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best buffet or smorgasbord

visiting los angeles end of april. We are a group of 4 and often go to the chinese buffets when we travel because they generally offer something for everyone.

could someone please suggest some great places to eat at a cheap or reasonable price?

here are some criteria:

1. best dinner buffet

2. best dinner option at cheap price

3. best breakfast option.

we will be staying at a hotel near LAX.


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  1. Not exactly cheap, but the best dinner buffet in L.A. would be the Universal Hilton. Cost is just under $40 per person for Thursday thru Sunday night seafood buffet.

    If you have a car, you might want to drive out to the San Gabriel Valley for some good Chinese food. The prices are generally pretty cheap, unless you go to one of the upscale Chinese places.

    1. at a cheap or reasonable price, the breakfast option i would choose would be dinah's family restaurant.
      order either the german pancake, the baked apple pancake, the chile relleno omlette, or the swedish pancakes served with lingonberry butter.

      Dinah's Family Restaurant. 6521 S Sepulveda Blvd (at Centinela Blvd). Los Angeles
      California 90045. Phone: (310) 645-0456.

      if you like thai food, a good restaurant to have dinner 'at a cheap price' would be Ayara Thai cuisine
      Ayara is located just a few minutes from LAX.

      6245 West 87th Street
      Westchester, California 90045

      Telephone (310) 410-8848
      Fax (310) 410-8849

      1 Reply
      1. re: westsidegal

        Dinah's also has "all-you-can-eat" most nights... just call for what's being served up each night...

      2. Chinese buffets are much less common in the Los Angeles area than much of the rest of the country. That having been said, the best Chinese buffet I've had (not counting fancy hotel buffets like the Universal Hilton) anywhere in the U.S. is West Coast Seafood, 1655 S. Azusa Ave. in Hacienda Heights. Unfortunately that's probably about 40 miles away from LAX. Decent Chinese buffets that are closer to you include Buffet City, 11819 Wilshire Bl; New Panda Buffet, 5120 Rodeo Road near La Brea; and Downtown Buffet in the Baldwin Hills mall at Crenshaw and Martin Luther King Bl.

        1. How about Buffetland in Koreatown?? I've never been there myself, but based on what I've read here, for a buffet, it's more than decent. I believe it's AYCE Korean BBQ and some typical vareties of sushi as well as your standard "Asian" buffet fare....

          1925 West Olympic Boulevard, Los Angeles CA

          3 Replies
          1. re: hch_nguyen

            buffetland aka secret garden is not bad. but my gripe is that they need to scrub down the tables and seats cause they are so damn sticky. bleh! buffetland is serve yourself kbbq, sushi and misc. korean food like chap chae, etc. its a good place to go if you want to help yourself to the meats and not have to rely on your waiter to bring out add'l servings.

            since you are in the lax area, jerne at the ritz in marina del rey has a great sunday brunch buffet. if you are down for southern/soul food, aunt kizzy's in marina del rey has a sunday brunch buffet as well.

            1. re: wilafur

              the ritz carlton prices will be high, so call to confirm price before you actually set foot in the place.

              1. re: westsidegal

                serves me right for scanning vs reading. =)

          2. Given that I am on the outer end of LA, there are others on this board far better informed about the area near LAX, but what about Brazilian for best dinner buffet? Fogo de Chao in BH as well as other less exepensive and reasonably location-friendly choices seem to get good reviews on CH (with "reasonable price" tending to be a personal opinion in my view) . For "best dinner option at cheap price", Mexican food comes to mind - LA does have some killer places...

            1. I may get a some negative feedback for this but I'm suggesting Hometown Buffet. They have Breakfast and Dinner, I don't know about lunch. Dinners about $10.00 and breakfast is even less. It isn't fancy but it isn't meant to be. They have every comfort food under the sun so if you're travelling and missing home it could be perfect.Meatloaf,fried chicken,cinnamon rolls,salads,soups,mac n cheese you name it. I enjoyed it.It's not five star cuisine and it's noisy and bright plus you may find the pizza decorated with a chicken wing or broccoli dropped in the soup or you get the picture BUT it's good clean fun and it is good grub. I think they have one in Hawthorne and that's not too far from LAX. (I don't think)

              5 Replies
              1. re: likesweets

                We went once for dinner to the Westchester location on Sepulveda. Horrible doesn't begin to cover it.

                1. re: Servorg

                  . I knew I'd get a have a hard time for that posting. I went once, I was hungry ,craving home "style" cooking and it was all there. I'm wondering what was horrible and what were your expectations? Sorry you had a negative experience there.

                  1. re: likesweets

                    My expectations were really low, and somehow they were exceeded in a negative direction. There was just nothing that was good. Dried out meat, overcooked veggies, tasteless and crumbly bread and soup without seasoning, (among the things I recall - and which I am trying to repress due to PTHTBSS - Post Traumatic Hometown Buffet Stress Syndrome). Maybe breakfast would be better. One thing I have noticed, even the food they show in their television ad's doesn't look appetizing to me, and that must be a hard thing to do given the fact that places like The Olive Garden are able to make their dreck at least "look" good.

                    1. re: Servorg

                      imho, hometown buffet serves one good dish: their cucumber salad.
                      everything else is inedible.
                      even their soft serve is terrible.

                  2. re: Servorg

                    One more thought because this place can really get a bad rap and people expext more. I thought of it as a fun cafeteria style place and felt like a kid again. Beverages included is a pretty good deal in of it's own if you're on a budget.

                2. Don't know if you've ever been to Soup Plantation, but their food is pretty decent considering the price and variety. Mostly salads and soups, they usually have something for just about everybody. The closest one to where you're staying around LAX is in Marina del Rey.

                  You'll also be very close to a Pinkberry which is in the adjacent strip mall on Lincoln. I'm personally not a fan of their "chilly bliss" as I prefer Red Mango if diving into the realm of frozen yogurt, but it seems to be on most out-of-towners' hit list for must-tries while in LA.

                  Soup Plantation
                  13455 Maxella Ave (corner of Maxella & Del Rey, just east of Lincoln Blvd)
                  Marina del Rey, CA 90292

                  4260 Lincoln Blvd (next to Starbucks)
                  Marina del Rey, CA 90292

                  1. There's a Hilton on Century Blvd, I vaguely recall a lunch buffet there or another large hotel on Century Blvd, but not sure about dinner. You could check with a few of the big hotels if nothing else comes up. And no, I wouldn't eat at Hometown Buffet. My standards are really low, too.

                    I would recommend the Chinese/seafood buffet I recently visited in Long Beach but it's too much of a drive from LAX during weekday evenings. There was a pretty wide variety and it was edible and cheap, with a few interesting things. It's right off the 405 Freeway at Cherry (Hokkaido).