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LA

Guide

The Best Restaurants In Venice

There’s more to restaurants in Venice than Abbot Kinney. Although you should definitely be eating on Abbot Kinney, too.

26 Spots
Launch Map
26 Spots
Launch Map
Updated November 19th, 2021

Venice gets a bad rap: It’s expensive, full of tech people who don’t think it’s expensive, overrun with Bird scooters, and just generally kind of a pain in the ass.

But we’re here to tell you that Venice isn’t that bad. It’s a neighborhood that actually feels like a neighborhood - you can walk places, and all the locals seem to know each other. More importantly for our purposes, the food is great. From long-standing local cantinas to luxury pasta rooms, here is everywhere you should be eating in Venice.

THE SPOTS

Dudley Market

$$$$
AmericanSeafood  in  Venice
$$$$ 9 Dudley Ave

Dudley Market is a fun, crowded spot a block from the beach, and a meal here makes you feel like you’ve joined a secret club of sommelier surfers who also know a lot about rod-and-reel fishing. Most of the seafood they serve is caught on the restaurant-owned boat, so if it’s on the menu today, there’s a good chance it was swimming in the ocean that morning. The bluefin tataki, clam and pork toast, and whole-fried fish are all some of our favorites, but the decidedly not-from-the-ocean hamburger with bacon-onion jam is our favorite burger in the city.

Ospi

$$$$
Italian  in  Venice
$$$$ 2025 Pacific Ave

Ospi is an excellent Italian restaurant one block from the boardwalk that comes from the same people behind one of our other favorite Italian restaurants on the Westside, Jame Enoteca. The menu is filled with razor-thin pizzas, vodka sauce-covered pastas, and big plates of meat like crispy scaled branzino and pork collar with pecorino. There’s also a fantastic wrap-around front patio that works for almost any occasion, whether it be a first date or a rowdy, wine-drenched feast with friends. Whoever you roll in with, be sure to make reservations well in advance - Ospi is still one of the hardest weekend tables to snag in the neighborhood.

Night + Market Sahm

$$$$ 2533 Lincoln Blvd

A kid takes over his parents’ family Thai restaurant on the Sunset Strip and turns it into one of the greatest Thai restaurants in LA before proceeding to expand to Venice, Silver Lake, and Las Vegas. Tale as old as time, right? Hardly. Kris Yenbamroong and his wife, Sarah St. Lifer, run the only party restaurants in town that we also shortlist for takeout. We like all three Night + Market locations in LA, but Venice currently has our hearts. It’s cramped and loud in a way that forces you to let loose, and even though they don’t have hard liquor (like they do in West Hollywood), the wine list always introduces us to something new. Make sure some form of larb, fried chicken, and noodles are on your table and you’ll be in for a great time.

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Jakob Layman

American Beauty

$$$$
AmericanBurgersSteaks  in  Venice
$$$$ 425 Rose Ave

This Rose Ave. spot serves excellent steakhouse classics, like a killer dry-aged 32 oz. porterhouse and the requisite sides - namely, a big potato pancake stuffed with onion and sour cream. There’s also a brand new front patio adorned with colorful chairs, planters, and of course, that sweet Venice sunshine. It’s the perfect place to take advantage of one of the many excellent cocktails on their menu, like the spicy tequila and celery-filled Friend Of The Devil, or our personal favorite, a dirty martini with bay leaf infused vodka.

The Win-Dow at American Beauty

$$$$
AmericanBurgers  in  Venice
$$$$ 425 Rose Ave

We imagine that when McDonald’s opened their first location in San Bernardino in 1937, the burgers looked and tasted a lot like what you’ll find coming out of American Beauty’s burger window: they’re a quick, cheap (a single cheeseburger is $3.95), and deliciously compact homage to the California roadside burger. Grilled on a flat-top with onions, topped with American cheese, pickles, and house sauce, and served on a Martin’s potato roll, the burger is low-brow, but high-quality. The meat comes from American Beauty next door, and while there are no martinis at the window, there are lovable burgers and fries on a chilled-out patio, perfect for grabbing after a day at the beach.

Jakob Layman

Felix

$$$$
PastaItalian  in  Venice
$$$$ 1023 Abbot Kinney Boulevard

For all its “coolest street in America” buzz, restaurants don’t open all that often on Abbot Kinney. So the entire neighborhood was lined up in advance when Italian spot Felix showed up at the beach end of the street in 2017, and while it’s still consistently packed, Felix is also as good as ever. It’s essentially a temple of pasta, complete with a climate-controlled pasta-making space in the middle of the dining room, and a pesto pasta that shouldn’t be missed.

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Gjusta

$$$$
AmericanSandwichesDeli  in  Venice
$$$$ 320 Sunset Ave

Gjusta is everything that’s both terrible and wonderful about Venice. Even though there are always multiple people pretending they’re living in a personal style blog (often while waiting to order), Gjusta is still one of our favorite spots in the neighborhood. Locals pop in and pick up pastrami lox and baklava croissants for brunch at home, and not-locals cross the city for the breakfast bialy sandwiches. This place is open all day and does incredible things with bread and porchetta (both together and separately). Bonus: There’s official table service now, so you no longer have to fight for elbow room in their chaotic deli area.

Holly Liss

James' Beach

$$$$
AmericanTacos  in  Venice
$$$$ 60 N Venice Blvd

If Gjusta is New Venice, James’ Beach is Old-ish Venice. Best known for being the fish taco place in I Love You, Man, it’s one of those spots that’s both a party and a restaurant. It’s an indoor/outdoor space, and if you’re sitting on the patio on a Friday night, your dinner will probably get taken over by bar-goers. Which is actually fine, because you’ll probably end up drinking with them anyway. The fish tacos are perfectly acceptable - don’t tell Jason Segel, but we prefer the chicken ones.

Teddy's Red Tacos

$$$$
MexicanTacos  in  Venice
$$$$ 46 Windward Ave

The first Westside location of Teddy’s Red Tacos is just as good as the original in South LA (which made our list of The Best Tacos In LA). And while the atmosphere in a shop off the boardwalk in Venice doesn’t quite live up to the original truck parked on train tracks, the rich, spicy beef birria is exactly the same. It’s the only thing on the menu, and the way to order it is in deluxe platter form, which comes with a quesadilla, mulita, tostada, taco, and pozole. You’ll be extremely full - and happy.

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Great White

$$$$
American  in  Venice
$$$$ 1604 Pacific Ave

It’s honestly hard to know why it took so long for an Australian cafe to open in Venice. On any given day, half the people in the neighborhood are visiting from Sydney, and if any group of people knows the importance of a flat white after a surf, it’s Australians. And Great White is a good example of the genre, with friendly table service, solid breakfast food, and extremely good coffee.

Varro

Varro

$$$$
$$$$ 600 Venice Blvd.

Taking full advantage of its prime corner property at Venice and Abbot Kinney, this Argentinian wine bar has a massive, shaded front patio and breezy, light-filled interior that feels designed solely with first dates in mind. That said, if we’re flying solo or meeting a friend for a casual midweek dinner, you’ll find us sitting right at the bar. Here is where you can chat up the somm until you find the exact right wine you’re in the mood for (their list includes both South and North American wines, as well as European) and then stare longingly into the open hearth filled with sizzling meats and vegetables. As far as food goes, we’ve yet to try anything here we dislike, but the aubergine escabeche, a marinated eggplant dish topped with stracciatella cheese and raisins, is a standout.

Gran Blanco

$$$$
Bar FoodBar  in  Venice
$$$$ 80 Windward Avenue

It’s hard enough to find a restaurant by the boardwalk with decent food, let alone one with good food and a crowd you actually want to hang out with. But Gran Blanco has both. It’s from the same owners as Great White across the street, and here, they channel that spot’s low-key, Aussie beach energy into a cocktail bar. The drinks are good across the board - we like the Celery Southside, which includes gin and celery - but the reason we’re really here most often is the burger. It’s a juicy, crispy smashburger with melty American cheese, and it adds to Venice’s tradition of top-notch burgers.

Jakob Layman

Hinano Cafe

$$$$
AmericanBar Food  in  Venice
$$$$ 15 Washington Blvd

Speaking of burgers - they don’t get any better than the ones at Hinano, a super casual, sawdust-on-the-floor, pool-cue-in-your-ribs beach dive that’s been a local fave since the ’60s (back when those locals included Jim Morrison). The burgers are super-traditional, grilled right behind the bar, and come in a basket with a bag of chips on the side, so needless to say they’re best enjoyed with a cold beverage (or six) of your choosing. The chili’s also good, and they serve breakfast starting at 8am if you’re looking to start your day the Lizard King way.

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La Cabaña Restaurant

$$$$
Mexican  in  Venice
$$$$ 738 Rose Ave

La Cabaña is one of a handful of remaining Venice classics, and also your only real weeknight late-night eating option in the area. This 55-year-old Mexican spot on Rose is open until 3am every single day, but is just as good for a casual dinner with work people you actually like or dinner with your tequila-loving grandmother. The back patio is the place to be any time of day, and the El Verde burrito is a monstrosity you want to tackle. Oh, and margarita carafes are $33. Stay safe.

Fig Tree

Fig Tree

$$$$ 431 Ocean Front Walk

The boardwalk is a tricky place if you’re hungry during lunch - or any meal for that matter - which is why Fig Tree is so important to know about. The sunny, all-day cafe is open every day (except Tuesdays) from 8am-9pm, and whether you’re alone at 10am with a laptop or on a first date that you have a good feeling about, this place gets the job done. The Latin-leaning menu is full of highlights like rockfish ceviche with coconut milk and whole grilled fish fajitas, plus cocktails that come with interesting ingredients like mole bitters and agave rum.

Mariscos Guillen

$$$$ 3306 Lincoln Blvd

On Lincoln right near that Whole Foods you swore you’d never visit again is a tiny Mexican seafood stand that’s been around forever. Mariscos Guillen is a great spot for a stand-up lunch away from the hoards on Abbot Kinney. The seafood cocktails are popular, but we’re partial to the fish or shrimp tacos. And if you’ve ended up here with someone who doesn’t eat anything that swims, the carnitas are a solid bet, too.

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Chez Tex

$$$$
American  in  Venice
$$$$ 218 Main St

A lot of restaurants in Venice seem geared towards tourists rather than people who actually live in the area, but not Chez Tex. It’s a little family-owned wine bar and restaurant at the quiet end of Main Street and is the kind of spot you can easily imagine becoming a regular at. They’ll help you find something good to drink, bring you simple bistro-y food to eat, and remember you when you come back.

Benji Dell

Wurstküche

$$$$
German  in  Venice
$$$$ 625 Lincoln Blvd

Wurstküche is the answer to any and all of your big-group eating needs in Venice. It’s a super-casual, order-at-the-counter spot (i.e. there will be no fights over who had two beers, not three), and they serve excellent fancy sausages along with the best fries in the entire city. Once you’ve ordered in the tiny room up front, head to the huge back room, take over a table, and try to get through as much of the giant beer selection as you can.

Casablanca Restaurant

$$$$
Mexican  in  Venice
$$$$ 220 Lincoln Blvd

Casablanca has been around for almost 40 years, and the menu hasn’t changed much during their run. The signature dish is the calamari steak, but we tend to go for either a grande burrito with perfectly-marinated birria or the build-your-own fish taco situation. And aside from serving solid food, Casablanca is always a dependable good time, with tortillas being made in the main interior dining room. Plus, if you stick around long enough, someone will probably wheel the tequila cart up to your table.

Barrique

$$$$
Italian  in  Venice
$$$$ 796 Main Street

A good percentage of Barrique’s charm is the army of handsome Italians that make up the waitstaff. Plus the fact that it’s in a two-story yellow bungalow on an otherwise deserted part of Main St. There’s substance here, too - the classic (although expensive) Italian food is always great.

El Huarique Peruvian Cuisine

$$$$
Peruvian  in  Venice
$$$$ 1301 Ocean Front Walk #10

Once your visting cousins have had their fill of henna tattoos, street performers, and taking photos with the Green Doctors on the boardwalk, head to El Huarique for a surprisingly awesome lunch. It might be inside an alley masquerading as a food court, but don’t be deterred - you’re here for the excellent Peruvian ceviche. Get the Venice Beach or Mixto versions to go, walk in the opposite direction of the crowds, and eat a solid lunch on the beach.

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Gjelina

$$$$
AmericanItalian  in  Venice
$$$$ 1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd.

Where the Venice-as-food-destination thing all began. It’s loud, you usually have to wait, and don’t you dare ask for a substitution. But we still put up with all of this, mostly because they are the vegetable experts and they know how to make an excellent pizza. Can’t be bothered with the whole thing? Go next door to GTA for a slice of pizza or the blackened fish sandwich to-go, or to be eaten standing up at a counter overlooking the street.

Benji Dell

Scopa Italian Roots

$$$$
Italian  in  Venice
$$$$ 2905 Washington Blvd

You’ll go to Scopa for the pasta, but if you’re anything like us, you’ll get distracted by everything else. Scopa’s been open for a while, and is technically in Marina del Rey (don’t tell them that, though), but the bar still gets packed and brunch is definitely not casual - and sometimes, that’s just what you need. Come dinnertime, the large dining room is one of the rowdiest in the area, making it a great option for a birthday dinner.

Holly Liss

The Rose

$$$$
$$$$ 220 Rose Ave

People got pretty riled up when longtime Venice resident Rose Cafe was closed and taken over by a big-deal restaurant group. While the original Rose Cafe was great in its own right, it really had been a long time since the food was good, and after a couple of years, the new version has settled in nicely. That massive indoor/outdoor space is at its best during the day for pastries and plates of eggs.

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Holly Liss

Superba Food + Bread

$$$$
AmericanPastaBakery/Cafe  in  Venice
$$$$ 1900 Lincoln Blvd

Superba is a full-blown restaurant on Lincoln, but in addition to serving things like steak frites and fried chicken sandwiches, they’ve also got a great selection of bread and baked goods. Our favorite is the sprouted wheat loaf which can only be described as unctuous, but if you want something on the sweeter side, try a cinnamon bun or any seasonal fruit galette. No matter what you order, be sure to get some whipped burrata on the side - it goes perfectly on any bread.

Holly Liss

Abbot's Pizza Company

$$$$
Pizza  in  Venice
$$$$ 1407 Abbot Kinney Blvd

These guys have been on Abbot Kinney since way before the crowds arrived, and thank goodness for that (even if their sister spot, Abbot’s Habit, recently succumbed to rent hikes). They do things you’d think they shouldn’t do to pizza, like give it a bagel crust and use salad as a topping, and we are all about it.

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