SMDP’s Weekly Guide to Food & Entertainment Goings-On In & Around Santa Monica

Your weekend starts here with a Free Super Mario Bros’ Screening , food and drink highlights including a Tomato Tasting Competition and Craw Daddy Boiler Summer Bash @ Esters , and much more!

“Cars & Coffee” @ the Water Garden (FREE): Event “features a hand-selected group of Lowriders on display along with live music, a food truck, a custom floral station and more!” with coffee sold by Dirty Latte Co. Thursday, Aug 17, 12:00-2:00p.m. 1620 26th St.

Super Mario Bros’ Screening (FREE): ‘Watch at Water Garden’ Summer Series returns Thursday, Aug 17, Music starts @ 5:00p.m. & movie @ 8:00p.m. The Great Lawn @ 1620 26th St. RSVP here to attend:

Don’t Tell Comedy: The BYOB pop-up comedy club that changes locations for every show is back at a secret Venice location. Friday, Aug 18, 8:30p.m.

Endless Summer C.A.M.P. (Community | Art | Music | Picnic) at Tongva Park (FREE): This first of four Saturday events celebrates community, arts and culture. Bring a picnic and join as artists from across Santa Monica and the LA region share their culture through interactive music, performances, and hands-on crafts. Special performances by local youth will be featured. Open to all. Saturdays, Aug 19 & 26, Sept 2 & 9, 11:00a.m.-2:00p.m.

4th Annual Tomato Tasting Competition (FREE): “Calling all maters!!! Bring your Black Krims, your Sun Golds, your Green Zebra or your Purple Cherokee. Bring your Big Rainbows, Amish Paste, and Mortgage Lifters for all to see.” No RSVP needed. Saturday, Aug 19, 9:00 – 11:00a.m. @ Ishihara Park, 2909 Exposition Blvd.

“Our Own Device” Exhibition @ Yiwei Gallery (FREE): “Delve into the interplay between escapism, addiction, and alluring artificial worlds. It invites viewers to reflect on the impact the virtual has on our lives and psyche.” Opening Reception Saturday, Aug 19, 2:00-5:00p.m. Exhibit runs until Sept. 17. 1350 Abbot Kinney Blvd.

The Fugitive 4K Restoration Premiere + Q&A with filmmaker Andrew Davis: The 4K Restoration is being released to celebrate the film’s 30th Anniversary. Saturday, Aug 19, 7:30pm @ Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave.

Queer Picnic Summer Series (FREE): “Join us by the beach for sunny afternoons filled with good food, new friends, and chill vibes.” All welcome. Sunday, Aug 20 @ Ocean View Park, 2701 Barnard Way

LA Housing Forum – Homelessness in Los Angeles In Search of Solutions (FREE): KCRWs Anna Scott is exploring the city’s housing crisis this summer from a range of perspectives, untangling this complex, but ultimately solvable issue. This is the 4th of four monthly forums at the Hammer Museum in Westwood. Tuesday, Aug 22, 7:30pm.

“A Walk Through Pier History” – New Historical Walking Tours @ the Pier: “These new tours are provided in-person via tour guides, but through headphones which give the feeling of exclusivity. Images are also provided for participants to view on their smart phones (physical handouts are also available). It really is a genuine, personal and unique live experience!” Cost is $25 per person, and reservations must be made in advance through the Pier Corporation’s website:

What to Eat & Drink?

Xuntos: The Infatuation said the new Spanish tapas spot “belongs in any Westsiders’ date night rotation.” I can personally recommend it as well. Two of my favorite dishes so far are the anchovy on buttered brioche (even my wife who doesn’t like anchovies was won over by this) and the fried eggplant (tasted like a fun vegetarian take on chicharones). 516 Santa Monica Blvd.

The Surfing Fox Opens at Pierside Hotel: It’s a mostly al fresco dining area steps from the pier with executive Chef David Yamaguchi, who has Japanese and Mexican roots, cooking up both classic dishes, including ceviche, Caesar salad, a burger, fried chicken sandwich and fish tacos plus some with quite unique twists like a Hot Chicken Sandwich with a koji brine and Oaxacan spices and a roasted half-chicken with coconut sauce and green sambal. 120 Colorado Ave.

Mochidoki is a New Mochi Shop on Montana: The mochi ice cream company began serving its treats last weekend with a grand opening scheduled for September 16. While Mochidoki has two locations in New York, this will be the brand’s first West Coast outpost. 1133 Montana Ave.

Wine & Brine @ Divine Vintage: $30 ticket includes entrance and 4 wine flights. The Blue Plate Oysterette catering van will be there offering fresh-shucked oysters and chilled shrimp to pair with their wines. Friday Aug 18, 5:00-8:00p.m. 1025 Montana Ave.

Border Grill Food Truck @ Main St. Farmers Market: Sunday, Aug 20, 8:30a.m.-1:30p.m. @ 2640 Main St.

Pa’s Biscuitisserie Pop Up @ Coucou: The pop-up biscuit concept pays tribute to chef Nick Westbrook’s Southern roots and the biscuit eateries he grew up visiting. The menu is divided into three styles – sandwich, gravy, and sweet. Highlights included a Fried Chicken Biscuit Sandwich, Spicy Lamb Sausage & Gravy in a goat milk bechamel, and a classic Jam & Honey Butter Biscuit. August 20 & 21, 8:00a.m. – 1:00p.m. @ 218 Main St.

Craw Daddy Boiler Summer Bash @ Esters: Expect a Louisiana-style crawfish boil on the patio from Craw Daddy Boiler. “Prepare to get your hands delightfully messy and dig into lots of fresh crawfish and seafood, while enjoying a special ‘Fizzy Beverage’ themed Sunday tasting.” Sunday, Aug 20, 2:00 – 7:00p.m. @ 1314 7th St.

St. Anne’s Lunch Food Truck Event: 10 food trucks. Free admission and parking. Lawn games and fun for the whole family or a quick bite during the work day. There will also be a caricature artist, coloring, music, free face painting, and more. Tuesday, Aug 22, 11:00a.m. – 2:00p.m. Saint Anne School parking lot @ 2015 Colorado Ave.

Michelin Starred Pasjoli Chef Dave Beran Opening New Restaurant on Main Street: The 38-seat, yet-to-be-named restaurant will serve a tasting menu inside a “secret garden” at 3110 Main St. sometime next year.

Tallula’s Closes This Sunday: The beach adjacent Mexican eatery ends a 6 year run stating “In this very difficult restaurant economy, the most challenging we’ve experienced in our almost 17 years of operations throughout our nine places, it no longer was sustainable to keep Tallula’s open.”

“Dog Daze of Summer” event on Montana Ave (Aug 26); “Day of the Dog” themed Main St. Festival (Sept 9 & 10)

If there’s something you think is worth highlighting, you can reach out directly to me at