Posts Tagged ‘South Bay’

The Arthur J offers fun twist on classic steakhouse

Arthur J table
Steakhouse The Arthur J rounds out Chef David LeFevre’s mini restaurant row in Manhattan Beach, adding a meat-focused eatery to seafood restaurant Fishing With Dynamite and small plates place MB Post. What makes The Arthur J special is not just its quality meats but its take on additions and sides. LeFevre has created a fun spin on the classic steakhouse while maintaining its elegance.

That mentality extends to The Arthur J’s cocktail list, too. My favorite is The Long Goodbye made with Oxley gin, lime, tumeric, honey, carrot and cardamom. Based on the ingredients, I didn’t think I would like this. But one sip — and one look at its vibrant color — changed my mind completely. It’s sweet and savory, giving a nice balance for someone who can’t decide what kind of drink to order (which is often me).

The Long Goodbye

The Long Goodbye

And then we turn to the menu. Yes, the Parker House rolls with deviled ham spread are delicious. Get them. And the Emmental popovers with strawberry preserves are the stuff of dreams. Get them, too. Get all the bread.

Parker House rolls

Parker House rolls

Emmental popovers

Emmental popovers

However, I didn’t love the roasted bone marrow toast. I think it was the focaccia bread that threw me off; the oiliness was too much paired with the already rich marrow. For a lighter starter, the hamachi tartare offers sweet and spicy notes, but in the end it’s just a nice raw fish-and-avocado dish and nothing groundbreaking.

Bone marrow toast

Bone marrow toast

But nevermind that. You could order the bone-in ribeye Tomahawk chop for two (or three or four, since it’s so large) or the Japanese Wagyu ribeye cap and be happy. But you’ll be happier when you start adding sauces and toppings.

Arthur J steaks table

The Sauces & Butters menu has all the usual suspects plus chimichurri, Vietnamese caramel, black truffle butter, yuzu koshu butter and foie maple butter. The toppings menu includes a sunny side up egg, lump blue crab, foie gras and a steamed half lobster.

Foie-topped steak

Foie-topped steak

If you get one side, get the potato gratin. Lefevre’s version is like nothing I’ve had before: a brick of layered potato, cheese and sauce that could stand on its own as a meal.

Potato gratin

Potato gratin

Desserts at The Arthur J are legit, too. The kitchen turns out solid versions of classics such as cheesecake and a chocolate bar, but it’s the strawberry shortcake that stood out for me. Not only do you get the fruit with the cream and a sugar-dusted biscuit, but the dessert comes with strawberry sorbet to boot, providing another dimension to an otherwise standard dish.

Strawberry shortcake

Strawberry shortcake

Note: This meal was hosted.


10 2015

Upstairs, downstairs: Simmzy’s offers upscale food in a comfy space

Simmzy's Long Beach

Simmzy’s Long Beach

Want to have a nice meal with good food and drink but don’t want to deal with having to dress up? Then Simmzy’s is your place.

Founded by brothers Mike Simms, who also owns Tin Roof Bistro and M.B. Post, and Chris Simms, owner of Lazy Dog Cafe, Simmzy’s is a casual pub with an upscale menu — a gastropub, if you will. Chef Anne Conness works it out with creative (but not too creative as to be off-putting) dishes, such as the Bacon & Date Mascarpone Pizza and the addictive Blue Cheese Haystack (shoestring fries smothered in blue cheese dressing, garlic and spicy sauce).

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07 2012

Laid back, playful and a little rock n’ roll: MB Post

When we first heard that Chef David LeFevre left downtown’s Water Grill late last year, we freaked out a little. Where else could we enjoy LeFevre’s sublime cooking? And how long would we have to wait?

But almost immediately LeFevre announced that he would be opening his own restaurant, so our fears were allayed. That new place turned out to be MB Post in Manhattan Beach, and it hasn’t disappointed.

Housed in the beach town’s historic post office on Manhattan Avenue, MB Post is much more laid-back than Water Grill. With its rustic interior, bench seating and rockin’ soundtrack (think Elastica, Guns N’ Roses and the Beastie Boys), MB Post is much more LeFevre’s personal speed. But just because the white tablecloths are gone doesn’t mean the quality of the food has suffered; in fact, this menu is interesting, playful, and most of all, delicious.

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07 2011

South Bay fundraiser this weekend, with food and music

Cocktails and the Taco de Atun Crudo from Ortega 120

The 4th annual White Light White Night fundraiser event, which benefits Walk With Sally, a non-profit organization that provides free-of-charge mentoring support programs and services to L.A. children who are living with or have lost a parent or sibling to cancer, is taking place Saturday, July 10, at 6:00 p.m. at the South Bay BMW lot and rooftop in Torrance. This year’s event will feature a concert from Rocco DeLuca, an auction, and food and drink from South Bay eateries, including Ortega 120 and the new outpost of Gonpachi in the Miyako Hybrid Hotel.

Last year, the event raised more than $100,000 to sponsor children through the Walk With Sally program. The goal for this year is to fund 60 new kids in addition to the 43 existing mentorships; there are currently 59 children who are waiting to take part in the program.

Tickets can be purchased online at General tickets cost $100 per person, and VIP tickets, which allow access to the silent and live auctions, cost $150 per person.


07 2010

French in Manhattan Beach: Cafe Pierre

I don’t make it down to the South Bay very often, so whenever I’m invited to a dinner in the area, I try to get over the “it’s so far” feeling that inevitably creeps up and go. This time the dinner was at Cafe Pierre in Manhattan Beach, a contemporary French eatery on Manhattan Beach Boulevard. This was a meal full of firsts for me, and I discovered I liked things I never thought I would like.

We were served a bunch of potted meats to start. This is when I tried head cheese, trotters, rillete and beef tartare for the first time, and none were as scary as I thought they would be. I actually surprised myself by really liking the hand-cut beef tartare, which came with judion beans on the side. I also had escargot and bone marrow as starters, too, both for the first time as well. While neither were as that scary, I didn’t enjoy them as much as the beef tartare, which had a fresh taste to it, contrary to what I had imagined raw beef tasting like.

I think this is head cheese, but it could have been trotters or rillete

Beef tartare

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02 2010

Ortega 120 in Redondo Beach worth the trek

Cocktails and the Taco de Atun Crudo

Cocktails and the Taco de Atun Crudo

I rarely go to the South Bay. I can count the number of times I’ve been there on one hand. So when Mexican restaurant Ortega 120 invited me and a bunch of food writers, including fellow blogger e*starla, down to Redondo Beach for a meal and tequila pairing, I was a little skeptical. I mean, it just seemed so far (melodramatic, I know). But far be it from me to turn down free food and tequila, right? I’m not gainfully employed at the moment, after all.

So when we arrived at the homey-yet-stylish restaurant via chartered passenger van (tequila pairings, remember) and I saw the extensive menu, I was immediately excited. And co-owners Demi Stevens (mixologist) and Tommy Ortega (chef) didn’t disappoint. Neither did the night’s tequila sponsor, Partida. Let me tell you why.

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06 2009