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I usually can't stand Maria's Italian Kitchen

Muhlyssa Dec 14, 2006 04:17 PM

We live up the street to the Sherman Oaks location and I've generally not liked it. I've found it very ordinary, not creative and no atmosphere. It's a great place if you have kids though. The problem is, hubby likes it. A few weeks ago, we were in Woodland Hills and ended up for lunch at their WH location.

They had a special menu with some fall dishes and I tried a Pumpkin Ravioli with Curry Cream that was really tasty. A week or so later, I got an Entertainment Book from my folks and noticed they were in there.

So last night I gave my local one (Sherman Oaks) a try and got another one of their seasonal dishes, Pumpkin Chicken and Fontina Lasagne, and loved it. It was savory and sweet (a favorite combo of mine) and gooey and filling. My husband had his old stand-by, gnocci, which just looked boring and doughy to me but he likes it. I recommend trying the pumpkin dishes if you are a fan of pumpkin.

  1. w
    WestsideLisa Dec 20, 2006 01:08 AM

    I was considering having my rehearsal dinner there, as their menu was very reasonably priced. We went for dinner to try out two of the entrees, and they were...um...well...gross. Square little beef ravioli that looked and tasted just like something out of the Chef Boyardee can, and chicken marsala that was really heavy and GREASY. Ewww.

    1. Emme Dec 19, 2006 06:18 AM

      If I'm looking for a healthy dinner, chopped salad sans cheese or salami, and chicken primavera w/ garlic sans oil... nothing breathtaking, but healthy.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Emme
        z
        ziggy99 Dec 19, 2006 10:39 PM

        "nothing breathtaking" - understatement of the year my friend. i think it's more like boooorrrrrring! the italian government should force them to change their name to Maria's Italianwannabe Kitchen.

      2. w
        Wes Dec 19, 2006 04:23 AM

        Carbonara !

        1. SauceSupreme Dec 18, 2006 11:26 PM

          I, too, am a fan of their calzone. And one time I had a risotto dish that was respectable. All in all, pretty decent for an Italian chain; I'd go there ahead of Mi Piace. (I go to the one in Agoura Hills next to the bicycle shop.)

          1. Das Ubergeek Dec 15, 2006 01:51 PM

            I'm just OK on Maria's, but their fried calamari is excellent, I really liked their chopped salad (with mustard vinaigrette, I *hate* balsamic vinaigrette), and the calzone's not half bad.

            1. davinagr Dec 14, 2006 09:40 PM

              I know this sounds ordinary, but I really like their Chicken Piccata. I typically go to the one in Calabasas, they have a nice outdoor patio area which is quite pleasant.

              3 Replies
              1. re: davinagr
                m
                malibumike Dec 19, 2006 02:57 PM

                Are you sure you dont mean Agoura Hills, I dont see on in Calabasas on their web site.

                1. re: malibumike
                  Das Ubergeek Dec 19, 2006 04:54 PM

                  It's in Woodland Hills, about ten feet from the Calabasas city limit.

                  1. re: malibumike
                    davinagr Dec 19, 2006 08:52 PM

                    It's the one on Valley Circle, on the cusp of West Hills and Calabasas.

                2. WildSwede Dec 14, 2006 09:28 PM

                  I remember one year they had some sort of pumpkin dessert that was really good. Whenever I go, I usually get the Cioppino (with a side of marinara to dump in).

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