A red carpet leads the way past a cluster of spotlights, and two large lacquered doors grant access to a low-lit room. Conversation buzzes, layered over the underlying thumping of music that emanates throughout the space. It's the quintessential modern nightclub, but Sunset Room is alive with old-school Hollywood glamour; it's decorated with crystal chandeliers and dark wood, aesthetic touches that are the very antithesis of stale chain restaurants or picnic tables set up in a cave. In the dining room, white tablecloths rest beneath the light of flickering candles, and small plates encourage sharing bites of flatbread and steak sliders. Reserved seating can make guests feel extra special, and live bands and DJs start dance parties on the dance floor. A team of mixologists also arrives on the scene to shake and stir a variety of craft cocktails and drinks at the towering bar.
The elegant mixture of cuisine, libations, and decor that constitutes Sunset Room is the brainchild of Chris Breed and James Ashford. Since 1990, Chris has been improving nightlife in Hollywood, first with the Roxbury Supper Club and now with Sunset. Chris teams up with James, who has a background as an LAPD officer and a real-estate man.
Executive Chef Junior Perez draws on traditional French and Italian cuisine as inspiration for the upscale menus of pasta, steaks, and seafood, which have garnered an impressive number of features on local food blogs. At the Culver City location, brunch lures palates and sentient flatware with dishes such as pork-belly hash, bedecked with tuscan potatoes and mustard sauce ($10). House-made agnolotti pouches enclose wild mushroom and mascarpone under a wave of truffle butter ($16). Cap off the epicurean experience with mascarpone cheesecake accompanied by cranberry sorbet and exotic coulis or the chocolate purse, which totes candied hazelnuts, vanilla ice cream, and a caramelized day planner. A fleet of flickering candles perches on walls and tables inside the Santa Monica locale's dining area, casting a dim orange glow on dark hardwood floors.
The Gaslite hosts karaoke crooners and undercover celebrities as they belt out ballads throughout the night. Karaoke commences at 7 p.m. every evening, provided that the bar's high-definition TVs are not showcasing the latest sporting events or insightful weather reports. The Gaslite also hosts happy hour daily beginning when they open to 9 p.m. with $2 off all drinks and four-bottle buckets toting domestic ($10) or imported beer ($12). As clients bask in the signature red lights of the bar and the rich vocal melodies of lightly sauced coworkers, they can consult The Gaslite's list of local restaurants and get food delivered directly to their tables. Patrons can also sip on a variety of mixed drinks ($7+), beer ($4+), and wine ($7+) to keep pipes prepped before replacing the words to their favorite songs with detailed carburetor-cleaning instructions.
Extract Juice Bar resounds with buzzing blenders that liquefy fruits and vegetables into an array of juice and smoothie concoctions. Past the plush sofas and wall-lined paintings from local artists, the kitchen staff whips limes, apples, ginger, and spinach leaves into The Leaf and combines cucumber, pineapple, and jalapeño to yield The Flash's smoothie froth. They also assemble vegetarian sandwiches and vegan dishes during breakfast and lunch hours.
Nikki's creative assortment of tasty appetizers, salads, burgers, sandwiches, and entrees lays the foundation for a bevy of specialty beach beverages. Treat your table to a plate of Nikki's homemade nachos, piled high with beans, pico de gallo, sour cream, and guacamole ($8, add chicken or steak for an extra $3), or devour four pint-sized sliders ($12) with your choice of protein to pave the food pipes for a savory entree. For dinner, get your grabbers on a 72 Market burger topped with lettuce, tomato, and red onion ($11), or skillfully fold your green thumbs around a veggie wrap stuffed with seasoned and grilled peppers, onions, mushrooms, and zucchini in a sun-dried tomato tortilla with jack cheese ($11). Classic comfort food such as meatloaf served with a side of garlic mashed potatoes ($14) will make diners feel even cozier when blanketed with another matured childhood favorite: strawberry lemonade made with Absolut Citron vodka ($10). Top everything off with The Half Baked, a half-pound, barely baked chocolate-chip cookie-dough base topped with three scoops of vanilla ice cream and drizzled with chocolate syrup ($6), just like everyone's favorite substitute teacher.