I started a new job on Monday. While this is exciting for me in many respects, perhaps one of the best parts of changing jobs is…new restaurants to go to for lunch! Luckily for me, my new job is close to Bergamot Station, a community of art studios located in Santa Monica. Inside of this area is Bergamot Cafe (aka, the Gallery Cafe at Bergamot Station), a tiny, busy hot spot with fresh food and a long drink menu. The drinks include coffee and espresso drinks, many teas, and most intriguing, Mexican Mocha. The space is so small, that there is only room for a few tables lining the walls. The remaining tables are outside on two heated patios.
If you go for lunch, prepare to drive around for a while looking for a cramped parking spot. And, don’t expect to park too close to the cafe. Once you actually get there, you will have to stand in line for about five minutes or so. But, don’t let any of this discourage you - it’s completely worth the wait. And, despite how busy it is, the food actually comes out pretty quickly. If you have a short lunch break, you can always order ahead for pickup.
The menu consists of several cold and hot sandwiches, a few salads, and freshly made soup of the day. Considering the cold and rainy weather as of late, I was so glad to see that lentil soup was on the menu when I was there. In addition to my cup of soup, I ordered a half a sandwich: fresh mozzarella, basil, tomato, and olive tapenade on ciabatta. The sandwich came with a mixed greens dressing with balsamic vinaigrette, and the sandwich itself was the perfect size. The whole meal cost me under $8, which I think is a great price, especially considering the caliber of food served there.
For me, this was the perfect gourmet lunch at a price that was easy to swallow. I normally bring my lunch to work, but I will save Bergamot Cafe for special treats on those days I need a pick-me-up. If you are in the Santa Monica area for lunch, I highly recommend it.
Bergamot Cafe is located in Bergamot Station at 2525 Michigan Ave A3, Santa Monica, CA 90404
Phone: (310) 828-4001