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A 10-Year-Old LA Restaurant Gets a New Lease on Life After Quiet Closure Last Year

Plus, a big win for Broken Shaker’s bartender, Ojai’s best restaurant pops up in LA, and more

A sunny restaurant space with warehouse-like decor, including metal stools at a communal, long table.
The former Seoul Sausage space in Little Tokyo.
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.

Downtown Los Angeles restaurant and bar Peking Tavern is back in action, more than six months after announcing its permanent closure. The nearly 10-year-old hangout spent a decade as an underground (literally) spot for dim sum dishes, scallion pancakes, dumplings, and drinks, before announcing its closure back in October 2022. Around the new year, ownership began quietly teasing a comeback on social media, but without divulging an address or reopening date.

Now it seems that a return could be closer than ever, with the restaurant opening inside the closed former Seoul Sausage space at 236 S. Los Angeles Street in Little Tokyo, at the base of the AVA building. The new lease, worked out earlier this year by the District Realty Group team, comes in at 2,300 square feet and features an open kitchen and large patio. Peking Tavern ownership is still waiting on a pending Alcoholic Beverage Control license for the full bar, but is already training new staff ahead of a planned opening in weeks, if not days.

A big win for a beloved bartender

Christine Wiseman of Bar Lab Hospitality (Broken Shaker LA, the Exchange) has won the Altos Bartenders’ Bartender award from North America’s 50 Best Bars. The award, which is voted on by a global pool of bartenders, acknowledges only one person every year. Check out this short video with Wiseman speaking about her background as a bartender and what winning means to her.

OC news to know about

Orange County burger superstar Hammer Burger has secured its first brick-and-mortar location at 313 N. Bush Street in Santa Ana. The busy pop-up started in 2020 and quickly grew to become one of the county’s best smashburger spots; now customers can find them in the same place, keeping regular hours, starting May 5.

Rye Goods, one of Orange County’s best bakeries, is opening in Laguna Beach on May 5. The former cottage home bakery opened in Newport Beach to much acclaim in 2021, and has since expanded to an even larger location in Tustin. Now Laguna Beach is on deck, with an early-May opening at the Lumberyard Mall at 384 Forest Avenue.

Cabo Wabo Beach Club arrives

Musician Sammy Hagar has opened a Huntington Beach location of his Cabo Wabo brand inside the Waterfront Beach Resort at 21100 Pacific Coast Highway. The restaurant, bar, and waterside lounge features passably Mexican fare from breakfast through dinner, plus lots of drinks of course.

Rory’s Place pops up in Santa Monica

Hot Ojai restaurant Rory’s Place is popping up at the Santa Monica Proper hotel for a dinner on Sunday, April 30. The evening, hosted by sisters Rory and Meave McAuliffe, will feature a raw bar, roasted meat entrees, and more across several courses. Tickets are $100 per person.

A sandwich party at Surfas

Calabama’s Cara Haltiwanger is popping up with chef Eric Greenspan at Surfas (3225 W. Washington Boulevard) on Saturday, April 29. The collaboration event pairs Calabama’s hot sauce with Greenspan’s New School American cheese on a bologna and fried egg sandwich. Tickets are $32 and come with a sandwich, a bottle of hot sauce, some cheese, and more.