By Nora Zelevansky / August 27th, 2009


Every time my friend C.M. & I meet, we lunch at Mariposa inside Neiman Marcus Beverly Hills. 

Sure, we pretend there's a chance of us meeting elsewhere.  We dance around the whole "where should we go" question, as if there's a chance in hell we'll wind up anywhere else.  Sometimes we even schedule our meal at another location, only to change locations back to good old Neimans once again.

See, there are actually many reasons why lunch at Neimans is genius and I will enumerate them here (ahem):

1. The Neimans experience is old world.  Just walking in to the perfume-filled lobby transports you to another, more genteel time, when a certain breed of woman wore only Chanel heels ("What's an Ugg?") and wouldn't dare to sport a pair of jeans. The perfume smell reminds me of trips to Saks with my mother and great aunt Mitzi as a child in NYC, spellbound by all the pretty ladies with clickety-clacking heels.

And downstairs at Mariposa, seriously, they still have models wander from table-to-table displaying their wares.  Like today, they were in the midst of an Escada trunk show, so a beautiful, eight-foot-tall model arrived at our table to show off a dress from the collection.  Of course, mostly she reminded us all that we shouldn't be eating buttery, eggy carbs etc., which brings us to the food . . .

2. In a word: popovers.  When I was growing up in NYC, my friends and I used to frequent Popover Café on the Upper West Side for popovers with heavenly strawberry butter and a hot apricot punch with a fresh cinnamon stick.  SO. DAMN. GOOD.  I never saw a popover in LA until C.M. introduced me to Mariposa and now we scarf at least one of them in all its eggy goodness at each visit.  Of course, when she was pregnant, she allowed herself two.  Lucky girl!

3. At the beginning of every lunch, they serve you an amuse bouche, which is ALWAYS a tiny mug of chicken consumé with a crusty cheese bread stick.  It's so yummy and comforting and wonderful!  I love!

4. The other stuff pictured below.

So pop over for a . . . eh, even I can't bring myself to get that punny.

xo – N.



[CLICK IMAGES TO ENLARGE: Chicken Consumé, New Four Cheese Grilled Cheese, Grilled Chicken Salad]