If you follow this blog regularly, then you know how much I love to uncover stories from scraps of evidence. But I have to give credit where credit is due… I’ve been watching the new construction on the north side of Montana Ave. in Santa Monica, between 15th and 16th streets where an old parking lot used to sit, but I couldn’t uncover any concrete proposals for the site. Then I heard from reader Patricia, who had caught wind of a rumor that the space was being converted into a branch of the popular purveyor of salads and bowls, Sweetgreen, which I couldn’t verify. So Patricia went to work. On an easily overlooked document for another Montana rental, she spotted Sweetgreen listed at that location, appearing to confirm the rumor. (Don’t ask me how she found it, but it’s definitely there on page 6). So while I still can’t prove it, Sweetgreen looks likely headed for Montana Ave. The real story here is that detective work. Brava Patricia!
I recently noticed that long-standing local fave Japanese bolthole Musha Tokyo Cuisine has quit its Downtown Santa Monica location at 424 Wilshire Blvd. The windows are covered over and the restaurant appears to be undergoing renovation. I originally wondered if they were remodeling since there is no for lease sign on the front. But Yelp is reporting them closed and their website isn’t functioning, so I’m assuming the worst. Let me know if you have any information, but I’ll keep watching…
The little strip mall that housed Pot & Pan Thai restaurant is undergoing a major renovation. Pot & Pan itself has since closed. But a new Thai restaurant is destined to move into the space at 2315 Santa Monica Blvd. A banner in the window promises us “Thai vegan coming soon”.
It was back in 2012 when I first noticed that a branch of Italian coffee specialists Spazio Caffe was on its way to 1511A Montana Ave. in Santa Monica. Having built a loyal local following, it’s a bit surprising to discover that they have abandoned the location. The space is completely gutted. I’m not sure what happened but I’ll keep watching to see what develops.
It appears that something new is coming the space that used to house the second incarnation of Books and Cookies at 2309 Main St. in Santa Monica, at least according to a recently posted ABC application. The application lists the applicant as 4 Jems Restaurants LLC, but omits an actual business name. An online search yields links to buzzy Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken in LA. So, I guess we’ll have to wait and see what develops. Let me know if you have any information…
Back in August of last year, I told you about a sign of hope in the risky restaurant scene on the third floor of Santa Monica Place. An ABC application let us know that Torrance’s The Dudes’ Brewing Company was taking over the commodious space once occupied by Pizza Antica. So, for all you who have been patiently waiting and checking for updates, I deliver this happy news: The Dudes’ officially opened its doors last week and is now supplying craft-brewed suds and pizza to the good people of Santa Monica.
Still more signs of trouble for the consistently sputtering food scene in Santa Monica Place. It appears that another of the concessions on the third floor has disappeared. CrepeMaker has unceremoniously vacated its food court location. In other news… If you were hopeful that the failed The Market space might return with the promise of a new food venture, I’m afraid your hopes are about to be dashed on the rocks. In case you haven’t heard, the space is being converted into the Zimmer Children’s Museum, at least according to the new window displays. Perhaps the Dudes’ Brewing Company, currently under construction, will breathe new life into the third floor.