This New Culver City Hot Spot Is Hoping to Be the Life of Every Party

Pasta! Polaroids! Margaritas! Tequila Shots with Sprinkles! Etta is making dinner out into a celebration

At Etta, the new restaurant in the Shay, a soon-to-open hotel, there’s a $65 menu item named “Porrón & a Polaroid.” It involves an entire bottle of wine (or the equivalent in margaritas) poured into a thin-spouted pitcher known as a porrón, plus a fully loaded Polaroid camera. Guests can pour the wine from the pitcher directly into one another’s mouths while documenting the hilarity.

On a recent Friday night, not one but two tables ordered the experience. As the booze flowed, the separate groups merged their parties. “All of a sudden, there was, like, a whole section of everybody celebrating some kind of celebration,” recalls chef Danny Grant.

With a sprawling patio, lengthy menu, and various party tricks (the restaurant calls them “moments”), Etta is primed for good times in rapidly developing Culver City. You can go big and order a $155 whole grilled lobster stuffed with shrimp, king crab, “& love” for the table, making wraps with a tower of flatbread, lettuce cups, and sauces. For dessert, there are shots of tequila and coffee topped with rainbow-sprinkled shortbread cookies.

“If we want to get wild, we can,” Grant says.

But if you want to pop in alone for just a bowl of pasta at the bar ($22 to $50) or come with a friend on a Tuesday and split a pizza ($21 to $27), Etta also fits the bill.

This is the third location for the restaurant; Grant and his partner have two phenomenally popular outposts in Chicago, and a West Hollywood location is planned for 2023.

Grant says Angelenos are surprising him with their appetites. L.A customers order twice as many of the hearty $120 short-rib dishes each night as they do in the Midwest.

“I love L.A.,” he says. “I love the people.”

Etta, 8801 Washington Blvd., Culver City.

Stay on top of the latest in L.A. news, food, and culture. Sign up for our newsletters today.