I swear to you, I don’t work for SBE. But for some reason, it’s impossible to get through a day this week without giving them some sort of coverage. While Gladstone’s is not a new establishment, SBE’s management of the restaurant is, so I figured it was time to give the old seaside standby another try.
For those who don’t know its history, Gladstone’s is one of the most successful restaurants in the United States. Throughout its existence, it has been one of the highest grossing restaurants nationwide, and has been a tourist attraction in LA since it’s relocated to its current location in 1982. After years of rising prices and declining quality, the restaurant fell off the must-list in the late 00’s, only to be rescued by an SBE management takeover in 2009.
So, what’s changed? Surprisingly little. The wood shavings on the floor are gone, and the SBE logo is ubiquitous, but the food still consists of mostly fried fish items served in massive portions. The quality is decent – typical for a restaurant primarily catering to out-of-towners spending a day at the beach. The prices though, are exorbitant. Most items are above $25.00. Keep in mind that this is for glorified fish-and-chips.
While Gladstone’s has a cool vibe and may return to social awareness now that SBE is in control, I think I’ll leave this PCH pitstop to the tourists it is happy to trap.
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