James’ Beach, the Venice Beach bar and restaurant famous for the lewdly humorous yet touching bromance scene between Paul Rudd and Jason Segel in the 2009 comedy “I Love You, Man,” is closing for good on Labor Day after 27 years in business.
A staff member attributed the closure to the economic slowdown of the pandemic and the owners, who are of retirement age. The staffer said James’ Beach was renting the building, so it was uncertain whether or when another restaurant or business would replace it in its spot on the south side of Venice Blvd., just a stone’s throw or two from the sand.
The restaurant is known by Westside diners and nightlife patrons for its fish tacos, touted by Rudd and Segel in “I Love You, Man” as the best fish tacos in the world.
In the film, Rudd and Segel drunkenly bond during their first “man date,” with the friendly Rudd desperately needing a best man for his imminent wedding.
“What about you, huh? You’ve been married?” Rudd asks Segel’s character as the two continue to drink.
“Nope. For what I’m looking for, divorcees are perfect,” Segel replies. “You know, they don’t want anything serious. And neither do I.”
“Oh man,” Rudd says. “You know, if it works for you.”
“Believe me Pistol, it is the best,” Segel says.
“Yeah, Gun. Cause you’re Pete. Pistol Pete, ”Segel says, drinking from his beer.
A waiter then asks if they’ll be eating, to which Pete says he has plans with his fiancee.
“Do not doubt. This place has the best fish tacos in the world,” Segel’s Sydney says, before it becomes apparent — and drunken antics ensue.
You can watch the entire James’ Beach “I Love You, Man” sequence at the top of this post. Be warned, it features NSFW jokes and language.
Beyond “I Love You, Man,” James’ Beach has served as a set for several more film and TV shows, including “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” and is popular for more than its fish tacos. According to its website, its menu received awards and critical acclaim over the years from the likes of Gourmet Magazine, Wine Spectator, LA Magazine, Bon Appetit and others. Open Table also honored it with the website and app’s Most Vibrant Bar Scene award.
It will have an estate sale “of art, moments and objects” dating to the restaurant’s 1996 opening on a date to be determined after the closure.
The last day of business will be Monday, Sept. 5.