With the opening of Le Village Café and Tavern 1, Malibu locals have new places to dine, but will have one less place to shop when Coco Consign closes its doors on April 30.

Le Village Café

Malibu residents and restaurateurs Marie and Francois Clausse opened Le Village Café on April 4 after three years of planning.

Located in the Trancas Country Market at the intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Trancas Canyon Road, the new restaurant offers casual dining from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. (10 p.m. on weekends), indoor and outdoor seating, separate menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as beer, wine, teas, smoothies and a juice bar.

Francois told The Malibu Times that he signed the lease three years ago, but there were some delays with the shopping center. He also had to go through the city’s permit process, and develop his restaurant concept and menu. After finding out what Malibu residents seemed to want, he decided to go with organic and natural foods as much as possible, with some vegan dishes available at each meal. His goal is to cater to locals, and he welcomes feedback. 

In the near future, Francois hopes to offer take-out, delivery and boxed picnic lunches, but for now, he said he is still getting the inevitable kinks worked out that come with the opening of any new restaurant, including getting his staff fully trained. 

The Nextdoor neighborhood network has been full of good things to say about Le Village Café.

“We haven’t had a place you can sit down and eat breakfast ... Excellent, healthy food and reasonably priced for Malibu. Let’s support this restaurant, or we will lose it,” users of the site wrote.

Tavern 1

After successfully starting and operating the Tavern 101 Grill & Tap House restaurant in Agoura Hills for several years, the owners decided to open a second location in Malibu on Pacific Coast Highway, next to the old courthouse.

Tavern 1 Grill & Tap House PCH Malibu opened on Jan. 4, and offers the same barbecue (baby back ribs, pulled pork, tri-tip, chicken and prime rib) and craft beer selections that made it such a hit in Agoura Hills. 

Manager Nichole Stallings said owner Marco Gonzales “has always been in love with Malibu,” and that is why he wanted to open his location here. In fact, in honor of Malibu’s seaside location, he added several seafood items to the menu, including avocado shrimp tacos, salmon sandwich and crab cakes. 

Open for lunch and dinner from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., the restaurant offers indoor and outdoor seating, a casual atmosphere, and a happy hour. Tavern 1 also does catering and hopes to soon start selling its barbeque sauces by the bottle.

Coco Consign

Less than one year after its grand opening, another Malibu business will pack up and close its doors.

Created by Liza Whitcraft and Kristen Nelson, CoCo Consign first opened its doors to customers on July 25, 2015.

The Pacific Coast Highway storefront seemed like an ideal location to feature vintage and modern pieces of clothing, handbags, furniture, art and jewelry, until conflicts arose between other tenants and the building’s landlord. Whitcraft and Nelson decided it was best to part ways with the leased space and possibly start anew elsewhere. 

While Whitcraft and Nelson continue working on selling pieces from CoCo Consign until its official closing day on April 30, the duo will search for an affordable location to open in Malibu. 

“There is interest in relocating,” Whitcraft said. “It really, really depends on the space. That place was fairly cheap, so I don’t know if there’s another little, weird, Harry Potter-pocket like that in Malibu.” 

Affordable retail space is a controversial issue in Malibu, with sky-high rents driven by weekend tourism. 

“If Malibu wants to preserve this community feel, I don’t know how you’re supposed to do this on those kind of rents,” Whitcraft said. “The only people that can afford those kind of rents are obviously corporations ... If you want the little cafe or the little consignment store ... it’s just not going to happen with Malibu’s rent.”

(1) comment

Steve Woods

In the real world when you have a historic glut of Empty commercial buildings and retail spaces collecting dust ,the rent space goes down in order to fill the spaces ,but most of Malibu is owned by investors who oblivious and seem not to care about receiving a positive cash flow from their units .They will wait it out for years or Decades like the Granita space to get top dollar and nothing less . So what do commercial developers do when 100's of thousands of square feet of empty commercial buildings lay dormant ? They pull permits to build shopping malls that locals do not want . The only way that the Civic Center property owners and investors can redeem their bad investments is to turn Malibu into a World Class Shopping destination on par with Rodeo Drive or Newports Fashion Island and we have a city in defiance of its citizens who will facilitate the nightmare upon those of us who need to use the only HWY in and out of Malibu

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