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Atwater Village to LAX - HighEnd Dinner

BasilKitty Mar 26, 2009 03:49 PM

I have a very high-end customer in town; Have to drop her off at LAX from Atwater Village; Between here and there - I need recommendations for an unfogettable meal! Any suggestions my fellow chow-hounders?

  1. westsidegal Mar 26, 2009 07:26 PM

    can't help you about the atwater village end, but near LAX, imho, the closest you will find to an unforgettable meal is cafe del rey.
    the view of the boats, the good food, the easy and secure parking (seeing as how her luggage will probably be staying in the car while you eat), the civilized atmosphere, the ability to leave for the airport at the last possible moment, the great wine list, all, to me, make it the perfect fit.
    also, you didn'lt say what time you will be eating, but cafe del rey is open continuously between lunch and dinner and into the evening. If you tire of sitting at the table they have an excellent lounge with sofas and a fireplace, or, if you prefer to stroll around the boat docks there is a sweet little promenade right there that you can use while the valet people keep your car/luggagesafe..

    1. soniabegonia Mar 27, 2009 09:31 AM

      Normally I'd say Providence if you're looking for an excellent high-end meal but it's a bt out of the way. Downtown is on the way to LAX so I'd do a search for that - Water Grill comes to mind. But --- if it's *unforgettable* you're looking for, I'd go out of my way to Providence and take the La Brea/Stocker/La Cienega route to LAX.

      1. lotta_cox Mar 27, 2009 05:55 PM

        I disagree with westsidegal about Cafe Del Rey, that's not a place I would go to impress someone, not that I don't enjoy it now and again. There are several options depending on how far you are willing to veer from the freeway.

        Sonia definitely called it with Providence. That was my first thought. If you are taking the 10 west toward the 405, you could pop up La Cienega and go to Bazaar, restaurant du jour in LA. You could also take that route and go to Sona or Lucques. There is nothing of that caliber in Atawater, Silverlake, or Echo Park. However, Water Grill downtown would be your best bet if you want to take the fastest route to the airport from Atwater which would be the 110 to the 105, stopping very close off the freeway in downtown for a wonderful seafood dinner.

        4 Replies
        1. re: lotta_cox
          westsidegal Mar 28, 2009 12:08 AM

          depending on the time of day, it can take well over an hour to get from downtown to the airport. (i live near the airport and used to drive my daughter to and from rehearsals at the music center on a regular basis). one night, they were filming downtown and it ended up taking closer to 2 hours to make the trip one way. one doesn't "pop" anywhere during rush hour.

          when your hot client/prospect has a plane to catch this kind of time consideration should factor into the restaurant choice.

          the amount of 'fudge factor' that needs to be built into such a trip is, to me, a bummer; you run the risk of your client cooling their heels at the airport for an excessive amount of time or the alternative risk of having them miss their flight because you haven't left enough time. the only way to avoid these risks anytime near rush hour is to eat geographically close to LAX.

          if providence was housed in the cafe del rey building, i would concur with you, but they are not.

          1. re: westsidegal
            lotta_cox Mar 28, 2009 07:21 AM

            Since the OP didn't mention time constraints, I thought giving her options regarding the best of the best in one of several geographic paths to the airport seemed like a good idea. If one is strapped for time and wants quick and convenient, Cafe del Rey would fit that bill. However, if one is really seeking to be unforgettable (and has time to do so) I think there are dozens of other options.

          2. re: lotta_cox
            westsidegal Mar 28, 2009 10:35 AM

            if this dinner is going to take place during the week, be aware that providence opens for dinner on weekdays at 6pm.
            a truly unforgettable meal there will run you, say, over 2 hours at least: that has you getting your in your car to go to the airport at around 8:15pm to 8:45pm. imho, you will not necessarily have time to check in and to go through security and leave enough driving time unless your flight leaves when? i'd say well after 10:30pm (most airlines are recommending 2 hours for check-in, but that is probably excessive for a domestic flight) . most evening flights leaving LAX take off before that time.

            true, the op didn't mention time constraints, but in Los Angeles, at dinnertime, with the high-end customer having a plane to catch, time constraints are likely to come into play whether they are mentioned or not.

            1. re: westsidegal
              lotta_cox Mar 28, 2009 01:59 PM

              I love that the variety of members using chowhound gives posters such a wide array of options!

          3. o
            OCchowman Mar 28, 2009 07:16 AM

            How about Palate food and wine, up in Glendale on Brand? It is only a couple minutes north of Atwater, on an easily navigable area. Plus, it is really good.

            1 Reply
            1. re: OCchowman
              lotta_cox Mar 28, 2009 07:18 AM

              That is actually a great idea. I am concerned though, recently they have gotten some very mixed reviews. Still, I personally am dying to go and geographically it's in a great spot.

            2. j
              Jodie Mar 28, 2009 08:10 AM

              Are you going to LAX through downtown or through the valley? Blair's in Silverlake is excellent and I think it's location is good for you. If you go through downtown, you have a lot of options. Water Grill is always always excellent. If you are going to take the 405 about 15 minutes (in each direction) out of your way in Woodland Hills is Brandywine which is fabulous. I have a good friend who is always looking for really really special restaurants to take clients and she LOVES Brandywine. Apparently it's incredibly expensive and very small, so make reservations in advance. Good luck!

              1 Reply
              1. re: Jodie
                lotta_cox Mar 28, 2009 01:59 PM

                I think Blair's has gone downhill in the last 2 years, but in that neighborhood the new Reservoir is amazing.

              2. b
                Briggs Mar 29, 2009 02:52 AM

                Since the thread seems to be veering from cuisine into logistics and traffic control, I would imagine many of the new places in Venice that have been discussed here recently would also fit the bill in terms of both quality and timing (if that's a concern).

                On that note, is Chinois still up to snuff? If so, the choice would be a no-brainer. However I also agree that Cafe del Rey is a good option. While it's not in the Providence league, it's still a lovely room with quite nice food. Still, there is the Puck cache.

                Finally, I suppose if you do get stuck in traffic there's The Encounter at LAX... I don't know anything about the food, but the ambience would certainly be somewhat memorable.

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