July 24, 2021 #1 Local News, Forum, Information and Event Source for Venice Beach, California.

Secret Venice

Dudley Markey Chef Wesley Barden was born in Venice.

by Melanie Camp.

Dudley Market is the best-kept secret in Venice. A little American Bistro off the beaten track. Hidden away in the space that used to be Henry’s Market, a dive of a corner convenience store at 9 Dudley Ave., is now a cozy local restaurant and market that serves locals breakfast, lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch with bottomless mimosas.

It is not just the restaurant that evades the giant spotlight that shines on dining in Venice. Dudley Market Chef, Wesley Barden, also likes to keep on the lowdown. “No one wants to see this head. If they do, they can come in person and take a look,” he said laughing. For the record, Barden’s face is fine. He’s just camera shy.

Barden was born in Venice. “I used to skate her in the pavilion before it became an awesome skatepark,” he said. Being local, it’s important to him that Dudley Market remains a neighborhood friendly place. “I want people to come straight from the beach and feel comfortable.”

After a childhood in Venice, Barden experienced the kitchens of the world. Working in New York, San Francisco, and exploring food culture in Thailand. However, he said Los Angeles is where it’s at food-wise. The inspiration behind his dishes is simple. “The farmer’s markets out here are killer. What’s so great about Venice is that the best produce in America is here. I think it definitely gives San Francisco a run for its money,” said Barden.

Last Saturday, two tables asked to meet the Chef. One man from France said Barden’s Duck Confit was the best he’d ever eaten. Barden takes the freshest ingredients available and peppers his dishes with a European flair. “It’s all about the food here. It’s very nice ingredients, very good techniques, but done as simply as possible as far as what the plate is about and what the guest is experiencing. So simple, elegant, and approachable all wrapped into one. Which isn’t necessarily easy,” said Barden.

3. Dudley Market
Simple, elegant, and approachable all wrapped into one. Photo Courtesy Dudley Market.

The food is delicious. Oysters are smoked in-house for the Smoked Oyster and Scallop Crudo and the house-made lamb chorizo sausage is amazing. While Barden has high hopes of changing the menu regularly, there might be trouble if he doesn’t keep the Seared Octopus Terrine. The appetizer is one of the most popular items on the menu. While the octopus is crunchy and tender all at once, the pièce de résistance is the sprinkling of crispy hominy on top.

If you take a Lyft or walk (both options preferable to driving and facing the battle that is finding a parking spot in Venice), you’ll find Dudley Market at the corner of Speedway and Dudley Avenue.

In fact, any option, other than driving, is best as the wine list, curated by General Manager Henri, is sensational. A unique “Henri selected’ wine pairing, while not on the menu, is something worth experiencing. And while all this might sound a little fancy, think of it more as visiting a friends house and having them treat you to the latest finds from their cellar.

The bar at Dudley Market always ends up a lively mix of locals. From, a writer taking a break from work on her second novel, to a scientist, to a couple who took a detour on their evening walk and stopped by for a bite. There always seems to be a spot for anyone hungry at Dudley Market. For now, that is.

Even after word gets out, Chef Barden hopes there will always be room for locals and that Dudley Market keeps it’s “neighborhood hangout” vibe.

“What we’re trying to do here is have really, really great experiences for locals and everyday people. Which is what I think Venice is about. We love that bohemian vibe, we love the artist community which is what we’re trying to have and celebrate here at Dudley Market,” he said.

2.Dudley Market

Hidden away in the space that used to be Henry’s Market at 9 Dudley Ave., Venice. Photo Courtesy Dudley Market

Related Posts

63-Year-Old Man Killed in Westchester Tent Fire

July 22, 2021

July 22, 2021

LAFD investigating Wednesday night incident  By Sam Catanzaro A 63-year-old man died in a tent following a fire in Westchester...

Opinion: Why Silence the Sheriff? Bonin Bashing of Villanueva Backfires at the Wrong Moment!

July 21, 2021

July 21, 2021

By Nick Antonicello Don’t like the message? Please don’t shoot the messenger! For that seems to be the case when...

Unidentified Skeletal Remains Found in Ballona Wetlands Amid Search for Missing Person

July 19, 2021

July 19, 2021

Authorities make discovery amid search for Kolby Story this past Friday  By Sam Catanzarto Unidentified skeletal remains were found Friday...

Beach Closures Lifted After Sunday Discharge of 17 Million Gallons of Raw Sewage From Hyperion Plant

July 15, 2021

July 15, 2021

17 million gallons of raw sewage discharged from Hyperion Water Reclamation Plant Sunday Night By Sam Catanzaro Beach closures have...

Edify TV: Local Cafe Supporting Foster Youths

July 14, 2021

July 14, 2021

La La Land Kind Cafe recently opened its first California location in Santa Monica, delivering not only unique coffee and...

Atlanta Restaurant and Lounge Eyes Washington Ale House Space

July 14, 2021

July 14, 2021

Fin & Feathers files for liquor license at 13484 Washington Blvd  By Kerry Slater An Atlanta-based restaurant and lounge self-described...

Petition for Recall of Councilmember Bonin Approved for Circulation

July 13, 2021

July 13, 2021

Signature gathering phase now set to begin after Tuesday approval by City Clerk  By Sam Catanzaro The Los Angeles City...

Hyperion Spill Discharges 17 Million Gallons of Raw Sewage Into Santa Monica Bay

July 12, 2021

July 12, 2021

Sunday night spillage occurs 1-mile offshore from Hyperion Water Reclamation Plant By Sam Catanzaro 17 million gallons of raw sewage...

IPO Cosmetics Launches The World’s First 4Step Facial Kit

July 10, 2021

July 10, 2021

It’s Perfect On Introduces a New, Convenient, Portable and Eco-Friendly Skincare Option By Staff Writer What if you could get...

Marina Drive-In Movie Summer Series Underway

July 9, 2021

July 9, 2021

Gather with your family and friends to watch movies by the sea in Marina del Rey. Marina Drive-In Movie Nights,...

Bill Chait Restaurant Planned for Abbot Kinney

July 8, 2021

July 8, 2021

By Toi Creel Bill Chait, the head of Tartine Bakery, is planning a restaurant for Abbot Kinney Boulevard.  Recently, well-admired...

Edify TV: Googie-Style Diner Getting New Neighbors

July 8, 2021

July 8, 2021

Dinah’s Family Restaurant, the Westside Googie-style diner beloved for its fried chicken, is getting many new neighborhoods. Learn more in...