Ownership at a Third Street Promenade food hall is consolidating, with half of its current and planned restaurants now under the same ownership.
K2 Restaurants, a Los Angeles based restaurant group, already owns STRFSH, Azulé Taqueria and Supertoro in the Downtown location. The company announced Thursday that it now owns Paperboy Pizza, also located on the second floor of The Gallery.
The restaurant group acquired the J. Fall Group and will own and operate Paperboy, Easy’s and Nighthawk: AM at the Beverly Center, Nighthawk: Breakfast Bar in Venice and the Tinfoil Liquor and Deli brand.
Jeremy Fall of the J.Fall Group will remain the creative directors of all J.Fall original concepts for the next year.
John Kolaski, CEO of K2 Restaurants, says the acquisition came about after spending time with Fall during the opening of Azulé and Paperboy. All came to an agreement that Kolaski could help grow their brands.
“I loved what their restaurants were about,” Kolaski said. “They really reminded me of some of my favorite restaurants — No B.S., just trying to make good food.”
Kolaski says as owner of half the restaurants in The Gallery now, he shares no concerns of foot-traffic volume or restaurant turnover that plagues many restaurant businesses in Santa Monica, specifically the Third Street Promenade.
“The thought is that the Third Street Promenade is for tourists… we knew if we could bring locals in off the Promenade or during their 90 minutes of free parking for a quick meal, we could be great. If you bring a great product and great experience, people will respond.”
He said the company has already had success expanding menus in the location, citing STRFSH as an example.
“STRFSH is growing incredibly,” he said. “The best thing of working with them is expanding on that STRFSH menu, that’s been wildly successful. The Hot fish sandwich and lobster roll have been great sellers.”
Kolaski says to further entice customers to choose his restaurants in The Gallery, updates to menus will occur. Paperboys will see new pizzas and appetizers within the next few weeks while new additions to STRFSH’s menu will occur sometime in the near future.
Nighthawk will have the most radical change, with an expansion of hours and menu items. No timetable was mentioned for the Nighthawk changes.
Overall, Kolaski says he’s excited for the future.
“It’s been awesome. We will say there’s more to come in The Gallery and a few more concepts to be added to the mix. We do believe in Santa Monica.”