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Leisurely lunch in Santa Monica...Penthouse at the Huntly, or?????

Meeting a friend to catch up over a nice lunch. The Penthouse has a great room...how is the food and value? I also love BOA. What other beachy places will make for a relaxing and tasty lunch with an old friend? I tend to find that Shutters and Casa del Mar are way overpiced, although wonderful settings. Funky, less expensive recs are welcome too! Thanks.

Dec 30, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Help decide - Wilshire, Xiomara or Jar?

Want to try a new place...they are all different, but want a fun and tasty place where six people can hear each other talk. Between Xiomarra, Jar and Wilshire what will be tasty and fun? Maybe even Tanzore...

Dec 18, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Anniversary dinner on the Big Island

I think Meriman's is a beautiful room and the best Big Island food, although you won't see any romantic sunsets from there. Have eaten brunch at the Mauba Kea, but not dinner at Monette's. Have had great meals at the Canoe House at the Mauna Lani,and the atmosphere there is beautiful....I think better than the Mauna Kea.

Nov 19, 2009
jay 1 in Hawaii

Best herring in sour cream and wine sauce

Who has the best creamed herring or wine sauce? Since Barney's is widely thought to be the best smoked fish in LA, I'd presume Barney's....but really don't know. Where's the best?

Nov 19, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Santa Monica Romantic and Quality

Would appreciate hearing about the "too many other good patios" out there. I love eating out doors, but it' usually too noisy or distracting. Love the patio at Lucques. What do you recommend?

Oct 08, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Santa Monica Romantic and Quality

Get a table upstairs at Jiraffe. It's quiet, romantic and delicious.

Oct 07, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Lunch between Huntington Beach and Long Beach

What are some good freeway close restaurants off this stretch of the 405? Thank you.

Sep 30, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Where do you go to for INEXPENSIVE, good, tasty fish?

I'm into a " eating healthy" phase and getting into fish. However, the standard $20-35 for good grilled fish isn't working for my budget these days. While I don't expect to find anything for less than $10, I'd appreciate knowing where you can get good, tasty fish west of Hollywood at a reasonable price. Any type of restaurant is ok....sit down, holes in the wall, taco places, take-out or even markets that sell good prepared food to go. My current favorite is grilled salmon at the Fresh Corn Grill in Westwood for $11. Where do you go?

Sep 07, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

What's good in Malibu these days?

Going to Malibu this weekend with a group of six. Other than Nobu, I find the options at the Malibu Country Mart pretty mediocre, at best. Going to How's Market for barbecue could be fun. What other places do you Hounds enjoy in Malibu these days?

Sep 04, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Frozen Yogurt Hunt

Penguin's at Olympic and Westwood ( across the street from the Big Chill) usually has one or two Carbowhey flavors, as well as Dream Delite and Carbolite. Usually they have four low carb flavors.

Sep 01, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Fresh fresh fish for a sushi fanatic

A bit further east at La Cienega and San VIcente is Haru, ITHis is my current favorite for the quality to price ratio. it;s casual, it certainly more romantic and I think better than Hide. I enjoy it much more than Kiriko.

Haru Sushi & Roll Cafe
480 S San Vicente Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 782-0547

Aug 29, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Does anyone enjoy shopping at Gelsons market as much as I do?

A lot of this discussion is a matter of economics. For years I wouldn't set foot in Gelson's....now that I make more money it seems almost worth it. If you value service, selection and cleanliness, then part of the perceived premium at Gelson;s is worth it - not that it's the only clean and courteous store, but it does have more of more things than other chains. The produce is expensive, and the Century CIty Gelson's will let you taste any of their produce...and as a result I haven't bought any bad produce since I made tasting it first a habit. WFM has some good produce men, but most are slow to offer a sample. Unless I want something cut a specific way, I've been turning to Costco for meats (except chicken). The difference in price is far greater than the difference in quality. The $9.99/lb NZ rack of lamb at Costco still blows me away. No need to pay over $20/lb for that!!! I do avoid "typical" groceries at Gelson's, but often there isn't that much difference from Ralph's, at least on the Westside. Since every store seems to think its OK to charge $16- 25 for any good imported cheese, that's the item that has become a special occasion purchase for me. Even if its delicious spanish sheep cheese, $24/lb is a tough one for me. Doesn't seem there has been much mention of Bristol Farms here, which has been a life saver on occasion, but I think REALLY wins the prize for overpriced and lack of value.

Aug 25, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

DIno's, Zankou and.....?

These are my two favorite chicken places, and since I'm in a low-carb mode currently (sadly, I don't eat the fries at Dino's these days), would like to know other great chicken places west of DIno's. I like to think the baba ghanouj at Zankou isn't that bad for carbs. Any other low carb favorites would be appreciated as well.

Aug 21, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Peanut Butter Lovers of LA; I seek your wisdom!

The twopeanut butters mentioned are my favorites....Santa Cruz Dark and Cream Nut. Whole Foods 365 brand almond butter is my other favorite. While it might seem mundane, Baskin & Robbin's Peanutbutter & Chocolate ice cream is still one of my favorite pbutter experiences. A couple of my friends make outrageous peautbutter and chocolate bars, but I can't think of bakery that does this. Clementine might have them occassionally, and they usually have great pbutter cookies..

Aug 07, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

century city and B. hills dinner?

Ate at Il Buco last week and had mushroom gnocchi in a truffled cheese fondue sauce - HEAVEN!!!! Also:
- Clementine offers a light dinner
- The Blvd in the Beverly WIlshire (where CUT is) used to be pretty good, although can get pricey
- Massimo on Little Santa Monica is very authentic italian

Jul 14, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Burgers on Westside

The burger's at Houston's and Bandera are somewhat similar, and both are great. When it's on, Daily Grill provides a tasty burger, although they recently changed the bun ti a denser heavier bun which detracts. Agree that Literati II has a fine burger. I find the burgers at Barney's and Hole i the wall to be to thick

Jul 14, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Any British(or European) Markets in Los Angeles?

Sainsbury Market on WIlshire, west of Bundy bears the name of the UK chain, and has quite a few shelves of UK items. I believe the owner is from the UK. They had many of my favorite biscuits and candy bars!

Jul 09, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Best Prepared Grocery Store Chicken to Go?

Gelson's (Century City) had great roti chicken for $8.99. I just had a Costco chicken this weekend, and while it is a better deal, it is not nearly as tasty...hot or reheated.

Jul 08, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

the quest for cobbler

The peach and cherry from Cobbler Lady are wonderful. They also do a sugar-free cobbler sweetened with agave juice. The peach is excellent. The cherry is a bit runny.

Jul 07, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

slow food on the Big Island, or the road less traveled.

Agreed that all three of these are very good, with Cafe Pesto being in third place. Also enjoy Pescatore in Hilo. While certainly not as good as "big city" italian on the mainland, it's a great meal in Hawaii, and as good as italian get's on the Big Island.
Have to TOTALLY disagree with your comment about Merriman's. While it clearly costs significantly more, these other places are not in the same league. I can't afford Merriman's on a regular basis, but the only other place on the Big Island that had better food was Alan Wong's which is now gone. While a good meal at any of the three mentioned (and I'd add Huli Sue's to that list) is very satisfying and cheaper, you don't get the delicious soups, waimea vegetables or subleties of Merriman's.....when you feel like spending the $$$. My problem with Merriman's is the menu is a bit limited and after the second visit seems too small.

Jun 19, 2009
jay 1 in Hawaii

Family Sushi

I haven't been for a couple of years, but Noshi Sushi on Beverly Blvd. near Western is a real workingman's sushi place. Always busy, nothing fancy...just good fresh fish, and cash only. Workingmen don't use credit cards! It closes at 9:00 so I was too late tonight. Ate at Kiriko on Sawtelle, which I will not return to.

Jun 12, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Good Sushi on Westside tonight?

Just got back from kiriko and had the same experience. sushi was fine, but nothing great or memorable. i had ikura with a quail egg and one of the eggs slipped off the sushi and was on my plate when given to me. a first in lack of attention to detail! i asked for handrolls and got cut rolls, and they forgot my bluefin tuna. so service was less than up to par. for $50 there's got to be a better experience...i won't be returning.

Jun 12, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Help - Its hot and I need gazpacho asap -

These are the two i would recommend as well. I asked for the recipe at Daily Grill a couple of years ago and now enjoy it at home (when I get motivated!) I put daily Gri;; abov Gelsons, but both are good.

Apr 21, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Anything new or different on the Big Island?

WIll be leaving next week. I've seen the post below from a few weeks ago, but wanted to check on most recent visits. Have been to all the usual suspects, so would appreciate anything new or less travelled that is good. Any price or type of food is ok. More on the Kona side, but will get over to Hilo. Mahalo.

Apr 18, 2009
jay 1 in Hawaii

Where are the best donuts in Irvine?

Need to take some treats to work and don't live in the area. What's the best in Irvine or close to the 405 in Costa Mesa or south of Huntington Beach?

Apr 14, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

help on the big island!

We feel the same way about the corn at Merriman's. It is SO delicious. Definitely our favorite splurge on the Big Island. Great for lunch too.

Apr 09, 2009
jay 1 in Hawaii

French restaurant with a great steak?

Thiird for Mistral. Very french feel, great steak, fries and on occasion fabulous soups! also those little cheese puffs are pretty tasty.

Feb 18, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Mission Impossible (downdown LA edition): breakfast snacks for 80 office workers for $100?

Try Paris Pastry on Western. Have only had a few things from there, but they were delicious. Depending on which you buy from their abundant selection, you could do pretty good for $80.

Feb 11, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

best valentines (or any day!) chocolate

want to take some delicious chocolate to a valentines party. excluding see's and godiva, who makes the best chocolate in l.a.? both dark and milk, as well as truffles, etc. thanks all you sweeties!

Feb 10, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area

Santa Monica Seafood

i've enjoyed all of the prepared foods i've had there. the ahi poke and indian candy are delish. the tuna salad and creamed herring were excellent as well.

Feb 06, 2009
jay 1 in Los Angeles Area