There’s no shortage of trendy restaurants in West Hollywood and Soulmate is a beautiful new destination in the neighborhood to enjoy a chic meal. Located in a prime location on Robertson Blvd, right off bustling Santa Monica Blvd, Soulmate is close to other popular spots like Catch LA, Craig’s, Cecconi’s West Hollywood, and Gracias Madre. Even with its popular neighbors, it’s opening is one of the most anticipated of 2021. I’ve been excited to not only try its Spanish Mediterranean menu, but also check out its eye-catching dining room
Soulmate has been in the works for years. The original idea was for it to be “Texas-style” restaurant led by Wes Whitsell (chef at Manuela and Hatchet Hall), but plans ultimately changed and Rudy Lopez, formerly at the NoMad in DTLA, took over as head chef. He wanted to focus on Spanish influenced cuisine mixed in with SoCal flair. I’m interested in why they named the restaurant Soulmate and didn’t feel to change it with a different direction.
My boyfriend and I made reservations at Soulmate for dinner. Since it was a Sunday evening, it wasn’t too hectic, but it was still a full house. Reservations were necessary as there weren’t many tables open for walk-ins.
Right when we walked in, I was immediately impressed with Soulmate’s design and decor. You first enter an open air patio space that had a big olive tree in the center and many different types of plants and flowers decorating the surrounding walls and tables. This gave the space a very calming vibe, as if you were having an intimate dinner in the park.
Past the courtyard area was the inside part of the restaurant and it had a more sleek aesthetic with large paintings, huge globe lights, and modern architecture. Just based on looks alone, Soulmate would be a good choice for a date or a posh night out.
We got seated right in the middle of the patio right next to the olive tree. After settling in, we browsed menu, which featured several popular Spanish items like Iberico ham, empenadas, fideua (paella made with pasta), grilled octopus, and of course seafood paella. Our waiter went over the menu and everything sounded so good. Each dish utilized a lot fresh ingredients and interesting flavors. After much discussion, we finally decided on the Santa Barbara uni toast (served on top of shrimp, chorizo, chili honey, and pequillo pepper aioli), salmon crudo (drizzled with aji amarillo peppers, pineapple ponzu, brown butter, and jalapeños), and the house dish Soulmate paella (with shrimp, calamari, chorizo, vegetables and rice).
The cocktails were also a must. Naomi Shimek, who rose to fame at R Bar and The Spare Room, serves as beverage director and curated the drink menu. Many of the cocktails infused a lot of fruit flavors, which made them sound so refreshing. I’ve been favoring more premium tequila lately, so I decided to get the Sunshine Pop, which was made with mezcal, pineapple, sage, and citrus. My boyfriend got the Golden Delicious, made with apple brandy, honey, and lemon. His drink was really good. I’m not the biggest fan of brandy, but the drink tasted like apple pie, masking the usually harsh brandy taste.
It was very nice to sit in the open air patio as the sun gradually set. The space got dim and the main lighting came from the candle on the table. Unlike other WeHo restaurants, the music wasn’t blasting, so it was possible to enjoy a conversation without having to raise your voice.
The uni toast and salmon crudo came out first. The uni was fresh and had a melt in your mouth texture. Most importantly, it packed a lot of umami flavor! The chili honey and pepper gave it a very unique blend of sweet and spice that I’ve never had with uni. The salmon crudo was also very fresh, and was a really refreshing dish to enjoy. The pineapple ponzu was a well prepared sauce that excited my tastebuds. The crudo is perfect summer dish to enjoy in Soulmate’s lovely patio. Lastly, the Soulmate paella made its way to our table. It was a good looking dish and big enough to feed two people. The rice was nice and crispy, as we mixed it with the various other ingredients. Honestly, the paella was OK to me. There was a lot of diverse flavors that came together from the calamari, squid, and chorizo, but it was pretty salty for me.
Overall, Soulmate would be a great place for a date with your significant other (or soulmate) or for a small intimate meal with friends. With it’s open air patio, I can see this place being a popular spot for brunch during the summer, as the cocktails are worth stopping by for if you’re bouncing around WeHo.
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Address: 631 N Robertson Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Hours of Operation: Sun-Thur 5-11 PM, Fri & Sat 5PM-12 AM
Parking: Street parking
- You can have to different dining experiences based on where you sit: in the patio or in the inside areas. Make a reservation if you want to request something specific