I recently tried Paul Martin in El Segundo for dinner. It is on Rosecrans near the Fleming's and not far from the P.F. Chang's--I mention this because all three are from the same restauranteur, Paul Fleming and I found it interesting that he has three places within less than .5 miles of each other, even though they each fill different niches. Paul Martin's niche is the casual American bistro, along the lines of a Houston's but with a proclaimed focus on the fresh, local and seasonal. The original Paul Martin is up in Roseville and this is the second location they have opened.
I tried the St. Louis BBQ rib appetizer with coffee BBQ sauce [$9.95] and the burger with pepper aioli [$12.95]. The ribs, which come with an apple slaw, were tender but, even with the BBQ sauce, somewhat bland--the menu said slow-cooked but almost tasted parboiled to me. The burger itself was quite good but was not done any favors by the pepper aioli, which was more salty than peppery. Decent herbed fries are served with the burger. Most worthwhile is that the wine pours by the glass are well-priced, particularly considering that they give you a generous 7oz pour--I just wish the selection was more interesting. I note that, like Fleming's, there is a Sunday roast beef dinner special.
Service was excellent, especially in light of the fact that it has been open just about a week. Prices are in line with Houston's and there is valet and validated parking available.
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