Moderate priced restaurant in West L.A./Santa Monica
Sounds like Nook fits the bill perfectly. They have a small but reasonably priced wine + beer list and have great food at great prices. Check out my review of the place for an idea of what kind of food/environment, etc. it has.
There are so many places on Sawtelle:
-Sawtelle Kitchen has lots of reasonably priced east/west dishes and you can bring your own wine for a reasonable corkage fee. I highly recommend the seabass w/ crispy mushrooms on top and citrusy sauce. I think it's only about $18.
- Hide has excellent sushi at very good prices unless you're looking for a romantic atmostphere. My DH and I get stuffed for about $60 total.
The best thing about that area is that you can walk to Beard Papa's after for some incredible cream puffs and coffee for desert.
Closer to the beach:
- This place may be too casual but if you're right by the beach, Cha Cha Chicken has a cute outdoorsy patio and heat lamps and very good jerk chicken or ropa vieja w/ plantains and cuban style rice for about $7 or 8. It's BYOB w/o any corkage.
- Primitivo on Abbot Kinney has a lot of "tapas" plates for under $15 and a very good wine selection.
- Lily's on Abbot Kinney has a great atmosphere and a very cute garden. Excellent French food and very good wine. Don't know what you mean by "moderate" but two can eat very well for under $100.