Where to Eat in Redondo Beach, Part One
Sometimes when you live in LA, you end up staying in a bubble. It's so crazy to think of how many unique places and cities out there that are simply in your own backyard, so to speak! I was fortunate enough to be given the opportunity to spend an entire day in Redondo Beach eating at 11+ of the city's best restaurants. Of course, I jumped on the chance! I hadn't been to Redondo Beach in awhile so it was good to get a refresher course and spend a day in the beautiful South Bay. Today, I'm spotlighting a few of my new-found must-eats in Redondo Beach to help you on your next trip or staycation to the South Bay. Let me preface this by saying Redondo Beach is drop dead gorgeous. It's basically like going to the Santa Monica Pier minus all the negative parts of going to the Santa Monica Pier. It's not as touristy and the place is immaculate! As a native Angeleno, I can say that Santa Monica feels so old and dirty to me. You get a much better ambiance by spending the day in Redondo Beach. Okay enough of my love profession for Redondo. Time for the big question ... so what should you eat?
If this picture doesn't get your attention, I don't know what will!
209 N. Harbor Dr. Redondo Beach, CA 90277 (310) 372-7703
Not only does Captain Kidd's have an amazing view of the beach, but it is the epitome of simple, bare bones, but delicious food. Take me here any day over a fancy smanchy dinner! Captain Kidd's has been around since 1976. The seafood is fresh and cooked-to-order. The ambiance is a simple counter-serve style with an outdoor patio. John, the owner, was nice enough to let me take a look at his 40 year old smoker. It's the secret to his perfectly smoked salmon. Exhibit A: Perfectly smoked salmon. Now, you know the secret!
In addition, to smoked salmon, there are an array of fresh seafood available. Do you like your fish fried? Sashimied? They do it all. They also make some decadent lobster rolls.
There's also seasonal specials as well as a fresh catch of the day always on the sign. If you like your alcohol, they have some great craft specials on tap as well. There's also a hot, prepared foods section. Here's my salmon and tuna sashimi. I was a very happy camper. You can taste just how fresh the fish is! The smell of the ocean breeze also doesn't hurt! Crab legs are easy to eat. Everything is pretty much broken down for you already. Just pinch and twist!
And when can you go wrong with shrimp cocktail and oysters? Answer? Never!
The ambiance and decor is also worth noting. There's lots of quirky shark and seafood parafleilla spread through the restaurant. I love it. You can even stick your head in a shark's mouth outside. For those familiar with Malibu, I would say that Captain Kidd's is similar to Neptune's Net, which was put on the map from the Fast and Furious films. Both restaurants are near the beach. Both serve fresh seafood in a shack/casual-style environment. In my opinion, I would rank Captain Kidd's higher than Neptune's Net. There's much more variety and much more to do in the area.
136 International Boardwalk,
Redondo Beach, CA 90277 (310) 376-9215
As you can tell from the video above, A Basq Kitchen was a hoot! I can firmly say it's one of my top places I've been this year. Chef Bernard Ibarra, who previously was at The Terranea Resort opened this cozy little gastropub on the boardwalk with his wife to bring a full taste of authentic Basque cuisine. Basque People are a minority of people along the coast of the Pyrenees in Europe. They even have a distinct language, "Euskadi" that is linguistically more similar to Japanese than any other European language! Interesting factoid: Chef Jose Andres is half Basque!
The waterside restaurant has a big nautical theme as well as touches of Basque culture throughout. They offer seasonal bites and even have lots of unique and hard to find Basque wines and ciders all the way from Europe. What a gorgeous charcuterie board! How amazing was this plate of sharp sheep's milk cheeses, house-made fig jam, cured Spanish meats and a variety of crunchy pickles? I'm drooling right now just looking back at these photos.
The charcuterie board was amazing. Wow, the cheeses were melt in your mouth and the view of the ocean didn't hurt either. Since we were on a 11 restaurant tour, we didn't want to eat too much at each place. I'll have to go back to A Basq Kitchen. They constantly have seasonal offerings as well as fresh oysters, sweet-salty jamon-wrapped dates stuffed with blue cheese, fried, garlicky shrimp, and piperada vasca, a vegetable stew that you can order topped with jamon and a fried egg, etc. The list goes on and on! Plus, go for Jessica! She's Chef Bernard Ibarra's wife and she is fun company!
1718 S Catalina Ave,
Redondo Beach, CA 90277
For those LA natives, you've probably seen a lot of fast food 90 second pizza places popping up left and right in the last year. You go down line and basically pick a gazillion toppings to get your money's worth. Although, there's most definitely nothing wrong with places that that, it's not a place you would go to for a quality pizza. And similar to the poke phase, I'm so over it. So cue the hallelujah when there's a real Neapolitan pizza place that uses fresh and high quality ingredients! Locale 90 is all about Neapolitan pizza. All the pizzas are made from scratch. They use “00” Flour, San Marzano Tomatoes, Fresh Mozzarella, Italian Sea Salt, and Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Pizzas only take 90 seconds to make because that is the optimal time for a pizza using open flame cooking in their imported oven. The temperatures reach over 900 degrees. I tried the pre-selected pizza combinations such as the marinara and broccoli, the caprese, the white potato, and the Prosciutto arugula pizzas. Locale 90 did not skimp out on ingredients. The Potato Bianca Pizza was filled with potatoes, Fontina Cheese, pancetta, and green onions. The meatballs, however were the showstopper for me! It's actually the very same recipe the owner's grandmother used to make. I also really enjoyed their Italian Tuna and White Bean Salad, which was filled with tomato panzanella, capers, red onions, parsley, butter lettuce, and basil vinaigrette. There was even a mini market section of the restaurant, which had some Italian and local ingredients available to buy home. The best part of Locale 90 is that they have a gluten-free pizza crust that those with a gluten allergy seem to have no problem with. That's a real plus in my book!
And don't forget their Nutella pizza for dessert! It was finger-licking good!
And those are my Redondo Beach must-eats, Part 1. Make sure to stay tuned for more recommendations to come. I wanna thank the city of Redondo Beach and Klick Communications for organizing the tour. This post was not sponsored. Opinions are my own.