Silvio’s goes upmarket, new barbecue in the old Ruby’s, micro food hall on PCH and other restaurant news

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Meat Plant: There are plenty of activities involving barbecues of all kinds in the South Bay, with one opening this week, one in a few months and another revival of a local favourite. The established spot is the former Silvio’s Brazilian Beach BBQ on the Hermosa Pier Plaza, which is now Silvio’s South American Lounge and Grill. As the name change suggests, the restaurant will expand its focus to include Peruvian, Colombian and Chilean produce. The basic menu is still there, including the popular Carnaval Plate sampler for two, but new chef Paul Bentsen, formerly of Baran’s 2239, can bring in some modern flourishes. It will be interesting to see how the place develops, as many South American dining establishments have opened in the area (20 Pier Ave., Hermosa)… The waterfront location is obviously a big draw at Silvio’s, and another grilled meat shop will open by the surf in Redondo. The old Ruby’s will become our local specialist in Santa Maria barbecue, a style whose history may date back to the cattle ranches of Mexican California. The usual meat is beef top sirloin or tri-tip and sausage rubbed with salt, pepper and garlic and roasted over red oak coals, usually accompanied by pink beans, rice and salsa gentle. The new restaurant will be operated by a team led by Quality Seafood’s Jeff Jones, and the name has yet to be revealed. Watch for an opening towards the end of the year… Finally, the highly anticipated opening of Holy Cow BBQ in the old Pho Show is scheduled for this weekend. The menu goes a bit beyond Texas favorites, and I remember eating some great Southern desserts at their Culver City location (1617 S. Pacific Coast Hwy., RB)…

Closed before I knew it was there: Esperanza’s upstairs lounge was a semi-secret spot that was popular for private events, and when those weren’t booked, it was by far the best watering hole on Manhattan Beach. The space was cool, comfortable and sophisticated, with a volume level low enough for you to enjoy conversations with your companions and the knowledgeable staff. Alas, the city has ordered it closed until a problem with their permits is resolved. It’s a shame, because many in the community loved the place and held family events there…I was one of them. Hoping they get better and reopen soon…

Departures and changes: The M&Love Vegan Café in Manhattan Beach closed its doors at the end of June, something I failed to report in the previous edition of this column. I’m sorry they didn’t, because they had some interesting ideas. The new tenant will be a second location for Little French Bakery, the Redondo hole in the wall which often has long lines for their excellent sandwiches and baked goods. I’ve been driving to Riviera Village for LFB’s pastries and bread since they opened, and it’s wonderful to see them being so successful… Elsewhere along Highland, Marine Ramen has closed, although it took a some time to figure this out because their hours have always been erratic. Their outlook was not helped by the owner’s abrasive and sometimes confrontational attitude towards customers. A new tenant may be in place, as a sign announces that it is now a private members-only club… In Hermosa, something is happening at the Stanton, which has been closed for some time following the departure by Chief Chuck Kallal. It’s a shame as the food and service was very good on my last visit. The sign on the door boasts that “We are preparing to announce some exciting news”, but it has been there for a while and there is no news yet. Does anyone know? My email address is at the end of this column, and I appreciate the advice…

Big news, small room: The former Mama D’s on PCH in Redondo is set to become a “Micro Food Hall,” run by Local Kitchens, which has eight locations in the San Francisco Bay Area. It’s a stand-alone food court concept with a distinctly eclectic style; one of their brands, “Senor Sisig,” will take care of your craving for Filipino fusion-style pork snout and chicken liver burritos in a way that no other local establishment can touch. “Sushirritos” and the magnificent Humphrey Slocombe ice cream might be an easier sell here, if available. I couldn’t get a response from anyone in the company about whether the offerings at Redondo will be similar to their Bay Area locations… And in my last edition of this column, I noted that the Colombian restaurant Encanto had posted that they hoped to be open by the second week of August. That day has come and gone – I’ve heard they expect to be in service by Labor Day weekend, but that hasn’t been confirmed yet…

From halls to shopping malls: The Del Amo mall has several new restaurants on the way – Keisuke Ramen, featuring Japanese noodles by a French-trained chef, sounds intriguing and will be opening soon. Another upcoming attraction is Market Broiler, a classic full-service seafood restaurant, as well as establishments from the Sweetgreen organic chain and the standard North Italia mall. Luna Grill is open serving kebabs, falafel, standard Middle Eastern pita sandwiches, and more. They share the always crowded parking lot with Lucille’s BBQ, so the curbside pickup option will be very convenient (21540 Hawthorne Blvd, Torr).

Chinese under the radar: Beach Towns has gained a new northern Chinese restaurant, but you probably don’t know that unless you’ve ventured to the back of Plaza El Segundo. The Northern Cafe Chinese Dumpling House opened in April, but I just discovered it. I’ve visited their other locations in Westwood, Gardena, and Rancho Palos Verdes, and had some really good renditions of traditional ravioli and noodle dishes. It’s a tough place, and I hope they can pull it off (700 S. Allied Way, ES)…

Event Alerts! Two restaurants are celebrating their 46th birthday this year, but one is also celebrating its 45th birthday. Captain Kidd’s reaches this milestone this Thursday and will continue the party with live mariachi performances on Friday. Beer drinkers could celebrate with a new beer specially crafted for the venue, Captain Kidd’s South Bay Blonde… Hennessey wanted to throw a big 45th anniversary celebration last year, but the pandemic got in the way, so they make up for lost time on September 17. There will be drink samples, food specials and music from Martin Sawyer in the afternoon and Celtic band Sportive Tricks in the evening. I’ve seen Sportive Tricks many times and they always put on an energetic and passionate show, and I highly recommend attending.

The Shin-Sen-Gumi chain is young by comparison, but they’re celebrating three decades of business in style at the Torrance Civic Center on September 3. There will be tastes of traditional Japanese dishes, live entertainment and anime cosplay, and other activities. The festival lasts from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and there are plenty of free parking spaces in the city car parks. Admission is a dollar, and yes, you’ll probably spend more once you get there, but it sounds like fun. The information is on this link. (3330 Civic Center Drive, Torr)…There will likely be Japanese food at the 12th Annual Gardena Food, Wine and Beer Festival, but since one of the sponsors is Giuliano’s Italian Bakery and Deli, we can suspect that much more to be offered. The date is September 24 and admission is $25 and includes a souvenir, a drink but nothing to put in – drink tickets are sold separately. Reservations and more details are at Eventbrite.com… And if you love learning new techniques for sprucing up your party platters, Platters2Gather’s Cathy Herrera is hosting a charcuterie workshop on September 11 at Agave Azul. You will not learn how to make salamis, cheeses and other objects, but how to cut, carve and arrange them to make a work of art. To see some of their lovely plates, check out their website at platters2gather.com. The price is $75 including ingredients, equipment and a glass of champagne, reservations are available through Eventbrite…

Tips: It’s news when a dining establishment doubles the size of its menu, and Proudly Serving on the Redondo Boardwalk has done just that. This is not very big news, as the total number of articles is now six. To their burger, fries, and cookies, they added grilled cheese, chili, and tater tots. The place is always popular with people who have a hard time deciding what to order… And a word to the restaurant owners: if you’re going to close early or take a few days off, you really should block that time into your reservation system, and secondly , put a sign on the door to apologize to customers. I have received several complaints about restaurants regularly closing without warning or apology, some after accepting reservations for the evening. Many complaints were about the same restaurant on Hermosa Avenue, which I observed closed at 7:30 a.m. last Sunday, even though their website and posted hours say they are open until 9 a.m. . If you want to let customers know you don’t care about them, this is definitely the way to do it…

And in closing: If you know of a restaurant opening that I may have missed, a culinary event that should be covered, or just about anything food-related that I should be covering, please send me the information. I am at richard@richardfoss.com. And while you’re on the internet, check out past restaurant reviews on our website at easyreadernews.com/restaurants. Emergency room

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