Cafe Habana in Malibu; Design Cafe at Pacific Design Center; Raya at the Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel
The Pacific Design Center's Design Cafe has reopened with a Mitteleuropa-meets-California-cuisine menu by Food + Lab, the brainchild of Esther and Nino Linsmayer. Open for breakfast and lunch, the Design Cafe kiosk offers morning items such as house-made granola parfait with European-style yogurt; house-made muesli with berries; and a smoked salmon sandwich with creme fraiche and sliced cucumber. For lunch, there are signature Food + Lab sandwiches such as chicken wiener schnitzel with lingonberry chutney, Austrian meatloaf and organic salads. 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pacific Design Center, 8687 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood (located at Melrose Avenue Plaza), (310) 657-0343, www.pacificdesigncenter.com.
Restaurateur Sean Meenan's New York transplant Cafe Habana is set to open this week in Malibu. The solar-powered West Coast outpost will serve the Cuban sandwiches and grilled Mexican-style corn on which the Manhattan original and its Brooklyn outpost have built their popularity. Residents of the 'Bu, including Cafe Habana co-owner Rande Gerber, are sure to flock to it. Also, full bar. Malibu Lumber Yard, 3939 Cross Creek Road, Malibu, (310) 317-0300, www.cafehabana.com.
Raya is open at the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel, featuring "pan-Latin coastal cuisine" -- sustainable seafood, local produce and Latin flavors -- from chef Richard Sandoval (his other restaurants include Maya in New York and Dubai and Tamayo in Denver). Chef de cuisine Greg Howe helms the kitchen. On the menu: appetizers such as coconut shrimp ceviche and hamachi tiradito and entrees including chile ancho-pistachio-crusted tuna and chipotle-miso glazed black cod. Dulce de leche pudding, lemongrass panna cotta and Mexican chocolate tart are among the dessert choices. One Ritz Carlton Drive, Dana Point, (949) 240-2000, www.ritzcarlton.com/lagunaniguel.
-- Betty Hallock
Photo: Design Cafe at Pacific Design Center. Credit: Design Cafe.