Katie Lee is the food correspondent for the CBS Early Show, as well as the author of The Comfort Table series cookbooks and one of the summer’s hottest beach reads, Groundswell. While she resides in the Hamptons, she frequently travels to L.A. both for business and for pleasure — especially to take advantage of the prime surfing conditions and the fresh California cuisine.
I am a total beach bum. On any given summer day, you will find me either on my surfboard, or sitting under an umbrella reading a book. My love of the beach has been lifelong, but surfing is a newfound affinity, and also the inspiration for my novel, Groundswell. After a day in the sun and surf, there’s one thing on my mind: Food. Here are my favorite spots for refueling after a day at the beach.
3835 Cross Creek Road # 1
Malibu, CA 90265
Work up an appetite surfing in Malibu, then stop at John’s Garden. I love the giant salads, piled with fresh veggies, avocado, nuts, and sprouts. I love big portions, plus it’s healthy, so this totally does the trick.
Joan’s On Third
8350 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
Joan’s is one of my all-time favorite L.A. spots. I like to load up on all sorts of goodies, like salads and sandwiches, and some sweet treats like the molasses cookies, for a picnic basket to take along for a day at the beach.
The Veggie Grill
2025 Wilshire Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90403
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Who needs meat when you have the Veggie Grill? I absolutely love the kale salad and the veggie burgers with sweet potato fries. I feel like a kid eating junk food, but without the guilt.
Shutters on the Beach
1 Pico Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90405-1063
It’s a classic for a reason. I love the whole vibe, and the farmer’s market-inspired menu. Perfect for sunset.
108 W. 2nd St. #101
Los Angeles, CA 90012
I spent a month in Mexico researching Groundswell, and I think the margaritas had a hand in getting the creative juices flowing. The Edison has a great new tequila, and I love their margaritas.