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Food

The Greens, So Tender

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In the Culver City cultural gold rush, Tender Greens (like Beacon) got there a little before the party started. (For those of you who have no resources other than LAist, people are just starting to get tipsy at the party.) And, as the line going out the door attests, Tender Greens is a great place for salads (and a couple of soups and dinners like yer ma used to make – meat, potatoes and veggies). I went there with a friend who, though she worked at Sony, had never been before because of that line.

What she didn't know is that the line moves and not like the brunch line at Toast, but quite briskly. You give your order, walk a little, get your order (on a large baking sheet), you pay, and usually, there's a good seat available, even when the line is long. There are a few seats inside, in a bright area with curving seats near the door. The rest is outside, under the trees in the front, or umbrellas on the side with pots of herbs and flowers growing all around.

And the food is just the sort of light, delicious fare for the setting. Mostly it's salads, different types of lettuce, deftly paired with farm fresh ingredients, and dressings that compliment, not overpower, the lettuce. The meats are grilled in house and are treated with every bit as much respect as the lettuces. My one real gripe with Tender Greens is that the chicken is gristley, even though it tastes good. Not a problem if you order the beef with beets and butter lettuce salad turned in a horseradish dressing. Or should you have your beef with mashed Yukon Gold potatoes and a small salad. Or just if you have beef. Or tuna!

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Even with the roar of traffic from Culver Boulevard, on the slightly less than an hour that is your lunch break, you can have a little slice of summer, sitting under the last fallen jacaranda blooms, enjoying a salad that tastes like what you might make if you grew the vegetables yourself (lettuce does not grow pre-chopped in a bag at the store!) with a stemless glass of wine or an iced tea.

It's also open for dinner.

Tender Greens, 9523 Culver Boulevard, Culver City, CA 90232