DineLA Restaurant Week 2015 was held from July 13 – July 26. It was a fourteen day event featuring some of Los Angeles’ best restaurants. It featured a prix-fixed menu that highlighted the particular restaurants signature dishes. DineLA presents Los Angeles as a global fine dining destination. The Experience Magazine was able to stop by four locations participating in the city wide event.
The Experience Magazine recently stopped by Seasons 52 to sample the DineLA menu. This was a real treat! All of the menu items are under 475 calories. It makes it easy to eat a healthy meal. The location of the restaurant is just amazing. Overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the Santa Monica Pier can be seen from the patio. The atmosphere at Seasons 52 is luxurious and sophisticated. The bar is very popular and the dining room can accommodate many guests.
For DineLA, we started with a vegetarian flat bread pizza which was a great way to start our meal. The crust was crispy and quite possibly the best pizza in Santa Monica! The feature of our DineLA dinner was the shrimp and grits. This is southern comfort food at its best. This dish was in the top five of best dishes in our DineLA experience. For dessert, we chose from several tiny hand crafted creations. It was fun to select from all the choices.
Check out Seasons 52 in Santa Monica. It’s such a nice restaurant that’s been a top gourmet destination for years.
The Experience Magazine dined at Bacari PDR which is located near the beach in Playa Del Rey. Opened in 2014, Bacari PDR is easily the best restaurant in Playa Del Rey. It’s a cozy pub that has a view of the pacific ocean. The sunsets from this restaurant are amazing. The DineLA menu that we sampled, has to be the best DineLA restaurant that we’ve ever attended. There were surprises, favorites, and well-done standards. Kyle, the manager, reserved a table for us. I’m so glad he did because the restaurant was full in about 10 minutes after our arrival. The restaurant was filled! Many people came to enjoy the drinking, eating and socializing. Residents of PDR love Bacari. It is obviously a local favorite. Chef Lior Hailel’s Cicchetti (which means small plates for some of the most upstanding Tapas we’ve ever had served as a meal or with food for drinking the crab Christine was a gourmet crab salad with poblano peppers in a bit with a baguette this looks like a popular item as it was being served to many tables it was prepared perfectly the panseared polenta with an eggplant salad with fresh and crunchy the Mediterranean menu shows off it’s spices the roasted eggplant poblano went so well with the with an ice cold beer the guy in LA menu features an open bar for 90 minutes you could order beer house wine for sangria the best dish in the house is the grilled chicken breast our server James said this was the best North popular item it was so good you must try it you could taste the Mediterranean spices no he know is Collie flower with the surprise– Prepared on a bed of fresh greens it has a barbecue chicken wing sauce that was spicy and so good cauliflower is so good for you but car utilizes locally sourced produce one available the panseared Bara Monday was from Malaysia and service a delicious hollandaise sauce there Monday is a popular fish because it is sustainable. The pan seared baramundi from Malaysia and served with a delicious hollandaise sauce the baramundi is popular because it is sustainable and low in mercury created with a carrot purée the capers for crispy and delicious again this is one of the best DineLA items that we never had finally for dessert Abi this featured rosewater custard shaved coconut hibiscus flower and grandpa Stasio had such a unique flavor the DineLA prefix menu is $40 per person you can choose to cheeses to Cicchetti and dessert it comes with all you can drink for 90 minutes
Gourmet Mexican food for DineLA in Santa Monica! The Border Grill never disappoints. This Los Angeles institution was created by celebrity Chef/Owners Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger. They have raised the bar for gourmet Mexican food in Los Angeles. The decor at Border Grill is festive, bright and fun.
To start our DineLA experience, we had the Veracruz Vegetable Ceviche. The favs beans, coyote squash and English peas were savory. Such subtle Oaxacan spices. The border grill ceviche has elements from the Santa Monica Farmers Market. Lime, oregano and tomato are raised locally and brought to your table. I detected a touch of cilantro and jalapeño. It’s such an original take on this dish. From the bar, we tried a handcrafted cocktail. The Mojito at Border Grill features fresh juice and a touch of mint. The bar is world class and has a nice atmosphere. The location of Border Grill is in the heart of downtown Santa Monica. You never know who you will see at the bar.
Finally for the main course, we had the vegetarian enchiladas. The corn tortilla was topped with Mexican cream on top. The mix of the raw quinoa with the salsa verde was balanced. The complex, gourmet flavors of grilled fennel, roasted squash, beets and carrots were presented in an upscale fashion. Border Grill works hard at getting everything right. This was the best Mexican food of DineLA 2015. If you get a chance to visit Border Grill in Santa Monica, you’ll be treated to some of the best gourmet Mexican food in Santa Monica.
The Experience Magazine was able to dine at Whiskey Reds in the Marina Del Rey Fisherman’s Village. When we arrived for dinner, there was a nice breeze and the sun was setting. The view of the boats going in and out of the harbor is just incredible. The patio area also has fire pits which create a nice environment as it gets dark. Chef Brandon Warren has put together a DineLA menu that allowed us to sample the American Bistro influenced menu. We started with the clam chowder. It was creamy and hardy. A great place to start. The first DineLA item we had was the fish and chips. They were prepared and fried perfectly. Fish and chips are comfort food. The Ahi Tuna Poke was fresh and had a nice balance of fish and spices. Chef Brandon uses organic and gluten free ingredients when he can. We enjoyed our evening of dining and hope to get back soon.