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Recs for "Family Meal" in North SFV ?

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Fellow chowhounds, I need your help. We're meeting my family (Mom, sister, brother-in-law and nephew (about 13)) in the Valley for a tour of the Nethercutt Collection in Sylmar, and afterwards we'll want to go somewhere for a late lunch/early dinner. If it were me, I'd take my wife to one of the great-sounding taquerias being discussed lately, but since it's the whole gang, I don't think this would go over so well - they're mostly pretty staid and relatively "play it safe" in terms of their tastes, so I was thinking of Brent's deli in Northridge. Any other suggestions ?

Thanks in advance !

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  1. Hi mikester,

    If your family likes BBQ you could always try the Bear Pit. I took out of town guests to Brent's the other day for lunch. They all enjoyed the Reubans. Always crowded though.

    1. If all Mexican is not out...Los Toros in Chatsworth is lively and has good margaritas and bean dip. The food is pretty standard Mexican fare. It''s on Devonshire off the De Soto exit off the 118 freeway. Make a right on Devonshire and it's on the right side just before Topanga. But you really can't beat Brent's. The Odyssey has a nice view but the food is boring. That's on a side street off of Rinaldi, right by the 405 overpass. Have fun.

      3 Replies
      1. re: LA Buckeye Fan

        Los Toros is fun and good margaritas, but friends of ours really like Hot's Cantina. Their menu is far more diverse and the setting is cute but not as restaurant-y.
        Located in the shopping center on the North West corner of Reseda and Devonshire.
        It gets mixed reviews, but it's not the standard boring Mexican fare.

        1. re: compucook

          We live in Porter Ranch and are constantly trying to find good food semi-nearby. None of what I say will be earth-shattering food and I really don't know east of Balboa so there may be some additional places. Hot's is a small place, but I think the food is a lot better than Los Toros. With a mixed, non-adventurous group, Los Toros would be okay and the faux patio is a nice place to sit in for that kind of group. Brett's has good food, although probably 10 minutes off the 118. We eat a fair amount at the Japanese place just off the 118 at Tampa (next to Whole Foods) due it being close to our house, okay food and no waits. In addition to Sushi, they have teriyaki chicken and short ribs which are decent. If you are asking about Sunday, you should check the hours though…. BBQ is a personal choice and we have eaten a total of once at the Bear Pit. For a little nicer, there is L'Affair in Mission Hills just off the 118 at Sepulveda. For casual sawdust on the floor, basic, kind of pizza, rolls, salad, etc there is Pizza Cookery at Balboa and Devonshire. There is also a okay walk-in Thai place, Rincone, (not talking wildly traditional, fancy or anything) near there. I haven't tried the Japanese place in a converted McDonalds at Balboa and Devonshire yet but will soon since they have been there a while and seems to be popular and I also need to try Pampas (Argentinean) which has gotten some good reviews at Balboa and Chatsworth. Otherwise you have chain restaurants, "eh" restaurants and really casual order at the counter kind of places, although people have different tastes and may like something else in the area. One thing which may be of interest is that there is a Carvel ice cream off the 118 at Woodley – not the shining area of the valley – but the soft serve ice cream is as good as I remember it being as a kid.

          1. re: Heidi

            Second L'Affair Cafe. Very good food and nice atmosphere. Although they recently revamped their menu and jacked up the prices a little bit, but then again what restaurant hasn't?

            Also would suggest Alessio in Northridge (Reseda near Lassen) for really good Italian or Alexis Greek Cafe (Tampa & Nordhoff) for Greek.

      2. On Reseda is Alexis Greek Cafe, which also serves some fabulous Portuguese!
        http://www.alexisgreek.com/Lunch_menu...

        1. This is all great, thanks for all the input and keep it coming :-)

          1. How about Barone's in Valley Glen? They have good prices and decent Italian food. I love the old fashioned ambiance with the red leather booths. www.baronesfamousitalian.com

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            Barone's Famous Italian Restaurant
            13726 Oxnard St, Van Nuys, CA 91401

            1 Reply
            1. re: chowhound chloe

              not really the North Valley, though, is it?