Combining elegance, fine Continental-California cuisine, and great ghost stories, Sir Winston’s (1126 Queens Hwy., Long Beach, 562/499-1657, www.queenmary.com, Mon.–Thurs. and Sat.–Sun. 11 a.m.–11 p.m., $30) floats gently onboard the Queen Mary. For the most beautiful dining experience, request a window table and make reservations for sunset. And dress in your finest; Sir Winston’s requests that diners adhere to their semi-formal dress code.
Have you come to Los Angeles to seek genuine homestyle Mexican food? You can find it at Sion’s Mexican Restaurant (235 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Manhattan Beach, 310/372-4504, Sun.–Mon. 8 a.m.–2 p.m., Tues.–Sat. 8 a.m.–9 p.m., $10). Expect nothing fancy, but everything fresh—from tacos to salsa—in this utterly casual and family owned hole in the wall.
A local’s favorite down where the shops and cafes cluster, Natraj Cuisine of India (5262 E. 2nd St., Long Beach, 562/930-0930, Mon.–Thurs. 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m. and 5–10 p.m., Fri. 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m. and 5–11 p.m., Sat.–Sun. 11 a.m.–11 p.m., $10–30) offers good food for reasonable (by L.A. standards) prices. Come by for the all-you-can-eat lunch buffet to sample a variety of properly spiced meat and vegetarian dishes created in classic Indian tradition.
The Green Temple Vegetarian Restaurant (1700 S. Catalina Ave., Redondo Beach, 310/944-4525, www.greentemple.net, Mon. 12–4 p.m., Tues.–Thurs. 11 a.m.–4 p.m. and 5–9 p.m., Fri.–Sat. 11 a.m.–4 p.m. and 5–10 p.m., Sun. 9 a.m.–12 p.m., $10–20) strives for a Southern California zen in both its cuisine and its dining room. All the vegetarian cuisine comes from sustainable and (whenever possible) organic sources, including Trader Joes and Whole Foods stores.
© Liz Hamill Scott from Moon California, 2nd Edition