Good eats in or near Manhattan Beach?
I'm currently staying in Manhattan Beach till Sunday. Are there any good restaurants near by that I should check out? I will most likely be dining by myself so will either be doing take out or if eating in, would prefer an atmosphere comfortable for single diners w/ book/laptop. I also have a car so wouldn't mind driving a little bit. I would love to try CA cuisine, known for fresh healthy foods, however, I do love southern food or good fried chicken too so may splurge if there is something worth it. Any cute cafes or great breakfast place I should check out this weekend? Overall though, I love food from all variety of countries so there really isn't a must not list...just a must try.
SouthBay has great breakfast spots - dinner, not so much.
Hermosa: Martha's, Ocean Diner
MB: North End (awesome potatotes), Local Yolk (cheaper, diner)
In Hermosa Beach on Pier Ave. is a little bistro, I think it's called Jackson's Bistro? We had a good dinner there about a year ago.
Close by in El Segundo is Second Ave. Bistro, pretty good food, we at on the patio so not sure what the ambience is like inside. Also Chef Hannes in El Segundo gets pretty good reviews here, I haven't been there myself.
Houston's in Manhattan Beach is a chain, but very good food and atmosphere. One of the best chain restaurants around.
For barbecue - Joey's in the Manhattan Village Mall, Mexican - Pachanga - in the Manhattan Marketplace where Bristol Farms is, In El Segundo - there is a new large outdoor mall - try Marmalade Cafe, also the market - Whole Foods has a great take out section - it is mind blowing. For comfort italian, quiet and fine for single dining is Lido in the Manhattan Marketplace. All manhattan beach locals LOVE - Uncle Bills (for breakfast)
For CA cuisine, Darrens's Restaurant is it. The bar menu is great, so you should definitely pop in and check it out.
For decent cafe/breakfast in a pleasant environment, North End cafe is the way to go. For a more upscale (and in my opinion, pretentious) setting. For a not quite as good but still respectable breakfast, corkscrew cafe is a cute litte wine/coffe/breakfast nook.
For fried chicken, Cafe boogaloo or New Orleans in hermosa beach aint bad.
For dining by yourself I strongly suggest
Cafe Boogaloo at the bar at night while a band is playing (for fried chicken), Darren's at the bar (it is a fancy place, so dining alone can only be done at the bar), north end cafe (for breakfast/cafe), or possibly corkscrew cafe. The best place for the laptop is North End.
For Breakfast I second Uncle Bills, but if the line is too much and you just want a cute and good cafe, Ocean Diner in Hermosa is awesome! They make all their pastries in house as well as make their own brand of coffee. The view isn't much but the place is so quaint.
Shloopy's is another cool place that has great sandwiches in Manhattan Beach.
Also Goodstuff on the Hermosa Strand is nice to visit. I would only recommend it for breakfast or lunch, but it's a cute place with Cal cuisine (although not the best although you can't beat the location)
For a drink and a view of the Sunset you might try Zinc's rooftop bar in Manhattan or for a more mellow experience Henessy's on the Hermosa Promanade
For people watching and a good drink try Mediteranio on the Hermosa Promenade (given the food is only mediocre but the "scene" is cool).