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Mar 31, 2008 04:32 PM

Basque in/around SF Valley (or any recommended Tapas/Wine spots without breaking the bank)?

I've been looking for a good Basque spot for some time and can't seem to find one. I'd be willing to do a little driving from Burbank if it's worth it.

Alternately, a solid, reasonably-priced Spanish tapas or wine bar in or around the Valley would be great. [We've enjoyed AOC and BIN 8945, but I'm looking for something a bit more frugal, if possible. Also, I've heard that Eight-18 is tasty but pricey and inconsistent. ]

Thanks for the input.

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  1. For a Basque restaurant, as far as I know (and, as usual, I would love to be contradicted), you are going to have to do more than a little driving -- meaning your choices are Chino or Bakersfield.

    I like Ole Tapas in Sherman Oaks (or is it Studio City?). It's not special but it's fine.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Das Ubergeek

      It's Studio City just east of Fulton on the north side of the street.

      1. re: Das Ubergeek

        Do yourself a serious favor and drive out to Benji's Basque Restaurant in Bakersfield. The food is delicious, the portions are huge, and it is ridiculously cheap.

        4001 Rosedale Highway
        Bakersfield, CA 93308
        corner of Rosedale Highway and Gibson Avenue

        1. re: carriedushey

          Burbank to Bakersfield is a serious drive, but I'll definitely make it a point to check it out sometime (delicious, generous, and cheap - what more could you ask for?).

          1. re: mcmachete

            If you go to Bakersfield, a scant 1 1/2 hours on the road stay for an extra night and then try Woolgrowers. Absolutely another one of the best.

        2. re: Das Ubergeek

          Since the change of ownership, Ole has really slipped. It is all they can do now to keep the doors open. 818 is very inconsistent.
          Go to a good restaurant like Max or the Boneyard Bistro and just order appetizers and various wines by the glass.

        3. Not exactly Basque but in north Glendale there is Ingredients, which is most definitely Spanish in flare. Here are some small bites offered on Fri & Sat:

          radishes w/sea salts and citrus butter 3
          roasted beets layered w/peppered goats cheese, pistachio and balsamic-honey 6
          duck confit tossed with pears, reggiano, almonds and quince 8
          poached wild salmon sous vide in mustard emulsion w/soy beans and blood orange marmalade 12
          merguez sausage on white bean ragout with saffron-onion jelly and harissa 8
          smoked prosciutto (speck) w/ berolina bread stix, olive chutney, aioili 7
          boquerrones, sweet marinated white anchovies on chickpea toast and spicy tomato paste 7
          piquillo peppers, stuffed with bonito tuna, capers, arbequina olive oil,olive paste 8

          And for wine, there is a a store 1 block away, called Rosso Wine Shop. No corkage at Ingredients, great tapas, pretty close to what you are asking about.