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Chef Nick Shipp presents interesting comfort food at this south Santa Monica gastropub.



Lunch Mon.-Fri., Dinner nightly

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Upper West, Santa Monica, CA

Operations may be disrupted due to COVID-19. Be sure to contact the restaurant to find out its current status and offerings.

Upper West Restaurant Review

: In this part of Santa Monica, where dining options are relatively scarce, we are always happy to have interesting options like Upper West. When a crowd assembles at the bar and adjacent high-topped communal tables, that can make the modern dining room, with its 28-foot ceiling, very lively. (In other words, if you want a quiet atmosphere, come early.) There's also a projector for screening films and sporting events on the wall. Longtime chef Nick Shipp uniquely enhances every dish with an unexpected twist. The traditional pairing of burrata and tomatoes gets a boost with black chai salt, green apple-blackberry panzanella and dill-mustard vinaigrette. Scallops arrive on a pastel bed of purple sweet potato mash, while the braised pork belly is a porcine powerhouse with its accompaniments of prosciutto cracklin' and chorizo, fennel and apple hash. If you are in the mood for a burger, there is a juicy one served with a steak knife skewered through the toasted brioche bun. Ethan's macaroni and cheese (named for Shipp's son) is loaded with asiago, goat cheese, Irish white cheddar, mozzarella and Parmesan, plus tarragon and tasso ham. Desserts continue the comfort food theme with house-made ice creams and brioche bread pudding. The globally sourced wine list is short, and the beer selections change seasonally. (Choose four beers to create your own sampler flight.) Cocktails put a twist on the classics.

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