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It's my BIRTHDAY!

A good buddy of mine wants to take me out to eat.

What I'm looking for is something moderate in price (I don't want to make it too pricey for her -- we're probably going to get a bottle of wine anyway) anywhere between Pasadena and Irvine.

We love trying foods from new countries and digging in to the obscure. But if that's not possible, we just enjoy good stuff. Good quality, good service and a decent or fun atmosphere. Great food a must.

Thanks in advance.

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  1. I'll bet you'll get more helpful responses if you can narrow it just a little since that's an area that encompasses hundreds and hundreds of restaurants. What would you consider moderate? 15pp? 30pp? 50pp? And any particular cuisine that you would prefer since it's your birthday? Would downtown be best? further south? The more specific you can be, the more helpful the responses people can give.

    9 Replies
    1. re: mollyomormon

      we're really willing to go almost anywhere in the area and we're VERY openminded when it comes to food. She's been sending me links for restaurants along the, I think, beach cities. I just moved to the LA area a couple months ago, so I am not that familiar with the area. We probably would prefer not to go downtown or the westside, but maybe somewhere in the OC area or maybe the San Gabriel Valley (around Pasadena).

      Moderately priced is about equal or less than 30/entree. maybe more around 25.

      I am really experimental when it comes to food and will try anything once. I'm not looking for anything too crazy like lizard legs tartar or anything like that, but want to give new flavors a try. I'm fine with American food, French food, Italian food, Chinese food, Mexican food, but I think something more exotic might be exciting. Afghani, Peruvian, Ethopian... I've tried and liked.

      It's not too crazy, but she suggested a place called Aegean Cafe in Laguna Beach.

      Thanks for the suggestion!

      1. re: jessijessi

        In Pasadena, and old town for that matter, there's a Tibetan place, I've tried their brunch/lunch buffet, it's quite good. Also there's an Afghani place, which I have not tried.
        Tibetan: Tibet Nepal House, http://www.tibetnepalhouse.com/
        Afgani: Azeen's Afghani Restaurant, here's an LAT review: http://www.calendarlive.com/dining/10...

        I'm actually really curious about when women (or men) started referring to their women friends as "buddies." I don't really understand why this traditionally male term is used for referring to women.

        1. re: slacker

          I'll submit a rec for Cafe Santorini in Old Pas. Patio lends itself nicely to the gorgeous weather we're having.

          I've found that "buddy," when used to describe an acquaintance, connotes a certain level of not only friendship, but real camaraderie. I don't see any misuse of the word at all.

          -----
          Cafe Santorini
          70 W Union St, Pasadena, CA 91103

          1. re: slacker

            I've been to Tibet Nepal House, and quite liked it, but honestly, it didn't seem that much different from Thai food. I wonder if I ordered something Thai like.

            If I were you, I try one of the great Vietnamese places in OC. Check board for recs (I don't know the area well enough, sorry.)

            I've used "buddy" since at least the early 90s, and probably before. I guess it never occurred to me that it's a male nickname. It does mean a real camaraderie, I don't know what a female equivalent would be. Girlfriend doesn't work (it sounds old fashioned or means lover.)

            1. re: slacker

              i didn't want to confuse the matter by calling her my girlfriend.

              1. re: jessijessi

                "Buddy" it is, then. Are we intriguing you with any of these suggestions?

                Happy Birfday, by the way.

                1. re: jessijessi

                  Must be the younger generation, definitely younger than me. We all still say girlfriend, and it connotes a bond that's stronger than what I hear in "buddy." Btw, I never said anything about misuse. It just saddens me a little that women are using a traditionally male term now to describe their female friends.

                  Anyway, back to the chow.

                  1. re: slacker

                    I think that the OP was hoping to avoid confusion by using the term buddy. The OP now appears to be a woman, but it's not like that was totally clear from the first post. I think OP was trying to say that the person taking her out to dinner is a friend as opposed to being OP's significant other.

                    1. re: slacker

                      I didn't mean to be rude when I said girlfriend sounded old fashioned.

            2. High Quality food at a very moderate price , Very good Service, Very fun Googie ambiance, about half way between Pas / Irvine. Check out the link. I took my son and daughter-in-law. She asked him to take her back for her birthday a few weeks later. jessijessi, HappyHappy Birthday.

              http://www.parkavedining.com/

              1. If I were celebrating my birthday in Los Angeles, I'd want to dine at Lucques.

                4 Replies
                1. re: ChefJune

                  i'd second that. i'd want french, that's for sure. Pastis is another option I enjoy. for italian, i would recommend pizzeria mozza - fits the bill $$$ wise, but might be tough to snag an ideal time for a table.

                  1. re: jaydee

                    For food just asd good for less $$ and reservation hell, try Caffe Angeli down melrose from Mozza

                    Good food, great service, good itlaina pizzas, pastas, entrees, appetizers, salads, great wine and beer. Good service. Good price. No month wait for a table.

                  2. re: ChefJune

                    I love Lucques, but it won't qualify for "not too pricey".

                    1. re: SauceSupreme

                      It might if they go for Sunday Supper.

                  3. Ethiopian (broken record, here)

                    Go to little Ethiopia on Fairfax south of Wilshire. Go to Rahel or Messob. Get a few combo platters, order the coffee service (with your dinner order..it pays to order ahead of time)

                    or
                    Moroccan:
                    Go to Chameau or Moun of Tunis. Get a moroccan feast complete with bellydancers at Moun of Tunis.

                    Or Japanese:
                    Go to Musha for pub food or Gonpachi for the soba noodles.
                    Go to Midori for all you can eat sushi.
                    Go to Sushi gen for great sashimi specials.