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New restaurants in Santa Monica?

Have a friend coming to town & staying in Santa Monica -- she's a gourmet foodie & wants recommendations of interesting new places in the Santa Monica area to check out. (She already knows some of the usual suspects: Jiraffe, Violet, Lincoln). I live on the east side and am a little behind on what's going on over on that side of town... anything newish worth checking out?

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    1. If you can head out to Beverly Hills, CUT opened pretty recently and has (generally) been raved about.


      1. Punch (on SMB) is newish and has garnered a few positive reviews recently for chow, ambiance and bar. Also, Literatti II is right on the SM/WLA border, and while not new, may satisfy such a visitor's needs.

        1. Lincoln Steakhouse actually underwent a remodel and emerged as Holly's West, a bar/lounce with a small plates menu. Haven't heard much about it.

          Valentino has a new chef (actually he worked at Valentino for years before moving back to Italy to open his own place, but now he's back!) so that might be work checking out.

          I hear Whist has had a resurgence in terms of the quality of food ... it's in the Viceroy. Might want to check that out.


          1. Has she been to Josie? Not new, but still pretty terrific.

            1. Take her to Nook immediately...foodie heaven, cheap, and you meet all your neighbors - and yes, that is a good thing for all your cloistered LA peeps! FANTASTIC.

              1. Josie is amazing, as is Nook, as is Litteratti II...not too many new greats but the old favorites just keep giving and giving.

                1. thanks for the suggestions. don't think she's been to josie, no. i'll put that on her list. any other don't-miss santa monica restaurants, new or not?

                  1. La Seranata De Gerribaldi~ mexican
                    Fritto Misto~ italian

                    1. As a Gourmet Foodie, a Don't-Miss old Santa Monica restaurant is Chinois on Main if she's never been there before; every real G.F. should dine there at least once.

                      For 2 people - Sit at the counter, watch the kitchen do their thing, and split what you order (i.e. starter, duck fried rice, sczhuan (spelling?) beef).


                      1. I'd go to Capo (1810 Ocean Ave). It's pricey, but worth it. Great chow, very fresh. That's why its worth the few extra bucks. Great wine list too.

                        Go to Casa Del Mar either before or after for drinks and enjoy the great view, ambiance

                        1. When thinking Capo, don't forget Cora's for breakfast/lunch!

                          1. Cora's... exactly. For those who aren't familiar with Cora's... it's right next door to Capo... same owners. They do great breakfasts and lunches. Small (tiny) place. Has a few, maybe 6? tables for outside dining. Not straight foreward bkfsts like eggs and bacon, more interesting "gourmet" type stuff. VERY, very casual and not really that pricey. Good call.

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                            1. re: WineTravel

                              great kobe style burgers too. and huevos racheros, homemade preserves, and great slice of peach pie with heavy whipped cream when in season. the prices are more expensive than your garden variety coffee shoppe but then again the food is ten times better.

                            2. Check out West at the Hotel Angeleno on Sunset in Brentwood. 17th floor with amazing views and very good food in a hip setting.