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Chow 'Round CineArts in West Portal?

Anything good in the area? Me and my significant bother are there tonight..


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  1. I like El Toreodor. It's a fun little Mexican place. If you are prone to sensory overload, beware. It's like a giant pinata exploded inside. Also the wait can be long on Friday and Saturday nights, so be prepared to wait outside or at the bar next door for up to an hour. Not good for large parties though. I think their tables can accomodate 6 max.

    1. I like El Toreador too. I also like Fresca and Bursa Kebab.

      1. Xiao Loong has good Chinese, in a nice setting. Second Fresca.

        1. I'll second El Toreador, and yes, it does look like a pinata exploded. Bursa Kebab is a uniqe and interesting experience and I really enjoyed it. The Cafe For All Seasons is nice too. Can be a bit of a retirement/family scene but consistently good salads and sandwiches/burgers

          1. El Toreador has good food, but I always end up with heartburn after a meal there. Maybe it's because I eat too much of the very hot and spicy salad w/ the chips....

            By far, my 2 favorites at West Portal are Bursa and Roti (Indian).

            1. Old Krakow is on the South/West end of West Portal but it's a great quirky Polish joint


              1 Reply
              1. re: 5 and Dime Eater

                What did you try at Old Krakow? I haven't had such good luck there. Have you been there recently? It would be nice to hear things are better these days.

              2. I had a lovely meal last night at Old Krakow, which is just down the street. If you're up for some delicious soup or hearty meat and potatoes fare, this place would be perfect.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Absonot

                  Really? What kid of soup? Although it would take many, many postive posts for me to try it again, I'm intrigued.

                  1. re: rworange

                    When I went I had the "pickle" soup. Sounds weird but it was great.

                    1. re: rworange

                      The pickle-potato soup is the only thing at Old Krakow that I'd be willing to put in my mouth again. The owner described it to us a "electrifying" in his recitation of the specials. I wouldn't call it that by any means, but it was pleasant, unlike the rest of our chowdown meal.


                  2. Bursa Kebab is the only place I've tried down there, but it was outstanding.

                    Your significant bother ??? LOL. I hope that person doesn't see your post, Big Tex.

                    1. Fuji sushi is surprisingly better than one would think.
                      And for as sacrilegious as this sounds, the maki rolls are superior to the nigiri. I know this seems wrong, but i have done the comparisons and the fish in the rolls always seems fresher and more superior than the cuts they are using for the nigiri...go figure.

                      I can highly recommend the 49'er roll.

                      Also,i want to throw in recs for Cafe for All Seasons (good fish) and Bullshead (great burgers)

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: jupiter

                        I was just at Fuji sushi on Sunday night for the first time in ages. I think they might be fine as a "fancy roll" place, but I had chirashi and it was very so-so. It was obvious they do not know how to make good flavored sushi rice for chirashi. It was disappointing and I would not go back.

                        1. re: Wendy_san

                          You are right. and i will not argue that report at all. i would usually just order rolls for take out for a quick fix, and one night i went in for the nigiri and had to get a roll cause i knew it would be good, and the nigiri was pretty disappointing, floppy sloppy cuts that seemed pre-cut so they were dried out....
                          the only good nigiri i had their was the Ankimo, which i had never had seved as nigiri before, but it was good.

                          again, the chef that makes the rolls seems to know what he is doing, or is at least more dedicated, than the other chef.

                      2. Second on Bullshead. In addition to the burgers, there was a post awhile back re: their fantastic steaks. I was never hungry enough when I was there to order one but they looked really good. Not much atmosphere to the place if that is important to you. I also like Fresca.


                        1. Bursa, Roti and Fresca - all great.

                          1. Not really for dinner, but I'd have it anytime, Sub Center in West Portal has fantastic sandwiches. Get the atomic!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: crimson

                              Yeah, a strong second for Sub Center. As mentioned elsewhere I'm also a big fan of Bullshead ...

                              DARN, I didn't notice the OP date. The Chowhound has already gone. Hope we here a report about what was selected.

                            2. A third for Sub Center. I love that place!

                              1. I live in the west portal area and would recommend fresca and the sub center as our two best eateries. el toreodor Im not a huge fan of, the portions are large, but greasy, and the decor is just plain sick.

                                roti is good too, but I usually just make the trek over to pakwan or shalimar.

                                1. I have had a couple of meals at El Toreador and was underwhelmed. Bright, lively atmosphere, with bland, undistinguished offerings. I am curious to know what the folks who sing its praises like about this place beyond the banners and family-friendly setting.