The décor offers a Nautical-Nantucket theme in the light blue and white restaurant. Rowboats sail across the ceiling while wooden buoys anchor each table. The ambiance pairs well with its bright blue Pacific Ocean views and the sparkling lights of the Santa Monica Pier at night. Both segue fluidly into a menu that includes a strong seafood selection.
One Pico not only delves deep into the sea, but draws from farmer’s market-inspiration, manifesting quintessential California cuisine from Managing Chef Sven Mede. Chef Mede’s career includes culinary positions around the world, on top of receiving a rising star chef kudos from StarChefs.com. That experience includes a stint in Las Vegas before Los Angeles, working as executive chef at Michael Mina’s Las Vegas restaurants, American Fish and Nobhill Tavern. In 2012, he signed on to navigate By the Blue Sea’s fleet of seaside restaurants and lounges at two Santa Monica hotel staples, Shutters by the Beach and Casa del Mar. Numbering six in total, Chef Mede utilizes his well-rounded background to create distinct menus at each location.
To kick off the One Pico tasting from the lunch and dinner menus, Chef Mede served fresh, thinly sliced Organic Salmon Crudo. Dressed with horseradish, capers, dill and crunchy toasted pumpernickel, the cool dish eased us into the feast. Served alongside the appetizer, a drippy Poached Farm Egg arrived drenching the green and white asparagus and crispy pancetta. We especially enjoyed the Grilled Pacific Shrimp wrapped together with accompanying shaved market vegetables.
Throughout the meal, we were able to enjoy dishes from partnering California suppliers; the main courses continued the trend. Each utilized greens, legumes and spices that shined across the plates. Flavored in fresh herbs, we savored the juicy Mary’s Farm Chicken Breast. Equally pleasing, the Griddled Halibut was dressed with caper berries and andouille sausage while the snap peas and roasted shiitake mushrooms provided a welcomed crunch. Next, the Pan-Roasted Maine Diver Scallops towered over a tomato risotto, arugula, and appetizing Parmesan crostini. Three desserts ended the afternoon affair nicely with a peanut butter, berry and chocolate parfait taking center stage.
The Santa Monica waterfront restaurant and bar includes brunch, lunch, dinner and epic views. Again, a combination that is rare in this prime area. With five other spots under By the Blue Sea and Chef Mede’s guidance, we’re definitely interested in sampling more menu concepts.
Victor and Mary
Couple and business partners, Victor and Mary, blog and manage La Bonne Maison, a chef-driven catering and event planning company in Boston. Victor and Mary are avid eaters, travelers and outdoor-enthusiasts. As regular contributors to JustLuxe.com they offer their unique perspectives on restaurants, hotels, luxury products, and wellness… they’re always on the search for a new angle to cover or ju...(Read More)