I recently spent a week in Venice, California. While Venice is famous for its boardwalk and the colorful cast of characters found there, food tends to run to the touristy, beachy sort of fare. At least along the boardwalk. Take a walk a few blocks the other way to Abbot Kinney Boulevard and there you will find several interesting options.
The first place I found I liked so much I came back a second time and probably would have spent a third evening there except for the crowd – I was too hungry to wait for a space. Hal’s Bar and Grill is a warm and welcoming place with lots of friendly patrons. It’s a big place with about 40% of it dedicated to the large wood bar and several tall tables. The other half is filled with cozy, wooden booths and, as with many Venice establishments, is filled with art created by the local community. And the food is great, too!
My first night there I started with a Caesar salad, then had a beautiful plate of salmon, scallop and ahi sashima. So good! I finished it off with one of the best bread puddings, warm and fragrant with pear, cinnamon and vanilla. I was a very happy camper. The second night I had a huge hamburger. It was also very good.
Besides the good food, though, what I really liked about the place was the friendliness of the clientele at the bar. Both nights I talked to several locals which made the experience very enjoyable.
For a nice place to relax, grab a tasty bite and meet some interesting locals Hal’s can’t be beat.
Hal’s Bar & Grill
1349 Abbot Kinney Boulevard