Manhattan Beach Post
1142 Manhattan Ave
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
I’m going to keep this post short & sweet, because that’s exactly how I would describe the dishes here (and the fact that I’ve been neglecting this post for 3 months due to the poor photos) – short, in that this is basically a small plates restaurant, and sweet, not in the saccharin sense, but rather in the notion of something pleasant.
It took me a LONG time for me to finally make my way down to Manhattan Beach to try MB Post. It’s not the closest to my home or work, and it’s kind of a hassle making the trek down south via 405S on a normal day. Also, the place sounds like it’s always packed. But too many people have raved about the place, to the point I couldn’t resist anymore. You’re going to pile up on the number of dishes ordered, standard of dining at a small plates restaurant. But, MB Post is a restaurant where you can close your eyes and point at a dish, and not be disappointed by the random choice. There are no gimmicks here, nor are there any specializations cuisine-wise (if I had to describe the food here, it’d be American with an Asian flair) – just simple and well-executed dishes that Chef LeFevre (formerly of The Water Grill in Downtown, and before that, at the legendary Charlie Trotter’s in Chicago) probably enjoys making at home.
If there’s a signature dish here, it would be the bacon cheddar buttermilk biscuits. Not exactly flaky or fluffy, these biscuits aren’t traditional in the Southern sense. Rather, they are somewhat dense, but not too heavy despite the added bacon and cheddar. The accompanying maple butter is nice, but probably not even needed. It would be dangerous to get too many orders of this. But while you might have come for the biscuits, you stay for everything else. The pork jowl has been on the menu since Day 1, and it’s pretty amazing – a not-too-fatty cut of pork jowl with a caramelized sear that’s somewhat reminiscent of Asian jerky, with a nice hit of fish sauce. Chef LeFevre also does justice to seafood and veggies, so don’t forget to order some of those dishes, too.
Despite being in a beautiful people area like Manhattan Beach, and being a small plates restaurant, MB Post is surprisingly affordable. It’s not a cheap restaurant, but prices are more than fair for food and ingredients of this caliber (you can probably order the same amount of food here for maybe 2/3 of the price at a place like Animal). Also heard brunch is equally as great – just wished the restaurant was a little closer. But with MB Post (and now Fishing with Dynamite), it looks like Chef LeFevre is establishing himself as the culinary king of Manhattan Beach.
Bacon Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits ($5 – pictured is 2 orders)
Blistering Blue Lake Green Beans ($9)
Roasted Brussels Sprouts ($10)
Steamed Mussels ($14)
Vietnamese Caramel Pork Jowl ($13)
White Oak Grilled Skirt Steak ($18)
The “Elvis” ($7)
Valrhona Chocolate & Salted Caramel Tart ($6)