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Permanently Closed - The Hungry Cat - Santa Monica Canyon

644 reviews
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$30 and under
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Top Tags:
  • Fit for Foodies (948)
  • Neighborhood Gem (682)
  • Special Occasion (409)

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This restaurant is permanently closed.

The Hungry Cat in Santa Monica Canyon offers seasonal produce from the Southern California area along with high-quality fish and meat in a fine dining atmosphere. The restaurant�s menu is constantly evolving, which gives diners an artisanal meal every time they come in for brunch, cocktails or dinner.

Start your day at The Hungry Cat with a raw bar of shrimp, oysters, clams, lobster or mussels, before trying the mushroom omelet of Maine lobster roll. Dinner includes grilled whole fish with nori rice, seared octopus and more. The Hungry Cat serves caviar and specialty cocktails along with oyster shooters and fine beer from local craft breweries.

Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Seafood, Contemporary American, Tapas / Small Plates
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Hours of operation
Sunday & Wednesday: 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Thursday, Friday & Saturday: 5:00 pm – 11:00pm

Closed Monday & Tuesday

Happy Hour Every Day
5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
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Phone number
(310) 459-3337
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Payment options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
David Lentz
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Private party facilities
Our private dining room offers scenic ocean views, a wood burning fireplace and hard wood floors.
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Private party contact
Nikki Cohen General Manager: (866) 943-1728
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For catering, please call 310.459.3337 or email
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Cross street
Pacific Coast Highway
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Parking details
Valet Parking Available!
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Special events & promotions
Private dining room available. Please send your inquires to
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 644 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.0  based on all time ratings
Noise · Moderate
81% of people would recommend it to a friend
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vipRachel (Los Angeles)
4.0  Dined on October 21, 2016

They have the best shrimp in town! And we love their house salad. Always a reliably good meal.

vipSMdiner (Los Angeles)
3.0  Dined on October 15, 2016

Much better front of house and service than in the past. Instead of being treated like trash (as in past visits) the hostess was quite warm and welcoming and our server was also lovely. Somehow that makes the food taste a little better. I hope that restaurant survives because it is a nice place and food can be good.

vipCaitlin (Los Angeles)
1.0  Dined on October 8, 2016

The worst waiter ever. We waited 45 minutes before he came to take our dinner order. We were so frustrated. We asked for the check and didn't order dinner there. The waiter never apologized and rolled his eyes at us. So rude.

vipOpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
3.0  Dined on October 7, 2016

My steak was delicious. My friends burgers were pretty good but various parts of each order had not been followed. Our first waitress was brusque, uninterested in serving us and charmless. The bartender took over eventually but he was busy at the bar. Food took a long time to come out. Basically seemed like very sloppy and poor service. Wish I could give a better review as its a neighborhood joint I would love to love.

GemQuester (Orange County)
2.0  Dined on September 17, 2016

This place has really gone downhill. It used to be my go-to place but it's sadly lost it's magic. I was there on a Sat night for 4 hours and there were only 8 tables filled the entire time -- no turnover. They've cut the menu in 1/2 and the staff was MIA most of the time. The Softshell crab BLT was greasy, heavy and disappointing. What happened?

OpenTable Diner (New York Area)
1.0  Dined on September 17, 2016

The restaurant was filthy with grease buildup on every table. The waiter advised us against ordering one of the main dishes because it was not fresh. Wine by the glass was €15 for a house cab. So we stuck with water and burgers. Even the burgers were greasy and came with a thick coating of blue cheese, which we didn't order. Frankly even our real black cat would pass on this restaurant.

vipOpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
3.0  Dined on September 16, 2016

The food was good and fresh, but our service was really lacking. It took an unusually long time for our waitress to acknowledge us after we sat down, and she was grumpy and just didn't seem happy to be working there.

OpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
3.0  Dined on August 28, 2016

We went for the special $85 crab feast. The first courses were good, but the steamed crabs were small and the first round they served overcooked.
The service was abysmal. Wasn't the server's fault...the restaurant does not have enough staff.

OpenTable Diner (Munich)
5.0  Dined on August 27, 2016

Es war spitze!!!

vipCookE (Central Coast)
3.0  Dined on August 25, 2016

We we're very disappointed in the menu changes as they removed all of the veggie sides, which we loved. Food was OK but pricey. Service was good, noise OK (but we came early). Won't be going back until the menu changes.

vipOpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
3.0  Dined on August 19, 2016

food was, as always, wonderful. Service was truly horrible.

vipJBean (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on August 19, 2016

The staff was extremely nice and helpful.

vipscout (Los Angeles)
4.0  Dined on August 17, 2016

I loved my food the last time I ate here and hoped for more of the same, but learned that the menu had changed. Our food was so spicy that my companion gave up on eating hers and wanted nothing else because her throat was burning. Mine was edible but too spicy. There should be a warning on the menu so you can take this into consideration when you order. The champagne was very good though.

OpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on August 13, 2016

The food was spectacular, as usual! The Pug Burger may be the best hamburger I have ever had--add the fried egg.

We were disappointed they don't have a cheese course available anymore and am hoping it will reappear on the menu soon.

RoseannH (Los Angeles)
2.0  Dined on August 11, 2016

We went to Hungry Cat because of reviews we read several years ago; sadly, it's not maintained the quality mentioned in earlier reviews. The first waiter was friendly and fun, though he disappeared to be replaced by a dour, unsmiling woman who seemed in a bad mood, and rushed us along (despite the restaurant being mostly empty on Friday . . . should have given us a clue). Oysters were delicious, and the cocktails very good (the bartender or manager, could not tell which, did stop by to see how we liked a new margarita he was crafting; he was great). Main meals nothing outstanding but decent enough. Desserts, however, were really not good at all. Just overall a shockingly bad restaurant for such an amazing location right on the beach at Santa Monica.

OpenTable Diner (Central Coast)
2.0  Dined on August 7, 2016

This service was atrocious .I asked for lemon for my fish and the waitress said "Use the lemon from my iced tea".I asked another server again for lemon and was ignored.Finally a new waiter came and was so helpful I gave him the tip.

vipJillers (Los Angeles)
2.0  Dined on August 6, 2016

So disappointed. We were expecting their summer menu they had been advertising and they stopped it at the end of July. We were there at the beginning of August and expected them to still have it. The menu was disappointing. Nothing new...

OpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
1.0  Dined on August 5, 2016

Hungry Cat used to be good but beware - it's TERRIBLE now (Aug, 2016). The food was disgusting and the service really poor. The Manager is awful and confrontational. Don't go!

FrancescaB (London)
1.0  Dined on July 30, 2016

The restaurant felt sad. It was Saturday night but there was no atmosphere at all. Very depressing. We sat down but left quite quickly and went to Giorgios next door which was fantastic.

OpenTable Diner (New York Area)
2.0  Dined on July 29, 2016

Disappointing. Had read somewhere that this was a quintessential California seafood place. Maybe that was some time ago . This is the only seafood restaurant I've EVER been to that had no daily specials. My clams and chorizo were tasty but my husband's and daughter's meals were both 'meh." Would not go back.

JohnM (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on July 27, 2016

Excellent food. Simple and very well prepared. The way seafood should be served. This is one of a very very small handful of restaurants in Santa Monica that are worth the price IMO

NateF (Los Angeles)
2.0  Dined on July 23, 2016

We went there primarily for the caviar as we'd enjoyed in the past for a special occasion. Guess what? They didn't have any caviar. Let down! I'll probably not be back, at least to this this location.

BeaS (New York Area)
1.0  Dined on July 21, 2016

Ambiance was fine and food was good (not the best). However all this was overshadowed by the terrible service our group of 6 received. Not only was the service incredibly slow, our waitress got our drink orders (simple tequila soda) wrong at least 4 times, and was never apologetic. Instead was defiant when we had to send back our 3rd or 4th drink and condescending. Then to top it off the dessert order was wrong again at the end of the night. The whole experience was bizarre and we were made to feel uncomfortable and apologetic as if we had caused all the inconveniences on purpose. Not sure if this was a off night but I know I will never be returning to this restaurant or recommending it to out of town guests again.

IrisK (Los Angeles)
1.0  Dined on July 19, 2016

This restaurant always had $1.00 oysters on Tuesday, which is a GREAT deal. Restaurant was always crowded, and the food was fantastic.
They have changed their menu, and not only did they no longer have the oyster special(they are now $3.00 a piece) BUT they have NO OYSTER CRACKERS!!! They offer nothing but grilled $^.00 an order. Hollywood still has the old menu...we will never go back to this one.
Even the lobster roll as 1/2 the lobster it used to be. SAD.

vipMichael (Los Angeles)
3.0  Dined on July 15, 2016

The ambiance is really too informal for the prices; paper napkins and silver stacked in cup on the table. The service was mixed at best. Slow to greet, slow to take orders and slow to bring drinks....but food was on the table before we had even finished our drinks. Food was fine, but not exceptional. The place was quiet on a Friday night at 8 p.m. with 3/4 empty tables.

vipJoseC (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on July 13, 2016

I had a good meal at The Hungry Cat. I was there for a business meeting and the food and service was delicious.

LisaB (Los Angeles)
1.0  Dined on July 10, 2016

our waitress was not good at all. didn't listen to what we wanted and didn't know about the what was in the dishes.

JasenkaF (Los Angeles)
2.0  Dined on July 3, 2016

I resereved dinner on a Sunday at 5:00pm. We arrived later than expected, but the host was fine with it. There was only one other couple in the main dining area. The menu seemed a bit confusing, so we had a few questions for our server. We ordered the shrimp as an appetizer, and the clams. I am not a big fan of raw seafood, so my friend was happy to finish the clams. I realize it's not really a kid friendly place, as naturally most kids don't eat seafood. So, we ordered a cheese quesadilla for my 4 yr old son and he seemed quite happy with that.
Myself and my friend ordered the margarita cocktails. We were told by our server that the blender had broken, so we couldn't have frozen, instead we had to have them on the rocks. Which I wasn't happy about. We still paid $12 each, even though it was happy hour? For the entrée, I had the lobster roll which was very good on a brioche roll with skinny cut fries. My husband had the white whole fish with rice. He wasn't blown away by it and said it was just ok. My friend had the fish tacos, which were so small it should have been bar food. All the portions were on the small side and we were barely satisfied when we finished our dinner. Definitely very overpriced for mediocre food. Won't be coming back anytime soon.

vipJonk (Los Angeles)
3.0  Dined on July 1, 2016

Usually a quality meal, this experience was a bit off. Restaurant might have been understaffed but we waited at least 40 minutes for our first course...which was from the raw bar, no cooking involved! The uni special just wasn't that enjoyable as it had one flavor that actually overpowered the dish, and not in a good way. The tacos, which are part of the new menu were good, but maybe not a great value. IT's a seafood place so maybe I ordered poorly on that one. Overall, the place was just "off" the night we were there. We'll go back, but maybe we'll wait for the regular menu to return.

vipBK11 (Los Angeles)
2.0  Dined on July 1, 2016

We have been here before and have never been overwhelmed with the service but this time it was really terrible. Even spoke to the manager who didn't seem to take much notice.