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18th Birthday Lunch for 12 young women - help!

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Looking recommendations for a 18th birthday lunch - for about twelve 17/18 yr old young women anywhere in Santa Monica, West Hollywood, Hollywood or even Downtown towards the end of August.

These girls have really good palates, love good food but we don't want something stuffy & formal -- looking for something funkier and in an interesting space. If not funky & unusual, then a place that could be very girly & feminine.

Half of the group are non-meat eaters, so whichever restaurant should have at least one nice fish dish.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

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  1. 17th St. Cafe on Montana-SM
    Asia de Cuba if it open for lunch-West Hollywood

    1. as a funcky alternative, c & o trattoria near the beach.
      the same people also operate c & o cucina on washington near lincoln.
      in both places
      the prices are very reasonable.
      the swordfish is very good.
      they have a very broad menu.

      this is, however, not 'chowish' food.

      1. This is a tough one, complicated by those pesky vegetarians and your large group. My friend recently turned 19, and we had to go to Islands because we couldn't think of another place that could hold 15 people and would satisfy everyone [dull] palette.

        I think a good place that fits the above criteria of being tasty and funky is Blue Marlin on Sawtelle, a creative Japanese quasi-fusion restaurant. The food is pretty damn good. It's unconventional and creative. It has a nice atmosphere attractive to us young people without being painfully hip/trendy. It's prices are good, considering it's a special occasion. I don't see you guys paying more that $20 a person there, even if everyone gets fancy fish dishes and drinks and tax and tip. They serve fish (hence its name) and red meat and chicken. I had the chicken gratin, and it was really good.

        The extra appeal of this place, besides delicious food, cool vibe, and meeting your specified requirements, is the fact that it's in a pretty neat area. After your meal, you could walk across the street to Beard Papas for dessert and get a tasty vanilla custard filled cream puff. Also, there might be a cool movie playing at the Nuart theater down the street.

        Check it out!

        P.S. If you could ditch the vegies, I'd go to Roscoe's Chicken n' Waffles in Hollywood. Awesome food, cool atmosphere, and just cool that you're eating chicken and waffles at the same meal. After, you girls could go down to Amoeba music or see a show at the house of blues, or go down a little more and go to those comedy clubs on sunset. Or even better, drive all the way down Sunset to the beach. Now that's fun!

        1 Reply
        1. re: young_chower

          Great suggestion - will definitely check it out. Any more suggestions greatly appreciated.

        2. Blue Marlin is a great suggestion, and also on Sawtelle (in the same mini-mall, I believe) is 2117 that has lovely 3 course lunch specials for reasonable prices in a relaxed, upscale atmosphere.

          1. If you can get a reservation, the restaurant at the Chateau Marmont is actually very good. It's very small though, but it's in a nice courtyard and the girls are sure to see some celebs. The lunch food isn't too expensive and was great! I think I had some steak sandwich that was great and I believe it only cost about $12. Luckily I went with a friend who made the reservation using his AmEx black card, but you may be able to get in. It's very quiet and secluded, but very cool and hip.

            1. I have a 22 year old vegetarian son with an educated palate and his favorite places to dine for birthdays are Cafe La Boheme in West Hollywood and Mako in Beverly Hills (Japanese). Also Crustacean in Beverly Hills. All have interesting vegetarian entrees. Bria

              1. Dolce - I'm unsure if they're open for lunch, but it's quite a chic place. Owned by Ashton Kutcher. Italian food, but there's always vegetarian options.

                Someone mentioned Mako - I think it's a pretty wise choice, given people can share the tapas and still have a variety of vegetarian and meat dishes.

                I also really really love Whist at the Viceroy, or blue on blue at the Avalon for poolside dining, in cabanas, or under a white tent. Nine-Thirty at the W Hotel also offers this scene.

                1. you didn't mention what your budget is, but some ideas for nicer restaurants are joe's on abbott kinney in venice (has the bonus of being in a cool location for walking around and window shopping before or after lunch), campanile on la brea (cool space), or buffalo club on olympic in santa monica (really pretty patio). all will have vegetarian and seafood options.