South Bay’s Best Restaurants of 2014

2014 is over and done with by now and this page presents an easy compilation of some of the best restaurants in the South Bay to eat at and visit for a sandwich, a pizza, happy hour, or a burger or two.


Restaurant of the Month: May
509 Pier Ave, Hermosa Beach

source4Changes in the way we eat and when we eat compound on a daily basis. The best laid plans of any diet or nutrition fad are so often temporary changes with no sustainable healthy effects. Food, now more than ever, is part of our identity. Insight on where it comes from and how it is grown resonate just as much flavor as taste. Simple, organic, farm to table ingredients underpin the strong focus of health and well-being at The Source Café in Hermosa Beach as the propietor & chef, Amber Caudle, infuses her Spanish & Italian style of cooking to meet the nutritious needs of the South Bay community.

Click here to read more about The Source Cafe.


Restaurant of the Month: June
2121 Rosecrans Ave, Ste. 1399, El Segundo

UnknownAt the beginning of 2014 that ever congested corridor along Rosecrans Avenue in El Segundo that caters to upscale dining restaurants like Fleming’s Steakhouse, as well as a conglomerate of corporations that lease space in a pro-business zip code with easy access to the 405 freeway, got a new neighbor with some east coast flavor. Grimaldi’s Coal Brick-Oven Pizzeria is not your typical mom & pop “pizza by the slice” joint with locations across the nation and a landmark location that sits in the shadow of New York’s Brooklyn Bridge. The main engine that has driven Grimaldi’s across the country to California is the science behind it all; large coal-burning stoves crank up to approximately 1200 degrees and produce a thin, crispy crust that lays the foundation for a an authentic pie-eating experience.

Click here to read more about Grimaldi’s in El Segundo..


Restaurant of the Month: July
1266 Sartori Avenue in Old Town Torrance

red_car_window500x375Historic preservation is a theme that underpins the nature of Old Town Torrance as its one way streets were originally designed to deter motorists from side-stepping highway traffic and using it as a short-cut. The pace of normal life slows down between Sartori & Cravens Avenue and without much notice, nightfall washes away lunchtime business and errands, bringing a simple quietness to Old Town that can be hard to recognize. At night, the street lights range from dim to very dim. The Red Car Brewery & Restaurant is also an homage to the past when Southern California traveled by electric trolley and cars were deemed a luxury item. The Red Car,a restaurant that brews its own beer on site, opened its doors & taps in 2000 which precedes the craft beer South Bay boom led by The Strand Brewery and El Segundo Brewing Co. It is one of the original South Bay brewpubs.

Click here to read more about Red Car Brewery & Restaurant in Old Town Torrance.


Restaurant of the Month: October
1142 Manhattan Ave., Manhattan Beachh

MB-Post-Restaurant-SF-Jones-3It is Tuesday night mid-September in Downtown Manhattan Beach just before dusk, the weather is hot and those lucky enough to enjoy a plot of sand on a weekday are treasure hunting for their parked cars hoping the day doesn’t end with a surprise stuck to their windshield. Fashionably well, the evening crowd fills in the vacancy left by the daytime class, Jimmy Buffet beach casual, millennial hipsters, and post-work power suit characters tangle through pedestrian traffic toward a happy hour or restaurant. The great food trends of the last five or so years have permanently migrated down to the South Bay, small plates, gastropub fare, farm to table, tapas, vintage cocktails & craft beer with the likes of Chez Melange’s Bouzy, Eatalian in Gardena, Hudson House and The Source Cafe finding success as some of the original table-setters. A deep cavernous buzz of share plates and wall to wall elbows pack the inside of Manhattan Beach Post every night always accompanied by a long line of eaters waiting to sit down in a location that actually sorted mail during the 1950s to the 1970s.

Click here to read more about M.B. Post.


Restaurant of the Month: November
3768 West 242nd Street in Torrance

lsNamed after a lake that used to cause week long floods during heavy rains, Torrance’s Walteria neighborhood along Hawthorne Blvd. just west of stacked with small businesses that could help you broker a mortgage, do your taxes, color you hair, clean your carpet, or decorate your pool or patio for starters. A gauntlet of inter-connected plazas not to keen on parking spaces or chic ambiance battle for curbside views, so it’s hard to find one of the best family owned, Mediterranean restaurants in the South Bay amongst the clutter.

Click here to read more about Cafe Aristo in Torrance.


Restaurant of the Month: December
15500 S. Broadway in Gardena

54163019Have you ever been to a culinary theatre? Probably not as it is a bit high minded and normal lease space for restaurant owners is always pared down for efficiency dollar by dollar. It is the nature of the business and wide open vistas in restaurants don’t compute. Opening an authentic Italian restaurant in the heart of pounding steel and sweaty warehouses far away from shopping plazas and daily commutes seems like a math problem with no solution as well. Gardena’s industrial center is outside the familiar warmth of the South Bay, but it houses a restaurant within a factory (or quite possibly a factory buttresses by a restaurant) that stretches the meaning of an old adage that location is everything. Eatalian Café has been seducing hungry eaters under or over the 110 Freeway down into its cavernous den of homemade pastries, gelato, pasta and pizza since 2010.

Click here to read more about Eatalian Cafe in Gardena.

6 Reasons to Love The South Bay

The South Bay is a vibrant and beautiful region of LA that many choose to call their home. From beaches, restaurants & shopping the South Bay has everything you could ever need and more. If you are considering moving or visiting the area, here are 6 reasons to love the South Bay.

Stunning Views

ocean_view_palos_verdes From Long Beach up the coast to Manhattan Beach, expansive views of the Pacific Ocean, Catalina, and to the north the San Gabriel Mountains can all be easily spotted on a clear day.

Aquarium of the Pacific

aquarium_of_the_pacific One of the country’s largest aquariums, the Aquarium of the Pacific takes several hours to truly appreciate but those with kids can hit the major highlights in less time, if necessary. While you’ll enjoy the usual attractions, this aquarium also features some great live shows that kids love, like those that feature sea otters, seals, and other marine mammals. There’s also an outdoor play area for running and climbing, perfect for little ones who’ve spent too much time in a stroller going from tank to tank. (Warning – There’s a very enticing fountain for kids to splash in here, so if you don’t want disappointed children, bring a change of clothes.)

Ports O’Call Village

p14_port_o_call_village_at_san_pedro-1 This authentic New England-style seaside village encompasses 15 acres of shops, restaurants and attractions. A meandering promenade of cobblestone streets connects the specialty shops. The shops feature items and gifts from around the world. Enjoy a relaxing lunch or dinner at one of the many restaurants overlooking the harbor. Don’t hesitate to wave to passengers on the cruise liners, passing so close that they dwarf the village.

Queen Mary

queen_mary_at_night_by_fd3sdriver-d47wtas Daily tours. The Queen Mary features an on-board hotel, an elaborate Champagne Sunday Brunch, a variety of restaurants, a wedding chapel and 16 Art Deco reception salons for private celebrations.

South Bay Shopping

del-amo-fashion-center-03 Del Amo Fashion Center, Manhattan Village Mall, South Bay Galleria, South Bay Pavillion & more


Desiré-André_001-1024x683 Cabrillo Marine Museum, Long Beach Museum of Art, Museum of Latin American Art & more

Five Ways To Check If your Home Has Termites


Many people think that termites only come out when the weather is warm. They would, unfortunately, be wrong.

Termites begin to emerge with rain, and with all the recent storms we’ve been having there are undoubtedly termites that have returned. In order to protect the investment you’ve made in your home, it is important to be proactive about checking for infestations. Here are 5 ways to check if Termites have found an unwelcome residence in your home.

Hollow-sounding wood

Termites prefer to be in dark, humid environments, so they do not typically feed on the surface of wood, where they would be visible to the human eye. In fact, the wood’s surface might appear smooth, even if termites are inflicting damage. If wood sounds hollow when tapped, it may be because termites are eating the wood from the inside out.

Groups of winged insects (“swarmers”) or discarded wings

Reproductive termites called swarmers take flight to create new colonies. Subterranean termites typically swarm in the spring, whereas drywood swarms are less predictable. If you see a swarm of insects or groups of discarded wings, call a termite specialist to inspect.

Cracked or distorted paint on wood surfaces

Swarming drywood termites can enter through openings smaller than the edge of a dime, so monitor and seal any cracks in the home’s foundation and near roof siding, vents and windows.

Mud tubes on exterior walls

Subterranean termites build mud tubes on surfaces, such as a home’s foundation, to provide moisture while they are searching for food. Store mulch, firewood and wood chips away from the home to avoid creating moisture-rich habitats for termites to survive and thrive.


Drywood termites produce wood-colored droppings called frass as they eat their way through infested wood. Keep gutters, downspouts and crawl spaces free of debris and cellulose materials to prevent food sources for termites.

7 Tips to Host the Perfect Holiday Dinner Party

The holiday season is officially here, and many of you are preparing to have dinner and cocktail parties. There is a lot of planning and organization that goes in to pulling off the perfect festive party to entertain family and friends. Here are 7 amazing tips to help your planning and prepping go easier.

Easy Menu Ideas

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If you’re having a dinner party, use one of these easy menus, or pick and choose which recipes you want to use and create your own holiday menu.

Make-Ahead Appetizers

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If you’ve decided to host a cocktail party, put together a list of the appetizers you’d like to serve. We suggest using recipes that can be made in advance, which will save you time and energy on the day of the party. For a list of great appetizers, read more.


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When it comes to decorations, think small. Save space for food by displaying low arrangements of blooms in lieu of a large centerpiece. Use small accents, such as gilded nuts, to fill any empty spots on the dining or buffet table.

Prep Ahead of Time

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Make as much of the food and drinks ahead of time as you can. Of course, some things cannot be made beforehand, but try to get all of your prep work done as early as possible. If you’re organized and have everything ready when the party starts, you’ll be better able to attend to your guests.

The Bar

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Set up a separate station (in another room or area if possible) for drinks. Stock it with both alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverage choices, ice, cocktail napkins, and appropriate glassware.

Easy Serving

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For a pretty (and easy) presentation, use oven-to-table servingware to help keep food warm, rather than glass or metal baking dishes. If you don’t have these serving dishes on hand, label what you are using ahead of time so you know exactly where everything goes when it comes out of the oven.

Holiday Schedule of Events


The holiday season is upon us. The South Bay doesn’t have a white winter, roasting chestnuts or even open fires, outside of Dockweiler Beach, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of options to keep you entertained and filled with holiday cheer. Here is what you have to look forward to in the coming holiday months.

Hermosa Beach Holiday Open House & Tree Lighting Ceremony


December 4, 2014 – 6:00 p.m.
Hermosa Beach Pier
The Hermosa Beach Chamber of Commerce will host the Annual Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony on Thursday, December 4th at 6 PM at the Hermosa Beach Pier. Hermosa Beach Holiday Tree Lighting CeremonyThe event will feature the official lighting of the Hermosa Beach Holiday Tree to help kick off the holiday season in Hermosa Beach. The festivities will include a visti from Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus and local Downtown businesses host holiday open houses.

Read more about this event.

Riviera Village Holiday Stroll


December 4, 2014: 5:00pm – 9:00pm
Riviera Village, Redondo Beach
Start your holiday celebrating in Riviera Village at the annual Holiday Stroll on Thursday, December 4th, from 5 to 9 pm. This wonderful collection of upscale shops will stay open late that night, offering fabulous finds and delectable treats to all. The Holiday Parade steps off at 6 pm down Ave. I and Catalina Ave. and features local bands, dance teams, and dignitaries.

Read more about this event.

Sand Snowman Contest


December 6, 2014
Hermosa Beach Pier
The weatherman says it’s nothing but sand! Sand! Sand! Sand! Bring your family and friends, shovels, scarves and mittens because Hermosa Beach will be showcasing its annual Sand Snowmen Contest December 6th from 8:45 PM – 12N. This holiday tradition is open to all ages and abilities. Come early and mark your spot for the best Sand Snowman! Don’t forget to bring your camera! Event check-in begins at 8:45 am and sculpting begins at 9:00 am. For more information, contact the Community Resources Department at 310.318-0280.

26th Annual Manhattan Beach Holiday Fireworks


December 14th, 2014
Manhattan Beach PierFireworks South Bay
The Manhattan Beach Holiday Fireworks Festival is held at the Pier every year in December. This year’s Fireworks Show will take place on Sunday, December 14th with festivities starting around 3:30 pm. This is a very popular event and crowd size can swell up to 15,000… for good reason. Manhattan Beach, with the help of sponsors like Skechers and others, puts on one of the most spectacular firework shows west of Carson. Traditional holiday favorites like a snow park, toy & canned good drive, and live music by Hyperion Outfall highlight this annual event… and of course there will be fireworks:

(7:00 PM) – Fireworks Show choreographed to seasonal music

Bring blankets, a bottle of wine, some gloves, friends, family, and your baby stroller, this event is a blast and the fireworks show is always top notch. The Holiday Fireworks are expected to go forward, rain or shine, on Sunday.

Read more about this event.

Holiday Concert

Torrance Civic Chorale & Orchestra
December 12th & 13th, 2014 at 8:00PM
David Burks – Conductor
Celebrate the holiday season at the James R. Armstrong theatre in Torrance. The Torrance Civic Chorale has been sharing its passion for outstanding choral music with the South Bay since the early 1960s. This year they weave together an evening of Christmas and Hannukkah songs and many familiar standard December favorites will be sung along with a ‘spoof’ on a familiar seasonal favorite ‘The Nutcracker.’ Reserved seating is available for $14.00, call the theatre box office at (310) 781-7171.

Read more about this event.


Holiday Cheer at the Redondo Beach Pier With Surfing Santa & Live Concert


Redondo Beach Pier
December 13th, 2014 – 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Surfin’ Santa Claus & Holiday Music

Holiday celebrants fill the Redondo Beach Pier Saturday afternoon for a free, community event put together by the Redondo Beach Pier Association. The stage is set for two hours of live music provided and an appearance by Mr. Claus himself. This event is family friendly and parking is FREE!.

Read more about this event.

23rd Annual King Harbor Christmas Boat Parade

boat parade

December 13th, 2014
5:30 pm
Nothing says California Christmas events like a boat parade. Combining the love of California beaches and waterways with the spirit of celebration, dedicated yachtsmen spend thousands of dollars on intricate lighting systems to deck out their boats and yachts for the annual King Harbor Christmas Parade. The seaworthy vessels within the channel follow a route that sweeps past vantage points where the public can watch the spectacular display of colors, designs and themes, often tied to the Southern California lifestyle.

The Boat Parade will light up King Harbor in Redondo Beach. Spectators can view the balconies from the International Boardwalk, Marina or Pier and the boat parade can be viewed from the seawall or Fisherman’s Pier.


The Nutcracker – Presented by Los Angeles Ballet

December 27th, 2014, 1:00 PM & 5:00 PM
December 28th, 2014, 2:00 PM

Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
Welcome to the world of The Nutcracker. This is the production that is the heart of Redondo Beach’s year-end holiday season. Whether it is a family tradition or a once-in-a-lifetime visit, your experience of this glittering classic ballet will stay with you forever and warm your spirit. From the moment the lights dim, you will be transported to a magical place filled with adorable children, marching toy soldiers, a glowing giant Christmas tree that seemingly grows forever, mischievous mice, crystalline waltzing snowflakes, the Land of Sweets and some of the most glorious dancing on earth.

Read more about this event.

There you go…fireworks, santa, snowmen on the beach, and everything in between. Grab a jacket or at least a hoodie and join your fellow locals for these unique holiday events.


Top Christmas Decorating Trends of 2014

Each year when December rolls around, we look forward to bringing out the holiday themed lights and decor. To make sure your house is up to date with the latest and greatest holiday trends look no further! Below are 7 of this years classic christmas decor.

1. Burlap and naturals.

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Burlap has been around for a couple of years but continued to dominate in displays throughout the Market. Burlap looks gorgeous added to soft golds/champagnes and cream tones, or add browns and woodland creatures for a completely different style.

2. Frosted theme

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White has been growing popularity, but with the addition of the frosted trims and clear glass it creates a fun but also elegant theme. This year polar bears are big, as well as the reindeers and squirrels we have seen around for a couple of years.

3. Touch of Bling

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This was a strong new trend for 2014. Rhinestone style decorations in silver, champagne and even more ‘on trend’ colours such as yellow. Christmas has always had a bit of bling but this has taken it to a new level.

4. Champagne Class

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Champagne (the softer toning of gold) has been a popular choice for Christmas decorating for the past 5 or so years. Such an elegant choice, this year we saw it used by itself, as well as paired with the naturals, bronze and brown tones. Also, it is a fabulous base colour to then just add a pop of colour with a small red decoration scattered through the tree.

5. Red and Green

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Classic!! Red and apple or lime green have been such a popular choice for Christmas decorating for 4-5 years. This year we saw the addition of a bit of the more traditional emerald green colour, but the pop created by the brighter green tones is just so much fun.

In the past we have seen red and green married with gold or silver, but this year we also saw more mixes with white. Another interesting option is to add a pop of black (such as the trendy chevron ribbons, or a black/white polka dot) to create the ‘wow’ factor.

6. Chevron

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In 2013 Chevron was around in loads of household accessories such as cushions, tea towels, etc. This year we saw the addition of chevron printed ornaments as well as a great range of chevron ribbons.

Chevron is being used to add a little punch the natural tones through burlap ribbons, as well as being a great choice for strong red and white or black and white themes for the trees.

7. Naturals


I’ve personally not been a fan of the naturals in the past because they have had more of a country feel to them. This year we were seeing far more naturals with a more contemporary slant.

The naturals were being used by themselves, or blended with other tones. One of my favourite combinations was the inclusion of taupe, bronze and champagne colours with the natural focus.

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