On Thursday, February 4, I was invited to dine with several other food bloggers at Cafe Pierre in Manhattan Beach. I’ve known about Cafe Pierre – The venerable establishment has been around for 30 years – but hadn’t made the trip to dine there. Once I got the invitation, i was immediately excited to try their signature French cuisine.
The setting inside Cafe Pierre was both cozy and classy. Their moderately sized dining room of 70 seats was filled with families sharing big plates, couples out on dates, and a big group of ladies jubilantly celebrating a birthday.
After our group was all present and accounted for, we got down to business sampling some exquisite French food. Actually, before the food there were cocktails! I opted for the Whiskey Smash, a refreshing mojito-like drink made with Jack Daniels, fresh lemon, fresh mint, and simple syrup. There were many more artisan cocktails on the menu that I’ll have to return for,
As a sort of “pre-appetizer”, we dug into various jars of interesting ingredients. Among them were Duck Rillettes; Pig Trotters; a buttery and spicy Foie Parfait; a Head Cheese; and my favorite, a hand cut Beef Tartare.
Appetizers followed and yes, there were some snails also known as escargots. They weren’t as garlicky as I hoped but were pleasing just the same with a wholesome, earthy flavor.
Another interesting starter was bone marrow. Served warm inside the bone, the seasoned marrow was a bit gelatinous. I’d never had bone marrow served that way so it was interesting to look at and sample.
After the jars and appetizers, there were still entrees to explore. Each plate was placed in front of a diner and then shared with everyone family style. Among the entrees were Veal Breast and Veal Sweetbreads — which is neither sweet nor bread!
Fortunately, the plate initially given to me was the 70-Hours Beef Short Ribs, served with spinach, steak fries, and a tremendous red wine sauce. The meat was tender, flavorful, and slow roasted to perfection.
Entrees on the menu that I didn’t try — but look forward to going back for — are the Braised Rabbit and the Roasted Jiordi Chicken.
Of course, there was desert. We were served a phenomenally good chocolate bread pudding. After such a wonderful and adventurous mean, a few bites of desert was all it took to call it a night!
If you’re thinking of going to France for the food, save yourself the airfare and take a trip to Cafe Pierre. With a delightful mix of modern style and old-world charm, delicious French cooking is as close as Manhattan Beach Blvd.
317 Manhattan Beach Boulevard,
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266-5316
With all the talented journalistic folks that shared this meal with me, I’d be doing you a disservice is I didn’t offer you their views as well. Their details and pictures — some great pictures, in deed — are likely to include something I missed or failed to mention. Please take a look at these other reviews of our meal at Cafe Pierre: