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Jun 12, 2006 02:08 AM

Searching for British Shops (and Ocean Avenue Seafood Report)

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I love the The British Shop, attached to Ye Olde King's Head on Santa Monica just before Ocean. Love that they have British food stuffs like Branston Pickes, Vegemite, and OXO, and appreciate the beautiful tea sets and Brown Betty teapots.

Where else in West LA/Santa Monica can I go for an equally British experience? The British Shoppe's located on prime real estate and a bit rich for my blood. I would love to find my jarred foods and Roy Kirkham mugs for a little cheaper.

Ocean Avenue Seafood around the corner turned out to be a real gem! Happy hour oysters are a steal, and on a Sunday around 3pm the place was anything but crowded. Service was lovely, and we fell in love with Hood Canal oysters. $15 for the plate below.



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    1619 Wilshire Boulevard Santa Monica, CA 90403
    Phone (310) 453 8655
    Fax (310) 453 5093
    Hours Mon-Sat: 9:30-6 Sun: 12 Noon-4
    British Videotape Sales and Rentals. CDs, Records and Cassettes from Europe, British Imports, Foods and Gifts. Sales & Rentals

    There's also a travel agency in the back that has amazing deals on flights to the UK (or used to, at least.)

    1. Across Second Street, the Tudor house has a much more impressive shop with house baked savories and sweets. That being said the prices are roughly the same, but the selection is more impressive.

      The Continental Shop is fine (at 16th and Wilshire), but it's more noteable for it's video rentals than it's selection of packaged goods.

      And Sainsbury Market (not to be confused with the other Sainbury Market), is British owned and managed and has a respectable selection of British goods, but it's primarily a convenience store (though their collection of regional and craft soft drinks is starting to rival Galco's).

      6 Replies
      1. re: Bucket

        Does Sainsburys stock Tizer?

        1. re: Zoe

          As far as I know Tizer shows up very infrequently.

          The various Santa Monica British markets are largely a product of John Major's "long shadows on cricket grounds, warm beer, and invincible green suburbs," where Tizer's loud new image as a trendy energy drink doesn't really fit.

          But, c'mon, Tizer is the Mountain Dew of the UK. That stuff is truly, deeply nasty.

          1. re: Bucket

            Yes, nasty - but its red. Did they happen to mention how RED it is? Truly annoying advertising.

            Sainsburys is very friendly - and are amenable to suggestions, so if they don't have Tizer, ask them if they can get it.

            I also need to mention that the gas station on the corner of 5th and Wilshire in Santa Monica (across the street from Wild Oats) is often a good source for UK candy bars, bikkies and the like. They even sometimes have PG Tips in their tea selection for a reasonable amount. I have no idea why that particular gas station carries these items, but when I want a Picnic bar, a packet of Wine Gums or a Crunchie, I am just happy to be able to find them.

            1. re: igj

              They all have Tizer. Foul stuff. 380 empty red calories per can.

              1. re: Moomin

                I was brought up at the Fox and Hounds, Cheswardine, Shopshire in North West England and Tizer was a treat given to me by the bartender on Fridays. I thought it was Champagne. Oh well, sort of. Best eaten with Smith's Crisps, if they still exist and enjoy that red ring around your mouth from the orangy drink.

                1. re: Zoe

                  Smith's is now Walker's, the flavors are more or less the same. They were both purchased by Nabisco and combined under the Walker's brand name.

                  For "true" Smith's Crisps you're going to have to go to Australia where Smith's is still producing crisps under contract with Frito-Lay. But, Walker's is available at each of the Santa Monica British markets, so you could potentially relive the Shropshire experience if the spirit moves you!

      2. Not the area you are requesting, but Rose Tree Cottage in Pasadena carries many British items. See link below - scroll down for items.