Small shared plates & hand-crafted cocktails
An affordable ($11-30) new american / small plates restaurant with organic meat options in (Manhattan Ave. & Bayview Dr.) (South Bay/South LA) with brunch offerings.
Mon-Thu: 5pm-10pm Sun: 5pm-10pm Fri-Sat: 5pm-10:30pm Sat-Sun: 10am-1:30pm
Ensconced in a former post office, Manhattan Beach Post (aka "M.B. Post") is a culinary love letter to this picture-perfect surfside town. Old-fashioned steel mailboxes, iron grid windows and weathered concrete walls nod to the space's postal history. Cooks prep worldly small plates in a fishbowl-style exhibition kitchen headed by chef/co-owner David LeFevre, formerly of downtown's celebrated seafood institution Water Grill.
LeFevre dubs this "a social house" and dedicates 40% of the restaurant to walk-in seats at communal tables in the bar and dining room. Though we can't say the stools at our communal bar table were entirely comfortable (or easy to snag – on a Friday night we waited upwards of an hour), the concept makes for a buzzing, convivial scene.
Like the tables, the seasonal small plates, whose preparations hop from the Far East to South America to the Mediterranean, are meant to be shared. The Asian flavors were particularly robust; blistered blue lake green beans were bathed in a fiery chili sauce while meaty, tender veal ribs with a (almost too assertive) teriyaki glaze arrived over spicy kimchi. The restaurant sources most of its meats from the Meyer Farm “Never Ever” program (sick animals are never slaughtered; hormones and antibiotics are never used), like the skirt steak with a perfectly buttery texture. Too bad the piquant red chimichurri overwhelmed the meat, and the smoky flavor of the accompanying broccolini drowned out its vegetal essence. Happily, the kitchen allowed the fresh ingredients to shine through in a simply dressed Tuscan kale and quinoa salad and succulent sauteed romanesco. Not surprisingly, given LeFevre's seafood expertise, our favorite plate was the moist steelhead trout resting in soft, lemony leeks. With triumphs like this, M.B. Post has the urbane small plates concept signed, sealed, and delivered.