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Third Street Promenade and vicinity

I live in Koreatown, don't head to Santa Monica too often. But some friends are in town who are not from California and wanted to head to Third Street Promenade. Some ideas for where to go, preferably places that are quintessentially Santa Monica?

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  1. Do you plan to be there over breakfast, lunch or dinner?
    Third Street Promenade is fun for out of towners.
    I often take people to dinner at Musha on Wilshire, then walk down the promenade checking out the street performers, then to the pier for a ferris wheel ride (and maybe a funnel cake).
    Another chow favorite that is right there is Annisette for French food.
    I'm not sure what would be quintessentially Santa Monica, but maybe that's the Lobster, right on the pier? Or perhaps the now very famous Border Grill?

    1 Reply
    1. re: hyacinthgirl

      i can't say that i have any idea about what you might consider to be 'quintessentially santa monica,' but i can say that i think all of hyacinthgirl's recommendations are tops for the area

      if you are looking for high-end california cuisine in a lovely environment, then i'd add michaels, but be aware that michael's is $$$$$$$$$.

    2. Hot Dog On A Stick, down by the Sta. Monica pier -- a couple of blocks from the Promenade. You can't get much more "quintessentially Santa Monica" than that, since it's where HDOAS started.

      1. Not sure your budget, for where your friends are coming from, but there are some very good choices listed here.

        I might add the following:

        Cora's Coffee Shop for breakfast or hamburgers
        Bay Cities Deli for Godmother sandwiches
        Chinois for classic Wolfgang Puck Asian fusion
        Tacos Por Favor

        I like the idea of the Lobster for a great view of the ocean and decent lobster.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Ogawak

          if you end up taking ogawak's advice and going to chinois on main, i'd recommend getting their whole, deep-fried catfish and/or their scallops.
          the tab at chinois has always run me over $50/pp, so you can plan accordingly.
          excellent food and service if you have the dough. . .

          1. re: Ogawak

            The Lobster has a great view, and is sufficiently touristy, but I would stick with drinks as I've found the food to be a little inconsistent, esp when dining in a group.

            Love the Hot Dog on a Stick rec! And note, the Deli, Chinois & Tacos Por Favor, are all delicious, but not really in the 3rd st promenade area, not even walking distance.

            Looks like they've opened a few decent bars in the area recently, but I haven't been yet:
            Copa D'Oro on Broadway, between 3rd & 2nd; West Jane 4th, on Fourth btwn Arizona & SM Blvd, (I believe). And the 5th Amendment, soft opening today, @ 129 Broadway, has decent beer list and food too.

            For cheaper eats, there's Joe's Pizza, purportedly awesome east coast / ny style on Broadway btwn Ocean & 2nd. Also have to say, the british pubs are actually quintessentially" SM now, b/c of a big British population, within walking distance to promednade and have been there forever.

            1. re: Phurstluv

              i also recommend copa d'oro if you're looking for a tad more upscale type of bar. their menu is quite unique, as they group their concoctions according to spirit (i.e. tequila, vodka, gin, etc.) and they also have a choose-your-own-option, where you can pick the spirit, the herb (i.e. basil, mint, etc.), the fruit (i.e. watermelon, strawberry, etc.) or other (i.e. jalapenos, etc.). plus, they recreate popular drinks made popular by other bars across the world, so the options are limitless. happy hour is great because you can get drinks for $5. otherwise, drinks come out to $9-13 per...

          2. Chez Jay is quintessentially old Santa Monica.

            1. The Lobster.
              book a window table @ sunset.