Tropicale Restaurant and Coral Seas Lounge
Hot Spot for Luscious Drinks, World Cuisine
By Pamela Bieri
Celebrating its fifth year, The Tropicale is one of the valley’s hottest go-to spots, known for its fabulous bar scene and innovative world cuisine. This former auto body shop-turned-tropical hot spot is the incredibly imaginative work of three entrepreneurs: Chef Tony Di Lembo, Rob Kenzi, and Ranz Wienert.
The Tropicale’s seasonally changing menu reflects creativity in its panorama of world flavors and fresh, organic products. Bringing her talents to the kitchen with Culinary Institute of America trained Chef Di Lembo is Chef de Cuisine Scooter Kanfer from Naya Restaurant in Pasadena, The House on Melrose and Larchmont Grill in West Hollywood, and other notable dinig venues.
Kanfer’s style and techniques harmonize with Di Lembo’s philosophy about fresh, organic, and locally sourced products.
“All of our meats are grass fed; poultry is free range; fish are sustainably line caught; and our lettuces, tomatoes, berries, and produce are all organic,” Di Lembo says. “Even most of our wines are produced sustainably. This shift has come about because we are all eating this way ourselves. Prime grass-fed beef is healthier and just tastes better!”
Flavors from Morocco, Korea, Vietnam, Mandarin China, Cuba, and Japan to wonderfully subtle American regions like Maryland, Hawaii, and California’s coastal regions find delicious expression here. Weekly specials highlight seasonal dishes paired with wines.
Reminiscent of old Miami and midcentury Palm Springs dinner clubs, Tropicale features a outdoor bar and patio with foliage and island furnishings. Misted in summer and heated in winter, the patio is open year-round.
Since 2009, the Tropicale has annually taken top honors as an OpenTable’s “Diners’ Choice” winner and as “Best in the Valley” for martinis.
Live jazz by the renowned Derrik Lewis Trio Tuesday and Thursday 5:30-9:30 p.m. Happy hour nightly from 4 to 7 p.m. and all night Wednesdays. Weekend brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday Sushi features sushi, hand rolls and sashimi, sake and Japanese beer. Dinner is from 5 to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 5 to 11 p.m Friday and Saturday.
The Tropicale Restaurant
Price Range: $$
The Tropicale’s super team of wait and kitchen staff is an integral component to this popular hot spot. Pictured in front above are Chef de Cuisine Scooter Kanfer, and owners Executive Chef Tony Di Lembo, Rob Kenzi, and Ranz Wienert.
The Tropicale’s innovative world flavors menu brings locally grown organic and sustainably raised produce and meats to the forefront. Featured here is the Pistachio-crusted grilled organic Colorado lamb chops with Israeli saffron couscous, carrot harissa purée, and golden raisins on a bed of fresh spinach, accompanied by a classic gin martini from Tropicale’s Coral Seas Bar.
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