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Little Prince

2424 Main St. Send to Phone
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Ari Taymor’s inspired contemporary California cuisine and garden cocktails light up this jewel box on Santa Monica's Main Street.

Cuisine
Open
Dinner Mon.-Sat., Brunch Sat.-Sun.
Open late
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Little Prince, Santa Monica, CA

Little Prince Restaurant Review

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About chef Ari Taymor: Ari Taymor opened his DTLA restaurant Alma in 2012 and garnered attention for his singular vision and masterful execution of haute California cuisine. Taymor’s strong commitment to small farmers and passion for sustainability shine through in his showcasing of pristine seasonal ingredients. Little Prince debuted as a brunch-only pop up, but its popularity helped spur the place’s maturing into a permanent fixture in Santa Monica.

The décor: This bright, whitewashed storefront jewel box off Main Street gleams under big wooden beams with subway tile, a handful of polished distressed-wood tables, a smooth marble bar and vases of colorful blooms. The chef’s counter perches in front of the wood oven where many of the delightful roasted dishes emerge. Brunch is still a mainstay, with a lively neighborhood crowd and festive offbeat daytime cocktails.

Likes: Creative, nuanced dishes with artful presentation, and reasonable prices. Great cocktails.
Dislikes: Main Street parking is woeful. Oddly low stools at the chef’s counter make one feel a bit like a kid at the adult’s table.

Food & Drinks: Although the menu at Little Prince is not nearly as ambitious as his previous restaurant, Taymor’s creative signature certainly carries over from his Alma days. Sometimes even the simplest dishes here can be a bit transcendent. This is nearly as much due to the chef’s meticulous farmer’s market sourcing as his subtly restrained execution. Case in point is an aguachile of ocean fresh Santa Barbara spot prawn and slivers of silky halibut bathed in a lime jalapeño sauce and nestled with summer peach. Or a bright heirloom tomato and watermelon salad kissed with rose-tinged whipped coconut. Flavors burst forth out of a standout flower-strewn mussel toast with Taymor’s seductive seaweed hollandaise and marinated fennel. Heartier plates include roasted lamb ribs with dandelion and a dry-aged New York steak. Be sure to save room for house-made chamomile and licorice ice cream with sorrel sauce, topped with fresh hyssop and meringues. First-rate craft cocktails make grazing at the bar exceptional, and the small but select wine list is reasonable. Brunch ranges from baked eggs and merguez to smoked salmon hash and a green pea pancake with market greens and herbs.
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