Toddrickallen stopped by the newly opened Tiato Market Garden Cafe in Santa Monica recently to check things out. Tiato is the casual brainchild of the An family of Crustacean in Beverly Hills. You might be forgiven for having driven by and not noticed. In order to find it, you have to enter the lobby of the office building that houses Lionsgate at 2700 Colorado Ave. I was assured that this would soon be remedied as they are putting the final touches on what will be their permanent entrance from the street leading through the patio. Juan, the affable assistant manager, gave me a tour of the restaurant starting with the large inviting patio. He pointed out to me that the lush landscaping is actually the kitchen’s herb garden and was careful to show me the Vietnamese herb tiato, (or pernilla in english) which gives the restaurant its name. Inside, the space is cool, modern, comfy, and cavernous with dark wood and teardrop glass fixtures. There is casual dining (a la Urth) as well as full service, and a take-away counter. Tiato also has a bar with a happy hour from 4:00 to 8:00 on Thursday and Friday with drinks, beer, and a modest wine list. The creative menus reflect a variety of influences, from Mexican to classic American, but a strong emphasis is on Vietnamese and Asian. Breakfast consists of a variety of eggs, burritos, vegan scrambles, salads, and smoothes. The lunch menu lists soups, salads, bowls, sandwiches, and larger entrees. And Juan confirmed the rumors that they will be bringing in limited supplies of Crustacean’s famous garlic noodles. Currently, Tiato is open from 8:00 to 6:00 Monday through Wednesday and 8:00 to 8:00 Thursday and Friday, but starting July 24th, they will be serving a weekend brunch from 10:30 to 3:00. With its great ambiance, friendly staff, fantastic patio, and An family cuisine, Tiato is well worth a trek to this sleepy Santa Monica neighborhood.
Tiato Market Garden Cafe
2700 Colorado Avenue (between Princeton and 26th Streets), Santa Monica