Blu Jam Cafe Is…Jam-Packed (Pun Intended)

With the restaurant explosion along the boulevard, it’s no surprise that the Chef/Owner, Kamil Majer, behind the popular Blu Jam on Melrose Avenue, decided to open his second branch here in the Valley. (You’ve probably noticed the black awnings of the restaurant—across the street from the car wash—where the old Carl’s Jr. was housed).  Good […]

With the restaurant explosion along the boulevard, it’s no surprise that the Chef/Owner, Kamil Majer, behind the popular Blu Jam on Melrose Avenue, decided to open his second branch here in the Valley. (You’ve probably noticed the black awnings of the restaurant—across the street from the car wash—where the old Carl’s Jr. was housed).  Good work, Kamil, the decision is apparently a good one.  Lines at the hotspot wrap around the block, and waits on weekends can take more than an hour.  When we dined here at 1:30pm on a weekday, every seat (both inside and out) was already filled. 

So what’s the big deal?  The secret to Blu Jam’s success is simple: healthy, inventive twists on classic favorites.  Their Crunchy French Toast—egg-battered brioche rolled in corn flakes, grilled, topped with fresh fruit and served with vanilla sauce—is unique but comforting.  The pan-roasted mac and cheese is heightened with bacon, ham, egg, and garlic.  Risotto is transformed into a breakfast entree with 2 poached eggs, infused mushrooms, and sundried tomatoes.  

It’s Los Angeles, circa 2013, so of course there are vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free entrees as well. Rustic salads come served with homemade dressing (we dug the citrus vinaigrette); fresh squeezed fruit juices are appropriately tart and sweet.  

There are a few setbacks, though.  First, the parking lot is tiny.  Additionally, both of our servers couldn’t tell us which entrees were organic, or whether the chicken was farm-raised.  We think a well-educated staff would better capitalize on this new little gem’s success.  When it comes to eating—ignorance, after all, isn’t bliss.

 Blue Jam Café, 15045 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks, CA.  (818) 906-1955.

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