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authentic french bistro food

Is there anyplace in Socal that does bistro like the neighborhood places in Paris, without the upscale yuppie factor?

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  1. I don't know if this is exactly what you're looking for (and I've never eaten here), but I've heard good things about Angelique Cafe downtown.


    1. Try Angelique ... you won't be disappointed ...
      840 S. Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014. call 213-623 8698.

      1. Cafe Beaujolais in Eagle Rock is friendly and unpretentious, and not too expensive either. Bistro de la Gare in South Pasadena, by Cafe Beaujolais' former owner, is another pretty good joint, though our second visit was much less impressive that our first, when they'd recently opened. And Le Petit Café, on Colorado in Santa Monica, is an Alsatian place with loads of charm and cheer and really good hearty food. We did enjoy Angelique; alas, we hear they've sold it.

        My New Year's resolution for 2007, BTW, is to try as many variations on the Steak Frites theme as my wallet and cholesterol levels will allow. So I will be watching this thread...

        3 Replies
        1. re: Will Owen

          Lucques. The frites have some fresh herbs fried along. Plus, with patience, you'll have hot crisp fries at the start, and beef-juice-soaked fries later (like the fries w/Dino's chicken, only beefy)! Also a nice arugula salad shares the plate. Oh, and there's a ramekin of bearnaise, too. I can't order anything else there for lunch.

          1. re: gnarlex

            I thought Lucques is pretty upscale... and maybe a little bit yuppy too, no?

            1. re: banquisha

              You're right on both counts, but I was just digreesing on Will Owen's quest for excellent steak frites, not the bistro topic, per se.

        2. Try Le Chef ... in southgate ... its worth the drive ...

          Le Chef - French Cuisine & Cocktails 8724 Garfield Ave #101 South Gate, CA 90280 Phone: (562)776-6067. p

          1. Lilly's in Venice. The food is good and the lunch special is a great deal. Also pleasant for brunch.

            Le Petite Cafe in Santa Monica/WLA. I haven't been there for a while, but it's always had great food and the atmosphere is very much like a neighborhood restaurant in France.

            1 Reply
            1. re: purplescout

              Second on Lilly's, especially for lunch.

            2. Cafe Beaujolais in Eagle Rock is the French neighborhood bistro that you are looking for. Really, this is it. Don't bother anywhere else.

              1. If you are central or westside in locale, then Pastis on Beverly Blvd. just a couple of buildings west of Crescent Hts. should provide the current look, the feel, and the food.
                www.lapastis.com for more info.

                1. Not really a French Bistro expert, so I cant speak to authenticity but I really like Frenchy's in Long Beach.


                  Ive been going there for some time, never been disappointed. Great service and fantastic meals. Good, reasonable, wine list.

                  Location will fool you (on Anaheim between Ximeno and Termino) in a ho hum building. But once your inside all is OK. Im a big fan of Frenchy's.

                  1. Just got back from Paris (was there over Thanksgiving) and we love Le Petite Bistro on Colorado Blvd. in Santa Monica.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: banquisha

                      Another good one would be Le Petit Jardin on Robertson Blvd just south of Pico -- it's very nondescript (doubles as a flower shop) outside, but there's tablecloths and candles on the tables and they do very good bistro food.

                      Their roast chicken is very good as is their entrecote.

                      1. re: NAspy

                        I've heard great things about this place and definitly will try it soon! Thanks!

                      2. re: banquisha

                        I believe the place is actually called Le Petit Cafe at 2842 Colorado while Le Petit Bistro is on La Cienega in the Weho area.

                        1. re: carter

                          Thanks for the correction Carter! I have never been to the one mentioned on La Cienega...

                      3. Bistro Hermitage on Culver Blvd. [?] in Culver City was pretty decent and reminded me of places I ate in Paris. Also, La Poubelle on Franklin in Hollywood.

                          1. There's a cute little bistro place right next to Doughboys on W 3rd St. I'd stop in for a quiche but the siren song of steak soup always draws me back to Doughboys.

                            1. French Market Cafe, 2321 Abbot Kinney, is pretty good and unpretentious for the most part - very casual and a fair amount of French customers. Great sandwiches if you're on the run - made on baguettes that would make any true bread lover cry tears of joy.

                              Lilly's is good as well - many more fancier menu choices and more formal - full bar, great wines and desserts. Definitely helps alot if you're a regular and/or speak French - carte blanche for those. On the same block of Abbot Kinney as the venerable Joe's - hey - that would be a great choice as well.

                              Joe's has excellent food that has alot of French influence, and the lunch menu is very reasonable in price considering the quality of food and level of service. Can't lose with the seafood choices there - flown in fresh from the East Coast. Lots of the produce is picked from the local farmers' markets, and 99% of the baked goods/desserts are made there - not outsourced.

                              1. Mimosa--they have cassoulet and a slammin mac'n'cheese.

                                Also, I went to this place on Washington Blvd near the beach in Playa del Rey and got a really yummy coq au vin for like $9 at lunch time. I don't remember the name...anyone?

                                1. I'll second Pastis and Mimosa, and add Amie's Bistro in Redondo Beach. C'est très parisienne.