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V BAR (valentino) finally I have found what I am looking for in Santa Monica

Amanda Enclade Jan 13, 2009 12:16 PM

I stumbled into V bar yesterday with a girlfriend...it's the offshoot bar of the well known restaurant Valentino. Ever since I moved to Santa Monica over 3 years ago, I continually complain about the choices I have to go out to eat and drink wine. Everything is super high end or super low end without anything in-between. How many times can I head over to the 3rd street promenade or abbot kinney? It usually takes a good 20 minutes just to park. V Bar is located in a mellow neighborhood right near Trader Joe's on Pico and 31st. Now I am well aware that the main restaurant Valentino is one snazzy and expensive place but I was more than pleasantly surprised by the warm service, wines by the glass(Valentino has one of the best wine lists in all of Los Angeles) and the menu available in the side bar. The food is an offshoot of the Valentino menu with much lower prices.(they said you can order off the big menu as well.) I ordered the branzino which was FAB-U Lous and they served parmesan crisps on the house that were not to be believed.
Most of the menu items were priced between 11-16 dollars...seriously! The wines by the glass were perfect and in my price range as well. I kept thinking the whole time I was there...why did I not know about this place?why have I not been here before? why is it under the radar? why are they not advertising this place? I asked and they said the bar had only been open 2 years...but still 2 years is a long time. I am so excited to have found this place...especially since I live 5 minutes away.

  1. y
    yogachik Jan 13, 2009 02:24 PM

    If you liked V Bar, check out Upstairs 2. Equally amazing and relatively inexpensive, and also a divine wine list.

    1. l
      lizziee Jan 13, 2009 03:35 PM

      I love Vin Bar and we normally sit there rather than Valentino. You can order from the Valentino menu or the Vin Bar menu. There is a thread here:

      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/569102

      Pics included if you scroll down.

      1. a
        Adsvino Jan 13, 2009 04:02 PM

        Also check out the way bigger SALUTE wine bar in Santa Monica, on Main Street.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Adsvino
          Amanda Enclade Jan 14, 2009 01:23 PM

          funny you should suggest salute...that"s where we were headed originally but they were closed. when do they officially open??

          1. re: Amanda Enclade
            a
            Adsvino Jan 14, 2009 02:19 PM

            They were open over X-mas when I stopped by.....not sure about officially.

            1. re: Adsvino
              j
              Juji Jan 14, 2009 02:39 PM

              They were open last Friday night, I went and really liked it.

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