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LBC-Good Eats

  • dbug31 May 15, 2007 08:15 PM
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We're visiting a friend next week & would love to know if there are any can't miss spots.
Any type of cuisine or price. I might have to do Roscoe's...

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  1. Benley is awesome! Very small place with very clean, fresh French inspired Vietnamese food. One of my favorite all time spots.

    7 Replies
    1. re: bubbles4me

      Hi Bubbles!

      LBC suggestions: YardHouse is fun if you like beer on tap and a fun atmosphere by the water.

      Nearby Seal Beach has an Irish pub we like called O'Malleys, located on Main Street Seal Beach which is near the Pier.

      And I second Benley!

      1. re: littlefrenchgirl

        IHey, my favorite little French girl! I've never been to O'Malleys...have to check it out

        1. re: bubbles4me

          O'Malley's is hardly notable for the food. It's a pub, and if you go with that kind of expectation, you'll be pleased. If you're in Seal Beach, across the street from O'Malley's is Beachwood BBQ, really excellent ribs, pulled pork, and brisket. My favorite sides are the collard greens, fried pickles, and the sweet potato fries are outstanding. Good microbrews, too, to complement the 'Q.

          1. re: CynD

            OK, since Pubs are being discussed. I have never been to the Auld Dubliner but my son has many times and keeps telling me to go. He likes the bangers and mash. They also serve dessert in the Iresh tradition. How about that place for food and drink in the center of the main drag of Long Beach?

            Auld Dubliner Irish Pub (Bangers and Mash, dessert)
            71 S Pine Ave
            Long Beach, CA 90802
            (562) 437-8300
            http://www.aulddubliner.com/logo.html

            1. re: JeetJet

              Well, I have been to the Auld Dubliner for some private events as well and they have some great food there. It's been awhile, but I remember a pasta dish and something with scallops also a wonderful salad. Very popular with the college crowd on the weekends/nights, so if you want to eat, go earlier.

            2. re: CynD

              O'Malley's seems to have better pub food than most other joints around here, including Auld Dubliner, but that could be just my persective. For example, I like their fish tacos and their shepherd's pie. And I like their beer - very fresh kegs. The atmosphere is also decent for a pub, not too sleazy but casual enough.

              I haven't tried Beachwood BBQ but I'll give it a shot!

        2. re: bubbles4me

          I agree also, Benley is great!

        3. "can't miss spots" -- OK, here are two can't miss spots. In fact, these are truly must trys. Of the two do Jongewaard's first and early in your trip because you will want to return before the end of your week for dessert at least one more time if not every day. Nice cottage ambiance. Egg Heaven Cafe has a cool 60's feel and down-home food. Both places are small and will have lines on the weekend but worth a wait.

          Jongewaard's Bake 'n Broil (Breakfast, lunch, dinner -- try the Chicken Fried Steak, Pot pie, Burgers, Red Velvet and other cupcakes, sticky buns, Cakes and Pies made in house and so good! Try anything. Do a Chowhound search on this place)
          3697 Atlantic Ave (North of 405 – corner of 37th st.)
          Long Beach, CA 90807
          (562) 595-0396

          Egg Heaven Cafe. (Cash Only, breakfast and early lunch only– Very good breakfast and burgers. Blue stack, sausage, omelets are all very good. I like everything BUT the hash and biscuits and gravy)
          4358 East 4th St. (Corner of East 4th and Ximeno St.)
          Long Beach, CA
          (562) 433-9277

          1. Thanks for all of the replies.
            Sounds like we'll have to go to Benley, it sounds great.
            The Yardhouse as well as Jongewaard's Bake 'n Broil.
            I'm getting hungry just thinking about all of it.
            I will abstain from O'Malley's as I work at better than average Irish Pub here in LV.

            1 Reply
            1. re: dbug31

              Awesome I think you will be quite pleased with the food! One note, they do not have a wine license so if you want wine you will have to bring it. (They have nice stemware)
              Enjoy and report back....I love it when people find this little gem.

            2. The beach-oriented area called Belmont Shore has several good cafe's and is worth a visit if you have time.
              La Creperie/ Yen/ Open Sesame,Supermex,Taco Surf and Aroma di Roma -AdiR has xlnt breakfast dishes,great Gelatto and very flavorful coffee .

              The Shore ( as it is known to locals ) has always been LBC"'s top stop for locals and visitors alike.

              be prepared to wait but people watching is superb
              enjoy

              16 Replies
              1. re: belmontvoicewebmaster

                Cafe Gazelle is right off 2nd St. and has incredible Italian food.

                1. re: belmontvoicewebmaster

                  I grew up in Long Beach and my Grandparents lived in The Shore but the thing that has been bumming me out is the growing number of chains down there, Lucielle's, Banana Republic etc...miss the good old days of Rainbow's ice cream.

                  1. re: bubbles4me

                    Wasn't there a place called Grandma's for sweets? miss that place too.

                    1. re: justagthing

                      I almost forgot about Grandmas. Giant chocolate covered goodies...aww now I miss that place too, they made awesome coffee drinks.

                      1. re: justagthing

                        Grandma's didn't close because of chains (ie Coldstone) they closed because people stopped going. A shame because those chocolate covered marshmallows were awesome.

                        1. re: Oh Robin

                          Wasn't saying that they closed b/c of chains, just noting that it's an old fav that is missed, sorry, bubbles post just had me reminiscing. Also there was that restro where Biggs is now and they kept the one in Los Al, but closed the one there....eeks! what was their name.

                          1. re: justagthing

                            Shenendoah? Is that the one you are thinking of? OK I will say that I'm the only person I know that does not like Lucilles, I don't dislike because it is a chain I just think there is way better BBQ to be had. Dude I eat at Islands so I am not anti-chain...just miss some of the old spots thats all.

                            1. re: bubbles4me

                              That would be the one. I remember going there when I was in college and feeling like it was so shi-shi. LOL!

                              1. re: justagthing

                                LOL. I remember ordering Gewurztraminer, (Deloach I think) to pair with my hickory smoked prime rib that is how fancy I was...sheesh.

                              2. re: bubbles4me

                                Not a big fan of Lucille's either but this is coming from someone whose fave bbq is Chris & Pitts. I do like Lucille's sides though (potato salad & cole slaw). Plus I like to get a bottle of their sweet bbq sauce to use at home. Otherwise I only go when forced through family events and I usually leave feeling sick and broke. Oh I almost forgot their lemonade is amazing but I don't need that sugar.

                                1. re: bubbles4me

                                  No, youre not the only one that dislikes Lucilles. I dont like it either, but then again Im not the biggest fan of Islands either-a bit overpriced for an average burger, and any place where you have to order fries separately turns me off.

                                  1. re: bubbles4me

                                    I'm right there with you on Lucille's. There's way better bbq out there. And iirc, Grandma's closed because rents in the Shore skyrockted.

                                2. re: Oh Robin

                                  Oh Grandma Sugarplums had the best cheesecake. I miss that place.

                                3. re: justagthing

                                  Grandma Sugarplums was the best. We used to go there as a treat for being good when we were young. They had an amazing circling refrigerator full of cakes, I used to stand there and just stare at my choices. They had the original motherload chocolate cake.

                                4. re: bubbles4me

                                  I happen to like Lucilles. Just because it is a "chain" (and it's a local chain btw) doesn't mean it's bad.

                                  Thank god there is now somewhere decent to eat in Belmont Shore. Used to be the only place open after 10 was the awful Hamburger Henry's.

                                  The Yardhouse is a chain, too. I like their appetizers more than the mains.

                                  And yes, definitely Benley's.

                                  1. re: mlgb

                                    I didn't realize The Yardhouse was a chain. Looks like we're getting one here in LV next year. I have to go sample all of their beers...yummy! I'm thinking The Creperie for breakfast. It looks as if we'll head to The Crab Cooker in Newport Beach too. Or is the Crab Pot better?

                              3. I was very impressed with this rec. from the board when I was in Long Beach recently:

                                Enrique's Mexican Restaurant
                                (562) 498-3622
                                6210 E Pacific Coast Hwy # 12
                                Long Beach, CA 90803

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: JAB

                                  I also went to Enrique's because of hounds. Not so much for me... however the hot chips and creamy/chunky guac was amazing. I'd hang out there for a beer but probably not dinner.

                                2. George's Greek Cafe (on Pine avenue or 2nd street in belmont shore) is really good, and has great prices. The servings are large-I think my husband I go just about every week. The calamari appetizer is sooo good, as is everything else.

                                  1. Born and raised in LB, so hopefully I can give you a couple of suggestions.

                                    Tantalum
                                    www.tantalumrestaurant.com
                                    This is one of my favorites. Fusion-inspired food with huge, all-around windows that give spectacular views of the Belmont Bay. During the weekends, they have live music, which is always nice.

                                    Cafe Piccolo
                                    www.cafepiccolo.com
                                    I'm surprised it has not been mentioned yet, seeing that it has been voted the "most romantic restaurant" in LB. Wonderful italian food and wine, and everytime I've been there the service has been great. Its very quaint, garden-like (complete with a fountain) that lends to a cozy atmosphere.

                                    The Sky Room
                                    www.theskyroom.com
                                    I've never been, but I've heard from friends that this place is definitely a must-see in LB. Although on the expensive side, it is located on the top floor of the Breakers hotel (ringing true to its name), where it offers amazing views of the city. I suggest going at night when all the lights come on.

                                    As you can see, I'm as much about the atmosphere as I am of the food :) I hope that helped, and that you enjoy your stay in Long Beach!

                                    7 Replies
                                    1. re: shelovestoeat

                                      Tantalum: Overpriced to the max, slow service, but yes the view is excellent. The food sounds better on paper than in the mouth. I would only go for apps and drinks.

                                      Cafe Piccolo: Yes! I love this restaurant, great atmosphere on the patio, agree about the food and service. Good value, too.

                                      Lucilles postscript: I don't think of it as a BBQ restaurant, but as a Southern food restaurant. Never had the ribs but have enjoyed the tri-tip sandwich, catfish, and bbq chicken, plus the best greens anywhere.

                                      1. re: mlgb

                                        Agree on Tantalum. Even the drinks are overpriced. Nice view though. Too crowded at nights.

                                      2. re: shelovestoeat

                                        I always drive by Cafe Piccolo's and wonder about it - is it worth a try? I would like to go if it is.

                                        1. re: littlefrenchgirl

                                          I wasn't impressed by Cafe PIccolo - very ordinary and not worth a second trip - but lots of people seem to like it.

                                          1. re: littlefrenchgirl

                                            It's worth a try. It certainly isn't ordinary. Nice date restaurant, I have taken a number of people there and they all ask to go back.

                                          2. re: shelovestoeat

                                            I attended Long Bch State during the 70s, now reside in Hawaii. Is Hamburger Henry's still there?

                                            1. re: hawaiisrfn

                                              Alas, long gone. Iirc, there's a Baja Fresh or Rubio's, a Starucks, and some other retail on the spot.

                                          3. Enrique's for Mex, search out personal faves from garlic shrimps to chicken soup no less to creme brule. Skip the gooey enchiladas & burritos. Long lines. friendly sevice, come early.

                                            Ferraro's, the one up the diagonal for moderate oldish school Italian, buffo tomato salad.

                                            Christy's for best italian in LB, everything's good.

                                            Lasher's for atmosphere, somewhat pricey Continental.

                                            555 Ocean for pricey but tasty nicely done steaks & sides.

                                            Open Sesame for simple cheap but OK mideastern.

                                            Bono's for lunch, hit or miss selections, somewhat pricey.

                                            Zpizza with desert across street at Babette's for a tasty carb overdose.

                                            California Pizza if you insist on sit down for pizza, entirely edible but unexciting.

                                            Star of Siam for Thai with some rough edges.

                                            Claim Jumper for good steaks and potatoes, lousy veggies, the most humongous clientele on the planet & multihour waits (not that there's anything wrong with that).

                                            Johhny Reb's for edgy BBQ, Lucille's for refined predictable BBQ.

                                            Bristol Farm Cafe, skip the cafe menu offerings, go get the sushi, prepared food, cheeses and baked goods from the cases & eat-in.

                                            Wild Oats has some edible hot & cold chow to eat in, variable pickins.

                                            Mimi's for breakfast or if you're incorrigibly old school.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: bernardo

                                              As long as we're mentioning expensive places like Lasher's, 555, Tantalum, let's not forget Frenchy's which actually has good food.

                                              http://www.frenchysbistro.com/

                                              There's another Lasher's in Burbank, does that make it a chain?

                                              I've never heard Johny Reb's called edgy before! If there are four locations, does that make it a chain? The simpler items on the menu are best, grilled meats, maybe the hushpuppies. To me it's more like faux poor white trash food, similar to what they serve to college students in Chapel Hill. Lucilles is more like soul food that my friends cook at home.

                                              And the Jimmy's Fish Market restaurant near the Trader Joe's (on PCH/2nd) isn't bad.

                                            2. Wow, thanks for all of the rec's.
                                              We were there only for a short stay this time, but will return to escape the summer LV heat sometime soon.
                                              Here's where we ended up:

                                              The Yardhouse-we arrived during Happy Hour, which was a major plus.
                                              We enjoyed good pints of Murphy's, Rogue Hazelnut Brown & Downtown Brown (?).
                                              For a snack we had both, the Crab, Lobster & Artichoke Dip, as well as the Poke Stack. Both were better than most & the location was prime too. It was a bit buggy, but now living in LV I've forgotten about such things. (p.s. & I'm from the E. Coast)
                                              I's love to return & explore some more of their beers & eats. Our waiter was above average.

                                              Next La Creperie-We all were tired & shared the Cheese & Pate Plate. In addition, we had the French Onion Soup. Both were quite good, although the soup was almost too thick for my taste. The setting was lovely, we dined on the sidewalk patio. The service was not as thorough as I woulld have liked, but we were the last table. As a server I do understand this, however I don't care much. After all, that's your job/function...I would return there as well. I want to try the crepes & Croque Madame.

                                              We look forward to our next visit to LB & I'll be sure to check out some more spots.

                                              Thanka again for all the rec's.

                                              1. Several lraved about Benley but no one included the location or what to order. What's the price range like? Also, is there parking nearby? Thanks. . .

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: Joani Macaroni

                                                  Benley: A Vietnamese Kitchen
                                                  8191 E. Wardlow Rd. (N. Norwalk Blvd.)
                                                  Long Beach, CA 90808
                                                  562-596-8130

                                                  In the shopping center, all the way at the end (farthest from Norwalk Blvd.). Plenty of parking. Tiny place, great food. Call for a res.