Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Long Beach Food Scene Intel: LB Fish Grill, El Torito closing; Happy Cow rebrands; more

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Missed previous Long Beach Food Scene Intel updates? We got you covered, boo: Click here for the full archive.

Long Beach Food Scene Intel is a series from Brian Addison that will recap food news throughout the city, both news that needs just a quick mention or repeated news where you might have missed the full features.


El Torito on Atlantic Avenue to permanently close

The El Torito at 3301 Atlantic Ave. (or what used to be The Red Onion for those who really wanna go far back) will formally shutter with its last day of service coming this Thursday, Mar. 14. It closed its much larger Pacific Coast Highway location back in 2017—and this closure follows a string of SoCal El Torito closures across last year and this year, including permanent closures in Orange, Dana Point, Santa Monica, and more.


Signage for Olive & Rose concept at City Center goes up

Leaning on a beautifully retro, pink’n’green aesthetic, the massive conversion of the City Center motel into a boutique hotel and restaurant is one of DLTB’s most exciting projects—especially its food component: Olive & Rose will mark Chef Philip Pretty and sister Lauren Pretty’s second concept following their Michelin-starred Heritage space. For the full feature, click here.


Happy Cow Kitchen rebrands as “La ‘Croque” sandwich shop

Happy Cow Kitchen owner Claudette Pentz has opted to move past her much-loved bovine-inspired space and move toward the inspiration coming from another animal: the mighty crocodile. Dubbed “La ‘Croque”—an apparent nod to both an inside joke and the famed croque monsieur/madames of the French sandwich world—Pentz wrote on Instagram that she began doodling in order to relieve stress mid-pandemic, coming up with friendly, bubbly iterations of the reptile. This soon blossomed into a sandwich concept that will open Friday, Mar. 15 at noon.


Long Beach Fish Grill permanently closes; space up for lease

Serving the community for over 15 years with affordable, quality seafood, Long Beach Fish Grill has permanently closed its location at 1201 Redondo Ave. (and is keeping its Torrance location open). Following the closure of Pier 76 in Downtown Long Beach, it marks a decided downturn in affordable seafood options.


Beach Garden closes as lease sign goes up

Amid rumors, Beach Garden co-owner Benjamin Guitierrez temporarily shuttered the queer space in hopes to take care of repairs alongside cooperation with the landlord; that has resulted in what will like be a relocation, according to Guitierrez. “We are still trying to negotiate [even with the lease sign up] but after all this, it might be easier to relocate.”


Vegan Playground coming to Zaferia

Vegans rejoice: St. Patrick’s Day will have an all-vegan celebration in front of Devi’s Donuts & Sweet at 3600 E. Anaheim St. Katsu, tamales, pupusas, and more vegan delights.


ICYMI: Amid absurd rent hike and landlord turmoil, Milana’s Brooklyn Squares to relocate

30%. This is the rent hike the landlord of the property which houses Milana’s Brooklyn Squares—the popular spinoff sister of Downtown Long Beach’s Milana’s—served owner Adriel Fasci upon the pizzeria’s end-of-five-year-lease in April.

And Fasci did not mince words: “Landlords are actings like pimps—and they need to stop treating small businesses like hookers. It’s certainly not a way to build a community or a partnership with small businesses.”

Read the full article here.


ICYMI: Marlena’s brunch proves why it is Long Beach’s best new restaurant

For sure, Marlena—one of Long Beach’s newest restaurants from newly minted restaurateur Robert Smith, Chef Michael Ryan, hospitality maestro Debra Zelenka, and cocktail connoisseur David Castillo—has quickly garnered a loyal legion of patrons.

With their fairly new brunch menu, that alignment with quality continues with eggs benedict pizza, Bufala ricotta slathered toast, baked eggs, and more.

For the full article, click here.

Brian Addison
Brian Addison
Brian Addison has been a writer, editor, and photographer for more than a decade, covering everything from food and culture to transportation and housing. In 2015, he was named Journalist of the Year by the Los Angeles Press Club and has since garnered 25 nominations and three additional wins. In 2019, he was awarded the Food/Culture Critic of the Year across any platform at the National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.

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