Everything about Destroyer is surprising. It’s located next to a business park and so you wouldn’t necessarily expect it to get much foot traffic beyond the people who work in the immediate vicinity. Yet it’s packed on a Friday lunch time.
The name of the place seems at odds with the vibe. The food is organic and, if not completely healthy, very natural. But the name, and indeed the design of the website, conjures images of military action and video games. It’s all slightly disconcerting.
And somehow it works. The oddities are the appeal. When you enter the place, you order at the counter and then take a seat but while waiting, there’s plenty to see. There are products for sale, such as teas and jams, fermented drinks and oils. None of it is cheap, but then it’s all made from scratch with natural ingredients. It’s nice to treat yourself once in a while when you’re able.
There are also non-food products – pottery items and other such home goods. Again, it’s fun to browse while waiting for your food.
At the counter, you’re faced with all manner of delicious looking baked goods. We resisted, but the pastries and savory delights all looked amazing. The meal we did pick from the menu was frankly incredible though.
We went with the Cold Smoked Black Cod, and have rarely been happier while doing this job. Every bite was a taste explosion, meant to be savored. The flakey, flavorful fish is served in a salted yogurt which offers a flavor similar to sour cream but better. More flavor comes from dill stems and an eye-opening savory onion granola. We didn’t know such a thing existed! Onion granola? And yet it’s a magnificent concoction that draws out the smoky flavor of the cod.
On the side is Icelandic Seeded Rye Bread – two thick-cut slices that have the wonderfully sticky, seedy quality of a classic German pumpernickel. Due to the aforementioned yogurt, the bread doesn’t need buttering. Just scoop some of the fish on there and enjoy.
Destroyer certainly isn’t your average lunch spot, – it’s a destination eatery. People certainly know about it and head there in droves. It’s not cheap, but it’s a real treat and the food leaves you satisfied. Most importantly, it’s different to everything else we have in Culver City and should be experienced.
Destroyer is located at 3578 Hayden Ave., Culver City 90232. Call 310-360-3860 or visit destroyer.la.