Citrin is a French-ish restaurant that sort of replaced Mélisse, the Santa Monica stand-by for meetings with your agent (fear not, dealmakers; Mélisse is now a $295 tasting-menu spot hidden in the back). The menu includes some dishes left over from Mélisse - basil brioche, lobster Bolognese, and a lot of caviar and truffles - and some new dishes we like, too, including the chicken Mornay, fried chicken balls stuffed with Mornay sauce that are like little cheesy chicken dumplings. The food is inconsistent, though, and the portions are tiny for the price - the chestnut agnolotti dish is just nine quarter-sized pieces of overcooked pasta, and the oysters (four for $24) are so loaded with green mango and cucumber that you can’t taste the sweet, briny oyster underneath. And considering you’ll be lucky to get out of here for under $150 per person, there are much better places in the neighborhood to spend this kind of money.
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The Dudes’ Brewing Co.
The Dudes’ is a craft brewery on the top floor of the Santa Monica Place shopping center with a big patio.
Sweet Lady Jane
Sweet Lady Jane in Santa Monica is the place to go for giant slices of freshly baked cakes and pastries that will satisfy any craving.
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French Market Café
French Market Cafe is a low-key brunch spot in Venice, with a great patio and a crowd of locals.
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