15255 Palisades Village Lane
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
By SARAH SHMERLING | Editor-in-Chief
Designed to serve as a welcoming destination for guests to return time and time again—from a family meal to date night to a ladies’ lunch—The Draycott is every bit chic, without any pretension.
The Palisades Village hot spot has been described as a California-inspired brasserie, designed by Riviera residents Matt and Marissa Hermer. The restaurant was named as an homage to London’s Draycott Avenue, which is where the husband and wife first met.
Matt and Marissa landed in the Palisades after leaving London, where the two own and operate award-winning bars and restaurants. They wanted to create a place that combined the things they love about life in Southern California with all of the things they miss about London—and a place they could bring their three kids.
Insert The Draycott, which features seasonal menu items served with a British twist.
Many diners have met Matt and Marissa, who frequent their restaurant—with or without the kids in tow—often.
We started our dining experience with a trio of starters. The English Pea Dip, peas, tahini, olive oil and toast, served as a fresh start with a nod to the Hermers’ British ties. The bread, crisp and buttery, but not overly so, was delectable and we would have eaten more if we didn’t have several courses to get through.
We followed up with Diver Scallops, pan-roasted scallops, carrot, vadouvan and pickled golden raisins, and Crab Salad, fresh dungeness crab meat, avocado, crispy shallot, basil and lemon vinaigrette.
The Draycott did not skimp on the portions here: The crab salad seemed just like that—mostly crab with a few garnishes, as opposed to mostly filler with a sprinkling of crab. The scallops came out thick and juicy, melt-in-your-mouth good.
We then moved on to mains—opting for a trio of seafood selections.
A British staple, we had to try the Fish & Chips, beer-battered wild line-caught cod, served with mushy peas, housemade tartar sauce and fries. A classic comfort food, this dish did not disappoint.
A bit heavy for a lunch but perfect for a dinner treat, the battering was thick and crispy, and the fish inside still tender and flaky. The housemade tartar sauce was a great touch, tying the dish together each bite.
Next up was Moules-Frites, more fries, this time served with PEI Mussels, alliums and celery. Not only visually appealing, the mussels were not at all chewy, easy to eat, with a light sauce so good you will want to spoon it up.
We finished with the Pan-Roasted Trout, fishmonger’s trout, sprouted almond, charred lemon and crispy capers, served with rice pilaf. Though I thoroughly enjoyed our appetizers and mains, the trout surprised me as the favorite item ordered that night.
The dish worked together, down to the details of the crispy capers, to make each bite memorable. Luckily the Post’s office is walking distance to The Draycott, so I will be returning for round two.
If you’re looking for something to drink, cocktails is another arena that The Draycott does not disappoint.
Their wildly popular (and highly Instagrammable) Watermelon Picante features Casamigos Blanco Tequila, Countreau, crushed watermelon, fresh lime juice, habanero bitters with Tajin lining the rim of the glass. With just enough kick to make it interesting, this almost-margarita is not overly spicy or sweet, making for a refreshing treat.
The Spring Royale, a specialty seasonal cocktail, combines Uncle Val’s Gin, fresh raspberries, St. Germaine and Prosecco. A sparkly delight, the Royale offers a subtle flavor with a fruity twist.
Other samplings included the Eastside on the Westside and the Derby—with each cocktail unique in its flavoring and tastes.
For an easy meal, The Draycott has recently introduced a Prix Fixe Lunch with two courses for $29 or three courses for $34. Diners have a choice of three starters (English Pea Dip, Tomato Bisque or Market Greens Salad), three mains (The Draycott Chop, Seared Salmon or Grilled Chicken Paillard) and two desserts (Sticky Toffee Pudding, housemade caramel sauce and whipped creme fraiche, or Ice Cream, three scoops of McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream, the Draycott’s Palisades Village across-the-paseo neighbor).
Matt and Marissa have created an ambiance—from the colorful decor to the friendly service—that feels like a second home for diners, who have the option to visit for weekend brunch, lunch, dinner or drinks.