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Where to eat at Centinela and Sepulveda?!?

Please help. I will be stranded at the Radisson Hotel on Centinela near Sepulveda from 2/23 until 2/26. I do not want to eat at the hotel and will not have my car. Does anyone have any info on Viva Fresh or Martini's? They are located on the same corner as Dinah's. I didn't see anywhere else.

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  1. sorry, i don't have info on those two, but as far as dinah's goes, here are the dishes i would recommend:

    the baked german pancake
    the baked apple pancake
    the chile relleno omlette
    and, to a much lesser extent, the swedish pancakes with lingonberry butter, and their chicken gumbo soup.

    although, i don't agree, a friend of mine thinks their bbq ribs are good.
    i am not a chicken affectionado, but i'm told their fried chicken is fine--not great, just fine.

    i am not, at all a fan of their buttermilk pancakes nor anything based on them.

    their alaskan crab claws can be very good or awful and there is no predicting which it will be.

    1. Kate, I can understand not wanting to spring for cabfare, but a couple of bucks (with correct change) pays for a bus ride and a transfer. This can get you up or down Sepulveda, and back and forth on Centinela -- you could get to Pann's or try Marisco Chente or hit Metro Cafe or Johnnie's or Tito's.

      3 Replies
      1. re: nosh

        of those choices i'd probably go with metro cafe as first choice because it probably doesn't involve transferring from one bus to another.
        second would be mariscos chente (i just ate dinner there tonight), because the food is sublime, and their prices are so low it would offset the cost of taking a cab to return to the hotel. if this is for dinner during the week, i'd try to go early because if business is slow, mariscos chente will close early.

        1. re: nosh

          Nosh, I'm an avid bus rider, but for these few days I can't rely on the bus to get me to lunch and back to the hotel when I need to be back--hence, "stranded." As for going to dinner on the bus, logistically it's possible.

          1. re: Kate is always hungry

            I might be wrong, but aren't you going to be close to the Fox Hills Mall? I was in there recently and I noticed that Green Truck on the Go (organic catering truck) was there. Never had their food, but some people have said it's pretty good. I noticed you said you can't count on the bus, but there is a bus station inside the Fox Hills Mall complex. I'd check the Culver City bus website, I would think they run more frequently although I've never used their buses. http://www.greentruckonthego.com/ Oh...just remembered they were renovating the Fox Hills Mall and it appeared most of the food places were shut down. Maybe the concierge at the hotel might have ideas. Good luck.

        2. Not that it is a culinary wonderland but there are a few more choices available within half a mile of the hotel, including the various middling offerings at the Howard Hughes Promenade just up the road from Dinah's. hhpromenade.com

          1. I am trying to visualize my shuttles from LAX back to Westwood on the Flyaway, which starts north on Sepulveda before turning onto the freeway near the Bridge, and I don't know exactly where Centinela is. I wonder if Sorrento's deli is within doable distance -- their sandwiches are freshmade, big and so inexpensive. There is a new branch of El Super Taco on the west side of Sepulveda across from them nearby for inexpensive tacos and tortas too. Both of these are in the vicinity of Jefferson, south of Washington or even Culver. Further south closer to the airport on Sepulveda, I recall a bunch of chains, and I know there's a Trader Joe's, a Souplantation, and maybe a Hometown Buffet.

            1 Reply
            1. re: nosh

              i don't know of a souplantation in the neighborhood. hometown buffet would be a bus ride therefore not really workable for lunch. for dinner, when there is more time, i'd recommend going with the better options you recommended in your first post.

            2. My wife likes Viva Fresh. I think it's okay Mexican.
              Howard Hughes has some decent places, notably Stefano's for pizza and Wild Thai for decent if expensive Thai.
              I would take the bus to Pann's, frankly.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Ogawak

                interestingly, the Stefano's in the Howard Hughes Center is pretty damn good.

              2. Up Sepulveda (up hill) about 1/3 mile is the Bridge (movies) at the Howard Hills Prominade there's a Maria Calledar's Grill, South of the Border for Mexican food, Islands for burgers (very good tortilla soup) theres a Jodi Moronis for hot dogs, etc, a pizza place, a taco place, a chicken place, a 50's style diner and a Thi place and Japanese resaurant. For breakfast, its Dinah's. And next to Dinah's is Viva Fresh like Baja Fresh - pretty good Mexican food, taco barrito etc. Mostly take out. . You wont go hungry Kate. Enjoy Culver City

                2 Replies
                1. re: Baron

                  Howard Hughes is your main option within walking distance. Already mostly covered here. Personally I'd pick Truxton's as my go to spot if I was stuck there. Also down the block from that in the Spectrum club is Pure Energy cafe which has zero atmosphere but pretty decent food, especially the specials. Think it's only breakfast and lunch though.

                  Worked in that area for five years and was soooo glad to leave. Food options are not great there.

                  1. re: Baron

                    Thanks Baron--

                    Since I have only a little over an hour for lunch (must not be late), Viva Fresh it is--one day at least. I was out there the other day (on foot) the immediate area seemed pretty desolate around 4:30 p.m.

                  2. I would try to take the bus down Manchester for dinner... To Manchester and Sepulveda. There you will find:

                    Truxton's American Bistro
                    8611 Truxton Avenue
                    Los Angeles, California 90045
                    Phone: (310) 417-8789
                    Fax: (310) 417-3430

                    FOR LUNCH: check out the mini Truxton's at the Bridge... There is a Callendar Grill there too which is suitable for lunch

                    And a great Mexican place, best tortillas in the US

                    Paco's Tacos
                    6212 W Manchester Ave
                    Los Angeles, CA 90045
                    (310) 645-8692


                    1. My choice would a walk to Go Veggie just a bit down on Centinela (Where it turns) and the Persian Place on Mesmer and Jefferson is also realy tasty!


                      12 Replies
                      1. re: Dommy

                        I just drove past your hotel. I noticed that Dinah's has "all you can eat" nights - one night fried chicken, another night something else. And on your side of Sepulveda one block north is the Sizzler. If that's your thing.

                        1. re: Dommy


                          I was there the other day. Where on Centinela is Go Veggie? I couldn't see anything standing in front of the hotel? The area seemed quite desolate.


                          1. re: Kate is always hungry

                            Right next to Marina Farms...


                            They have a salad bar with some soups and warm entrees. I particularlly like their Date Shakes. :)


                            1. re: Kate is always hungry

                              imho go veggie would not be walking distance for lunch if you only have an hour.
                              for dinner, you'd be able to go to much better places.

                              1. re: westsidegal

                                Agreed. Out & back would be 30-40 mins + and kinda thru an industrial-ish part of the area. If you're desperate, there's a Denny's on Jefferson near the 405 fwy & Kaiser clinic, a short walk from the hotel.

                                There's an Italian place (sorry, can't think of name) across the street from Denny's, but have never been. It's used to be a popular place, but have no clue about now. Others know?

                                1. re: pharmnerd

                                  as i recall, from many years ago, the spaghetti with meat sauce at dinah's was as good as the stuff they used to serve at that italien restaurant.

                                  the main problem here seems to be lunch. between dinah's, viva fresh, the cafe at the spectrum health club (much better food than you would think), and the food places at howard hughes promenade, kate should be able to fill in her lunch spots reasonably.

                                  for dinner, imho, if she eats fish, even if it takes a very short cab ride, it's worth it to go to mariscos chente.

                                  1. re: pharmnerd

                                    The Italian place's name is Cafe Roberto - reliable Italian fare; had a dynamite lasagna there a while ago. Also has a retail shop at the side.

                                    1. re: pharmnerd

                                      If she's going to walk to that Denny's, a better option might be Reyhan Persian Grill. I've been meaning to try but have been told it's pretty good.


                                      It's right next to Cafe Roberto

                                      1. re: kevin

                                        Go Veggie has vegan, vegetarian, and omnimore selections...

                                        1. re: bulavinaka

                                          Omnimore = "More of Everything" (I like it!)

                                          1. re: Servorg

                                            I used to call it, "normal people food," but the PC angel on my shoulder has whispered words of wisdom in my ears...

                                2. definitely try to go to Mariscos Chente. i can't imagine there being too many places in the area that outdo Chente on the price/tastiness scale.

                                  11 Replies
                                    1. re: westsidegal

                                      okay.. My office is at the Howard Hughes Center for over the last ten years.. You can walk to Fox Hills Mall per above ( 10 minutes) Sorentos. 15 minutes and very good sanwiches. But where is your home town you may have lower or higher expetations...
                                      Many places by bus.. heck I will drive you somwhere if the cost of a taxi is an issue.. Viva Fresh some like some dont I do not like it I. Panns a maybe ( will owen loves it!!!!.. Dinahs well only if your hungry. Roll and Rye for decent Deli is 15 minutes walking ( do you like to wak?? )

                                      1. re: Foodandwine

                                        well if you're making it to roll n rye, you can also try George Petrelli's. and the MandM on Centinela.

                                        yeah, i'd also agree that mariscos chente would be more of a trek.

                                        and the slices at stefano's in the howard hughes center complex are pretty good.

                                        but jody maroni's has closed.

                                        1. re: kevin

                                          Another Howard Hugheser here... Jodis is going to open up again... The previous owner got evicted and they probably sold the franchise to someone else...


                                        2. re: Foodandwine


                                          Thanks for your kind offer, and thanks to everyone else. I really appreciate all your information. I am taking the bar exam and due to time constraints and stress, not to mention the cost of the test, my choices are very limited.

                                          Thanks again,


                                          1. re: Kate is always hungry

                                            good luck!!! make sure you treat yourself to an AWESOME dinner after you take it!!!

                                            1. re: Kate is always hungry

                                              yeah, on second thought, since you're taking the bar i would also recommend the spectrum or somewhere else very nearby. i didn't know they were stil offering it in the la area. at least you don't have to make the trek out to ontario (ontario being a dining wilderness if i ever did see one) for it or anaheim

                                              1. re: Kate is always hungry

                                                You're taking the bar exam? Then I hope you're eating low-carb with lots of lean protein during the day. Give your brain a fighting chance -- and good luck!

                                          2. re: ceviche

                                            Just a warning that MC is cash only.

                                            Heck, maybe we can organize a hound get together one of those dinners so you can try more dishes and someone can pick you up and drop you off. I live within walking distance of the place and many of the posters on this thread are local to the area.

                                            Mods, I know, I know, offline for any group planning. I'm willing to organize if there's enough interest. An email in my profile.

                                            1. re: Jase

                                              sounds good, id probably like to partake. just a reminder, the early is better for chente since they have erratic hours and no phone number or email, contact, etc. also cash only.

                                              1. re: Jase

                                                They took our credit card early this week.

                                            2. You can walk up Centinela to Compari's, which has decent pizza and salad, or to M&M soul food, which has good chicken, greens, mac n cheese, etc.

                                              5 Replies
                                              1. re: lil mikey

                                                The operative word here being "up" (no aerobic gym time will be needed for the following week at least after the one mile climb up the hill to either of the above two places). ;-D

                                                1. re: Servorg

                                                  just treat LA as if it were New York and then you're good to go

                                                  1. re: kevin

                                                    In NY I'd take the elevator to the top of the hill.

                                                    1. re: Servorg

                                                      aright. but new york is pretty interesting, usually i eat like a piglet, three-lunches are di rigeur plus snacks a sitdown dinner or possiby two, and then late night eats at katz's or possibly one of the aforementioned dirty water dogs at one of the papaya outfits. and yet, i still might not have gained any weight, but that's due to much walking or tredging up the hill, the hill on the uws near columbia is darn brutal.

                                                  2. re: Servorg

                                                    Well having ridden my bike many a time up the hill, M&M and Compari are towards the bottom of that hill and it does not start getting steep until after you pass the mini mall with those restaurants.

                                                2. In that same strip mall as Dinah's there's a good pizza/Italian sandwich to go place (that may be Martini's). Also, if you walk further down Sepulveda towards the Fox Hills Mall, there should be some other choices there, although very generic sort of places like Sizzler, Shakey's Pizza. There is a steakhouse around that area too, but I've never been to it. I guess it depends on how far you're willing to walk, because as you go further down Sepulveda towards the Fox Hills mall, you'll have more choices. One of my favorite Meditteranean take-out places, King's Kabob, is located on Sawtelle, off of Sepulveda, but it's probably about a mile walking distance from the Radisson. There's a sweet little coffee house (King's Cafe) owned by the same person next door if you're looking to just hang out with some locals.

                                                  Everything Open 24 Hours!

                                                  6 Replies
                                                  1. re: kushnerom

                                                    what else is good at the italian deli there?

                                                    will have to check it out, never heard of it before, or is it just merely good if you happen to be in the immediate area?


                                                    1. re: kevin

                                                      Sorrentos is inexpensive and a good value size-wise. They usually have Veal parm cutlets or roast beef, or maybe spaghetti in the hot foods/prepared section along with various cold-cut sandwiches. Several bakery items as well, Euro- candies...

                                                      1. re: broncosaurus

                                                        Those veal parm subs at Sorrento's look great, but the patties lose any crispiness in the sauce and I don't think it is their strongest sandwich. Get the hot pastrami or roast beef or a cold sandwich instead.

                                                    2. re: kushnerom

                                                      i respectfully disagree about the food at king's kabob--imho it is just awful.
                                                      i go out of my way to avoid it.

                                                      1. re: westsidegal

                                                        to each their own.

                                                        i was about to make a run for there but maybe now i'll have to pass on it.

                                                        in comparison, do you think sunnin in westwood is good?

                                                        1. re: westsidegal

                                                          In two trials I found ti pretty bland. If you've made it this far you might want to pop into the Pavillions across the street for sandwiches and other prepared foods.

                                                      2. I'm quite certain there is an airport shuttle bus operated by that hotel. Perhaps they would drop you someplace on Sepulveda further south? Trouble with that plan is I'm not personally particularly aware of anywhere terrific along Sepulveda south of the Radisson that's very good. There is a Souplantation-type place next to the Trader Joe's -- can't remember it's name and haven't been there b/c Souplantation is my idea of really bad, really unhealthy food. Just my .02. Oh -- there's a coffee shop-type place *behind* the shops on the east side of Sepulveda that I enjoy well-enough; forget its name -- you have to walk a block east of Sepulveda. There is a Paco's Taco on the southeast corner of Manchester & Sepulveda that someone else recommended -- again, for me that's bland and pretty not-special; why you'd want to eat that Americanized-Mex food is beyond me in the land of real-Mexicans, but that's been hashed out many times on this board; it exists. Really, Westchester is a mecca of pretty plastic-American food -- there's a grinder-type not-a-chain-but-it-might-as-well-be place on the northwest corner of Manchester and Sepulveda. There's a IHOP catty-corner to it, but personally I'd think Dinah's would do you better by comparison there.

                                                        Others may possibly have more far-reaching ideas given the possibility of getting the hotel shuttle-bus driver to drop you mid-stream.

                                                        Good luck! Sounds like you should take up these howling hounds on the offer of a group-lunch-with-transportation! Also, the corner sounds like a really good opportunity-locale for some better food! fwiw I like Roberto's though it's not "good" food, I'll allow. Sorrento's up the street (north on Sepulveda; east side) has very good sandwiches and is a really nice place, but might be pushing it to walk to and fro and eat in the time allotted.

                                                        5 Replies
                                                        1. re: aliris

                                                          I think walking from the Raddison to either Roberto's or Sorrento's wouldn't work given the time constraints - It's around a mile or more to either place. I'd say bite the bullet and either eat somewhere very close or get a cab.

                                                          1. re: bulavinaka

                                                            completely concur with bulavinaka on this.

                                                            the 'very close' place i would select if i were in your shoes would be the cafe at the spectrum health club
                                                            6833 Park Terrace
                                                            Los Angeles, California, 90045
                                                            Phone: (310)216-3060

                                                            any of the specific dishes i recommended in my earlier post about dinah's.

                                                            1. re: westsidegal

                                                              W.G. What are your suggestions at the Spectrum club cafe? What''s good and what is not so good? I'm going to give it try since I'm there quite a bit.

                                                              1. re: Baron

                                                                you didn't ask me but I'll answer anyway ;). I usually go for the specials (fish ones are usually good), the chicken soft tacos or one of the sandwiches (i think it was Chicken Jalapeno or something like that)

                                                                1. re: Baron

                                                                  i've only tried their breakfast foods, and have been quite pleased with those.
                                                                  i'm assumng that the rest of the menu follows suit in terms of quality.

                                                          2. Kate, will you actually be staying at the Radisson? If so, would it make sense to order food for delivery to your room during your lunch break? Or perhaps kit yourself out with an ice chest and some lunch fixin's?

                                                            That would open up your options, and also give you a chance to decompress privately during your break from the exam. (Or punch a pillow or two!)

                                                            And then treat yourself to dinner at Chente when you are all done. :-)

                                                            Good luck!