")
The Lefebvres also are planning the next series of LudoBites in Los Angeles this summer at an undisclosed location. For now, it's French-Mex at Casa PuLudo, 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday. Phone reservations only; call (310) 540-8028.
LudoBites Redondo Beach, Casa Pulido, 228 Avenue I, Redondo Beach.
-- Betty Hallock
Flyer credit: "Ludo Bites America"