Everything’s Peachy at Pici in Beverly Hills

Eating out at anytime for me is a total act of faith, several weeks ago we had dinner at Mastros SteakHouse in Beverly Hills and it was nothing short of painful. The noise and the crowd were causing me to become ill and I could not wait to get out of the place. I am not impressed with high prices and 80 dollar steaks, not at all. And I am so not happy with starch in my boxers and high end gyp joints. Good food and a relaxing place to sit and talk, I think I found a winner and it is all “Peachy.”

Now to my lunch today, the complete opposite, once again in Beverly Hills and I was with Ira Friedman and his son David. I will never not tell the truth when it comes to great people and even better company. This lunch is not getting any better unless I have a twin that will show up to join me. Now the best part, the place, the restaurant, “The Place.” PICI pronounced “Peachy,” cool right? I was not so sure at first, it was the name had me wondering. With Ira I was preparing for some good food and maybe a drag show with a host named “Peaches.” Once we sat down, Ira and I had a wonderful conversation about numerous things, Ira is funny — if you have never sat and talked to him he is one of the funniest people I have ever met. And his take on “Canadians” will also have you rolling on the floor.

Well when we walk in and are barely in the door, we are immediately greeted by Jason Harley, the owner /chef. This guy is the real deal and the room was wonderfully fresh and airy, white table cloths, the wait staff were right on point. CLEAN! The kitchen well-lit and looking and smelling like a kitchen. The menu was perfect and for me the appropriate level of sound, I have found a place of peace. The ice tea was served in a nice glass and it was real ice tea, not that silly flavored crap lots of places are trying to impress people with (this is important to me). The menu was fresh with salads and a few meats and fish, all of it fresh and a better presentation you cannot find, nice. Ira asks for a sandwich, no sandwiches are on the menu today. Jason offers to make Ira his Chicken Parm sandwich (Ira had one last week and wanted another one). What the heck I will have one too…when the sandwiches arrive they are the best, tasty and the bread fresh and crusty, just the right cheese and the sauce, nice again. The side salad is fresh and you can tell it was made by someone who was paying attention to freshness and the dressing was perfect.

David, Iras son asked for a pizza with “lemon grass,” when it comes it was the best, Jason tells us it brings him back to his Brooklyn roots (lemon grass on pizza?) I am from Boston and this takes me back a few steps…I taste it, it is good, real good). This place is going to be my new favorite place in Beverly Hills…reasonable prices, fresh food and an owner (Jason Harley) and a staff that cares. After speaking to Jason and others it was apparent that this is just how Jason Harley rolls.

My People, if you don’t like your meal and can’t get any satisfaction send me an e-mail and I will pay for your dinner…this is a safe bet for me! Visit this place, you are going to love it: PICI, 212 S. Beverly Drive, Beverly Hills, Ca. 90212, give Jason a call and he will hold a table and tell him John sent you, 310-274-7424. To Go: 310-278-7424 Cell: 310-428-3060 (he is giving you a cell phone can you believe it?) One more thing, Jason is a big guy and tell me if you agree that he looks like a young Steven Seagal and two hundred pounds lighter.

Straight Talk with John J. Nazarian, Private Investigator
September 23, 2011
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