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Jonah’s Kitchen: New Santa Monica Restaurant Open For Lunch + Dinner

An Eclectic Multicultural BBQ Hotspot + Friendly Casual Dining Experience for Foodies and Families

Celebrity Chef Jonah Johnson has created a fantastic new Santa Monica restaurant that’s not just about food but a whole experience!

Have you ever passed a restaurant and been lured in by the delicious scents wafting out?

At Jonah’s Kitchen, located on Wilshire and 26th in Santa Monica, the aroma of burning almond wood beckons you inside. The friendly atmosphere invites all sorts of diners. Professionals might grab a quick lunch. Friends might be looking for a relaxed spot to enjoy drinks and appetizers. Families who are seeking a welcoming place with options for every palate. Whatever reason you’re there, it’s all about that mouthwatering brisket slow-cooking in the smoker all day. Come in and experience it for yourself!

The New Santa Monica Restaurant Aesthetics

The restaurant’s aesthetics were a beautiful collaboration between Jonah and his partner Reza. His fiancée, Shelby Bullard, worked her magic with stunning plant arrangements. They were also joined by Bishop Pass, a company well-versed in restaurant layouts, to craft the open, friendly, and casual dining space.

Jonah’s vision for the restaurant draws inspiration from his numerous trips to Tulum. He fell in love with the laid-back Caribbean vibes of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. Jonah wanted to infuse it with the warm, welcoming atmosphere he grew up with. His mom, Andrea, always made their home cozy and inviting; Jonah loved that concept. Jonah ensured these style theories became integral to the restaurant’s decor. This was achieved through natural materials and a unique look inspired by his life experiences.

A Multicultural BBQ Haven

Jonah best defines his new Santa Monica restaurant as a multicultural BBQ haven. Given the diverse menu, it defies any attempt at categorization. The menu reflects Jonah’s personal background and experiences and isn’t a mere show of eclecticism. Instead, it embodies his love for savoring an array of international flavors in a single meal.

Influenced by his travels to countries such as Australia, Jamaica, Mexico, Argentina, Italy, Spain, Japan, South Africa, and New Orleans, Jonah infuses his culinary creations with hints from these journeys. When he gathers with his closest friends and family for a cooking session, they bring in their own gastronomic inspirations. Influences are from places like Sweden, Peru, Hawaii, India, and Koreatown.

Every dish that Jonah prepares is a masterpiece of haute cuisine. Nothing about his creations is simple; the flavors are intricate yet harmoniously combined. The meticulous care and attention devoted to each dish’s preparation and flavor profiles become apparent from the very first succulent bite.

Hospitality Beyond Expectations: Your Journey Through Jonah’s Kitchen

Approaching this new Santa Monica restaurant, you are immediately drawn to the vibrant, brightly colored door, hinting at the exciting happenings inside. Upon entering the main area, you’ll encounter a unique ordering set up as part of the open-concept design. There’s a huge glass case showcasing tantalizing shish kabobs and mussels. You place your order like in a studio commissary—grab a number and choose a table while you eagerly await your delectable order.

Jonah’s Kitchen offers two distinct spaces for your comfort. The expansive main dining room provides a grand view of the bustling kitchen and the lively scene on Wilshire Blvd. For a more intimate experience with an outdoorsy touch, head to the backroom with a bar area and a retractable roof.

Savoring Jonah’s Kitchen Favorites

Now, let’s delve into some of the favorites we had the pleasure of trying:

Peruvian Yellowtail Ceviche
  • Start your culinary journey with the Peruvian Yellowtail Ceviche, a delightful mix of hamachi, cucumber, sweet potato, red onion, aji lemon, and fresh homemade tostadas. Pair it with the refreshing Mint To Be cocktail, featuring Tequila, Rum, Mint, Cucumber, Orgeat, and Lime, or a glass of Txakolina wine, Gaintza from Honddarrabi Zuri.
Guacamole and Tostadas
  • The guacamole and tostadas make for a generous and shareable starter, perfect for families.
Tantalizing Tacos
  • Don’t miss the tantalizing tacos: the Cochinita Pibil, showcasing banana-wrapped Yucatan-style smoked pork, queso fresco, salsa, pickled onion, and a handmade tortilla, and the Gochujang Shrimp Taco, featuring wok-seared Argentine red shrimp, gochujang, wasabi mayo, Thai chile, and a handmade tortilla.
Thirst-Quenching Delights
  • Thirsty for more? Opt for the house special Spicy Margarita or one of the finest Old-Fashioned cocktails you’ll ever experience. There’s also a straightforward beer selection, an array of distilled spirits, ciders, and a delightful selection of bubbles. The wine list offers a touch of eclecticism, all within a reasonable price range.
Wood-Fired BBQ
  • The mouthwatering aroma in the air might lead you to the Texas Style Brisket, the Lomo Saltado, or the impressive Jonah’s Platter for two, featuring K-town chicken, two sausages, two ribs, and pulled pork—a superb sampler plate.
Sauces and Flavors
  • All wood-fired meats are accompanied by the house’s specialty Pirate sauce, Chimichurri, Aji Verde, or the option to go Gochujanged, introducing a sweet and savory red chili paste popular in Korean cooking. The Pirate sauce is a delightful blend of Caribbean BBQ sauce, Jerk, All Spice, and more, creating an irresistibly flavorful dipping sauce.
Spanish Linguiça Smoked Sausages
  • Make sure to savor the Spanish Linguiça smoked sausages, especially when Gochujanged.
Indulge In Mussels
  • If available, don’t pass up the opportunity to indulge in the mussels.
Delectable Sides
  • For sides, we highly recommend the Crispy Potatoes with housemade buttermilk ranch and the Chipotle Cream Corn, a harmonious mix of organic sweet corn, chipotle, crema, and queso fresco—sweet and savory perfection.
Sweet Finale
  • To conclude your culinary journey, treat yourself to the Peach n’ Raspberry Cobbler, a buttery, warm peach cobbler served with frozen vanilla custard and a delightful raspberry compote. A fittingly sweet and tasty finale to your Jonah’s Kitchen experience!

Jonah’s Favorites

Jonah has his personal go-to dishes that he holds dear. He has a special affection for the K-Town Chicken and the Argentine Parrilla Style Spare Ribs. Jonah says, “The menu’s core offerings are here to stay, but we constantly introduce new delights inspired by the season’s freshest farmer’s market finds or the latest catch from the fishmonger.”

Dining at Jonah’s Kitchen evokes the cozy, familial vibe of Jonah’s upbringing, complete with lively music. It’s the place that instantly makes you feel at home, basking in the Tulum-inspired ambiance that strikes the perfect balance between upscale and laid-back. And guess what? Jonah is no stranger to the spotlight. He’s a celebrated celebrity chef with A-list fans like Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Tobey Maguire. Keep your eyes peeled; you might spot them showing their support at Jonah’s welcoming establishment.

Embracing Genuine Hospitality and Togetherness

Upon meeting Jonah, one can’t help but notice his genuine and warm personality. He’s created an environment where he can whip up dishes he loves and believes others will cherish. It’s his way of stepping away from the constant “on the road” lifestyle and offering a place for families to relish shared meals. Jonah’s Kitchen is designed to be a haven for everyone to enjoy, a testament to his sincere and inclusive approach to food and hospitality.

Jonah’s Kitchen is about the joy of sharing plates with loved ones, especially in the evening. Jonah emphasized, “We’re all about cranking up the great music, pouring wine generously, and celebrating life. That’s what we’re here for.” If you’re not in the mood to revel and have a blast, Jonah recommends grabbing your food to go and enjoying it in the comfort of your home. However, if you’re longing for that getaway feeling, even if it’s just for a little while, then stay and dine at Jonah’s Kitchen, where you can soak in the fantastic ambiance and delightful company. Jonah wants to clarify that his new Santa Monica restaurant is open to everyone, inviting everyone to savor the experience and create lasting memories.

Plan Your Visit to Jonah’s Kitchen: Location, Hours, and More!

Jonah’s Kitchen is at 2518 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90403. They’re open for lunch and dinner from Tuesday to Saturday, welcoming guests from noon to 11 p.m. Please note they take a short break between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. every day. Lunch hours run from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., and dinner is served from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. It’s worth mentioning that they operate on a first-come, first-served basis, so reservations are not available. To explore this new Santa Monica restaurant’s delectable menu, visit the Jonah’s Kitchen menu here: