Kitchen United Mix Adding A Second Location In Santa Monica

When NY-style coal-fired pizza joint Grimaldi’s closed in El Segundo, it was reported that they were moving to a Santa Monica takeaway operation in the office complex at 2501 Colorado.  What wasn’t reported was that the new location will be inside yet another outpost of rapidly expanding ghost kitchen/food hall Kitchen United Mix, making this Santa Monica’s second branch.  Currently at address there is an erstwhile Daily Grill and, more suitably, a cafeteria called Colorado Kitchen.  Both Santa Monica locations of Kitchen United were shooting for an October opening, but as it stands, little work has been done at either.  Nearby Westwood is also getting a branch as well.

Pacific Dining Car Will Not Be Pivoting To A New Restaurant In Santa Monica

Devoted fans were crushed last year when their favorite Westside dark bar for martinis and nostalgia, Pacific Dining Car, permanently closed during the Pandemic.  But the door had been left open for a possible conversion of the iconic location into a new restaurant.  Recently, a new “leased” sign appeared on the front and a renewed hope inspired my readers to pepper me with questions regarding the new establishment. Sadly, it appears that it will not be a new eatery.  A notice posted on the front announces a hearing to to “allow a 24-hour emergency veterinary services to the existing building”.  And sorry, I still don’t have any information on what may replace another Wilshire institution that fell victim to the Pandemic: Casa Escobar.

King & Queen Cantina Coming To West Hollywood

King & Queen Cantina appears to be on a mission to spread their signature brand of bawdy fun to Westside.  It was last year when I told you that they were bringing a branch of the San Diego party chain to Santa Monica (it has since opened).  Now they have their sites on West Hollywood. Signs are already up on the former Tortilla Republic space at 616 N Robertson announcing their impending arrival. Expect a “party, out of the box” with “Latin flavors” set in Dia de los Muertos decor.

Raising Cane’s, Panera Coming To El Segundo

El Segundo is certainly the place for big commercial and multi-use developments, and it appears a new one is in the works on (what I believe was) former aerospace land on the corner of Nash and El Segundo Blvd.  Nash St. Exchange, as the new complex is called, will host at least two new eateries.  The building right on the corner will be the future home to Raising Cane’s, which has multiple restaurants across LA and Orange County and is known for chicken finger meals.  Also in the complex will be a branch of comfort bakery/cafe Panera Bread.  

Kindred Spirit’s Grand Opening This Weekend In Santa Monica

I first told you about Kindred Spirit back in June, when I noticed help wanted flyers on the former ISno Cafe and Monsieur Marcel space at 1260 Third Street Promenade.  KS opened back in August, but is hosting a Grand Opening event this weekend.  The good folks at Kindred Spirit reached out to me and asked me to pass this along to you:

“Kindred Spirit – a new project from the Demitasse coffee geeks featuring an all day menu of alcohol free cocktails, lunch and brunch plates, and a rotating seasonal menu of classic patisserie inspired by the Santa Monica farmers market in a plant filled open air space on the Promenade is now open and will be having a grand opening event this weekend.

Kindred Spirit has been soft open since August but will be celebrating an official grand opening the weekend of October 23rd with a “Sober October” event from 12-4p featuring the launch of of their fall menu, an adult and family friendly mocktail and craft session with Makers Mess (dried floral wreaths like these), and complimentary sampling from the Free Spirits alcohol free spirit brand who are featured in a number of Kindred Spirit’s elixirs. Makers Mess craft session complimentary with food and beverage purchase.

Following that Kindred Spirit has a number of on site alcohol free brand pop-ups planned through the holidays and into Dry January.”

KS Lox of things Bagel /Photo: Carolina Korman

Café Bohème Bringing French Charm To The Beach

I heard from a reader (Thanks C.P.!) who asked me to check out the new café that recently opened in Playa Del Rey.  Café Bohème is a breezy French charmer that sits in an unlikely strip mall at 8248 Pershing Dr. (corner of Manchester).  A full remodel of the space has turned it into an airy, bright, cozy dining room and counter with soft wood and macramé accessories.  The current menu is tellement Francais and includes omelettes, quiche, tartines, croque monsieur, galettes, and crêpes sucrées . They also produce their own croissants and pastries.  Right now they are only open for breakfast and lunch, but dinner plans are in the works.  We wish them bonne chance.

Breakfast Republic Expands Into Culver City

Good news People of Culver City, your first meal of the day is about to get more interesting!  There’s window paper up one of the spaces in the Harlow development, on the corner of Washington and Hughes, announcing the impending arrival of Breakfast Republic.  BR has a smattering of locations mostly south of here, but this will be only their second LA County space (after West Hollywood).  Look for a menu of benedicts, omelets, pancakes, scrambles, as well as sandwiches, burritos, and vegan options.  Oreo Cookie pancakes anyone?

Cava Restaurant & Bar Closes On Coast Village Rd, Montecito Weeps…

I was shocked to discover on a recent trip to Santa Barbara that perennial favorite Cava Restaurant & Bar has closed up shop after 25 years.  The elegant Mexican eatery had been an iconic presence on Coast Village Rd. in Montecito and was known for brunch and margaritas.  SantaBarbara.com has the owner, Carlos López-Hollis‘ gracious goodbye and explanation, in which he cites the Thomas Fire and Pandemic as reasons.  Sad…

Taste Of Runway Playa Vista Coming October 14th

Playa Vista’s first ever food festival is coming October 14th.  Taste of Runway offers you an opportunity to sample nibbles from various Playa Vista eateries including Urban Plates, Bull & Butterfly, buzzy Loqui, Joliet Cafe and Bar, and even the-as-of-yet unopened Neighbors.  There will also be live music.  Get tickets here.

Kitchen United MIX Replacing The Gallery In Santa Monica

The Gallery, at 1325 Third St. Promenade, managed to survive the Pandemic lock downs but mysteriously closed a while ago, prompting readers to pepper me with questions about its status.  The Gallery had gone through a major redo not that long ago and was home to such eateries as Voltaggio STRFSH, Paperboy Pizza, Dialoque, and others.  Then it went dark.  But now we know what’s coming…   There’s a notice up on the front that names the new eating hall as Kitchen United MIX.  And what is that?  It appears to be a chain of food halls that describes itself as, “the nation’s first ‘Multi-Restaurant Ordering’ to-go experience” that “allows foodie fans who love variety to order meals from 10+ restaurants, all on the same bill.”  Kitchen United MIX has a few locations across the US and are planning on a major expansion.  There are upcoming locations on the books for Westwood and Torrance as well.  This location is aiming for an October opening. 

Is Cure Spa Opening A Restaurant In Malibu?

Cure Spa, one of Malibu’s preeminent wellness centers, appears to be expanding from their PCH location to a spot in the newish The Park at Cross Creek development at 23401 Civic Center Dr.  If you look closely, you’ll see an ABC application posted on the front of the space describing the type of business as an “eating place”.  A rep for the well-known spa very sweetly declined to confirm or deny that there will somehow be a restaurant here, encouraging us to wait and see.  So there ya go…  I’m picturing egg white frittatas and pinot gris.

Cobi’s Replaces Dhaba In Santa Monica

I’ve been keeping my eye on what has been happening at the former home of longtime iconic Indian standard Dhaba at 2104 Main St.  The location has been a hive of activity recently with construction and upgrades…  And now we know what’s going on.  A new sign has gone up announcing the arrival of Cobi’s at Dhaba, which soft-opened last night and is opening to the public on Thursday.  Cobi’s used to operate a restaurant at 8422 W 3rd St. that closed earlier this year.  This is a fresh start for the Southeast Asian eatery that is being described to me as “a new creation with ‘partial honors’ to the old Dhabba”.  Check out their menu here.  Reservations can now be found on Resy.  We wish them the best of luck.

Yoga-urt Replacing Treats In Santa Monica

It was in late August when I told you about the devastating closure of local hang-out spot Treats Frozen Yogurt at 1700 Ocean Park Blvd. in Santa Monica.  But thankfully, the neighborhood is getting a new frozen treat shop.  A banner is up on the front of Treats‘ former location announcing a branch of Yoga-urt.  Yoga-urt has two other locations (Glendale and Echo Park) and offers a menu of plant-based soft serve, smoothies, and shakes “made from scratch, starting with hand squeezed almond milk with all organic and dairy free ingredients and added probiotics”.

The Red Chickz Set To Burn Up Culver City

Have you been wondering what’s going on at 10100 Venice Blvd. in Culver City?  The windows are papered over and there’s a sign up announcing something called The Red Chickz.  The Red Chickz has a location on Spring St. in DTLA and offers a menu of Nashville Hot Chicken and jumbo shrimp in such forms as sandwiches, French toast, tacos, and loaded wedges.  What Now Los Angeles has more on this as well as a major proposed expansion for the chain.