April 27 2010
Mark C O’Flaherty
My default lunch order in California is a Cobb salad. It’s light but sustaining and utterly delicious: chicken, lettuce, tomato, bacon, egg and cheese. I’m not really a salad kind of a man, but when it’s sunny and 1pm in Los Angeles, it’s a dish I crave.
The best Cobb, no question about it, is the one at The Polo Lounge at The Beverly Hills Hotel, although technically it’s called the McCarthy salad. While most Cobbs come with blue cheese, this one comes with cheddar, and the blue cheese is in the dressing. But that’s not why it’s such a stellar dish. The real genius of the McCarthy is in its double chopping (or the “chop-chop”) which leaves fine and meticulously ordered pieces presented at the table unmixed. It’s as pretty as it is delicious. I’ve tried to replicate it at home, to disastrous, mushy, effect.
As I won’t be in Los Angeles for the next few months, I’m pleased to discover that The Polo Lounge (pictured) is coming to The Beverly Hills Hotel’s sibling, The Dorchester, in London from April 26-30. The Promenade Bar is getting a temporary Beverly Hills Hotel makeover in pink and green, and the whole Polo Lounge menu will be available, including the McCarthy salad. If only they were able to bring the pool and poolside bungalows, too, I’d install myself for the whole week.