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Local Legends: Beach City Eateries

If you have grown up in the friendly and easy-going city of Redondo Beach like we have, then you know that there are staple eateries every South Bay native has tried if not become a regular at.

Whether its a weekday or a weekend, a savory craving or a sweet craving, a cozy cafe or a social hub that you're looking for, these homemade, family-owned restaurants are exactly what everyone needs when hunger calls.

In the South Bay there is a unique and comforting magic about the organic culture its residents share, and we hope South Bay Food Company becomes a lasting part of that culture someday. The Beach Cities community is a family, and that shows in the diverse and homemade food we cook.

Though there are dozens of ma & pa businesses we could celebrate, we've decided to highlight a few of our favorite Local Legends to try (if you haven't already, of course!):

In Redondo Beach

Cozy Cafe

Cozy Cafe is indeed cozy in the best of ways and is a wonderful place for brunch. The owner of this eatery is incredibly invested in her customers and stops by to say hello, so don't be shy!

Eat At Joe's

Eat at Joe's has been a South Bay Landmark for decades. This breakfast hot spot has a comfortable vibe that's nearly beachside, and it usually has a line so take care to get there before you're too hungry.

El Gringo

El Gringo is open in multiple South Bay locations, but was originally established in Hermosa Beach in 1986. This eatery has been voted Best Mexican Restaurant by locals a number of times, and for good reason. El Gringo is authentic, fresh, and listening to its customers!

El Indio

El Indio may be small but it sure does serve up a big, freshly made menu. This eatery is best for comfort-food takeout, though it does offer limited seating inside.


..Though the company is not exactly locally made (it was created in Ohio), Handals is still a Redondo Beach favorite and can't be missed. The ice cream is homemade with sweet care and tastes so irresistably creamy in a multitude of flavors. Don't forget to stop by on 2-1/2 Buck Tuesdays!

Old Tony's On the Pier

Enjoy a filling meal and a gorgeous, unobscured view of the ocean at Old Tony's. Afterwards, why not grab some icecream, check out the shops, and stroll along the sand? Perfect date night!

Quality Seafood Inc.

Quality Seafood Inc. has been in business since 1953! Sat just around the corner of the Redondo Beach Pier, they have finest selection of raw fish, crab, and lobster. You can stop by for a snack on the patio or take away fresh ingredients to cook a recipe of your own.

In Hermosa Beach

Lighthouse Cafe

The Lighthouse Cafe will light your way to a good time with happy hour and live music. On top of that it is a location imbedded with history dating back as far as the early 1900s. Food paired with music - its kind of The Lighthouse Cafe's thing.

Mickey's Italian Delicatessen

Mickey's has a little bit of everything! Whether you're in need of a soda, a beer, a candy bar, or a whole freshly made pizza with a heaping side of potato salad they've got it! Located a block from the beach front, this is a great any-time-of-the-day one-stop shop.

Ocean Diner

Welcome to Grandma's Place! Ocean Diner started off as a bakery, but slowly transformed into a diner after the owner wanted to expand to serve to the public. This is a sweet location for any time of day with its family-friendly surfs-up theme and comforting food.

The Rockefeller

The Rockefeller prides itself on crafting and selling indepdently made American beer. They also pride themselves on being South Bay local! "Nobody cares more about delivering a great product day in and day out than the people who live and are local to the fabric of the community." (We agree!)

Rosa's Restaurant

Rosa's Restaurant has been serving the South Bay authentic Mexican food since 1973, and from then on our stomachs have been the better for it. This eastery is an inexpensive, family-friendly location dedicated to satisfactory customer service and honoring cultural traditions.

In Manhattan Beach

Big Wok Mongolian BBQ

Go ahead and grab a bowl! The buffet style ingredients are yours to pick and choose. Once you've created your ideal meal the chefs cook it in front of you on a giant grill. Before you know it you're sitting down and diving into deliciousness.

The Kettle

The Kettle has a clear and beautiful view of the beach just down the hill and is less than a five minutes walk to the Manhattan Beach Pier! This casual dining experience is perfect for tourists wanting to enjoy the Manhattan Beach vibes or for locals who just want to chill with friends.

The Local Yolk

Though The Local Yolk doesn't sell dinner, its American-style, mixed breakfast-lunch menu is all you need for a good meal. This little Beach City diner is a lovely location for a relaxing breakfast or a beach-day lunch!

The Strand

The Strand prides itself on quality food, wine, and a comfortable ocean view that serves as the perfect place for friends to gather for an elegant evening out.

In Torrance

El Burrito Jr.

Craving authentic Mexican food? El Burrito Jr. is the go-to place for just that! Though it doesn't look like much when you walk past it, this local eatery is a delicious icon with fresh food and a chill atmosphere.

Here are some Honorable Mentions:

Catalina Coffee Company - Redondo Beach

Imagine this: You're lost in an interesting book with a cup of sweet coffee warming your lap. You can't help but yawn contendedly and sink deeper into the big, soft cushions of a thrift store lounge chair. Next to you there are two friends playing checkers on a low tabletop, their giggles mixing with the sounds of a coffee machine whorling, computer keys clacking, and people chatting animately. You finish another chapter. You could sit here all day if adulthood didn't call.

After 17 years, however, Catalina Cafe closed in 2018. The building now sits abandoned on Catalina Road, waiting for the next entrepreneur to establish a new icon. Catalina Coffee Company is dearly missed and will forever be remembered as a home away from home.

Ruby's Diner - Redondo Beach

Unfortunately, during the COVID-19 pandemic, this iconic, 50s style diner permanently closed. Depite this, Ruby's Diner lives on in hundreds of people's memories. Located besides Seaside Lagoon and the soothing ocean front, Ruby's was a hot spot for families and Redondo Union high schoolers. This was the perfect place for a classic American burger and a fun, historic atmosphere. We still think fondly of the stiff, blue and yellow fish that swam across the ceiling and the red, vintage bartop stools that spun jerkily. Luckily, Ruby's Diner is a chain, and though we can no longer enjoy this restaurant RB style, we can still enjoy a trip back in time in other cities.

What do you think? Have you tried any of these yet? What's your favorite local eatery?

Let us know in the comments below! We'd love to hear from you!

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