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chestnutnd's Profile

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Group Dinner for 30

LA Hound needs suggestions from Honolulu counterparts. I want to host a post wedding dinner for about 30 friends and family who will be travelling to Honolulu for a wedding on a Saturday. A number of the guests are restaurant savvy. Because we are mainlanders, the more Hawaiian the venue and food the better, but food quality is more important than view, although I'd love to have both. The Honolulu area is best, but for the right venue, I'd be willing to have our guests transported. It would be nice to keep this in the $100 per person range, but we could spend more for the right place. Thank you in advance for your help.

Dec 22, 2013
chestnutnd in Hawaii

Rehearsal Dinner recommendations

LA Hound would like your recommendations for a rehearsal dinner for 50 people for a wedding. Half of the guests are honolulu area residents and half from the mainland. About 20 people are experienced with good restaurants, but the others care very little about food and would probably be more impressed with ambiance. I'd love to find a spot that would give me impressive enough quality to keep the 20 happy until I can deal with them the next night ( I'l deal with that in the next post) but I'd rather not break the bank with a 'foodie" restaurant when the majority would be happier with a good steak. An atmospheric location would also be great. I'd love to keep this in the $75-100 per person range, but having a good experience with "bang for the buck" is more important than the cost. We will be staying in the Waikiki area, but cars are available if the location warrants it. Thanks in advance for your suggestions.

Dec 22, 2013
chestnutnd in Hawaii

Cotogna vs Perbacco [San Francisco]

Will be coming to SF for a weekend in May. Which of these two are better for an LA Hound. I have dined at Cotogna twice. The first time was a few months after they opened and it was outstanding. The next was clearly a weaker visit but it is possible we ordered the wrong dishes for our taste. Have only walked by Perbacco. Your comments are welcomed.

Apr 28, 2013
chestnutnd in San Francisco Bay Area

What is the most vibrant, exciting high-end restaurant in LA right now?

Absolutely correct. Michelin is incompetently out of touch in California along with Italy. These fools have no clue about quality. They seem to rate based on similarity to French cuisine, which explains the fact that they just don't "get" other styles. In Germany, you have to cook French to get more than one star. Several of their SF ratings are just head scratching, ie Gary Danko getting one star! And LaBotte as the highest rated Italian in LA seems to be based on the highest arrogance rating in LA.
Servog has it correct: Outside of France, the Michelin Guide is of use only to paper eating insects and maybe a few arrogant Francophiles whose taste is in the "pre-nouvelle" age.
If their opinion was worth anything, I would buy the book in a heartbeat. If it saved me one poor dinner choice in five years it would pay for itself. Alas, it's not worth it.

Nov 07, 2010
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

Antica Pizzeria in the Marina is LA's best and most authentic Neapolitan pizza experience

Westside: Cow's milk mozzarella is allowable under the VPN regulations. I think they refer to it as fior di latte. That said, you are very correct in saying that bufalo mozzarella gives the pizza a different consistency.
I had the pleasure of eating pizza every day in Naples. It's a near religious experience. Very different from Mozza which is very good in it's own way, but definitely not Neopolitan. If I could have only one pizza for the rest of my life, make it any margarita(?sp) I had in Naples. The flavors are so fresh and the textures so perfect that I actually agree with the Neopolitan purists who will not allow any other toppings or flavors other than a magarita or a marinara. Just my opinion.

May 05, 2010
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

Dr. Bob's Ice Cream - Quality Differences?

Try Mc Connell's Ice Cream

Mar 07, 2010
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

Ottawa: Need rec for dinner

Many thanks to my Northern friends. I knew I could rely on such prompt and gracious replies. I'll forward the boards suggestions to my sister and look forward to what sounds like a cold weekend. I don't want to rub this in, but it is 69F ( About 20C ) outside at 9PM. On the other hand, you have that crisp clean air and wonderful green foliage (in the summer) that we can only dream about. Thanks again.

Jan 13, 2009
chestnutnd in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Ottawa: Need rec for dinner

Los Angeles Hound will be in Ottawa for our nephews wedding and will be going out to dinner with several adults on Friday. I'm looking for any type of cuisine, with quality food being the first criteria. Anything from top notch wood burning pizza to moderately high end french or "locovore" cooking would be great. It's all about the quality of what is on the plate. Thanks in advance for your opinions.

Jan 11, 2009
chestnutnd in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Anniversary dinner in the South Bay

You need to consider Catalina 320 in Redondo. New chef cooking upscale California Cuisine. Much better than Admiral Risty ever was, let alone now. Small, elegant in a simple way, with West side quality food. Depending on your date, they have a special 5 course wine and food dinner on Oct 1 for $75 pp.I'll be there. Usual cost is about $50 pp for 3 courses.
Another choice is Darren's in MB. Slightly pricier, and I don't get the warm "we try harder" feeling there.
The best value and quality restaurant that is in your geographic range and is a hybrid of French and Italian is Fraiche. About $45 pp and a bargain for the quality. Their original service problems have long been solved. Don't miss their pastas as an appetizer. They are the best $12-15 pastas in LA .

Sep 23, 2008
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

Getting dragged to Beso...help!

Todd English is very over-rated.

Aug 14, 2008
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

REVIEW w/ pics: At last! A restaurant that serves my favorite "Filipino" food that is actually "Sicilian!"

Pleasurepalate: Nice post. Pasta with broccoli cooked with olive oil, garlic and sometimes a little red pepper is a traditional dish frome Avellino which is 30 miles inland from Naples. I think Batali has this recipe in one of his books. When I ordered it in Avellino in 1986, they said they couldn't serve it for a few days because of the Chernobyl fallout !! You're correct that it is one of those classic simple Italian dishes with only a handful of ingredients that are wonderful for home cooking. You will notice that the best Italian restaurants serve these simple dishes done well, and the lousy local places catering to the movie crowd serve dishes with 15 ingredients usually blended together with heavy cream - Ugh. No self respecting real Italian chef would do this.

Aug 14, 2008
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

Bastide since Manzke left?

Has anyone dined at Bastide since the chef and presumably his wife (desert chef) left? If so, how was it?

May 11, 2008
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

Lunch at Bastide

Melange: Do they serve complimentary bottled water at lunch and do you know if they serve lunch on Saturday?

May 03, 2008
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

Do Ice-cream and Wine go together???

Tim: Do you think that would pair well with an Obie Burger from Ithaca? Phi Alpha

Nov 22, 2007
chestnutnd in Wine

Anniversary Italian?

WOW: Has something changed? This place was out of date in the 70's.

Nov 03, 2007
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

Anniversary Italian?

Second on La Terza. Much quieter and far better service than Angelini, which can be outrageously hectic on weekend nights. Great food at both and reasonable prices for the quality.

Nov 03, 2007
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area

IS there any good Italian Food in the South Bay ?

Frascati has closed. The chef owner, Enrico, will open a new place in The Palos Verdes Peninsula Center area in November. He is a good chef, probably the best Italian chef in the South Bay.

Oct 15, 2006
chestnutnd in Los Angeles Area