Mark Gold, the high-profile L.A. chef who ran Beverly Boulevard’s Eva and then cooked at Chez Soi in Manhattan Beach, has resurfaced at a shiny perch in the Marina del Rey Hotel, which reopened last week after a $25 million makeover.
Gold is the executive chef at Salt, the hotel’s waterfront restaurant, which is serving seasonal California cuisine from its sweeping indoor-outdoor setting. The three-meals-a-day, farmers-market-driven restaurant offers lunch and dinner options like a Crab Louie salad with fresh Dungeness crab, and Scottish salmon on a potato emulsion with grilled king oyster mushrooms and tarragon butter. For the breakfast menu, Gold has created dishes like steel-cut oatmeal brulee (with organic milk, brown sugar brulee, toasted pumpkin seeds, and fresh berries) and his Buenos Dias Chilaquiles (with fresh tortilla chips, poached egg, chorizo, avocado, black beans, Hook’s cheddar, radish, red onion, and roasted tomatillo sauce).
Along with colorful signature cocktails, craft beers, and champagne brunches, Salt has bar food like deviled eggs and a Maine lobster roll. A 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. happy hour means $5 bites, beer, wine, and well drinks, with the goal of turning the restaurant into both a neighborhood and a tourist destination.
A handful of restaurants on or just off Admiralty Way near the Marina del Rey Hotel succeed at being spots for both locals and out-of-towners. But while the Warehouse, Tony P.’s, Cafe del Rey, Killer Shrimp, and a colossal Cheesecake Factory all bring in crowds, Gold’s menu at Salt aims to offer a level of modern sophistication the other restaurants don’t have. He’s certainly the most well-known chef on this waterfront restaurant row.
Gold has been on a bit of a roller-coaster in recent years. The chef went to stage with Rene Redzepi at Copenhagen’s Noma in 2012 while Eva was still open. While Gold was gone, Eater reported that his wife quickly raised $12,000 in crowdfunding to deal with issues that included maintaining Eva’s liquor license. Despite that money, the restaurant closed less than six months later in March 2013, and Gold moved on to Chez Soi, which opened in April 2013 but didn’t last through one summer.
Fans of Gold at the critically acclaimed Eva, where he had a three-and-half-year run, might be pleased to know that he’s now working with a big hotel group instead of being a cash-strapped restaurant operator. The Marina del Rey Hotel is part of Pacifica Hotels, whose portfolio also includes the nearby Jamaica Bay Inn, Hilton Garden Inn Marina del Rey, Inn at Marina del Rey, and Inn at Venice Beach.
Salt at the Marina del Rey Hotel, 13534 Bali Way, Marina del Rey, 424-289-8223