Wilshire Restauant in Santa Monica
Has anyone tried this restaurant... and if so, What is it like. I am looking for a very special restaurant for my mother's 90th birthday. She likes continental food. Should I consider the Wilshire Restaurant?
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Although I like Wilshire (especially the ice cream shoppe dessert menu they offered on Tuesday nights), there are probably better choices for your purpose. Wilshire is attractive but the best seating is outside and it favors a young and noisy crowd. The food is good (not really Continental, though) but not outstanding, particularly for that price point. Among the places you might want to consider instead are La Cachette [www.lacachetterestaurant.com]--nouvelle French, Melisse [www.melisse.com]--more classic French, Ortolan [www.ortolanrestaurant.com]--modern French, Spago [www.wolfgangpuck.com]--Cal-Asian, Valentino [www.ValentinoRestaurant.com ]--alta cucina Italian or Vincenti [www.vincentiristorante.com]--alta cucina Italian. If she is an adventurous seafood lover, take a look at Providence as well [www.providencela.com]. A lot of good buzz on here for the newly reopened Bastide [www.bastidela.com] as well but I have yet to get there. Have a great time wherever you wind up!
Yes, it is very good, yet you should plan on going early, per her age bracket, and then you will avoid the noise and hip factor that tends to show up later on. At 6:30 or 7pm you are fine, but by nine, well, good luck.
Make sure Matt Straus the sommelier takes care of your wine needs. He really knows wines.
I thought of Michael's as well, but not really in this chilly weather. I'm not a fan of those patio heatlamps (not particularly Michael's, but anywhere) -- I always feel like I'm being grilled on one side and still cold on the other.
I gotta go for La Cachette. Really fine food, quiet room, good service.
My other suggestion would be Gardens on Glendon in the S/E side of Westwood Village. Not the caliber or expense of La Cachette, but very comfortable and they are very experienced at catering to that clientele of a certain age and history.
Wilshire and a birthday for a 90 year old mother are probably a bad mix.
As someone else suggested above, Michael's might be a better choice, or even One Pico (at Shutters) -- both of which are in the same area.