In a city seeped in film culture and as a melting pot of diverse heritages, there are many places that sometimes combine into an explosion of all the best things about Los Angeles. Nestled on Lincoln Boulevard in Venice Beach, is a Mexican restaurant that boasts not only delicious food and a fine selection of tequila, but takes you into the world of the film Casablanca.
Named after the classic movie starring Humphrey Bogart, this establishment uses the setting of the film with a fine collection of memorabilia to fulfill the needs of any hungry cinephile craving Latin American cuisine. The tortillas are made in house and served as a pre-appetizer with their green salsa that has a delicious tang and chunks of avocado and cheese. They also offer the warm tortillas with some butter.
On certain days they have a live musical performer who plays standards, like “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” with a bit of Latin flare, and even some notable classics in Spanish such as “Bésame Mucho.”
The cantina (bar) section has quite an impressive collection of tequila and offers drinks inspired by the movie and signature cocktails, like their Cadillac rimmed with salt and spices for an extra kick. Around the bar is a collection of posters and prints for the film Casablanca and even a statue of Bogart that can join you for a drink or two.
The booths and tables are also sprinkled with a selection of movie cels and film-nerd items to feast your eyes on as you wait for your food. There are even wonderful murals that depict classic scenes from Rick’s Cafe with cameos from the owner and his family enjoying the sort of feasts you wait for.
The dinner selection is extensive and includes delectable Mexican fare such as fajitas, steaks, seafood and chicken – even chicken marinated in Dos Equis beer. On the weekend, they offer a brunch that’s great for the family with endless mimosas, champagne or sangria. And, let’s not forget some flan for dessert.
Casablanca Restaurant is located at 220 Lincoln Blvd., Venice 90291. For more information, call (310) 392-5751 or visit casablancarestaurant.net.