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Dish (La Canada) -- review

Had a nice, casual dinner at Dish in La Canada on Wednesday night.

Was looking for something low-key and casual... and Dish came to mind.

Dish serves b'fast/lunch/dinner. It reminds me of a big house -- I like the main room, as it's not crowded with tables and the exterior walls have semi-circular booths -- which, I should point out, are beyond comfy!!

Warm sourdough rolls were brought out -- nice crusty outside, soft, warm bread on the inside. The butter melted perfectly --- very nice (I'm not a huge sourdough fan and I ate the whole thing!)

Had a nice penne pasta with chicken, spinach and baby tomato dish with a cream sauce. It was just perfect -- nothing that evoked inventive cooking, just solid, pasta dish that was served hot and was exactly what I needed. For $12.95 it was a steal (especially considering the overpriced, mediocre, and lukewarm dishes I've been subjected to lately).

There was a nice Syrah on the menu (Rock Rabbit).

My dining companion had the chicken with marsala wine sauce on a bed of linguini.

Again, this is not the place to go for a culinary explosion - but if you need a casual place with decent food for not a lot of money, it's a sure bet. I'd put it in the same genre as Green Street Restaurant -- with more of a mom and pop type feel.

The most notable was the service -- it was fantastic -- very genuine and friendly waitress.

Didn't see the bill, but figure it was about $35-40 for 2 entrees, a glass of wine, and a hot tea.

Looking forward to going back for b'fast (which they excel in).


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  1. A couple of weeks ago I had an EXCELLENT cheeseburger there. I wasn't expecting much from this restaurant when I first walked in but I ended up being happily surprised. My burger was cooked perfectly, the meat was tasty and juicy, and I asked for extra cheese and they were happy to comply (often times I ask for extra cheese and I seem to get less than usual!) I thought that the fries were good too.

    1. Yes, I agree. Great basic food.

      Does anyone know the history of the building? There's a similar structure on Los Feliz that was once one of the original Brown Derby Restaurants. Was this also once a BD?

      1. I have been recommending this place for about a year now, glad more people are discovering its casual charm & good solid food.

        They are apparently working up a new menu this fall.

        1. I've had excellent short ribs there. However, their red velvet cupcake was dry. I've heard this complaint of red velvet cupcakes in general at other bakeries/restaurants so I'm wondering if it's just a general LA thing- can't get good red velvet cake?

          1. Yep - looks definitely like something along the lines of Green Street or Marston's, homestyle chow that's not too heavy on the wallet. It's also pretty close to where I work so I definitely look forward to checking out during lunch some time. Thanks for the heads-up!

            1. I need to get back up there; haven't been in a while, but remember it as a pleasant and friendly place with consistently good food, I feel a notch or two above Green Street in fact. Met a friend for an early (11 am) lunch there once, and they had no problem with his ordering off the breakfast menu and me from the lunch one.

              Yes, that burger is good enough that I've had to make a conscious effort to order something else, just to give the rest of the menu a chance!

              1. They have really great breakfasts on the weekends, with corn johnny cakes, apple sausage, and really good french toast. Unfortunately, they stop with the Breakfast menu at 11:00AM!! They serve a very limited b-fast menu after 11, but it doesn't include my faves. I think 11 is WAYYY too early to end breakfast on the weekend.

                1 Reply
                1. re: annalulu

                  Yeah, that's just wrong. I would imagine that the problem is with mixing breakfast and lunch items coming off the same grills, or cooktop space, or something like that. But cutting off weekend breakfast before noon means we'll never have a Sunday breakfast there.

                2. yuck yuck yuck! i dined there maybe a year ago and vowed to never go back. i had some kind of salad (it was on their specials menu) - it was spinach salad with strawberries and bacon and walnuts... spinach was wilted and old-tasting, strawberries were obviously not fresh, the dishes themselves needed to be replaced because they were grayed out from years of wear (ie silverware markings on the dish)

                  was this just a one time thing?

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: jwn

                    yeah, had to have been an off day. I've dined there a handful of times over the last few years and never had such an experience with their salads. sounds disgusting!! I'd say if you are in the area, go back and at least try b'fast.

                  2. no - not a one time thing, our last experience there wasn't very good either. despite the already long wait (45 minutes +), the hostess kept seating her friends before the rest of us who were patiently waiting. i ordered a grilled tuna melt (breakfast was over by then), but received a regular tuna sandwich. the server then said, "well, it's the same thing". water wasn't refilled and we waited another 20 minutes after the dishes were cleared for the check. we won't be back either.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: StefTodd

                      far from a one-time thing...i live within walking distance, and wanted soooo much to love the place. have had the worst service i've ever experienced there, TWICE...i don't mean inattentive or quite busy, but incompetent and rude at the same time...also, have had bad meals at bfast, lunch AND dinner,including one episode that is legend in my foodie family now:a hair was discovered in my daughter's pasta....quite clearly NOT hers...we finally semaphored our waiter, who bent down to look more closely, took the plate away, and as soon as he was behind the double kitchen doors, he pulled the hair off the plate and brought it back to her.....OMG! and seemed bewildered when we objected to that resolution...and even more confused when we wanted it removed from the bill. that was the last visit, so help me God.

                    2. Wow. I'm so sad to hear so many unpleasant stories about Dish. Ate there last night. The FOOD was amazing. I had penne pasta with pesto cream sauce and chicken apple sausage (I basically order it for the sausage which is to die for!) and my friend had a salmon dish served with some amazing snap peas. Our waitress was, admittedly, a little inattentive. Nothing was refilled... at all and she was just pretty much standing around and chatting with the rest of the staff. But once we got used to flagging her (seemed like she was waiting around for people to wave her down before she moved in - interesting technique) it was really lovely. Also, maybe it was just last night, but the drinks were VERY stiff (i.e. a white russian that was nearly clear) to the point of being almost undrinkable and needing to be sent back to be dilluted. I have to say though, in spite of the up and down quality of service, I LOVE the food there and I've been there for breakfast, lunch, and dinner a number of times and never had a bad experience. It's nothing fancy, but it really is great comfort food (when it's hairless).

                      1. We don't head out to La Canada very often, but I fondly recall one lunch there years ago when we happened to be in the area. Nice, family-friendly place. I loved the fireplace - it was a rainy day, so it gave a warm touch. Food and service was both decent. I wouldn't mind returning.

                        1. Wow, unless the waiters wear hair nets, I would imagine that a hair on the food would not be unheard of from time to time, you'd think the waiter would have been told how to deal with the unfortunate situation! Although, when it happens to me at home, I guess that's about the same thing that I do!

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: jackattack

                            yes, but when it happens at home, you know whose hair it is...
                            as you said, it was an unfortunate situation, made worse by the handling.

                          2. We also live close.

                            The food is good and I believe a fair price for the quality

                            HOWEVER (note big caps)

                            The service is awful - not once, not twice, almost everytime we go.
                            It's really sad because there is HUGE potential for good food here but it almost always comes out to be a poor dining experience.

                            Their food has come out on multiple occasions from luke-warm to cold - add this to inattentive service = if you do send back, you will definately be eating alone.

                            My wife keeps going back because she does enjoy a cocktail with dinner and it is hard to find a casual place in the area that fits the bill. She now goes with her girl-friends because she knows I will not return.

                            When we are looking for cocktails with dinner in the area we now go to Conrads and split the fried chicken dinner (i highly reccomend it) - unfortunately this place is clean but in dire need of a remodel.