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Sep 16, 2008 08:18 PM

Midwest Chowhound looking for recs near Ahmanson

Hey LA Chounds,

I am heading to LA from Minneapolis and looking for a great pre-theater spot. We are a mix of vegetarians and meat-eaters. Nothing too hip, but nothing too boring. Somewhere you feel comfortable in jeans and has wonderful food and is fun! (Full bar is a must!)

Thanks everyone!

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  1. The only advice I can give is do not, under any circumstances, go to Kendall:s at the Music Center. You will be very sorry if you do - there is a full bar, but the food is equivalent to what I suspect you could find in a shopping mall in Minneapolis.

    1. Ciudad might be your best bet (pan-Latin with good veggie and meat options). There is a shuttle to the theatre.

      445 S Figueroa St Ste 100, Los Angeles, CA 90071

      3 Replies
      1. re: New Trial

        We do have car, so it does not have to be in walking distance. Is Mozza Pizza worth all the buzz if I can get a reservation?

        1. re: chadradchad

          Mozza is wonderful, but reservations are hard to score without a lot of advance notice. But if you are willing to eat at an odd time, I had a very late lunch there last Friday at 4:00 p.m. and walked in without a problem.

          1. re: chadradchad

            Mozza's way too far. Nowhere near the Ahmanson. It will take you at least 30 minutes to get from Mozza (located in Fairfax/Hollywood area) to get to the Ahmanson in Downtown.

            If you want Italian...try Zucca's in Downtown L.A. It's about 5 blocks from the theater. Great food and full bar. Love it.

            Zucca Ristorante [CLOSED]
            801 South Figueroa, Los Angeles, CA 90017

        2. MORTON'S 4 blocks away by Taxi.

          If you had preferred Seafood then WATERGRILL is the answer.

          Home style food recommendation is ENGINE 28

          Kendall's is horrifying.

          6 Replies
          1. re: russkar

            Thanks, do people really take taxis for four blocks???

            1. re: chadradchad

              The Ahmanson (Music Center) is on a hill, Morton's is down below and more like 9 blocks away, and these are long blocks.
              Jeans are fine just about anywhere in LA, as long as they're nice, and everything else you're wearing with it is nice.

              I've also been to Pizzeria Mozza at an off hour, no prob getting a table at all.

              1. re: slacker

                We got a reservation at Mozza at 5 and the show is at 8, so I guess we will have time to kill. I guess we will find drinks by the theater. Thanks everyone!

                1. re: chadradchad

                  I think Kendall's, which is right at the Music Center, should be fine for drinks. It's actually a very pleasant environment - it's just that the food is so awful. But I don't see how they could screw up drinks.

                  Enjoy Mozza - check out this link for appetizer suggestions and there are numerous threads with pizza recommendations

                  1. re: chadradchad

                    You can also get drinks at Noe, in the Omni Hotel, which you can get into from Grand Ave. A chill place for drinks.

              2. re: russkar

                I highly recommend Engine Co. 28. It's a great dining building too. It's actually in what used to be an old brick fire engine garage back in the hey day. I love the skillet fried chicken, creamy corn chowder and their meatloaf. Don't let the comfort food fool you...they have a full bar, great atmosphere, white linens on the tables and an incredibly unpretentious atmosphere.

                They're good at catering to pre-dinner theater crowds too.

                Another good option is Ciudad...a nice Latin fusion restaurant. GREAT mojitos. It's fun to get a lot of different little tapas to share with everyone.

              3. For people who might see this thread in the future, I highly recommend: (1) Arnie Morton's for steaks; (2) Water Grill for very expensive seafood; and (3) Roy's for eclectic fusion (a good mix of seafoods and meats, with Asian and Hawaiian influences). All of them allow you to park at the restaurant and take free shuttles to the Ahmanson. For a jeans-type place, Roy's would be my personal choice. The food is always excellent and the drinks are great.

                As another resort, there is a McCormick's and Schmidt's downtown for solid seafood.

                1. The answer has to be Pete's Cafe in the toy district. Good food and atmosphere, full bar and just a super dining experience.