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JiRaffe

502 Santa Monica Blvd.
Santa Monica , CA , United States http://www.jirafferestaurant.com/
(310) 917-6671

This French bistro from chef-owner Raphael Lunetta opened in 1996, and stops just short of fine dining. The restaurant has brown awnings and arched windows outside, and inside, canary-yellow walls, ground-floor and mezzanine seating, and crystal chandeliers. The seasonal menu might include purple Peruvian gnocchi with rock shrimp, a caramelized pork chop with wild rice and smoked bacon, or pepper-crusted ahi with soba and bok choy. Chef Lunetta regularly severs a seasonal four-course menu, as well as a special prix fixe dinner every Monday. The beverage program centers on wine, relying on French, Californian, and Oregonian selections.

From the From the May 2008 Food & Wine Go List

This Venice teahouse is set in a quaint beach bungalow behind a fence, surrounded by a flower garden. Run by the Singaporean-born Kristy Choo, the place has a breezy California sensibility, though the gorgeous sweets and savory dishes have a strong Chinese aesthetic—think lemongrass chocolate.

We loved: Egg-salad finger sandwiches; green-tea cake with red-bean paste.

Last updated 2012-04-05 10:20:07 UTC
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