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cheapish dinner? - culver city to ktown

any recommendations for a evening meal of $15 or under for a group of people who love good food of all nations? except korean right now... we're all sick of korean. which is why we're seeking help, as that is our usual choice. and i have a whole list of places i want to try (thanks to you chowhounds!), but they're all out of the allotted price range for tonight. oh yea, and we have 2 vegetarians in the group.

grateful for any help!

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  1. Versailles (Cuban) in Culver City. Awesome garlic chicken, and I love fried plantains!

    1 Reply
    1. re: attran99

      versailles doesn't work for vegetarians because their beans contain animal fat.

    2. Ruen Pair for Thai. Cheap and SO yummy! There are other inexpensive Thais in Thaitown, but I don't think any of them are as good as Ruen Pair.

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      Ruen Pair Restaurant
      5257 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027

      1. "2 vegetarians in the group." is a loaded term for me but I'd consider Metro Cafe on Washington Place in Culver City. They have a lot of great starters and some specials that the two vegetarians could easily piece together for their meals, while the rest of you could have your peace. To avoid buying drinks which will break your $15 mark, you might want to bring a few bottles of wine and pour some to the house as well. It's that kind of place...

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        Metro Cafe
        11188 Washington Pl, Culver City, CA 90232

        1 Reply
        1. re: bulavinaka

          MANY of the entree prices at metro exceed the $15 limit--add a beverage and you're way over the limit.
          my favorite STARTER at metro is $9.00.

          metro is on my regular rotation.

          as a regular, i might get away with bringing my own wine and having no corkage charged, but i wouldn't have the gall to bring a large group ( many of whom may stick to starters to meet the $$$ issue), to this small restaurant and on top of it all expect to be comped on corkage. . .

        2. If the non vegetarians in the group wouldn't mind going veggie for the night then I recommend Rahel's for Ethiopian food. It will be a great and delicious experience for you all, without a doubt. If you have never been, and wondered what it was like, here's your chance.

          http://www.rahelveggiecuisine.com/

          Or, if Ethiopian is of interest, but you would like some meat choices as well:

          http://www.mealsbygenet.com/

          Or one other idea: Gloria's Cafe for Mexican / Salvadoran food. Right outside of CC on Venice Blvd.

          Gloria's Cafe
          10227 Venice Blvd (At Vinton Ave)
          Los Angeles 90034
          310-838-0963

          2 Replies
          1. re: Servorg

            the vegetarian items in gloria's menu are not strong. it was ok with me, because i'm a pescatarian and they offer many fish dishes. if i were vegetarian, though, i would not have been able to piece together a satisfying meal... .

            i strongly second both of your ethiopian recommendations..

            1. re: westsidegal

              I don't know what you consider strong as far as veggie choices, but Gloria's has quite a few options given that all their Salvadoran specialties are veggie, plus veggie Fajita's, veggie Tostada, veggie Burrito and Enchilada Suisa's.

              I will say I don't know/have never asked them about whether they are using lard in their cooking or not. Also, as you pointed out, since the OP didn't specify to what degree the veggie members of their group are fish eaters or not, (a lot of people say vegetarian when they mean they will eat other than red meat) then we just don't know about all those choices that Gloria also offers as well.

          2. Santouka; veggies friends could get other good food in the market.
            Tender Greens
            Cafe Brasil
            Empanadas Place
            Guelaguetza

            1. if it's $15/pp BEFORE tax, tip, and beverage, then i'd head over to shamshiri grill (persian food, huge portions, large portion of their menu dedicated to vegetarian dishes, many of their starters are vegetarian too, skewered meats, poultry, fish and stews for everyone else).