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Sam's by the Beach

389 reviews
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$30 and under
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Top Tags:
  • Special Occasion (4)
  • Neighborhood Gem (3)
  • Quiet Conversation (3)

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Sam's By The Beach, opened in July 2000 as a neighborhood bistro, and has become a destination restaurant, thanks to its innovative food and comfortable yet elegant dining experience. Elias, inspired by his heritage, considers the cuisine to be California-Mediterranean, with an emphasis on high quality ingredients. "I enjoy going to the Central Market each day to purchase my vegetables and seafood. It keeps me in touch with what is fresh, and helps me to plan my menus." Sam's menu is seasonal and changes at least four times per year. In addition, there are daily specials and a chef tasting menu based on what Elias discovers at the market. Regular menu items include appetizers of Blue "Fin" Tartar ($17.95), Wild Mushroom Salad in lemon basil dressing ($13.95) and Fennel and Blood Orange Soup ($9.95); and entrées include Vegetarian Crepes ($23.95), Grilled Atlantic Salmon with braised Swiss Chard and roasted Jerusalem artichoke ($26.95), Roasted Duck Magret with poached Pear.
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Californian, Mediterranean, Global, International
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Hours of operation

Dinner: Tuesday - Saturday: 5:30pm to 10:00pm; Sunday: 5:30pm to 9:00pm
Closed Mondays
Last Seating Tuesday to Saturday 9:30; Last Seating on Sunday 8:30
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Phone number
(310) 230-9100
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Payment options
AMEX, Diners Club, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
Sam Elias & Chef Oscar Benitez
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Private party facilities
Sam's By the Beach is a destination restaurant know for its innovative food and comfortable, yet elegant dining experience. Owner/Chef Sam Elias has been inspired by his heritage and considers the cuisine to be California-Mediterranean, with an emphasis on high quality ingredients.
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Private party contact
Sam Elias: (310) 230-9100
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We specialize in outside catering for Kosher and Non-Kosher Weddings, Bat Mitzvahs, Bar Mitzvahs and Birthdays.. Back-stage Catering at Staple Center (Downtown Los Angeles)
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Cross street
Pacific Coast HWY
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Parking details
Valet $7.00
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Wine Maker Dinners, Special Theme Events, Mom's Annual Dinner (Third Wednesday of January), Tuna Feast(May-1st to May 31st)...
Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 389 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.7  based on recent ratings
Noise · Quiet
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
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vipmaardvark (Chicago)
5.0  Dined on November 28, 2017

consistently meets all expectations: cuisine, service, comfort

OpenTable Diner (Sydney / NSW)
5.0  Dined on November 28, 2017

Sam and his associate Jean-Michele create a special experience on every occasion at Sam’s. We have been there for private events, our own private party and many dinners. Sam NEVER disappoints. The food is fresh and delicious, the wine menu robust and well priced, and the specials are inventive.

OpenTable Diner (Seattle)
5.0  Dined on November 23, 2017

Eating thanksgiving dinner at a restaurant seemed very strange to us, but as we were in town visiting family it was the best option and luckily we found ourselves at Sam’s by the Beach! The staff made us feel like we were dining at a friends house, they were funny, accommodating, and so so friendly! Sam is amazing saying hello to everyone, bussing tables and serving dinner, and Jean Michel, our server, is a gem, providing funny conversation and selecting the perfect wine for our meal. The food was exceptional and we couldn’t have asked for a better thanksgiving out. We highly recommend Sam’s by the Beach to everyone!

Stuffedturkey (Seattle)
4.0  Dined on November 23, 2017

After reading a lot of reviews about Sam’s, I pretty much expected a perfect Thanksgiving dinner. The ambiance of the restaurant was really nice, comfortable. Wait staff was attentive. Dinner was good but a few things took away from it. Dry, over-cooked stuffing, missing cranberry sauce, mix-ups on who got what kind of soup and desert. I’ll visit Sam’s again next time we’re in Santa Monica and give it another try.

OpenTable Diner (Nashville)
5.0  Dined on November 23, 2017

We had Thanksgiving dinner at Sam's. Very much a nifty little neighborhood place with great food. The service was very friendly and attentive. Small with a lot of character and ambiance.

vipjared (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on November 22, 2017

Wonderful evening Sam was great , food delicious and attentive staff

vipradman (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on November 22, 2017

Quiet, comfortable, friendly, efficient but non-intrusive service. Lots of interesting menu choices. Fair prices and an interesting, well priced wine list. Full bar for those that care. But parking is tough, and the valet costs $11.

vipEdH4320 (New England)
5.0  Dined on November 22, 2017

Fantastic meal. Sam is a gracious host.

Jules (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on November 16, 2017

Food was absolutely amazing. Sam the owner was nothing shy of charming, charismatic and authentic.
Definitely will be back!

OpenTable Diner (New York Area)
4.0  Dined on November 15, 2017

Food was great, really top notch. Parking was impossible. If you approach from the East, it takes a full 15 minutes to do a u turn on PCH and return to the restaurant to approach from the west. And the ballet fee is as high as any in LA.

vipmelmor (Los Angeles)
2.0  Dined on November 14, 2017

Disappointing evening for four diners. The food and service was overall at best average and below our expectations. A few dishes were quite good, others not. The service was attentive, but sometimes obtrusive. The other diners in the restaurant were quiet, but the restaurant staff was noisy and the background music odd and unnecessary.
Perhaps this was an off night; by comparison to most others, the restaurant was blessedly quiet, a very big plus.
The only real parking option was valet at $11.

vipGillet (Baltimore)
5.0  Dined on October 29, 2017

Great service, excellent food good wine. Loved it.

Paul (Los Angeles)
4.0  Dined on October 21, 2017

Very creative and all encompassing menu. The choices were extensive. Excellent bread, which always gives a clue to the rest of the food.
Seafood soup was and is huge, plus delicious. Enough for two.
Can be completely satisfied by ordering two apps.
Great location right across the street from the beach.
A big bonus was that we could actually hear ourselves talk.
Go and enjoy

vipCritical1 (Los Angeles)
4.0  Dined on October 19, 2017

Was my second time; not as good as the first, partially because there was a birthday table for twenty-three in middle of a small room & the noise almost killed it for us. Otherwise food was ok, especially the lamb chops, but not the mushroom salad. Dessert somewhat sweetened the dining experience. Next time have to make sure there's no large party dining at the same time.

OpenTable Diner (Minneapolis)
5.0  Dined on October 19, 2017

Great food and hospitality keep us coming back to Sam's by the Beach. My daughter and I visited last year and were personally greeted and welcomed by the staff and made dishes to order that were delicious. We brought our family back on a recent visit to Malibu and the manager even remembered exactly where we sat the year before as he asked about my daughter's first year at college. I don't know of another place that is so welcoming. My favorite was the seafood soup (a huge portion) and risotto. We will return!

OpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on October 17, 2017

Celebrated my birthday here and had the most wonderful experience. Our waiter was over the top, spoke French with me and made my birthday extra special.

He brought out a savory puff pastry for a starter then we proceeded to order tuna tartar which was fresh and great way to start the meal. I️ ordered the lamb which was delicious but a little one noted with the sauce, my boyfriend got the filet mignon, which for him could have been more rare. My mom got the roasted smoke quail, which was so delicious and probably my favorite. The stuffing inside just melted in your mouth. Top it off with two lovely glasses of wine.

For dessert our waiter brought us creme brûlée and a chocolate cake with ganache, so yummy. Our wonderful waiter gave me a delicious dessert wine to end the night in the most sweet and perfect way! I’d definitely recommend this place and loved the ambiance and vibe.

OpenTable Diner (Salt Lake City)
5.0  Dined on October 15, 2017

We met for dinner here after a day at the beach. I cannot believe I didn't now about this lovely restaurant tucked into a cozy nook between Pacific Palisades and Santa Monica. I called ahead to check and see if it was OK that some in our party were dressed very casually and we were told 'No problem! It's Sunday!'.

The food was delicious, the service was outstanding, and the ambiance perfect. Such a charming find. This will become a regular outing for us.

vipizsme1 (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on October 5, 2017

Great atmosphere...very quaint. Sam provided excellent food and service. Highly recommend!

OpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on September 30, 2017

We have been to this great local restaurant many times and it is always great! Sam is an excellent host and a truly service oriented staff. There are lots of delicious specials, fresh fish and veggies...all perfectly prepared. The menu is very diverse and the seating is extremely spacious and comfortable for quiet talking. Also has a classic full bar, which is hard to come by in The Palisades as well as delicious wines by glass or bottle. I highly recommend it!!

vipJebell (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on September 28, 2017

If I were to describe this restaurant in one word, it would be "charming." We felt like we were dining in a European bistro more than a typical LA dinner spot. Sam waited on us himself. We had great food, drinks and even a special dessert. Definitely recommend for date night or small gathering of friends/family