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Help! Where to go for dinner tonight in Studio City / Van Nuys!

Morning, so tonight I am meeting some friend for dinner in the Valley. To be exact, at the corner of Woodman and Ventura. I lived in the area for years and exhausted what few good dinner options there are. Rather then get dragged to the old stand-bys, I'm hoping to offer an alternative. It's a bunch of 30-ish old guys so something comfortable and mid-range. Mexican (not Casa 'hour+ wait' Vega or Fred's) or Italian are safe bets. I know there's a lot of sushi near there, any that won't break the bank and involve a long wait? Help, or they'll make me eat at Stanleys!

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  1. Dr. Hogly Wogly's Tyler Texas BBQ in van nuys - texas transplants love this place.

    1. Risotto is new and very good, just opposite Jerry's Deli. You still can't go wrong at Teru Sushi and the Wine Bistro is another good place. Lastly if you're in the mood for it, the Oyster House is always fun.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Thorn

        Risotto, I'll check that out. I used to like the Oyster House, but (to me) the food portions got bigger and the quality got smaller. Thanks!

      2. There are worse places than Stanley's, yet I understand your thought - you've eaten there too often already.
        Well, Boneyard Bistro is 2 blocks east of Woodman while Mistral, Le Petit Restaurant, and Mistral are all around Ventura and Dixie Canyon, about 4 blocks east of Woodman.
        Cafe Bizou, Cafe Cordiale(ugh!), and Rive Gauche are all focused around the intersection of Hazeltine, 6 blocks west of Woodman.

        1 Reply
        1. re: carter

          Oh, carter, how could you even mention Cafe Cordiale in the same post as (l'havdil) Mistral, Le Petit Restaurant and Max?

          Good God, that place is beyond bad.

        2. How about Carnival, near Woodman and Moorpark?

          Max, on Dixie Canyon and Ventura.

          Spumoni, on Ventura just west of Van Nuys.

          Mistral, on Ventura just west of Dixie Canyon.

          If you're OK with much, much more casual, Tony's Mexican Grill on Coldwater Canyon and Magnolia might fit the bill.

          San Remo, on Woodman and Victory.

          And what's wrong with Stanley's? I mean, it's not creative, but it's not bad food either. (I'm not suggesting you go there, since you obviously don't like it, I'm just wondering... Stanley's is kind of a non-entity to me, it's neither fish nor fowl nor good red herring.)

          1. i like Robin Hood for fish and chips and drinks - Woodman at Burbank.

            India's oven in the mall at stern at ventura is fine.

            Kuishimbo on the second floor of the mall at the old La reina theater just west of Van Nuys is good.
            So is Clay pit/oven/whatever just west of Van Nuys on Ventura.

            Siam Cabin has retooled and is very pretty now, decent prices and passable Thai food.

            I'd avoid mr Cecil's more than I would Stanley's which has a pretty good cobb salad.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Jerome

              Robin Hood is a good suggestion... Kuishimbo's fine but it's not really a "sit and talk" place.

              Mr. Cecil's -- ugh. Same for Kung Pao Bistro, just don't do it.

              1. re: Das Ubergeek

                Kung Pao Studio City is fine yet the one in Sherman Oaks, not related, is awful. In Studio City, stick to seafood, hunan lamb, soups, but avoid apps, and you will be fine.
                Mr. Cecil's - don't know how the doors stay open.
                As to the Cordiale mention, agree with you per my ugh comment, yet am not sure at what level poster is looking to spend - Cordiale has plenty of people inside that like it at some level, yet we are obviously not two of them.