Need Dinner Rec for SUPER picky eater
Okay, so I'm going to have dinner with someone who's a very picky eater. Her favorite restaurant is "Cheesecake Factory" and I think she likes Italian. I'd prefer something not too expensive, of course good, probably need a lot of variety, nice-she's kind of a neat freak so I don't think a hole in the wall would work for her.
I live in the Pasadena area, but will gladly love to hear about some other recommendations.
Thanks for the help!
Um, there's a Buca di Beppo in Pasadena (that I hate to admit I actually really like). Gets really packed though. I had nearly an entire bottle of wine myself waiting for a table. Maybe that's why I liked it so much...
I think there's also an Il Fornaio in Pasadena. Nothing amazing, but should fit the bill and it's a chain but feels less chain-y than Buca. Food is a step up too.
If her favorite restaurant is Cheesecake Factory, either of these should blow her socks off. I'd much rather eat at either of these chains than CF.
Buca has the cheesy, loud, big family style appeal. If it's just two of you, it might be hard to manage since portions are HUGE and meant to be shared among 4-6.
Il Fornaio is a chain gunning for an upscale white tablecloth appeal. It's more polished than Cheesecake Factory, for sure. Someone who loooooove CF would probably be impressed by how proper and fancy Il Fornaio is by comparison.
A smattering of (what I see as) options...
Outtake Bistro in Studio City is varied
What about taking her to somewhere like a tapas bar that would provide many small plate options like Ole Tapas Bar or Minibar
Cafe Cordiale in Sherman Oaks is also non-scary
Caioti Pizza Cafe on Tujunga
Eclectic Wine Bar on Lankershim
Delis always seem safe to me with varied menus
Salads Galore up in Encino or The Dressing Room in Sherman Oaks for fresh fare
Mo's in Burbank
Il Forniao will probably do..large enough menu to choose from. Celestino for a bit more higher-end, but moderately priced. If she really really wants to stay in the Cheesecake vicinity, you two can hop on over to Mi Piace -- they can satisfy the sweet tooth like CH can.