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New York Times
Venice, CA

Venice's Hollywood foodies tend to stop at one of two destinations, depending on how visible they prefer to be. The under-the-radar A-listers head to Axe (pronounced AH-shay; 1009 Abbot Kinney Boulevard, 310-664-9787), a minimalist box of a restaurant that serves organic food. But those who prefer to be on display are at the new Beechwood (822 Washington Boulevard; 310-448-8884), where pretty young things in designer jeans drink cocktails by the outdoor fire pit. The Japanese-meets-Aspen restaurant in back serves fine-food comfort food. Try the sweet potato fries ($5) and the pulled beef short rib pot pie ($20), but leave room for the peanut butter truffle tart with homemade caramel-covered popcorn ($7).