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The Yard Goes Gastro With Top Cheffer Chris "CJ" Jacobsen

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Over a year and a half after opening its doors, The Yard celebrated its rebirth as a bona fide gastropub last night by showing off its foodie-focused revamped menu created by the restaurant's new executive chef, Chris "CJ" Jacobsen, previously a personal chef for the likes of Arianna Huffington, but best known for his stint on Season 3 of Top Chef (and easily spotted during the event thanks to his towering 6'8" frame.) While the menu still stocks a few tried-and-true bar food staples like wings and burgers, more creative seasonal dishes have been added like a salad of chocolate persimmons, burrata, pomegranate and house-smoked almonds; fish tacos made with local sea bass, cumin slaw and crème fraiche; and wild mushroom risotto with Cabernet-braised quince. There's also a cheese plate offering created by Andrew Steiner of Andrew's Cheese Shop on Montana.

The cocktail list offers hand-crafted drinks created with purees and fresh juices, but the BackYard lemonade, mixed with gin, St. Germain, basil, lemon juice and ginger ale was the standout, served in a mason jar with a sprig of mint. The warm room, with pumpkin-colored walls and concrete floors, is full of small wooden tables and leather-backed chairs, anchored by a giant high-top communal table that can seat a good 20 diners. The prices are staying reasonable, no dish runs above $16, and they've launched a schedule of rotating nightly specials from wine and beer tastings and food pairings on Wednesdays to 2-for-1 drinks specials for ladies on Thursdays. The Yard may be promoting itself as having a "Cheers-like" atmosphere, but that comparison just doesn't seem to give the place enough credit. We don't ever remember seeing Norm wash down a warm duck confit salad with a blood orange martini.
·Relaunches [~ELA~]
·The Yard Gets New Chef, New Look [~ELA~]
—Lizbeth Scordo

The Yard

119 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA, 90401

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