As for the homemade desserts, we passed over flan with caramel sauce (a mistake, probably, given that Patricia Johnson's Peruvian mom makes it) and raspberry-chocolate mousse and instead chose a slice of three-tiered cheesecake -- chocolate, pistachio, and plain. It was runny, as if it had been left near the oven, but rich and filling.
The jury's still out concerning the so-called Hollywood renaissance: The pessimists point out what the area doesn't have, and the glass-half-full folks highlight what it does have. I agree with Ted Johnson, who insists, "A metamorphosis takes time." So does a smoothly running restaurant.
Cafe Erte. 1716 Harrison St., Hollywood, 954-925-1775. Open nightly from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.; Friday and Saturday until 4 a.m.
Impromptu. 2039 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 954-923-7099. Lunch Tuesday-Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Dinner nightly from 5 to 10 p.m.