After re-launching this summer with a new owner, chef, bar manager and new menus, the historic Venice Whaler did us all a tremendous favor by adding a weekend brunch menu to their arsenal.
It’s a smart move for them. There are tons of places lining Pacific Coast Highway where one can enjoy a beach-view brunch but down in Santa Monica and Venice, it is actually more challenging to find a spot with views like those you get when you’re enjoying a Crab Shell Bloody Mary. Brunch is all about indulgence and decadence so ideally, we should all be staring out at a perfect blue ocean during it, right?
Oh yes, that Bloody Mary is THE BOMB. Of all the things I am allergic to, thank goodness I am not allergic to shellfish. I loved it. I’m not gonna lie – I had two (thankfully, Alyssa drove). I may or may not have also tried the sparkling sorbet cocktail and the watermelon mojito (hint: I totally did but don’t worry, just sips)!
That sparkling sorbet cocktail…. OMG. Alyssa really liked the watermelon mojito. I am not a watermelon fan but even I had to admit it was refreshing.
But enough of that because I haven’t even mentioned the food yet, which is a crime against humanity at this level. The menu is wonderfully varied and every bite we had was delicious. It was hard to decide what to get, mind you. The breakfast burrito was tempting. And we could have had Whaler Burger (with a fried egg!) or the fish tacos (seemed like a god beachy choice) but in the end, we ended up with these three plates on the table. (And a side of bacon. Because bacon. DUH.)
Eggs benedict is my favorite brunch dish all all time in the history of the world and I appreciate a good spin on the old classic. Here, it’s served on slices of Brioche and in lieu of Canadian Bacon, you’ll get sausage patties. It’s really yummy. It’s a fantastic savory twist. Also wonderfully savory? The chicken and waffles. And may I just recommend the side of bacon for this dish alone, because it’s a wonderful compliment to the syrup and fried chicken.
The favorite for me, though (while we liked them all, Alyssa, I believe, picked the Benedict as her #1), was the CHALLAH FRENCH TOAST. I could eat that every day. EVERY. DAY. But I won’t. Because that would be unhealthy. Like, more unhealthy than I already am. And even I have my limits.
So any flaws? Not really. I will say if you’re looking for a traditional, indulgent brunch setting, you might be a little caught off guard here. It’s not a space with traditional tables and chairs. It’s very communal, more like a bar, and you’re sitting on stools (which, to their absolute credit, are nice, big ones and even I was super comfy on them with my big booty). But there’s also live music – a DJ – and some TVs, and the staff is super friendly and attentive, so it almost ends up feeling like a brunch party, which I enjoyed! It made for a really nice change!
AND!!! Fun fact – the new chef? None other than Nick Liberato from one of my favorite guilty pleasure shows, “Bar Rescue” (see him in action)! I was so excited! Thankfully, the Venice Whaler will never need rescuing. They’re in terrific shape.
- Best bet for parking: The beach parking lot the street dead-ends into. The steep $9 is worth the convenience.
- The Venice Whaler’s official website
- All of the socials! Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
P.S. Since you are paying $9 for parking, why not make the most of it and spend some additional time on the beach? Go for a walk on the pier. It’s right there!