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Oct 24, 2007 07:26 PM

los angeles/bev hills

i'll be in LA this weekend and am looking for a great place to have lunch near the santa monica pier and near beverly hills. looking for serious food with a somewhat lively (but not too much foo foo LA) atmosphere and great wine list.

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  1. Lunch only? I would say in Santa Monica Ivy at the Shore, Buffalo Club, Boa or Chinois on Main (Wolfgang Puck's.) Otherwise it's the hotels. At dinner, there are many more choices. In Beverly Hills you might like The Grlll, Chaya Brasserie or the Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel.

    1. Yes, Ivy At The Shore (1535 Ocean Ave.) is one of my favorite restaurants. It's open all day, and the menu is American comfort food. Maybe you don't drink, but they serve wonderful tropical cocktails made from fresh juices - umbrellas and everything. I usually order the fried chicken or the cajun prime rib, but that's just a very small menu sample. You will not be disappointed.

      1. For a serious food lunch in Beverly Hills, the best choice remains Spago, though the Grill on the Alley and Enoteca Drago would also be fine selections.. Near the Santa Monica Pier, Abode, Boa or the Lobster may be the best weekend choices--I disagree with the suggestions for Ivy at the Shore (very expensive for mediocre food and about as "foo foo LA" as it gets in Santa Monica) and, regrettably, neither Buffalo Club nor Chinois serve weekend lunch.

        1 Reply
        1. re: New Trial

          Ditto on Spago & Grill on the Alley.

          There is nothing mediocre about the food at Ivy at the Shore or the regular Ivy on Robertson in Beverly Hills. That said, I wouldn't recommend them in this instance - it is comfort food, nothing I would call "serious" or inventive is on the menu, it is a pretty "frou frou" crowd, and whenever I've been at either location for a weekend lunch, the place is pretty dead. They are much more lively during the weekday power lunch/ladies-who-lunch time.

          One other suggestion - Father's Office in Santa Monica. It's essentially a bar that serves a short menu of great "serious" food, including what many say is one of the best burgers in the country (no subsitutions or deletions however) and a cheese plate my boyfriend is in love with. They open at Noon on the weekends, and I've been at about 2pm before, when it was certainly lively and fun. It becomes a hassle at nighttime, when it gets insanely crowded with long waits. It's not terribly close to the pier, but that burger is fantastic...

        2. How about Lucques in West Hollywood? They serve a great lunch, you can sit in the courtyard under the sun (hopefully the smoke will be clearing up by then), and you can have a leisurely lunch. It's a great place.

          1. Go to Rustic Canyon. Both The Ivy and Ivy at the Shore are the epitome of "foo foo LA".