It doesn’t get more Venice Beach than Great White (1604 Pacific Ave.), a breezy new all-day café where blond wood tables spill onto the sidewalk beneath the iconic Venice sign, and the sand is steps away. Hoping to capture the shaggy surf vibe they grew up with in Australia, owners Sam Trude and Sam Cooper tapped comedian-turned-chef and YouTube cooking show host Alex Thomopoulos to put together a beachy menu that is both indulgent (crispy chicken sandwiches) and healthful (quinoa bowls) in that oh-so-Venice way.
“The food is my take on growing up on California beaches,” Thomopoulos says. “It’s super-familiar, but there’s also a colorful spin on it.”
That applies—literally—to the ocean-hued Blue Smoothie Bowl. Banana, fresh pineapple, passion fruit puree, hemp seeds, and chia seeds are tossed into a blender with E3Live blue-green algae, a type of spirulina that she calls “one of the most nutrient-dense superfoods on the planet.” Don’t worry—despite its eye-catching color, the algae’s taste is extremely mild. Thomopoulos finishes the bowl with chopped seasonal fruits (figs, berries, mango) and a coconut granola she seasons with cinnamon, cayenne pepper, and honey. Not a bad breakfast before hitting the waves, brah.