Dominique's Kitchen in Redondo Beach is far enough away from the water to put their money into their food instead of their rent, and with their very low corkage fee of $10, locals are flocking to this place like seagulls. There is a tiny lot, but plentiful street parking, and the dining area is warm and inviting. Make reservations if you want a seat because even on a weekday night, it is fully booked.
Some of my friends have known me since I was too young to drink (in the
US) and as we have grown up, our tastes have evolved, as well as our
skills in the kitchen. Finding a place we all like wouldn't be difficult
if we had unlimited resources, but part of the fun of eating out is
finding a hidden restaurant gem that doesn't cost as much as a car
payment. Six of us ate all of the dishes below for about $40 per person including tax and tip (we brought our own wine). At prices like this, do not expect perfection; some of the flavors were muted or mangled, and the plating left a lot to be desired, but there was definitely value and some well executed dishes.
An amuse bouche of kale with cannellini beans and Parmesan started off the evening. Fresh flavors using local and classic ingredients, but with an overwhelming ratio of cheese to the kale and beans.
I ordered the lamb chops and the
meat was tender, but I was underwhelmed by the garlic and thyme au jus which tasted of neither and lacked seasoning. I did not eat any of the polenta that came with this dish because it tasted like it was made with MARGARINE! The restaurant contacted me to say they do not use margarine, so if it was butter it was awful. For a place which uses local and fresh ingredients in other dishes, I was very disappointed by this incredible faux pas.