Restaurant Review #86: Swingers, Santa Monica

Swingers is a popular late-night dining spot, and by late, I mean post-club late. It's open 24 hours, but it's hipper than Denny's, and probably has better food as well (having thankfully managed to avoid Denny's for the past seven or so years, I couldn't really say).

You've probably been to Swingers, so I'm not entirely sure why I'm writing this review, except to steer you away from the ahi tuna salad. It's not that Swingers is abnormally deficient in this area--it's just that half-raw fish has no place in a diner, even in LA. It bugs me that so many places, in an attempt to incorporate some hipness into their menu, feel the need to serve ahi tuna steaks and ahi tuna salads. You get the worst of several worlds, all at the same time--tastelessness, awful texture, and the knowledge that whoever created the menu thinks it's okay to serve something they don't know how to purchase or prepare.

Other than this, I have no problems with Swingers. I also think the atmosphere strikes an interesting balance between not being an authentic fifties diner (it's not that old, is it?) but also not being one of those shiny, new, contrived "diners." It's not trendy, it's not quite hip, but it's not uncool, either. A place that doesn't try too hard or too little is kind of refreshing in LA, don't you think?

802 Broadway
Santa Monica, CA 90401

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