Face it, people. Venice (or the out-dated version in your head) is long gone. The boardwalk is a forgotten pile of trash, t-shirts, and tourists, and Abbot Kinney is a white-washed theme park with less culture than an Irvine megamall. The only people who can afford to live here are tech bros, trust fund babies, and Kate Beckinsale. It’s unappealing, unattainable, and most alarmingly, uninteresting. But there is a flipside. Placed in the right hands, gentrification can finally take that eyesore of a space and finally make it useful to the community.
Dudley Market fell into the right hands.
There’s certainly no shortage of good looking restaurants in Venice, but Dudley Market feels different. The bright interior is as beautiful as it is actually functional, with the right amount of charm that makes it interesting, not overstimulating. The historic building isn't large either. Or so small that the girl behind you’s beach bag is jabbing your shoulder blades the entire meal. Everyone is comfortable and everyone is happy.
The menu is broken up into three sections - daytime, midday, and dinner. The vagueness of that is as hilarious as it is useful. This is Venice Beach, no one’s taken a meeting here since the 70’s. The food ranges from pretty good to pretty great. Yes, the pork hash is definitely too salty, but that Burger Diane is worth driving across the city for. We thought we were over restaurants putting crazy things on toast, but their bone marrow proves we are not. The mix of the marrow and feta cheese sprinkled on top is unlike anything we've ever really tried before. And don’t forget, this is an actual market too, with a small retail component, and a to-go service ideal for your lunch hour needs. And it all blends perfectly. Roll up for a weekend brunch or a casual date night, and you won’t feel like you’re eating inside a grocery store.
One word of caution - parking. It doesn’t really exist. That’s more of Venice problem as a whole, but it’s important to know. Make sure you have some cash because paying for a beach lot is all but guaranteed on the weekends.
It’s certainly been tough watching our Venice favorites bite the dust over the last few years, but if Dudley Market is the future of the neighborhood, everything’s going to be fine.
When you know how to cook an egg and have fresh vegetables within arms reach, good things tend to happen. This is the case at Dudley Market. Simple, easy, and extremely well done.
A total knock-out. An obvious take on the steak diane, this burger (with mushrooms and dijon on top) is sloppy and manageable all at the same time. MUST-ORDER.
This dish wasn’t bad. And it was only a few adjustments away from being great. But overall, just WAY too salty. The flavors are there, but we were gulping water for two days afterwards.
Just when you thought you had enough of the toast game, in comes this baby and keeps the trend alive. Secret ingredient here - the feta cheese.
The cavatelli won’t blow you away, but we highly recommend it for a date night scenario. It’s not too large and very easy to share. Ideal for not feeling like a dump truck when you stroll on the beach afterwards.