A favorite eatery for locals and tourists sunsets after 37 years
After 37 years, restaurateur Michael Franks brings the local favorite Chez Melange to an end, on February 29, 2020. Sadly for Redondo regulars and those who traveled there from LA like myself to enjoy the cool and comfortable surroundings by the beach, where you could order something you’d get no where else, and it would never disappoint.
Chef Robert Bell and Franks met in 1982 and became business partners and opened the unique and wonderful Chez Melange later that year. The pair eschewed the traditional eatery model and offered unique options that were unheard of at the time by combining American, European, and Asian fusion dishes into a menu that changed daily.
Throughout the years, the restaurant went through many changes to become a gastronomic destination like no other: three restaurants under one roof. Chez Melange offered Bouzy Gastropub, a relaxed French brasserie, English pub, and an American bar and grill; The Oyster Bar causal seafood and cocktails bar; and the last addition, Sea Change, a formal, seafood-centric restaurant with a daily-changing menu with specialties like Zarzuela, Lobster Kung Pao, and the signature ‘Hangtown Fry.’
Chez Melange was a hit on Sundays for its jazz brunch where patrons would stay all day, noshing on Profiteroles, the chef’s creation of delicious cream-filled beignets, and flights of fresh juice mimosas.
It’s fitting this unconforming hangout would shutter its doors on a day like no other, on the last day of February in a leap year, in 2020. It never bent to be like anything else, and it will go out in splendor, on an unforgettable day. Oh, how we will miss you and remember you, like watching the sunset on a perfect beach day.