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Changes afoot at Santa Monica Place

See my comment below.

about 7 hours ago
carter in Los Angeles Area

Changes afoot at Santa Monica Place

When leases come up for renewal, greedy landlords change the rules that the tenant cannot always live with.
CCF and others in similar situations just have to move on, meaning close.

about 7 hours ago
carter in Los Angeles Area

Best Mexican in Sherman Oaks?

I like Mexicali a lot, for what it is, but I truly do not feel it is suitable for a group of 15 or so. If having a conversation is of any interest, good luck with one there for a crowd of over 4.
The El Torito Grill at the Galleria is better than the El Torito @ Ventura & Van Nuys - yes, there is a difference.

1 day ago
carter in Los Angeles Area

Best Mexican in Sherman Oaks?

I too just don't understand why better Mexican places have not found the area.
But given the out-of-town nature of the guests, I would think the El Torito Grill at the Sherman Oaks Galleria would be the ideal call. It has plenty of seating, reservations have to be available for that size grouping. If the guests are staying at the Courtyard just west of the Galleria, they could walk to the venue, weather permitting!!!
Food is decent enough.
Fwiw, soon Jesse Gomez will be taking over La Ventura in Studio City, not sure whether an Yxta or Mercado or ?

1 day ago
carter in Los Angeles Area

Need Rec for Good Meet Up Place in Studio City or Thereabouts

La Ventura has been sold, Warren's Blackboard not only lost its namesake chef, but it closed as well.
Warren's place was there for about 9 months, fwiw.
Black Market, Local Peasant(in Sherman Oaks), Firefly, Stanley's in Sherman Oaks.
Do wish Dan Mattern and Roxane would open a version of Cooks County in either Studio City or Sherman Oaks. Dream come true.

Dec 25, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Alexander's Steak House Opening In Pasadena

But with SO many visitors coming to the San Gabriel Valley every day of the year from HK, Taiwan or the Mainland, they bring wheelbarrows of money, are very willing to spend, and thus a steakhouse nearby provides that opportunity. Hopefully, a VERY good selection of high quality red wines should also be available.

Dec 23, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Maude vs. Melisse - how do they compare (or not)?

Melisse is quite formal, stiff kind of service. Have not been to Maude, yet the food at both will be stellar.
Check the menus to determine if they might offer any clues.

Dec 23, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Flemings or Roy's

They are next door to each other, and in fact share the same valet parking set-up.
My preference is Fleming's, but then I would rather have a steak or chop than anything with Hawaiian flavorings, meaning sweet or battered stuff.

Dec 23, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Alexander's Steak House Opening In Pasadena

Only 2 left in LA County, El Segundo & DTLA.
Since it is now owned by Landry's Steakhouse, I am surprised they did not just re-brand it and open it accordingly.
But a Chinese-owned steak house in Pasadena should do well, maybe even better than a previous attempt by the Porterhouse Bistro people in BH.

Dec 22, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Where did The Clay Pit go?

This is the former El Caserio location in that awful mini-mall at the corner of Beverly & Virgil, NWC.
Not the same ownership as the one that was on Barrington in Brentwood. Those owners still have Taste of India in Sherman Oaks, however.

Dec 22, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

The Closures Continue... Mo-Chica Closing This Weekend

But it will close at the end of the year, and be renamed, reformulated, etal.
In essence, closed as we know it today.
Don't forget, Joe has Pintxo in Santa Monica, so he knows, understands, and excels at the small plates format.
And don't think that idea is lost on the two as they move onward.
Don't expect appetizer, entrée and dessert to reappear.
He is still one of the best chefs in the region, and has mentored more than one over the decades!!!

Dec 19, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

The Closures Continue... Mo-Chica Closing This Weekend

Joe's on Abbot Kinney.
Jiraffe in Santa Monica.
And with Josiah doing a casual place in Venice/MDR, can Melisse be far behind?
And Jar?
And....?
Fine dining as it used to be is really taking it on the chin.

Dec 19, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Last Epicure Sale for 2014

Today and tomorrow are the days, just as a reminder.

Dec 19, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

The Closures Continue... Mo-Chica Closing This Weekend

No, Ricardo is out of all 3 of his places.
It is just a matter when Picca closes, to complete the triumvirate.
Something went askew, and only time will tell, but in the restaurant biz, that kind of information does not last very long.

Dec 18, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Hunan Garden, formerly Style, now 2188 Spicy Shrimp

Here we go again:
http://www.abc.ca.gov/datport/LQSData...

Ying Feng takes over, effectively immediately.
Any input, or does it seem like we have heard this line before regarding this facility?

Dec 18, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Need restaurant recommendation in Glendale/Pasadena area

Smitty's in Pasadena on Lake Avenue, just a bit south of Green Street might be of interest.

Bistro LQ's 18 course Truffle Menu

Who needs this amount of food in one meal, carter asks?
Limited to 18-20 guests as I recall.
That is closer to my monthly budget for food - pass!

Dec 16, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Last Epicure Sale for 2014

Epicure Imports at 6900 Beck, just north of Vanowen in North Hollywood, will be having its last sale this coming Friday and Saturday, December 19 & 20, for all your gourmet, high calorie & cholesterol needs.
Friday from 11:30 am until 5:00 pm
Saturday from 9:30 am until 3:00 pm

Next sale will probably be in February if this year's calendar can be used as a guide.
http://epicureimports.wordpress.com for more details

Du-Par's Opening in Encino

No butter should EVER taste like that!
If so, the French revolution will commence anew!
Some of the most vile breakfast flour-based food was served by TN, aka Dupars, in Studio City the last two times I was there at the invitation of an out-of-country visitor who longed for the good old days, which have sadly departed.

Dec 11, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Asada Tacos and Rolled Tacos in San Fernando Valley

While I have never eaten at Cactus Tacos, currently with 3 locations including the one that took over from Henry's in Studio City, it is opening a 4th location in the former Manny's at the SE corner of Woodman & Moorpark in Sherman Oaks.
What its specialty - not sure, but it should add to the local mix.

Dec 11, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area
1

Ms. Shanghai Rose-Murphy is taking over the SFV with all-day, everyday, dim sum

And to compound problems of logistics, the only parking, short of valet, is that awful parking structure on the east side of this godawful-looking Russian-inspired mess.
Inviting, not so much.
Formerly Chi Dynasty which had quite poor food, and I am not encouraged by the emergence of this place in its place.
However, ymmv.

Dec 10, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Bestia or Factory Kitchen

But do you go to any restaurant specifically for the charcuterie?
Having a good version, ala Waterloo & City, is fine, but is not necessarily the reason you would go there for dinner.
And, besides, what is wrong with having sin for dinner?

Dec 08, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

D.C. Hound in Culver City: Best eats for two days?

Café Vida for Taco Tuesday at 9755 Culver Blvd., near Sony Studios. Five varieties created for that night, and highly unlikely you will have tried any of them conceptually in DC.
Units also in Pacific Palisades and El Segundo.

Dec 07, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Dinner before the Disney!

Glad you enjoyed the show.
I attended the morning rehearsal, and enjoyed the entire program.
Hearing Gustavo conduct Salonen is quite a thrill for those of us who have seen & heard both over the years.
What did you get at Patina, a full dinner, or just appetizers? I always think the place is WAY too expensive for a pre- or post-concert meal.

Dec 05, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Dinner before the Disney!

Badmaash is located about 6 or so blocks east of Disney Hall, has limited to no convenient parking. Food decent enough, but stick to appetizers @ Chaya, or head to California Plaza for many selections, including a Mendocino Farms. Not sure how late it stays open though.
Soon, Au Lac, Vietnamese vegan from Fountain Valley, will open in that mini-mall west of Disney Hall at First & Hope, in the place that was formerly called First & Hope.

Dec 05, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Best picnic basket/supply stores in the LA area?

The one BB&B carries is the same one as that carried by Williams-Sonoma, but is far less expensive.
Compare for yourself.

Dec 03, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Take a Bao (Studio City) - what's good?

The space is small, but totally reconfigured from the Kung Pao Bistro Days.
All movable tables & chairs, no banquette, so flexibility exists.
No ABC licensing, yet they have permitted wine to be brought in. I bring my own glasses, and thus no necessity for corkage on their part.
I'm not sure I have stems for 16, you say!
Talk to Panchapol, the son of Peter, the actual owner. He is young, can cook, and plans all things for that location.

Dec 02, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Take a Bao (Studio City) - what's good?

If the latter grouping ever has a need again, try Spice Season on Ventura & Tujunga in the former Kung Pao Bistro space, next to Reno's Pizza. Really good Thai food, with vegetarian and non-vegetarian items. They also own a vegan place in Sherman Oaks directly behind El Torito in the same center, alongside the relocated Alcazar.
So they know vegan very well.

Dec 01, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

Chinese hot pot in or near LA?

Per J. Gold in his review a while back:

This is the point where I should probably point out that Hai Di Lao is not exactly the only Sichuan hot pot restaurant in the San Gabriel Valley; that hot pot is actually something of a fad at the moment. The Little Sheep chain, which is all over the Southland and just opened a new location in Pasadena last week, is also a Chinese import. LuGi in San Gabriel is excellent. Mon Land, also in San Gabriel, is probably my favorite — the patio is a wonderful place to pass an evening. Friends love Jazz Cat, Boiling Point and Hot Pot Hot Pot, which lean toward the Taiwanese taste. Many of these restaurants feature duo pots, infinitely customizable individual pots or small but choice selections of Mongolian lamb dumplings. All of them are cheaper than Hai Di Lao, sometimes significantly so.

Maybe posters can comment on those referred to in this paragraph.

Dec 01, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area

High Protein - Los Angeles

Lawry's or Fogo de Chao on La Cienega, BH.
Any steakhouse you deem appropriate.

Nov 28, 2014
carter in Los Angeles Area