EXCLUSIVE: A Beloved LA Local Hotspot For Beachy Drinks & Turtle Races

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Get excited Angelenos, head back at Brennan’s!

Get excited Angelenos, Marina Del Rey’s local hotspot for turtle racing and outdoor hanging is back at Brennan’s!

Brennan’s has been a beloved community institution of Marina Del Rey for the past 46 years that it’s been open. Established in 1972, Brennan’s was a straightforward dive bar in the beach town where locals liked to hang around for low-key beers and drinks.

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It was also where they held their wildly popular turtle races on a weekly basis with the bar owners’ turtles. Participants could pay to rent a turtle to enter in the race, which they would place in the middle of a circle. The first turtle to make it out of the circle would be the winner and the person who rented that turtle would win a small prize. It was extremely unique and people would get crazy cheering for turtles to cross the finish line.

Now, with spanking new renovations and a revamped menu, Brennan’s is back on the block to charm locals and visitors alike. The turtles are back too with a swanky new turtle sanctuary in the patio, where they can swim and lounge in the sun whenever they’re not racing.

The revamped menu as diverse as it is exciting. As health and foodie conscious Angelenos, the restaurant wanted to be a destination where anyone could come and find something to eat. Everyone from vegans, vegetarians, celiacs and meat lovers have delicious menu items to choose from. Much of the food is made to be shared family style to elevate the highly sociable aspect of the venue.

The starters are the most exciting, with original and refined options like the Smoked Fish Dip (so creamy and savory!), Chicken Liver Mousse, Mushroom Pate and Burrata Toast. The last two can be made vegan or non-vegan, which means yes, there is delicious vegan cheese that can be found at this restaurant! Brennan’s pizzas are perfectly crispy and loaded with fresh California produce and goods. Everyone is bound to find their favorite pizza as there’s a wide range from White Mushroom, Arrabiata, Squash Pie, Charred Poblano and Fennel Sausage. The Squash Pie surprisingly came out as my personal favorite, with the perfect combination of sweet and savory from the winter squash, gorgonzola, pomegranate molasses and arugula. And if you thought the vegan cheese blew your mind, wait ‘til you try the vegan sausage that you can order with the Fennel Sausage pizza!

There are drinks for everyone at the bar as well, whether you like sticking to local beers or indulging in a well-made cocktail. The beer list is very California as it offers a wide range of pilsners, IPAs and stouts from local brewing companies like Smog City, El Segundo Brewing and Modern Times. For those who love hip mixology, there are also refreshing, beachy cocktails like A Pineapple Under the Sea (made with bourbon and orgeat), Offshore Breeze (gin, cucumber and mint) and Hare of the Rabbit (with vodka, carrot juice and ginger).

The outdoor patio is the mighty drawing point of Brennan’s. It’s possibly the dopest, most inviting patio that you will find in L.A. The bright outdoor space with long wooden tables, white deck chairs and striped green umbrellas is designed for nothing but fun in the sun. Brennan’s patio is like your favorite neighbor’s backyard. It’s friendly and unpretentious, which is a pleasant contrast to the highly stylized spaces at the uber-trendy restaurants around Los Angeles. And of course it’s everybody’s favorite patio because of the turtle races which happen every third Thursday of the month!

With scrumptious California cuisine for everyone and sunny vibes, Brennan’s promises to once again become a hit staple in the community. The patio alone is worth the drive out to Marina Del Rey once springtime rolls around in L.A. So grab your friends and family, get excited for some turtle racing and go to Brennan’s for the perfect afternoon in the sun!

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Nadia Cho

Communications Associate

Nadia reps Team JST traveling the world in search of exclusive features and online via JST's social media platforms. You can find her exploring metropolitan cities or lounging on tropical beaches.

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