Tea Mug Boba Coming To Sawtelle Japantown

It appears that a new boba joint is landing in Sawtelle Japantown.  There’s window paper up on a storefront at 1642 Sawtelle that used to be the home of a hookah lounge.  Tea Mug Boba is promising tea, coffee, and smoothies that are made fresh daily.

Savida Raw Seafood Bar Replacing Sushi Sho On Montana Ave.

I’ve been carefully tracking the developments at the former location of Sushi Sho at 1303 Montana Ave. in Santa Monica.  Last week I pointed out a nonresponsibility notice that named Best Bite LLC as the new tenant.  Window paper just went up announcing the name of the new establishment as Savida Raw Seafood Bar.  I can’t find much information on this business, but I think the name lets us know what to expect…

Update:  Savida’s website is up and running.  Check out more and get a look at the menu here.  

Lotus Dim Sum Dumpling House Replacing P.F. Chang’s In Santa Monica

Ever since I told you about the startling disappearance of Santa Monica’s branch of Asian-ish chain P.F. Chang’s, people have been demanding answers about what may replace it.  The commodious space on the corner of Wilshire and 4th was leased a few months ago, and construction on the interior had begun, but there was no indication of what the new restaurant would be.  Just this week and small sandwich board has appeared that lets us know that the new establishment is going to be Lotus Dim Sum Dumpling House.

Sushi Sho’s Replacement in Santa Monica…

Many of you are following this story carefully so I’ll pass info on as it becomes available… Here’s the latest on the replacement for NOMA’s beloved Japanese take-away joint Sushi Sho:   As I told you, construction is fast and furious ever since the sushi restaurant moved out of 1303 Montana Ave.  A sharp eyed reader (Thanks Kurt!) spotted the nonresponsibility notice taped to the front that lists the lessee of the property as Best Bite LLC.  I can’t seem to confirm much more than this right now.  Keep watching this space…  

Bread & Porridge Disappears From Santa Monica

I heard from a reader (Thanks Debbie!) that Santa Monica’s perennially popular under-the-radar neighborhood breakfast joint Bread & Porridge had abandoned their longtime location at 2315 Wilshire.  I had been watching the space, which has been idle for a few weeks, to see what was going on.  Last month a notice in the window explained that they were taking a temporary “break from operations”.  Since then, a for lease notice has appeared in the window so I assume there is no hope for reopening at this location. They will be sorely missed by their legions of fans who have made this humble restaurant an A.M. fave since 1994.

Fiish Los Angeles Diving Into Culver City

I heard from a reader (Thanks Andrew!) about a new establishment taking over the old Bondi Harvest space in Culver City at 8820 Washington.  In case you haven’t tried recently to navigate your way through the fresh hell that is Downtown Culver City, well… it is an unmitigated traffic disaster and you’ll be stuck there a very long time.  Anyway, I did eventually make it to the location to see what was going on.   Window paper up on the space announces the impending arrival of Fiish Los Angeles.  I can’t seem to find much info on this business so if you know more send me a message.  Just know I won’t be driving there anytime soon…

Sushi Sho Decamps From Montana Ave.

Modest Sushi Sho has been quietly dishing fish to the good people of NoMa from its humble storefront at 1303 Montana Ave. in Santa Monica for a very long time.  Sadly, almost overnight it has completely pulled up stakes.  But something appears to be quickly moving in.  As soon as I find out what that is I’ll let you know…


99 Ranch Market About To Bless The Westside…

As a Westsider, a couple of times a year I get in the car and drive up the 405 to Van Nuys for a pilgrimage to the 99 Ranch Market (also known as Tawa Supermarket).  They carry a comprehensive selection of Asian groceries, and are most likely to stock hard-to-source ingredients like stinky tofu or broad bean paste.  I’ll return home with piles of Makrut lime leaves, rau ram, fried tofu, a plant for the garden, and just possibly durian.  (Although I do thoroughly recommend a local gem: Ma’am’s International Foods in Santa Monica whose much smaller, concise selection is accompanied by the BEST service anywhere.)  Well that trip up the 405 may no longer be necessary.  It appears we are about to be blessed with our own Westside branch of the chain.  There are tiny window notices up at the former site of the Ross Dress for Less at 1364 Westwood Blvd. in Westwood announcing an upcoming location.  Read more about the company and its vision here.  Very exciting news…

Kung Fu Tea, TKK Fried Chicken Bringing NY/Taiwan Flavors To Westwood Village

A reader (Thanks Jeremy!) noticed a banner hanging over the front of the space that used to be home to D’Amore’s Pizza at 1136 Westwood Blvd.  The banner announces a collab between Kung Fu Tea and TKK Fried Chicken.   Kung Fu Tea originated in Queens NY and is the self-proclaimed largest bubble tea brand in America.   TKK Fried Chicken began life in Taipei in 1974 and promises to have us say, “Cluck yeah”.

Wienerschnitzel Bites The Dust In Santa Monica

The A-frame of Santa Monica’s fossilized outpost of tube steak chain Wienerschnitzel has been a fixture along Pico Blvd. for as long as anyone can remember.  But alas, no longer.  A reader (Thanks John!) wrote to tell me of its closure at 3010 Pico.  Sure enough, all signs have been pulled down, the place is gutted, and a hastily-written note proclaims it permanently closed.  Wienerschnitzel was founded in Wilmington CA in 1961 and was a marvel of midcentury fast food chains.  Truly the end of an era.

Urban Skillet Opens In Santa Monica On…

It appears a new burger joint is close to opening in Santa Monica.  Almost overnight, signs went up at 2307 Main St. announcing that a branch of Urban Skillet is moving in.  Urban Skillet hails from Minnesota with a location in The Valley as well, and is known for their Halal burgers, as well as chicken burgers, wings, fries, and hand-blended shakes.  They will be throwing open their doors on Friday, March 11th at 12pm.  For their Grand Opening, they are offering a free burger when you buy a burger with this coupon.

Tomat Kitchen Coming To Westchester

It appears that there’s a new build-out underway at 6261 W 87th St. in Westchester (just to the east of Sepulveda).  An ABC application pasted on the front lists the new business as Tomat Kitchen.  I searched high and low and can’t uncover much information about the new eatery (except an undeveloped website), so if you know more pass it along…

Uranus 27 Fresh Boba Tea Now Open In Westwood

The space at 10912 Le Conte Ave. in Westwood Village has had a number of tea shops as residents over the years.  A plucky new contender is giving the location a go.  Uranus 27 Fresh Boba Tea recently opened and is now dishing their proprietary traditional tea, milk tea, smoothies, and slushes.  Uranus has other locations in Upland and Glendora as well.

Kickin’ Fish & Chicken Landing in Westchester

You might not have noticed, but a new fish and poultry purveyor is coming in for a landing at 8622 S Sepulveda in Westchester.  That’s because the banner is hanging on the backside of the building and not streetside.  Regardless, it appears that Orange County’s Kickin’ Fish & Chicken is moving into the location most recently occupied by a spa.  Kickin’ has an outpost in Westminster and offers a menu of seafood and “naturally raised, free-range and organic chicken” that is either grilled, fried, or rotisserie.

Risky Business’ 12th Annual Mardi Gras Crawfish Broil

In what has become an yearly tradition, the good people at Burbank’s Risky Business (previously known as The Other Door) have reached out to me to pass on information about this year’s 12th Annual Mardi Gras Crawfish Broil.  Celebrate the easing of Pandemic restrictions New Orleans Style with “hundreds of pounds of the critters live from Louisiana” served with “frosty Abita on tap, authentic Sazeracs, Hurricanes, and other New Orleans cocktails”.  They will also have King Cake.  The event takes place from 10pm to 2am on Tuesday, March 1st at 10437 Burbank Blvd. in North Hollywood.  While there are no advance ticket sales, they do expect to sell out so arrive early…

Yalla Mediterranean Disappears From Culver City

I’m hearing from shocked readers that everyone’s favorite neighborhood take-away spot Yalla Mediterranean had completely disappeared from its location at 9516 Culver Blvd.  The space is completely gutted and the signs have been taken down, leaving no trace whatsoever.  I’m not sure what happened, but I’ll keep an eye on the location to see what develops. (If you can’t live without Yalla‘s salmon salad, they still have a location in Burbank.)

Blossom And Friends Coming To Santa Monica

Vietnamese noodle shop Blossom appears to be broadening their horizons.  On a tip (Thanks CG!) I went by the space that used to be home to Uplifter’s Kitchen at 2819 Ocean Park Blvd.  New signs and an ABC application in the window are announcing a new project from Blossom, which incidentally sits right next door at 2821 Ocean Park.  I’m told by a spokesperson that the new project, Blossom and Friends, will be a departure from Vietnamese.  While the menu is still in development, it appears Italian will be on offer.  I’m also told that they are looking to open by the end of March.  We wish them the best of luck…

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams Coming To Beverly Hills

Beverly Hills lost both of their branches of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf in the mass extinction event the chain experienced during the Pandemic closures.  Their location at 445 N Beverly Dr. has sat empty ever since, but that’s about to change.   A notice of intent for an open air dining permit posted on the front door spills the beans that an outpost of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams is on the way.  Founded by Jeni Britton Bauer and headquartered in Columbus Ohio, Jeni’s boasts a frozen treat with “a uniquely smooth texture and buttercream body, with bright flavor and clean finish” for which people go crazy, including President Joe Biden.

Wildbird Landing In Westwood Village

It appears a new purveyor of poultry is coming at 10917 Lindbrook Dr. in Westwood Village, previously home to Think Halal Grill.  Window paper is up on the space announcing that a second branch of Hollywood’s Wildbird is settling in.  Wildbird prides itself on offering chicken that is “antibiotic free, hunanely raised, [and] free-range… from local farmers we trust like Jidori”.  The birds are marinated overnight in a “citrus-herb blend of spices”, then seared, and finally slow-roasted and served with a variety of sides and salsas.

Alligot Sandwich Coming To Westwood

Looks like there’s a new sandwich spot coming to 1049 Gayley in Westwood Village, formerly home to Kaido.  Window paper is announcing the arrival of Alligot Sandwich.  A cursory search turns up recipes for pommes aligot (French mashed potato with cheese) and alligator sandwiches (apparently a thing in Louisiana), but nothing on Alligot Sandwich.  If you have more information, pass it along…