If you’re like me, you tend to drive on the same streets all the time. Harbor Drive in Redondo Beach is not a street I typically frequent and because of that, I forget about certain restaurants like Baleen Kitchen.
I’ve been to Baleen Kitchen for Happy Hour a number of times and until recently was not aware that they had a separate dining room. As I entered, I was pleasantly surprised to find a fire in the fireplace and breathtaking views of the marina.
My most recent visit focused on sampling items from Baleen’s Valentine’s Day Menu. I started with the following: French charcuterie, lobster sliders, duck carnitas and lobster mac and cheese. I learned that Baleen Kitchen’s lobster mac and cheese was a huge hit at last year’s Redondo Beach Lobster Festival. I actually enjoyed each of their starters; my favorite was the duck carnitas. The ingredients were served separately: cornmeal crepes, chipotle blackberry and apple slaw.
Grilled Maitake salad was the next course served. Maitake is a mushroom that is indigenous to Japan and is known to have medicinal properties. I really enjoyed the taste of the heirloom tomatoes. Haricot vert and avocado rounded out the salad.
Mer Soleil “Silver” 2012 unoaked chardonnay was the wine I enjoyed that evening. I immediately took notice as it is bottled in a light gray ceramic bottle. I found it to be refreshing, light and crisp and perfect to pair with seafood.
The third course was a roasted black sea bass. I’ve never had black sea bass before and I found it to be much denser and a consistency like grouper. It was served with grilled shiitake mushrooms and topped with pea shoots.
The dessert was a warm chocolate cake pared with vanilla gelato. I found both items to be quite delicious.
Baleen’s Kitchen is a great place to enjoy Valentine’s Day. Not only is the food prepared well, but I really enjoyed the ambiance. The fireplace and the incredible views set the tone for a special Valentine’s Day. Follow this link for their Valentine’s Day menu (opens a PDF).
I’d like to express my sincere appreciation to Allen Taylor Photography for their generous permission to use their photos.
* Some items mentioned in this article were provided on a complimentary basis for the purpose of this review. This story was accurate when it was published and reflects the uninfluenced opinions of the reviewers.
- Baleen Kitchen located at the Portofino Hotel
- 260 Portofino Way Redondo Beach, CA 90277; (310) 372-1202
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/baleenlosangeles
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/BaleenLA