{some photos courtesy of Villa Blanca}

Coming from a family that was involved with Hollywood, the last thing I am is celeb-crazy or prone to being starstruck… However, that does not make me immune to having a role model of sorts.  I loved the Bravo television program “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” and my favorite Housewife, hands down, was Lisa Vanderpump.  It may seem like a reality show would be the last place to find an inspiring woman… but she is gracious and ambitious… and, most of all, I admired her eye for style.  It was a happy coincidence that while shopping on Rodeo Drive I stumbled upon Villa Blanca, one of Vanderpump’s restaurants.  The experience that my girlfriends and I had while dining here was so wonderful that we came back two days later!

The Decor: Villa Blanca dazzles from start to finish.  With crisp white table linens, beautiful stemware, gobs of fresh flowers, and mirrored surfaces constantly in eyesight you are sure to enjoy the visual decadence.  The white theme of the restaurant is warm and inviting through the use of textiles, cozy pillows stamped with the Villa Blanca logo, and elegant lighting fixtures.  The abundant plant life and antique finishes give the restaurant a European feel.  Even the substantial menus {white with a silver embossed logo gracing the front} add to the luxurious experience.  If you are anything like me {and adore the color pink}, keep an eye out for the tiny touches of blush that unexpectedly pop {the dessert menu and sign for the women’s loo both incorporate this fun shade}.

The Food: Both times that we dined at Villa Blanca {once for their weekend brunch and once for a Monday lunch}, we had a wonderful {and unbelievably filling!} meal.  The meal starts with some perfectly crusty bread and tapenade {salty and satisfying}.  Villa Blanca’s flatbread pizzas are a sure bet and the presentation {on a wooden serving board with a side of parmesan} makes it that much more enjoyable.  For me, lunch is about a substantial sandwich… I had the Smoked Turkey & Cranberry Flatbread Sandwich {with melted double creme brie, baby romaine and a cranberry-sage aioli} for lunch one day and, on another day, I had the Roasted Chicken Flatbread Sandwich {with maple cured bacon, avocado, spinach, French feta, and pesto aioli}.  All sandwiches come with fries and an organic baby field greens salad {with the most delicious dressing}.  While both sandwiches were very good, the chicken sandwich was exceptional {I highly recommend it}.  If you are watching your waistline, you should try the Blanca Chopped Salad {an incredible flavor combination}… the presentation {and taste!} is beautiful.

The Experience: On weekends, Villa Blanca has a special brunch menu {featuring specially priced items and drinks}.  We ordered the white sangria {a personal favorite of mine and very hard to find in many restaurants}.  At only $6 a glass, this drink packed a mean punch and the perfect light and not-to-sweet flavor.  The service was fabulous {the staff is very friendly and doesn’t behave in a pretentious manner… which, sadly, is an attitude that can be found all over Beverly Hills}.  I recommend sitting outdoors on their enclosed patio.  The people watching is top-notch and you may even find yourself being watched as passerbys try to decipher if you are a “somebody.”  Villa Blanca is such a remarkable experience from start to finish… I know I will be dining here again in the near future.