Any place like Boulevard SF in LA?
I recently moved to LA from San Francisco and I really miss the restaurant scene. We had so many great neighborhood places and now I live in Manhattan Beach where we can't even get good sushi. One of my favorite things to do in San Francisco was to celebrate special occasions at Boulevard. For anyone who knows Boulevard, is there a LA equivalent? A place that has amazing food, seasonal menu, classy but not fancy, not sceney, reasonable prices ($20-35 entrees)?
Aah, Boulevard. Back when I was in advertising, I missed a lunch at Boulevard because I was getting my wisdom teeth out. I'm still not over missing that lunch and never getting to try Boulevard!
Quite a schlep from Manhattan Beach, but Palate is the first place that comes to mind. Reasonable prices, farmer's market driven menu, inspired and constantly changing menu, very down-to-earth scene. They've been getting some incredible reviews and were just nominated for a James Beard award, so reservations are a must if you want a table. You can always just stop by however and wait for a seat at one of the communal tables.
Oh, also Canele in Atwater Village, also pretty far for you but a great spot with similar inspirations and price points.
Maybe Joe's in Venice?
3219 Glendale Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90039
Palate Food & Wine
933 South Brand Blvd, Glendale, CA 91204
Jiraffe & Josie in Santa Monica both have groovy 'market menus'. I sure do miss Boulevard...the food at Grace reminds me of it a bit.
Head north. Rustic Canyon in Santa Monica; Fraiche in Culver City; and Grace, Hatfield's, and Lucques in LA. Not exactly like Boulevard but they all have that cal-cuisine, good delicious food you're looking for. Grace and Hatfield's are probably better.
As for sushi, you won't be missing SF sushi for long. LA sushi is leagues beyond what SF can offer. Mori, Sushi Zo, and Kiriko easily top SF's best.
Boulevard is not dissimilar to Campanile, a restaurant that in many ways seems to have inspired it. Campanile's flavors may have a bit more depth, but both kitchens feature Mediterranean-influenced, ingredient-obsessed, herb-intensive, big-portioned, grill-happy California cooking, and if you like the one, you will like the other.
I love Boulevard and have been there many times, and L.A. doesn't have a place that quite matches the combination of atmosphere and food. (And I wish we had a place comparable to Slanted Door.) Lucques is probably closest, not in atmosphere but in food (and perhaps better food at Lucques). And like Condiment said, Campanile is comparable. Rustic Canyon shares a vibe. In MB, try Darren's-- tiny, and kinda pricey, but good. I've had good experiences at Beechwood in Venice, too, and it shares a modern-American spirit with Boulevard.
Ahhhh the food scene of SF how I miss you. I went to college in SF and since then have moved back home to Hermosa Beach. I understand your pain too well. I think you've had some awesome suggestions. Palate is wonderful, so is Fraiche, and Lucques.
In regards to MB restaurants I have had many wonderful meals at Darren's, the bartenders there are really nice.
For really good sushi I reccomend a slight drive to Gardena. Its only about 10 min. away and has reliable sushi restaurants as well as ramen places. I know there are a bunch of boards already on chowhound about this.
Depending on your age, price range, and willingness to drive, you should be OK :)
Thanks for all the suggestions. We've been to Joe's in Venice and loved it. We just ate at Rustic Canyon and the food was alright, but I honestly was not that impressed. I'll have to try the other places you all have mentioned. We're willing to drive for a good meal. I need to bring my husband to Darren's...he's threatening to move out of the South Bay due to the lack of good food. I've been meaning to try it forever.
Thanks for all the suggestions.