Over the course of the last year, a Los Angeles restaurant veteran has converted the former Zinque space (which had a short-lived run as Argentine wine bar Varro) into a spacious and mostly outdoor restaurant named Paloma. It’s a big transformation for the busy corner of Abbot Kinney and Venice Boulevard, complete with a Mediterranean menu that’ll eventually run from breakfast to dinnertime. Paloma opened on Thursday, October 20.
Paloma’s chef is Raul Cerritos, who had an exceptional run at the original Madeo’s for more than 20 years. Cerritos’s Italian- and French-leaning menu includes cold or hot antipasto with prosciutto and burrata, or grilled halloumi with cherry tomatoes and oregano. During the day, Cerritos also offers a crudite platter, shakshuka, burgers, salads, pasta, and chicken paillard.
The dinner offerings are more extensive, with some lunch items staying on the menu, along with carpaccio and a handful of pastas (linguini vongole, pesto gnocci, and spaghetti with lobster). Mains include classics like chicken scallopini and chicken pizzaiola, but there’s also a 32-ounce grilled tomahawk and a pepper-crusted filet steak au poivre. Breakfast will follow in the coming months.
Venice resident and Paloma co-owner Reza Roohi — also a co-founder of SBE — says he utilized the city’s al fresco permit to expand dining into the parking lot with the help of design group Event Eleven. Paloma’s patio is hardly a quickly installed parklet; it’s a lush and fully constructed patio where the majority of seating is outside. Theresa Fatino Design handled the interiors, which includes an open kitchen.
For now, Paloma is permitted for a beer and wine license, and Roohi anticipates securing a full ABC approval toward the end of the year. Beer, wine, and champagne will suffice, along with soju cocktails and flavored saki.
Paloma’s operating hours are lunch Tuesday through Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., with dinner Tuesday through Thursday from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. On Fridays and Saturdays, dinner runs until 11 p.m. Secure a table on Resy.