Long Beach, California is a big spread out city. As a tourist visiting the 6th largest city in California, deciding where to eat in Long Beach depends as much as on what you feel like as where you are. During my three day adventure in town, I visited as many places as my waistline could handle. I focused on the places and parts of town I thought you would most likely be visiting. Of course, I missed entire neighbourhoods like Cambodia Town, which is first on my list to visit when I return. But, until then here are my recommended places to find good grub when you are in Long Beach.
1 The Attic On Broadway – Craving Brunch? The Attic On Broadway is the place to go. Get here before 11 am because the line up really starts to get long after that. Order a cup of coffee and the above mug is what you might get. There is only one giant mug, and I was the lucky recipient. It’s as big as my head. As for the rest of the menu, they are famous for Bloody Mary’s, so I suggest you choose one of the many on offer. For food, I treated myself to the Chicken Fried Steak Benedict. Yes, it tastes as good as it looks. Fantastic. I can see why this place gets a lineup.
2 Berlin by Portfolio Coffee House – After brunch you may decide to explore 4th Street Long Beach for the vintage shops. Shopping is always better with a cup of coffee in my hand and even though it’s a short drive away I suggest you visit Berlin Coffee House for your Java. It has a Portland Hipster vibe to it and whether you dine in or out you will love the coffee.
3 Fox Coffee House – Earlier I wrote about my Helicopter flying adventure over Long Beach. Not far from Long Beach Airport is Fox Coffee House. From the outside, I wondered if Yelp was sending me on a wild goose chase but once inside I saw that you shouldn’t judge a coffee shop by its storefront. Great coffee, Live music and a funky and relaxed atmosphere makes Fox Coffee a local hangout.
4 Steelhead Coffee – Steelhead Coffee is not really near the tourist zone, but it is near Long Beach Airport, and it was on my route as I was leaving town, so it made sense to stop in here for a cup of coffee before I hit the road to my next adventure. Good coffee, clean modern decor and a quiet place to do a few final emails. Two thumbs up!
5 Fuego – Sometimes hotel restaurants are an afterthought, there to satisfy the in-room dining crowd. Not Fuego at the Hotel Maya. It is worth a visit even if you aren’t staying at the hotel. My gondolier recommended this place to me, not knowing I was staying here. Whether it is for Happy Hour or breakfast, I was impressed. Also, the view is not bad either.
6 Padre Latin Table & Craft Cocktails – I discovered Padre thanks to an invitation from a friend of a friend. Located at 525 East Broadway, it is near all the downtown action. We hung out in the bar and spent a few rounds trying cocktails and tapas. The lighting was great for hanging out, but not great for photos, so I apologise the pics aren’t the best. For drinks, my favourite was the Old Fashioned made with Mezcal. Tapas wise I pigged out on fresh Guacamole, Patatas Bravas and a Hot Dog that was taken up a few notches.
7 Congregation Ale House – Located at East Broadway and Promenade Congregation is the only church I want to belong to. They worship Beer and Burgers. Finding a table is a bit of a challenge here because it is always busy, but if you get friendly, I am sure you can find a seat. It is counter service so you order your beer and food at the bar, and they will bring it out to you. I went for a Belgian Saison, Bacon & Cheddar Burger and a side of Tater Tots. I don’t get the obsession with Tater Tots, but they said it was the thing to order. I loved it all except for the Taters.
8 Beechwood BBQ & Brewing – If you are craving some BBQ while you are in Long Beach you can’t go wrong with Beechwood BBQ & Brewing. They not only do great BBQ, but they are also a Brewery and brew their own beers. I focused on the BBQ this visit and pigged out on Baked Mac & Cheese and the Three Meat BBQ Platter. I needed a wheelbarrow to carry me out of the place when I was done.
9 Michael’s Pizzeria – Located next to Congregation Ale House & Beechwood BBQ is Michael’s Pizzeria. If you are looking for a Neopolitan style pizza, this will satisfy your craving. I caught up with a childhood friend turned famous Comedian Ian Bagg here for lunch one day and left a few pounds heavier. No matter what pizza you try, you will not be disappointed. They even have salads and burgers that look as good as the pizzas.
10 Open Sesame – Let’s go Lebanese! There is only one place to satisfy your shawarma craving in Long Beach and that is Open Sesame on 5215 East 2nd St. It is one restaurant spread out over three or more locations on one block. You check in at the same place, but who knows where you’ll be sitting. Everything on the menu is fresh and amazing. We ordered some appies of Fried Potatoes and Cauliflower and then shared the Open Sesame Combo platter. #NomNomNom
As you can see, there is no shortage of great places to eat in Long Beach. This is what I discovered in three days. Imagine if you were there for a week or more. Bon Apetite.