3 weeks in Santa Monica
I'll be spending 3 weeks in Santa Monica for business and am looking for recommendations. I'll be staying at the Best Western on Santa Monica Boulevard and I won't have a car, so please keep that in mind. Also, moderately priced places would be appreciated (it's a new job and I don't want to freak them out with the expenses just yet.
I would recommend Nook.
It is east of the Best Western on Santa Monica Boulevard. It' sin West LA -- but not far -- a very short "Big Blue Bus" ride (5 mins? - 10 mins at most?).
Nook is very well-reviewed on this board, so I don't need to rehash the menu. Here is a link to the Nook search:
FWIW - From the Best Western on Santa Monica, you can also take the Blue bus west to the 3rd Street/4th Street/Downtown area very easily. In fact, a straight bus ride up Santa Monica is easier than finding parking in Santa Monica. There are tons of places to try once you've gotten off the bus at 4th and Santa Monica, places walking distance from right there.
In addition to Nook, with so much time, you may want to try the following as well:
Border Grill (better value for lunch than for dinner - try the conchinita pibil)
Houston's (California burger)
Josie's (very high end, but just go, sit at the bar and get a glass of red wine and the buffalo burger with foie gras and truffle fries - it'll be the best $35 dinner alone you ever ate)
Father's Office (again, the burger)
Hello.. Good recs so far. Another 'must' option is just a few blocks further east (then south) of Nook Bistro: Sawtelle blvd. will intersect Santa Monica blvd. Go south (right) onto Sawtelle, and within a few blocks you will come upon many affordable japanese options, from ramen shops to small-plate cafes to boba and creme puff joints to sushi. It's a good walk on foot, but safe and stimulating to the eye and palate. By the time you've reached the corner of Sawtelle blvd and Olympic blvd, you will have more choices than you'll possibly need. Enjoy...
if you are town during the 18-22 and 25-29 of sept, pellegrino is sponsoring their annual Dine Out event that offers pre-fixe lunches for $25 and dinner for $35 at participating restaurants. this will be an affordable way of trying some more expensive restaurants in the LA area (including a handful of places in santa monica).