Lares Restaurant

2909 Pico Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Lares Restaurant +

Star Foreman


  • Daily 8am-1am
  • $$
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Late Night
  • Full bar
  • Private Party, Takeout
  • Street Parking, Valet Parking
  • Reservations Accepted, Reservations Not Necessary
If I were on the Westside, I'd probably eat most of my carnitas at Lares, a serious, old-fashioned Mexican dining room just down the street from Rae's, all secret niches and crinkled plaster, and one of the few restaurants in this part of town more serious about its spicy shrimp plates and carne adobada than it is about its margaritas, which the waitresses just kind of slap together at the bar. There are mariachis on weekend nights, if that's your sort of thing. And the carnitas is very fine, the kind with frizzled crispy edges, a funky, developed pork flavor, and ribbons of fat sufficient to keep the chunks juicy and firm.

Related Stories (2)

  • Lares Restaurant: Old-School Beer + Drinks at the Altar
    Tuesday, February 7, 2012 at 8:30 a.m. by Jenn Garbee

    In L.A., where high-paid architects and interior designers seem as essential to a new restaurant's success as the choice of chef, walking into a well-worn local haunt like Lares in Santa Monica has that "welcome home" appeal you can...

  • Ask Mr. Gold
    Thursday, September 23, 2004 at 12 a.m. by Jonathan Gold

    QUESTION: I realize you get asked this kind of thing a lot, but I really, really like carnitas, especially the crunchy kind, and I really, really don’t want to drive all the way to Downey, or Pacoima, or wherever the hell you&...


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