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San Fernando Hotspots

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Hi, I am a 21 year old recent culinary school grad that was born and raised in the Conejo Valley, but has since moved to Eugene, Oregon. I am planning a routine visit back to Ventura county, but have decided to focus some attention towards the San Fernando Valley, as I will be spending a considerable amount of time there as well. My mom spent the majority of her life there, but most of her favorite restaurants have either closed down or changed ownership since her departure.

My main interests are reasonably priced, established, ethnic restaurants of all sorts. I am open to just about anything, but it is extremely daunting for a novice like myself to be able to decipher the good restaurants from the bad amidst the sea of strip malls and chain restaurants. I will be staying off of Victory right by the 405 freeway, but I am always up for a drive if it's worth my while. Last spring break I visited and drove down one street, I don't recall the name but it had "Circus Liquor" on it (Vineland perhaps), and I saw several italian and mexican restaurants that looked like they had the potential to be good, but who knows. Any ideas or feedback? Help is much appreciated, thanks in advance!!!

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  1. Ethnic--Carnival (on Woodman), Alcazar, NoHo thai restaurants or head to hollywood for sanam luang or jitlada, Tama Sushi...

    Been to Madeleine Bistro or Chili My Soul? both worth visiting...

    1. Kyushu ramen in Van Nuys..
      Pho 99 in van nuys
      Il Tiramisu In Sherman oaks
      Boneyard Bistro in Sherman oaks
      Simon's Cafe In Sherman oaks
      Gungadin in Studio City
      Artisan Cheese Gallery in Studio City
      Yogurt Zone in Studio City
      Asanebo Sushi in Studio City
      Vegan Table in Studio City
      Vendome liquor in Toluca Lake for wine and beer tastings
      Alcazar in Encino
      4 on 6 sushi in Encino
      Ce Fiore yogurt in Encino
      Shiraz in Encino
      Gorikee in Woodland Hills
      Chili My soul in Encino
      The Stand hot dogs in Encino
      Weiner Factory in Sherman oaks
      Clay Oven in Sherman oaks
      The Great Greek in Sherman oaks
      Humus bar in Tarzana
      Gochi in Encino/Tarzana
      Woodlands Pure INdian in Chatsworth
      Vegetable Delight in Granada Hills
      La Frite in Sherman oaks or Woodland Hills
      Nats Early Bite in Sherman oaks
      Hugo's in Sherman oaks
      Cici's Cafe in Tarzana
      Bobby's diner in Woodland His
      Snapper Jon's fish Market in Sherman oaks
      A&W seafood and Dim Sum in northridge (not as good as in the SGV)
      Alexis Greek Cafe in Northridge
      Brent's Deli in Northridge
      Vallarta market's prepped food, deli, and bakery (multiple locations)
      Gelson's salad bar, prepped foods, and deli (multiple locations)
      Hong Kong 88 chinese in Sherman oaks
      Marmalade Cafe in Sherman oaks
      Cafe Bizou in sherman oaks
      Vin Loi Tofu in Reseda
      Mulberry Street Pizza in Encino
      India Sweets and Spices in Canoga Park
      Follow your Heart in Canoga Park

      There's more

      1. Great Thai food at Top Thai in Reseda, (especially their northern specialties on the back page of their menu).

        Top Thai
        7333 Reseda Blvd
        Reseda, CA 91335
        (818) 705-8902

        So much good Mexican food you will never exhaust them all. Try an asada burrito ordered "spicy" from Rincon Taurino on Van Nuys Blvd. near Parthenia (they have other locations).

        Rincon Taurino
        8708 Van Nuys Blvd
        Panorama City, CA 91402
        (818) 892-7444

        How about:

        Las Fuentes Mexican #2
        18415 Van Owen @ Reseda Blvd.
        818 708 3344

        Or:

        Zankou Chicken
        5658 Sepulveda Blvd. @ Burbank Blvd.
        Van Nuys
        818 781 0615

        At Zankou I like to get at least the half chicken and then slather on plenty of their garlic sauce or try their tarna plate.

        Best of luck with your chowing.

        1. The best mexican in the SF valley is, IMO, found at taquerias and for the best taquerias, check out Bandini's website: http://tacohunt.blogspot.com/.

          My fave taco spot is El Taco Llama; there are several locations but I prefer the one in Northridge at Corbin/Parthenia.

          Other great choices (both ethnic and not) in my neck of the woods (Reseda/Northridge) would be:

          Pita Pocket (Nordhoff/Reseda, next to Vons
          )Mandarin Deli (Reseda and...Prairie I believe? Slightly further north than Nordhoff)
          Pho So 1 (Reseda Blvd just north of Sherman Way)
          Rincome Thai (Devonshire and Balboa in Northridge)
          Falafal Palace (Reseda/Prairie in Northridge)
          It's all Good Kabob House (Reseda/Vanowen - there is also a taco llama there and it's good but I prefer the other location)
          Melody's Mexican Kitchen ( Same owners as Las Fuentes; Reseda just south of Vanowen)
          Firehouse Greek (Victory, just east of Reseda)
          Ravanelli's Pizza (awesome family owned joint, Reseda/Chase)

          There are plenty more, but I'm blanking out at the moment.

          2 Replies
          1. re: jencounter

            My two favorite Mexican joints in the valley aren't actually taquerias -- Dos Arbolitos and Las Fuentes.

            The place where I eat most often in the valley, though, is Pho So 1. I used to visit the Reseda Blvd location back when I worked in Calabasas, but now I'm eating at the location on Sepulveda because I can stop into 99 Ranch too.

            In Calabasas, you can find one of my favorite sushi spots, Shibuya. It's tiny. Tiiiny. It's this -> <- small, and there's no reservations, so locals line up before it opens.

            -----
            Pho So 1
            6450 Sepulveda Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 91411

            Pho So 1
            7231 Reseda Blvd, Reseda, CA 91335

            Dos Arbolitos Restaurant
            9034 Woodley Ave, North Hills, CA 91343

            Las Fuentes
            18415 Vanowen St, Los Angeles, CA 91335

            Shibuya
            4774 Park Granada Ste 8B, Calabasas, CA 91302

            1. re: SauceSupreme

              Oh! You just reminded me of a newly discovered (to me, anyway - thanks CH!) sushi place in Woodland Hills: Tatsuki. It's just down the street from Brothers. It's tiny, neighborhood-ish and fabulous.

          2. SUSHI = Shibuya in Calabasas (on expensive side)
            KOREAN = BCD Soon Tofu on Saticoy by Reseda

            Gorikee in Woodland Hills for garlic fusion (very reasonably priced and yummy)

            Las Fuentes in Reseda for Mexican food

            1 Reply
            1. re: WHills

              Yes, I also forgot BCD (saticoy and lindley)! And Gorikee!

              I went to Gorikee for lunch but didn't order the burger but husband did. After I tasted it, I spent the rest of my meal envious of his yummy burger. Mine was okay (I had the salmon) but his was fantastic.