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May 23, 2008 11:22 PM

Last minute dinner plans

Hi. I'm going out to dinner Saturday night w/ 2 other couples (a total of 6 people) and we were looking for something unique for dinner. We are seeing a movie in Century City AMC or Landmark in West LA. Any suggestions for that area? we want to spend a total of about $35 per person total (ncludes wine, tip, etc). Ethnic food is always good. Thanks in advance!

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    1. if you go to landmark, across the street you will find gyu-kaku, and down the street there is bossa nova (thought i've never eaten there, but heard it's not bad). a few streets away is sawtelle, where there are many dining options under $35 a person - orris, bar hayama (cool outside fire pit), 2117, hide sushi etc.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Alice

        fwiw, i would not want to be at orris nor at hide on a saturday night with a party of six because
        1)neither place takes reservations,
        2) neither place has a decent waiting area
        3) you will not, realistically get out of either place within your stated budget.

        1. re: westsidegal

          gyu kaku and bar hayama take reservations (i can't remember if orris does). you can eat for $35/per if you're careful or do not have alcohol. both places are v. good.

      2. You are close enough to quite a few Persian restaurants as well. Shamshiri, Shaherzad, Baran, and Flame might work for you. Sunnin Lebanese Cafe is in the same neighborhood as well. These should all work within your price range.

        Poster Alice has some good recs but places like Orris and Bar Hayama make it really tempting to spend a lot more than your price range. It can be done but the dishes tend to be small and the wine and sake will bump up your tab quite a bit. I would say $50-$70 is more realistic, especially when you're with a group and the rounds start flowing...

        1 Reply
        1. re: bulavinaka

          I vote for Shamshiri - love that place! Lamb fesenjan, great since it's chilly out, and maybe panir al sabzi appetizer. Definitely rose ice cream for dessert.

        2. Here's a review from a Bar Hayama dinner some hounds and I shared a few months ago. Our bill for 5 was $150 pre-tip and we ordered a ton of food plus wine and some sake flights. I think it's actually easier to eat at a place like Bar Hayama for less pp because you can share so many more dishes than if you went as just as couple.

          1. Nook Bistro stops taking reservations after about 8 or so, allowing you to get in with perhaps a modest wait after the movie. Entrees are about $20, with some steak and fish slightly more and their upscale burger significantly less, and are generous servings including sides. If your party shares some starters (the mac'n'cheese and mussels) and splits desserts and goes very easy on the wine, you may be able to stay near your budget. Nook is an excellent value -- I've eaten far less well and happily for way over twice the bill at other restaurants.