The Quick Pitch: Andrew Kirschner, who made his name on the Westside at the patio-powered Wilshire, has gone solo at this modern-rustic dining den in Santa Monica a few blocks east of the Third Street Promenade. He doles out the likes of pork knuckle with pickled pear and chili salad, ricotta gnocchi with charred baby broccoli and an appetizer known as “chanterelle stuffing,” which includes chestnut, currants and sage.
The Insider’s Dish: The chef’s close friend, KCRW’s Tom Schnabel, curated the world music soundtrack.
The Must-Order Item: Charred octopus skewers with salsa verde and piquillo pepper aioli.
The Best Table: One of the spots along the rear banquette, which features a view of Kirschner and exec sous chef Jacob Wildman in action in the semi-open kitchen.
The Industry Neighbors: Lightstorm Entertainment, Innovative Artists and the Kennedy/Marshall Company.
602 Santa Monica Blvd., Santa Monica, 310.587.0700, tarandroses.com