Three friends have turned backyard suppers into an eco-friendly restaurant serving healthy, ultrafresh salads. Here, their favorites.
The nine-month-old restaurant Tender Greens, in Los Angeles, has already become a favorite refueling stop for the entertainment industry—from executives at nearby Sony Pictures to celebs like Luke Wilson. The draw: casual, delicious meals made with ingredients from local farmers. The owners are David Dressler and chefs Matt Lyman and Erik Oberholtzer, who met while working together at Santa Monica’s Shutters on the Beach. Frustrated by L.A.’s limited dining options (power meals or fast food), they would load up at the farmers’ market on their days off and invite friends over for healthy dinners; Tender Greens is their attempt to share that experience. A partnership with nearby Scarborough Farms provides the restaurant’s ultrafresh produce, which Lyman and Oberholtzer use in inventive salads and specials like slow-cooked wild king salmon with miner’s lettuce. Tender Greens also reflects the partners’ eco-friendly lifestyle, in everything from its biodegradable take-out containers to its reclaimed hickory floors. When asked about the diverse clientele, Oberholtzer replies, "Everyone can appreciate the simplicity of the food."