The commodious space at 1705 Ocean Ave. In Downtown Santa Monica has hosted a number of different restaurants including (maybe) a Joan’s on Third, H B Daisy, and Winston Pies. The location has been vacant for a cool minute, but that’s about to change. Self-described “laid-back and unpretentious neighborhood restaurant, coffeehouse and meeting place” Sweet Maple is moving into the address. Their website confirms it. This will be the first SoCal location for the San Francisco-based restaurant famous for their Millionaire’s Bacon, which is “extra-thick, sweet and spicy bacon” that is “slow-cooked for hours with brown sugar and spicy peppers to a chewy perfection”. Check out the menu of their original branch for an idea of what may be coming.
While no one was looking, a new Japanese restaurant quietly slipped into the space most recently occupied by innovative noodle shop Rakkan Ramen. Sushi Gozen is now open at the hidden location at 1705 Ocean Ave. #111. Sushi Gozen is the sister restaurant to West Hollywood’s Gozen Japanese Sake Bistro and promises a “laid-back seaside vibe” with fresh seafood, sushi pizza, chicken, and other offerings.
Winston Pies unceremoniously quit the unlucky space at 1705 Ocean Ave., but the plucky pastry purveyor is not done with Santa Monica quite yet. There’s window paper up on the front of the old Milo SRO space at 826 Pico Blvd. announcing the arrival of the expanding popular bake shop. Winston produces pies that are handmade from scratch using natural ingredients and baked in the tradition of founder Brianna Abrams’ childhood home of Winston-Salem, NC. Thanks to PHW for spotting the notices.
Santa Monica’s branch of Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern disappeared during the pandemic restaurant closures, leaving a gaping hole at 1733 Ocean Ave. But a new contender is stepping forward to give the space a go. There’s a banner off to the side of the patio announcing the impending arrival of Sol-Agave. This will be the fourth location for the Mexican chain that started out as a food truck in in 2014 in San Juan Capistrano. According to their website, it appears that they are also planning on a location at 800 W Olympic #A130, near STAPLES Center. We wish them the best of luck.
The Venice Whaler has been the go-to destination in Venice since 1944. Now they are bringing their beachy vibes and fish tacos to the Good People of Santa Monica. Ma’Kai, on the corner of Broadway. and Ocean Ave. in Downtown, closed up shop during the pandemic. A number of months ago plywood went up on the front, and eventually a help wanted notice hinted at what the new bar/eatery was going to be. But now it’s official: Recently installed signs declare that this will indeed be a new outpost of the legendary Beach party spot, The Santa Monica Whaler.
After having sat vacant for ages, the space at 1705 Ocean Ave. in Santa Monica, previously inhabited by H B Daisy and a dubious branch of Joan’s on Third before that, is about to get a new tenant. Window dressing has gone up on the commodious corner shop informing us that this will soon be the home of a branch of popular pastry perfectionist Winston Pies. This will be their third location, we wish them the best of luck.
A new ABC application recently went up on the front of the currently closed-for-renovation Viceroy Hotel on the corner of Pico and Ocean in Santa Monica. While it doesn’t give us the name of the restaurant, it does promise that an eatery will be coming to the iconic property. You may recall that The Viceroy’s previous restaurant was called Whist and subsequently Cast, and in the past has been helmed at different turns by Tim Goodell and Tony DiSalvo. The website says the name of the new restaurant is Sugar Palm Ocean Avenue, and you can catch a glimpse of it through the front door. I’ll keep watching to see what develops.
Yikes! It appears that an exodus of eateries has occurred in Downtown Santa Monica after the Holidays. Plan Check has checked out of 1401 Ocean Ave. Le Pain Quotidien has said adieu to 316 Santa Monica Blvd. (A note in the window blames an expiring lease agreement.) And, after a valiant effort, Creams & Dreams has closed their nitrogen ice cream outpost at 219 Arizona after four years. Sad…
Thanks to a tip from eagle-eyed reader Frank, who’s been keeping watch on the erstwhile home of O + O Sicilian Kitchen in Santa Monica, I went by to check things out. Easy to miss, a new ABC Application has gone up on the front door. It appears that a branch of Rakkan Ramen will soon be moving into the space 1705 Ocean Ave. Suite 111 (Behind the former Joan’s on Third). The Japanese chain has two other locations around LA, and is known for its plant-based dashi that is easily customized to accommodate vegans.