Seaside Santa Monica is a haven for fresh and sustainable seafood, but Savida stands out as an Israeli concept that lands courtesy of chef Dan Smulovitz, who marries flavors from the California and Mediterranean coast in dishes like a crispy Octopus Tostada that’s smeared with zesty tzatziki and harissa sauces, and a Squid and Sea Asparagus salad that’s dotted with pine nuts. The intimate space offers a small selection of seating on the interior where you can watch as chef Smulovitz lends his final innovations to dishes before they’re sent out to guests, as well as sidewalk seating with a pleasant view of pedestrian-friendly Montana Ave. Savida just launched dinner service, with a wine menu to follow soon.
There is a sleeper hit on Montana Avenue in Santa Monica, chef Dan Smulovitz’ new restaurant Savida, which just opened for dinner Thursday through Saturday nights, in addition to lunch service every day except Monday. The menu is fully seafood-focused, with a particularly impressive collection of raw fish dishes that take liberal inspiration from Japan, the Mediterranean, and Mexico—that globetrotting ethos makes sense, considering Savida is a concept that Smulovitz literally trotted across the globe, relocating the restaurant here from Israel. There’s an octopus tostada slathered with a bright and lemony tzatziki sauce, hamachi with yuzu kosho and mint, and cured bonito with creme fraiche and dill. There are also tuna tacos and a smoked trout salad with fresh strawberries, a lobster roll slider, and a summertime gazpacho shot—the menu reads like your jet-set friends’ lunch plans for the summer.
How to order: Order online through Toast.