Name of restaurant: Cafe Scent
What dish represents the restaurant, and why? Summertime is the perfect time to enjoy the pot bingsu ("pot" means red bean and "bingsu" is a shaved iced dessert). Cafe Scent is like a cafe you'd find wandering the streets of Seoul, down to the young staff, the cushy decor and the overpriced desserts. Its most popular bingsu is the fruit shaved ice, served with a scoop of strawberry ice cream over a generous mound of sweet red bean, a variety of fruits, morsels of rice cake and a spoon of miseut galu (a Korean protein powder made from powdered grains).
Concept: A flower shop and cafe right next to K-Town's largest golf driving ranges.
Who's at the next table? A Korean mother speaking Konglish in a hushed voice to her children while they share a bingsu dessert. On the other side of the velvet seats, a Korean businesswoman has a meeting with two visiting associates.
Appropriate for: A clandestine date. Be sure to get one of the tables in the corner. The cafe is open into the wee hours, although it might be too late in the night to get a bouquet from the tiny flower shop inside.
Uh-oh: So the fruit bingsu is mostly canned fruit (which is actually old-school Seoul style). If you want real fruit, opt for the green tea bingsu, usually served with bananas and strawberries. Also, they validate only for part of the parking, but for 50 cents for three hours, you can’t really complain.
Service: Friendly but slow, because the servers are also preparing the drinks, bussing tables and making desserts.
What are you drinking? Relax and share secrets over a latte, an Oreo shake or a yuja (citron) slush.
Cafe Scent, 3680 Wilshire Blvd., No. P03, Los Angeles, (213) 383-9440, www.cafe-scent.com.
The Scouting Form is a quick look at restaurants worth a visit. Scouts were selected by restaurant critic Jonathan Gold, who may or may not agree with a single word.