, on Ventura Boulevard, offers Angelenos a refreshing break from hoity-toity brunch venues and routine lunch haunts.
Pillowed seats and small tables line the restaurants’ exterior as wrought iron gates lead to a small courtyard with butter-yellow walls and additional seating. The rustic charm infuses the comfort of American nostalgia and the simple elegance of European cafés.
Leslie Danielan and her husband, Rick Berge, are the proprietors of Sweet Butter. Twenty years ago Leslie started Sweet Somethings Catering Company also in Sherman Oaks.
Before owning her own catering company Leslie supplied baked goods to the popular 1980’s restaurant Mary’s Lamb. Sweet Butter is Leslie’s first restaurant and by the swarms of happy brunch goers and the abundance of plates finished clean it is evident Sweet Butter has been embraced by Angelenos.
The café walls are adorned with brightly colored vintage food signs, farmhouse baskets, and a large chalkboard displaying the daily menu. A small refrigerator shelves retro soda pop from Bubble-up to Orange Crush, specialty drinks such as Zico Chocolate Coconut Water and Maine Root Pumpkin Pie Soda, and jars of Sweet Butter’s own martini, sharp cheddar and jalapeno olives.
A forest green bookcase displays children’s party games, birthday candles, and aprons that would make anyone look adorable in the kitchen.
Books with themes ranging from vintage cakes and recipes, quotes on kindness, Parisian cuisine and a 19th Century take on butler etiquette line the white countertop on the way to the register.
Customers are welcome to enjoy the seasonal selection of breakfast, lunch, and light snacks from the comfort of cushioned chairs under heat lamps or from a small table under the canopy covered courtyard surrounded by herbs, flowers, pumpkins, and cornhusks in whimsical Thanksgiving spirit.
The menu ranges in taste and sophistication with breakfast choices from a Croque Madame to toasted bread with cinnamon butter. Lunch appeals to the glutton with Italian tuna melts and quesadillas as well as the health-nut with “The Yoga” a sandwich comprised of white bean spread, cherry tomatoes, and dressed arugula and a selection of salads from mixed greens with Fuji apples to Tuna Nicoise.
For patrons in a hurry Sweet Butter offers box lunches that will certainly outshine your typical office catering or ready-made bites with choices such as Jambon de Paris and Brie with Dijon Mustard or Prosciutto and Fresh Mozzarella with Basil Aioli.
The bakery case boasts almost too pretty to eat French macaroons, strawberry croissant bread pudding, petite fours, huge chocolate chip and peanut butter cookies, scones, muffins, and chocolate croissants that so delectable you’ll never think of going low-carb again. If all those sweets made you thirsty enjoy a glass freshly brewed iced tea or pink lemonade.
For those looking for a morning pick-me-up order a cup of Intelligentsia coffee or a deliciously rich cup of hot chocolate with freshly made marshmallows.
"I taught myself to cook in the third grade," said Leslie. In college Leslie spent a semester abroad in France. "I think my time there really influenced my culinary style. Sweet Butter does a European vibe and I would attribute that to my experience in France," Leslie said.
"I don’t have a favorite dish to cook or eat. My favorite thing to cook is anything I’ve never cooked before. I love to try new things and I’m always switching-up the menu at Sweet Butter so customers always have the option to try something new," said Leslie.
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