Michael D’s – Santa Monica, CA [CLOSED]

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Restaurant Santa Monica

Michael D's serves the kind of solid, straightforward food that does a bowling alley proud.

Some restaurants spend fortunes to get a retro look, but Michael D’s doesn’t have to. This old-fashioned greasy spoon diner in the Bowling Alley in Santa Monica has looked the same way since the early 1960’s. The counter, the chairs, the kitchen in the back with the chef wearing an old fashioned white chef hat, all look like it could be a movie set. But it isn’t just the look. The food is startlingly good. For one thing, I’d rate their French fries the best I’ve had in L.A. along with those at The Apple Pan. These are ideal greasy spoon French fries, a little greasy, very crisp and oh so tasty. In a world in which the evil of coated French fries (French fries lightly coated with flour and/or animal fat to give them a fake color and crispness) have nearly obliterated the classic greasy spoon fry, Michael D’s is an oasis. And they are very popular. They remind me of the fries at New York’s great hole-in-the wall coffee shop, the Viand, on Madison Ave. Their burger is not in the top echelon (like the Apple Pan or the Viand) but it is very good. And their patty melt is luscious. A surprise was their grilled smoked ham and cheese, a savory delight. The crowd is interesting and friendly (a man and his son were reminiscing about the bowling alley back in the ’60s) a mix of fathers and sons on bowling trips, and exhibitors from shows across the street at the Convention Center. One of the reasons I look forward to coming to Santa Monica for a show at the Convention Center is Michael D’s. Fun and delicious.

Blog Comments

Okay, you said the magic word. For ten years I lived two blocks down from Viand. Practically next door to Three Guys, actually. I would always pass up Three Guys to eat at (or order in from) Viand — usually at least twice a week. Guess I’ll have to try Michael D’s!

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