To the dismay of many Angelenos, fall weather continues to elude Southern California. While our friends back east get to snuggle up next to a roaring fire in their cozy sweaters and socks, we're still flip-flopping around town and cranking the A/C in our cars to help combat the unrelenting summer sunshine. And yes, I hear how sad that sounds - blue skies and warm weather all year, and we're still complaining? We're basically the worst. So, in an effort to start appreciating the seemingly endless summer weather here in L.A., we'd like to make a motion to spend less time sweating through your sweater at the "pumpkin patch" (read: the dressed-up parking lot full of hay bales and pumpkins that were grown hundreds of miles away), and more time kicking back at the beach. And what better way to start a day at the beach than with a beachside brunch?
Here are a few beachside brunch spots that have received the Brunchographers stamp of approval, and are perfect for kicking off a day by the water!
Beachside Restaurant & Bar, Marina del Rey
You can't get more beachside than Beachside Restaurant & Bar in Marina del Rey - nestled inside the charming Jamaica Bay Inn overlooking Mother’s Beach (a picturesque, surf-free little beach in Marina del Rey), brunch here feels like a vacation. Grab a table on the patio, order up a craft cocktail, and spend the day soaking in that gorgeous view. And if you're bored on a Wednesday, you're in luck - Chef Victor Gonzalez’s popular brunch menu is served on weekdays, too.
Favorite Dishes: Breakfast Enchiladas, Fried Chicken & Frangelico Custard French Toast
Pro Tip: Unlike pretty much anywhere else in the Marina, parking is free when you visit the restaurant - so unless you're planning to imbibe, you can skip the Lyft fare.
Check out our blog post from Beachside here.
Malibu Farm Pier Café, Malibu
Located at the end of the end of the Malibu Pier, Malibu Farm Pier Café is perhaps the ultimate beach-view brunch spot. There's nothing more magical than enjoying Helene Henderson's excellent farm-to-table fare with a 360-degree view of the Pacific. Whether you keep it healthy or indulge a little, the bites at Malibu Farm Pier Café are a treat, and we especially love the delicious coffee from Caffe Luxxe.
Favorite Dishes: Swedish Mini Pancakes, Fried Egg Sandwich
Pro Tip: If you're going to drive all the way to Malibu, we recommend making a day of it - reserve a (free) ticket to the Getty Villa for after your brunch, and enjoy an huge collection of Greek and Roman antiquities in an unforgettable setting.
Playa Provisions, Playa del Rey
Playa Provisions, the fourth culinary venture of Top Chef winner Brooke Williamson and husband Nick Roberts, is an ambitious beachside concept that hits all the marks. Four unique dining concepts are housed under one (minimalist chic) roof: an ice cream parlor, a casual food counter, a whisky bar, and an upscale restaurant. During the week, we love to pop in to King Beach and order a coffee and a sandwich at the counter. On the weekends, Dockside - the full-service restaurant - is the place to be, especially if you happen to catch the occasional Saturday Jazz Brunch.
Favorite Dishes: Biscuit Bites with Dulce de Leche, Pretzel Croissant, Smokey Tomato Stewed Beluga Lentils
Pro Tip: If you're a cyclist, be sure to stop in here on your way down the coastal bike path - Playa Provisions offers 10% off for cyclists who "pedal in wearing their kit."
Check out our blog post about Playa Provisions here.
R10 Social House, Redondo Beach
If marina views are more your speed, you can't do much better than R10 Social House in Redondo. Located smack-dab in the middle of the marina, there's not a bad seat in the house for taking in the ocean breezes and beautiful scenery (although next time we'll be vying for a spot on the upper deck under those cute red umbrellas). The menu is packed with crowd-pleasers (and a few good puns, which we appreciate), and we loved their creative takes on Mimosas.
Favorite Dishes: Bacon-Sweet Potato Hash, So Farro, So Good! Salad
Pro Tip: If you manage to save room, be sure to try the "Wanderlust Dessert," a rotating weekly special inspired by flavors from around the world.
SALT, Marina del Rey
When you're looking to entertain out-of-town guests, SALT is a no-brainer. With its sprawling patio, upscale modern vibe, and sweeping views of the marina, a meal at the Marina del Rey Hotel's restaurant will easily fool your relatives into believing that you're leading that glamorous L.A. lifestyle they saw on TV. The menu is vast (perfect for your cousin's food intolerances or your uncle's strict half-grapefruit-and-a-side-of-plain-egg-whites breakfast habit), the cocktails are delicious, and the coffee is bottomless. Follow it all up with a stroll through the marina, and you'll be stealing Aunt Lynn's title of official family travel agent before you know it.
Favorite Dishes: Toast, Croque Madame, Avocado Hummus
Pro Tip: Parking at SALT is valet-only - so now may be the time to splurge for that Lyft ride.
Check out our blog post about SALT here.
Surfside, Venice Beach
What with the mobs of confused tourists, the scantily-clad rollerbladers zipping through foot traffic, and the exorbitant price of parking, Venice Beach can be kind of terrifying. Fortunately, it's not without solid brunch options - if you can find a place to put your car, of course. Surfside is a relaxed, breezy spot just steps from the sand, located on historic Windward Avenue (home to the famous "Venice" sign). The menu features plenty of California breakfast staples (including plenty of choices for those trying to keep it healthy) and a host of fun, beach-day-worthy cocktails.
Favorite Dishes: Pipeline Burrito, Black Kale Salad
Pro Tip: Surfside is a perfect spot to take a break from the hot sun, especially if you've got a sports lover in tow - there are plenty of TVs to keep them up-to-date on all the latest scores.
Pro [Coffee] Tip: Enjoy the tasty cocktails at Surfside, but save the coffee for Menotti's across the street - it's some of the best in the city, and is conveniently located for a post-brunch pit stop.
Terranea + Catalina Kitchen, Rancho Palos Verdes
Whether you're staying at the enormous, swanky Rancho Palos Verdes resort or not, Terranea's many restaurants are worth a visit (especially mar'sel for a fancy dinner with a great wine selection). For brunch, Catalina Kitchen can't be beat; its atmosphere is comfortable yet stylish, and the menu features dishes that range from the crowd-pleasing classics (Shrimp & Grits) to the creative and fun (Caramel Banana Granola Crepe). Be sure to take a stroll around the grounds or make an appointment at the luxurious spa - Terranea feels like an island getaway in our own backyard!
Favorite Dishes: Smoked Salmon Mushroom Scramble, Steel-Cut Oatmeal with Fruit
Pro Tip: If you're staying at the resort, be sure to let them know if you'll be celebrating a special occasion - when we went for a birthday, we were treated to complimentary champagne and cupcakes in our room!
What are your favorite beachside brunch spots? Let us know!