Across the street from a shuttered service station and down the road from a tattoo shop with a window display of a plump sea lion wearing a fisherman’s sweater, there’s an unassuming restaurant-café called Outerlands. The walls are hung with gray-brown planks of weathered wood, plants dangle from nautical ropes, and at lunch there’s a little menu of simple good things: a sandwich of ripe tomatoes and roasted eggplant; melted cheese with two runny eggs on top; a bourbon-laced apple cider to guard against the sea-breeze chill of a summer afternoon. Brett Cooper, the chef, arrived here via the more rarefied kitchens of Coi and Saison. The vibe is homey, the organic levain bread is delicious, and you sort of do want to stay all day.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.