Three on Fourth – When Standards are Affected by Situation

three on fourth (3 on 4th) santa monica, los angeles, ca

Three on Fourth
1432 Fourth St (between Broadway and Santa Monica Blvd)
Santa Monica, CA 90401

A long time ago, Three on Fourth used to be Rocca. I wanted to to try it; I thought about it on several occasion; I mentioned it whenever we were deciding on where to go for dinner; but by the time I finally worked myself up to going, the place closed. That seems to happen to me a lot in many parts of my life – too deep analysis, too long “thinking,” too much weighing of options that I end up too late. But that’s a blog post for another day!

We went to Three on Fourth because I pass it every single day as I pull into the parking structure for work and I was determined to try it before it closes. It’s not that I expect Three on Fourth to close; that location seems to have a mini-curse.

The hostesses made a small to-do about seating us, which made me feel special, as if they were trying their hardest to accommodate us. Then I realized that for Friday night at dining prime time, the restaurant was rather empty. The to-do was a show and having more than one hostess was mild overkill. The space is dark, narrow, but lofty, reaching upwards through the second floor to another smaller dining balcony that overlooks the ground floor. I wanted to be impressed. We headed upstairs just for fun and sat at a small table against the front railing. Through the evening, I kept peeking through the bars to see what kind of action was taking place amongst the plebes because it was noisy. There was no action. There were no plebes. Just a lot of unexplained noise.

three on fourth, santa monica, los angeles, ca
balcony vip
three on fourth, santa monica, los angeles, ca
sniper shot. no target all night

Three on Fourth is supposedly named because the cuisine comes from three places: America, Europe, and Japan. I can understand Japan, but America and Europe? America must be comfort food (they have Mac n Cheese), but Europe? What is the “cuisine of Europe?” Last time I c
hecked, there were about a bazillion cuisines all over Europe, and if you take into account the Mario Batalization of Italy’s regions, then it’s five bazillion. Three on Fourth Should really be called Everything Except Asia Except Japan on Fourth.

The breadth of the menu is just a minor irritation, though, because for anyone who has culinary ADD, the scope of cuisines is perfect. I really was interested in just about everything on the menu. Unfortunately, we were there to “meet,” so we kept the food order conducive to conversation: light.

three on fourth, santa monica, los angeles, ca - bacon
better with bacon
three on fourth, santa monica, los angeles, ca-sweet potato fries
it’s fried vitamin a

I was excited by the Brie salad. Under normal circumstances, I would have been mildly disgusted by the fact that a restaurant would have the *ahem* balls to simply put a wedge of Brie large enough to serve to a cocktail party on a small salad for one person. However, given my dining situation in the last few weeks, it was a wedge of Brie! It was perched atop greens with crisp bacon and mushrooms! It was brilliant. And yes, we finished that whole piece of Brie.

We had some sort of wholly unremarkable grilled thing.

Sweet Potato Fries, however, were wholly remarkable – cut slightly thicker than most, as crisp as a sweet potato fry can get, and sweetly chewy inside. I have a soft spot for sweet potato fries, partially because an ex-BF loves them (amazing! one instance where she’s not bitter about an ex, thereby swearing off all things associated with him!), but mostly because the invisible Commission for the Advancement of Profits from Sweet Potatoes has done a fantastic job of marketing sweet potatoes as a high-nutrtion food. Antioxidants! Vitamin Something! It’s orange! It makes eating them as French fries absolutely guilt-free.

Three on Fourth was awesome! For the Promenade (though it’s not quite on the Promenade). Okay, so it wasn’t awesome. It was almost awesome. For as long as it’s there, and as long as I’m there, I’ll probably go back.

Sure, it’s settling, but at this point, something is better than nothing.

** a year ago today, we were headed toward amazing graze **
** two years ago today, i began seoul searching with my grandmother **

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  • Anonymous

    Hmmm, my good friend’s friend owns this restaurant. My fiance and I thought it was amazing, but maybe that’s because we went to a wine pairing dinner and he made specialty dishes.

    mel_fox80 [at] yahoo

  • Lightcnd

    Mmmm…sounds delicious…but I think you need a new camera, the recent pictures are beginning to…I dunno…what the word is…but I assume you know what I/we mean, unless the pictures are taken “undercover.” :-P

  • sarah

    melfox: you got lucky!

    lightcnd: well, i never use flash in restaurants, and threeonfourth was pretty dark inside. i did the best i could with the candle.

  • Just A Girl From L.A.

    I linked you on my Must Visit Links (you are 1 of 6) so visit me! I love your blog!

  • E

    very funny…

  • the domestic minx

    Utterly brilliant.
    As usual.

  • Chelsea

    All the true Chicago foodies should consider attending the 4th annual Gourmet Wine Cellar event on May 17, 2007 from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. The event will feature some of Chicago’s finest chefs including Grant Achatz of Alinea and Rick Bayless of Frontera Grill/ Topolobampo, as well as Gourmet magazine’s executive chef Sara Moulton. The event will provide guests the opportunity to sample fine cuisines and wines from the world’s top wineries, as well as cooking demonstrations and opportunities to engage in discussion with top sommeliers. Tickets are available now for $90 per person, or at the door for $100. For more information or to order tickets, log on to or call 1.800.679.0397. It is sure to be a wonderful evening, all benefiting the Greater Chicago Food Depository.

  • Lightcnd

    Have you been to “Joan’s on Third”? This comment is totally unrelated to the delicious life’s kritik “Three on Fourth” other than it reminded me of Joan’s on Third. Haha, then after a moment, it really has nothing to do with the review. Begs the question: : “Who’s on First?”

  • Anonymous

    Their menu sucks.

  • off2cdwzrd

    darlin, it’s been a week! you need to get out, girlfriend, and snap some new pix of some new food :-)

  • sarah

    just a girl from LA: thanks for the love!

    e and the domestic minx: thanks!

    chelsea: thanks for the 411…i guess? i think you’re talking to mostly LA peeps here :)

    lightcnd: i have not yet been to joan’s on third…remodeling was the rumor? i have, however, tried cupcakes and food from there that friends have brought to dinners and parties.

    as for “who’s on first?” in samo, that’s ocean ave, and i believe the offerings there are better (in relative terms) to the promenade, but still not fantastic. boa steakhouse, sushi roku, makai, i cugini…though i do have a soft spot for ocean avenue seafood :)

    anonymous: so straightforward :)

    off2cdwzrd: i know. i need to push myself east, i think. westside is getting rather dull.

  • Anonymous

    yeah right!

    guys sucks!

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