Sunset Boulevard is dotted with dance clubs, but there?s only one as sexy as it is historic. 

Built in the early 1900s by D.W. Griffith as a movie studio, El Cid was re-opened in 1963 as a 16th-century-style Spanish taverna with dark wood, exposed brick and fountains. Its flamenco--intricate guitar work, syncopated clapping and, ahem, thrusting pelvises--has drawn raves for years, although the food has never been anything to applaud. 

But now new chef Olivia Hernández, a former caterer for high rollers like CAA and the Prince of Dubai, is serving seasonal tapas including paella and carne chimichurri skewers, and organic jam maker Laura Ann Masura is creating craft cocktails (many made with dashes of her Laura Ann?s Jams).

We went to El Cid for a 6:30 p.m. dinner before catching the 8 p.m. show. On Sundays, brunch begins at 11 a.m. and dancing ensues at 12:30 p.m. Tickets to the shows are $15, and the array is dazzling: from grande dame Angelita Macias, a 50-year club veteran, to San Diego-based Arte y Pureza, a company that leads flamenco trips to Seville. 

We like the idea of dinner theater that not only satisfies but also leaves us with a spring in our step.

El Cid, 4212 W. Sunset Blvd.; 323-668-0318 or elcidla.com

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