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Need mid-range recommendations for first-time trip (staying in WeHo & Santa Monica)

For Santa Monica - just had dinner at Rustic Canyon and it was excellent, but might be a little pricey for the budget.

WeHo - Tender Greens close by on Santa Monica blvd. and Yatai a little farther East on Sunset are easily within the budget. I eat at both places regularly; consistent, good vibe, good prices, good food. Watch out for the Sunset Plaza restaurants - tourist trap, just saying (sorry, but I count Tony's as Sunset Plaza material). For breakfast I would do Jinky's or the Griddle (the Griddle can be very busy and it's probably 1.5 miles walk, but the portions are crazy - 2 people can split) . Duke's I haven't been to in years, but it was okay back then. Mel's is well, it's Mel's. For yogurt - the Yogurt Stop on SM. For Pizza - Joe's on Sunset or a longer walk, we have Vito's on La Cienega. The Abbey IS a very nice atmosphere, but the drinks are underwhelming for the prices they charge. Everybody else in town is doing 2 for 1 or happy hour. There's also Bossa Nova across from the Abbey. Mexico down SM blvd. has decent drinks and a few nice things on the menu even if the place is weird beyond words. I had a good meal at Amarone, but the service wasn't as good.

Sep 02, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Reasonable priced restaurants in West Hollywood?

Yatai on Sunset. Great lunch specials on the monthly (e)mailing list.

+1 Tender Greens

Jul 22, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Pizza delivery to Standard Hotel Sunset Blvd

I guess this week got away from them, he's saying Monday now. I dropped by and got to try a slice. A welcome addition to the neighborhood.

Jul 10, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Joe's Pizza on Sunset Strip!

Walked by today and saw some activity. A friendly guy named Joe said he thinks next week. Waiting on an inspector...

Jul 01, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Cristoni Pizzeria - Double Bust

Primo Bistro on SM Blvd. is the same, mostly staff loafing around. PB crowded the sidewalk with a bazillion chairs and tables behind a planter moat and it serves little beyond underlining how little business they're doing. And to create a pedestrian chokepoint a la Sunset Plaza eateries.

I walk by there almost daily. I hope the staff is getting paid decently, because they sure aren't getting any tips. What a money black hole those places must be.

May 15, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Tlapazola or Monte Alban? Or El Cholo?

Same as everyone else. El Cholo isn't in the same league as the other two. Can't go wrong with Tlapazola or Monte Alban. Great food at both, I lean towards Monte Alban myself. They're both in mini-malls, but each has a different atmosphere. The margaritas at Tlapazola are tasty.

May 07, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

malibu recommendations visiting from Toronto

I was dragged to that place many, many times by family and MS is amazingly consistent at serving up an underwhelming meal. Agree, drinks & view only. Never for food. I've had better food at Malibu Seafood, Duke's, Paradise Cove, possibly even Gladstone's!

May 07, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Bar Pintxo

I don't think I bothered to comment after my first visit a few months back. We only tried the desserts, but that was enough. I wish I could say that they were serviceable, but they weren't. As mentioned above, the place looks the part. Service wasn't great for us. I've been to Spain and I'm familiar with what the deserts are supposed to taste like - same is true of the others in our group of four.

Apr 19, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Lunch at WEHO

Yatai on Sunset. Most of the lunch menu is under $12. They just added a large table to the outside patio. The long table inside should take 15 as well. I would give them a call.

If KKR is under consideration, Tender Greens on Santa Monica would be similar, but better.

Apr 14, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Porto's Bakery - what kicks ass?

By edible I mean delicious.

Apr 03, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Porto's Bakery - what kicks ass?

What Will Owen said. I've been disappointed by places that haven't lived up to the hype, but doesn't over the top hype retribution do more to discredit oneself? I can sympathize that it's not the end all that some pronounce it to be.

Lately I've been getting the Torta de Pollo and the Steak Torta. I find them edible.

Apr 03, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Best Veggie Burger you've had?

In LA I'm a fan of Native Foods, but the thing I really like is the falafel burger at the Roxy in Encinitas. O! Burger is good, mostly because I like the pickles, cabbage mix & chipotle sauce that they put on it.

Mar 31, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

STREET finally opens Monday

The prices are bonkers for that menu. It's not like it's located on Rodeo drive either. I don't think I'm *that* interested in anyone's take on street food on ANY street. Moving on.

Mar 30, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Potato Pizza at Riva

+1 on the potato pizza.

Mar 15, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Riva's Margherita pizzas and tiramisu

I didn't mind the crust myself, but the red sauce wasn't my favorite either. As to service I've only been once, but I didn't encounter any pretentious service - uber or otherwise.

Mar 04, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Riva's Margherita pizzas and tiramisu

Someone else in our group wanted to try the potato rosemary pizza - I wasn't keen on the idea, but I ended up really enjoying it - good rec.

Mar 04, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Tony's Italian Steakhouse (West Hollywood)

Feb 28, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Tony's Italian Steakhouse (West Hollywood)

I would hardly describe that location as "easy to get to". It's terribly congested with commuter cross traffic. Norman's did some amazing stuff in that kitchen a few years ago, while the economy was in better shape and no one bothered to go. I'm probably not the target audience anyway, I haven't ordered a steak since the early 90's.

Feb 27, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Absinthe

The anise component can't be stressed enough. I really couldn't get into it at all. I tried it a number of times in Barcelona and I was unable to get past the taste. I even ended up giving away a bottle of the stuff that snuck back on the plane with me. Yeah and no hallucinating or anything remotely like that.

Jan 25, 2009
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

"Cincinnati style" Chili

I spent a decade in Cincinnati and Goldstar/Skyline are one of my must-haves whenever I'm back in the area. It's pretty low brow stuff, but it has a very distinctive flavor and somehow when the cheap and unremarkable ingredients are piled together they are transformed. It is thin and runny, but it's more of a bonding/saturating agent compared to other chilis. I can't imagine eating it by itself. If somebody was halfway smart, they would open a franchise/knockoff out here. Easily 65% of Los Angeles has lived in Ohio, they're just keeping it secret. Not just that, but it's exactly the right kind of cheap, interesting, recession appropriate food for LA. I never acquired a taste for White Castle, but Cincinnati chili is very addictive.

I do a knock off with Trader Joe's supplies. I use the their canned turkey chili to which I add some diced white onion, a little garlic, apple cider vinegar, cinnamon, semi sweet chocolate chips and cayenne powder. I serve it on spaghetti, covered with shredded mild cheddar cheese and sprinkled with oyster crackers. A little Cholula sauce for color on top and there you go.

Dec 28, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Best outdoor space in LA

inn of the seventh ray = no

Dec 12, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Apple Pan: First timer tips?

AP banana cream pie. The old timers behind the counter, no impersonal chain experience, the burgers are just a bonus.

Nov 13, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

casual dinner in hollywood or thereabouts

Yatai on Sunset. I've *never* been rushed out of there and I always end up eating, drinking, staying more and longer than I intend.

Nov 08, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

How is Pann's?

Never eaten there, but I drive by it every time I go to LAX. That would be countless times at every hour of the day and night over the years. I would hardly call it scary, I suppose it's a fair question, as scary and dangerous are two totally different things. I don't find it to be either one, but the type of person who finds otherness to be scary and depending what other is to that person, could make it feel scary. There's always Mel's on Sunset, which scares the hell out of me ; )

Oct 23, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Jian Korean BBQ

That is quite an achievement. Changing my clothes and cleaning my glasses are the first things I do after KBBQ.

Sep 15, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Cristoni Pizzeria - Double Bust

Thanks for taking one for the team.

I saw it promoted, I mean mentioned on the official Primo Corporation newswire, I mean that eating blog. They've already got a guy holding a sign blocking west bound traffic on Sunset, it doesn't matter what they serve, there's a certain demographic that will eat there anyway.

What is with all the site-seeing tour busses, parking & advertising sign-holding people holding up traffic? With all the congestion it seems like the city would curb that activity.

Sep 06, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

REVIEW: Millions of Milkshakes? Not quite

Good report, worth some chuckles. Sounds like a place I would not like and I like a good milkshake.

You might actually like the date shake across the street @ O Burger.

Aug 27, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Best Chinese delivery in West Hollywood?

We were regular customers of theirs for many, many years. I agree, tasty food and quick. I'm not going to expand on the 'incident', but I'll never order from them or eat there again. It was the driver, not the restaurant, but it kinda ruined it for us. I'll repeat, millions of dollars, lawyers, days & days wasted.

Aug 27, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Ammo: WORST TURKEY BURGER EVER

The TB at O Burger in WeHo is interesting. It could be that I like the chipotle sauce they drench it in though.

Aug 23, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area

Empanada Factory on Robertson?

Yes, do please. Empanadas Place had a location in WeHo, but I thought they were too expensive for fried, small empanadas. I have yet to eat an empanada in LA that's even 'street grade' in south america. I really hope these are quality empanadas.

edit: I looked them up and if it's the same people over in Venice, I think they had baked empanadas which tasted pretty good. I tried EF many years ago and I think it was more calzone than empanada, but I would eat them if they were that close.

Aug 06, 2008
ahuacatl in Los Angeles Area