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Santa Monica’s Award-Winning Formerly Vegan Restaurant Erven Has Closed

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Nick Erven has pulled the plug on his first standalone space

Erven in Santa Monica
Wonho Frank Lee
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

Chef Nick Erven has decided to pull the plug on his eponymous Westside restaurant Erven, closing the doors for good to vegans and meat-eaters alike. The Santa Monica mainstay hung a “closed for catering event” sign last week, and sadly has no plans to return.

Eater reached out to Erven directly, and he confirmed that he and his team are shopping the space. In the meantime they’re using the kitchen for some catering and private event work, but the public side of the restaurant is gone entirely. “It was a good run,” Erven tells Eater of the 18-month ride out in Santa Monica, and he’s right to be proud. In its truncated tenure, Erven got heaps of praise from places like Thrillist, LA Magazine, and even Jonathan Gold. It could not, however, seem to find a consistent enough customer base with its all-vegan menu.

In June, Erven told LA Weekly that he was going to be adding meat and some dairy to his menu as a way to draw in a more diverse customer base, and not feel like anyone was being excluded. That seemed to work for a time, but ultimately the place just couldn’t sustain. Erven has more recently moved on to consulting gigs around town, and promises he has more coming up down the line.