Farm livin’ is the life for private chef turned restaurateur Helene Henderson—and Malibu is the place to be
Written by Wendy Bowman | Photography Courtesy of Martin Lof
After spending years hosting home-based cooking classes and organic pop-up dinners on her 2-acre Point Dume spread, Swedish-born private chef and caterer (and former model) Helene Henderson turned her culinary prowess toward Malibu, where she’s created a thriving duo of eateries at opposite ends of the beach community’s pier.
Known as Malibu Farm—a nod to her plot of land holding a menagerie of chickens, goats and a pig, along with vegetable gardens, a fruit orchard and vineyard—the casual counter-service café sits at the tip of the 780-foot pier, while the restaurant and bar heralds the entrance to the historic landmark.
Locals, celebrities, fisherman and tourists all regularly gather at both establishments to enjoy stellar ocean views amid a rustic and casual atmosphere created by L.A. interior designer Vanessa Alexander. The Scandinavian-inspired interiors feature custom-built scaffold wood tables topped with herb-filled copper pots, sheepskin-covered benches, and white, gray and wood décor.
But chef Henderson’s bounty of local, organic and fresh fare definitely is the star here. Delish dishes are prepared using ingredients sourced from local fisheries and farms (including persimmons, carrots, asparagus, fresh herbs, eggs and more straight from her own backyard).
“We do a lot of breakfast and lunch, so that is what we are mostly known for, although we also serve a great dinner,” says Henderson. Among the menu favorites: quinoa oatmeal, Swedish mini-pancakes and fried egg sandwiches for breakfast. Lunch and dinner patrons clamor for salads like the popular Vegan Chop with kale, romaine, butternut squash, beets, avocado and garbanzo beans, as well as vegetarian and gluten-free dishes such as vegetable-crust pizzas and spaghetti squash lasagna.
The organic and agave-based bar beverages also are a big hit (think watermelon, jalapeno and coconut cocktails, along with a standout nonalcoholic kale apple juice). Henderson even offers merchandise, such as her own cookbook—The Malibu Farm Cookbook, with 100 fresh recipes—along with fun events, like a magical, eco-friendly snow experience during the holidays. Farm fresh.
23000 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA 90265
310.456.1112 (café) | 310.456.8850 (restaurant) | Malibu-Farm.com