New Tavern Rolls into Service on 2nd & BroadwayIn Downtown Santa Monica
Locals to Liberate Their Palates with Inventive Plates and Libations;Open for Lunch & Dinner Service Beginning February 10th
SANTA MONICA, CA – (February 9, 2015) In 1875, the Los Angeles & Independence Railroad ran east to west, from Downtown L.A. all the way to the long wharf in Santa Monica, putting the new city in contention for Port of Los Angeles. History ended up taking a southern course, but this February, Downtown Santa Monica manifests destiny with the arrival of a new culinary and cocktail-powered tavern, The Independence at 2nd and Broadway. The restaurant opens for lunch and dinner service on Feb. 10th.
At The Independence, Santa Monica resident Jonathan Chu (Buddha’s Belly, Copa d’Oro) has engineered the payload to be three-fold: engaging service, extensive menus and an eclectic atmosphere built around a classic long center bar featuring a bright white subway tiled backdrop, flanked by high-tops and intimate booths. To the left of the bar, a mural by local artist John Park synthesizes an urban landscape in new color. In this setting, a collaboration with design firmWICK, Chu and team have created a new drinking station and dining destination at the apex of Santa Monica day and nightlife.
Commanding the culinary vision is Chef Tom Block (BLT Steak, Allen & Delancy, Beelman’s Pub) who displays his New York sensibility and newfound West Coast viewpoint. Block offers a collection of shareable dishes and entrees that expand on his New American style of cooking. With produce from the Santa Monica farmers market, fresh seafood, and grass-fed meats, the menu plays to both casual tastes and culinary wayfarers. Dine on Shellfish Stew(clams, mussels, chili, tomato and lime),Chicken Wings with salsa verde, Roasted Mushrooms(62 degree egg, yuzu kosho hollandaise), and dry aged Rib Eye(wild mushrooms, bordelaise sauce, celtuce). As some days call for a simpler spread, Block has prepared a selection of elevated sandwiches, led by The Independence Burger with Gruyere and caramelized onions, and his homage to Cincinnati-style chili fries. Other menu highlights include Whole Stuffed Trout with almonds, Meyer lemon and breadcrumbs, Venison Ragu with house made papparadelle and pecorino, andGrilled Octopus with smoked beans, grapes and chili.
With respect to cocktails, this bar car belongs toVincenzo Marianella (Copa d’Oro, Providence, Love & Salt), and the signature drinks he pours are anything but stationary; their namesakes drawn from original stops on the LA & I’s old line. Begin with the Longshore (bourbon, port syrup, lemon juice, egg white, angostura bitters), build momentum with the LA Speedway (gin, dry fino sherry, marsala, orange bitters) and bid farewell with the Ocean Stop (mezcal, maraschino liqueur, creme de mure, sparkling wine). GM and Santa Monica native Tatia Oshidari(Orris) has many of the 10 beer taps championing local breweries with a nod to the West Coast IPA movement, accompanied by a roster of canned and bottled brews as well as a worldly wine list.