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Anniversary Dinner recs - close to/in Culver City

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Where should the "old man" and I go for our 10th wedding anniversary dinner? We're not into super-meaty places, nor vegan/veggie, seafood would be good. Somewhat of a destination but where the food lives up to the view. Any ideas?

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  1. In Culver City itself, my default would be to lean toward Fraiche but I do not really think of it as being suitably romantic for a major Anniversary. Moving further away, the best choice would be Providence but, if being somewhat closer is important, Cafe Del Rey might suit your needs well. Another great choices would be Ortolan (which does an excellent job with its fish and poultry dishes).

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    Fraiche
    9411 Culver Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232

    Providence
    5955 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038

    Ortolan
    8338 W. 3rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90048

    Cafe Del Rey
    4451 Admiralty Way, Marina Del Rey, CA 90292

    1. if you're into kitchy and pretty good food (the cajun combo is very good, though meaty) - dear john's is really fun. they have a piano player/singer that can sometimes be too loud, but is always entertaining. booths are best and so you should call to reserve. 11208 Culver Blvd., Culver City, CA 90230. http://www.yelp.com/biz/dear-johns-cu...

      cucina paradiso has really outstanding food and is kind of on the romantic side. the eggplant parm. appetizer is delicious. spinach salad is great. ravioli and bolognese make my mouth water just thinking about. it's a great restaurant. service is great. if you want to "go out" afterward (or before), boardwalk 16 (a good karaoke bar) is just around the corner. http://cucinaparadiso.net/.

      i like fraiche - but have had soso experiences in terms of taste of food. some things are great, most are good, and some are so so. all in all it's -- in my opinion -- overrated. in addition the staff is not exactly "welcoming." i really like to be treated like a customer when i eat out and they are not in that business. they act like you're lucky to be eating there instead of being happy they have customers. that really bothers me. on the other hand - it's a popular restaurant in a fun lively area and you could grab a drink before/after dinner somewhere and walk around. so? it depends on what you and your hubby are into.

      congratulations! have fun.

      7 Replies
      1. re: bu dat

        I haven't been to Cucina Paradiso in a while, but my recollection was that it was excessively expensive for what kind of Italian food it was-- and nothing particularly bowled me over.

        I haven't been yet, but a lot of people seem to like Wilson.

        1. re: noahbites

          Just be aware Wilson changed to a new type of cuisine/menu that may or may not be what the OP is looking for in terms of an anniversary celebration.

          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/623064

          1. re: Servorg

            Is Wilson still open? Thought the conversion to Mexican wasn't working and had closed the place.

            1. re: carter

              The report linked was from May 27 of this year. Haven't read anything further since that small review about the new menu.

              1. re: Servorg

                Ah, right. Well so much for me ever trying Wilson.

                1. re: noahbites

                  Had dinner there a couple of nights ago. I've always been a fan of Wilson and thought it would be massively more appreciated if it were half a mile closer to downtown CC. Given my choice I'm partial to the old Wilson but I'll take the new one over most of Culver's restaurants. The new Mexican menu isn't quite as creative but still very good. A long way of saying, still open.

        2. re: bu dat

          must respectfully disagree with the DEAR JOHN'S recommendation.
          imho, DEAR JOHN'S is a neighborhood bar. would not recommend their food. their 'entertainment' is often a husband/wife singing duo that is so bad that they are like an embarrassing snl parody of captain and tennile.
          i go to DEAR JOHNS when i want a good, cheap, old fashioned drink--period.

        3. I would say that Jer-Ne in the Ritz Carlton Marina fits the bill. Nice view, decent food, plenty of seafood.

          1. How about La Cachette for such a special occasion? Should fit the bill. Close by, not super meaty, lighter far, nice place.

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            La Cachette Bistro
            1733 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90401

            4 Replies
            1. re: AAQjr

              Think Cachette has closed at this location, awaiting the reopening as a bistro in downtown Santa Monica.
              A new suggestion for dinner might be Saint Amour, the new French Bistro just west of Starbux across from the Culver City City Hall. Opened only one week, definitely affordable, yet a bit noisy, but the patio is very nice and reminding of the patios on many a major street in Paris or Aix. Beware the breeze can come upon you, so plan your seating accordingly.
              9725 Culver Blvd. Former owners of Cafe Angelique in downtown LA.

              1. re: carter

                I second the Saint Amour recommendation -- ate there on Saturday and it's a very sweet traditional French place decked out just like a Parisian brasserie -- you can get pig's feet, sweetbreads, escargot as well as the more prosaic duck confit, entrecote, roast chicken, etc.

                1. re: carter

                  La Cachette will be open in Century City until July and, while not as close as Saint Amour would be (since that is actually in Culver City), it is much more romantic for an Anniversary and the food is significantly better. Not to say that Saint Amour isn't good and fun if you are in the area and want a casual meal.

                  1. re: New Trial

                    While not knowing what the prices are like at St. Armour I'l hazard a guess that the prices at La Cachette are probably significantly higher than those at SA, if that makes any difference to the OP?

                    Add: http://lesaintamour.com/index.html (and their website includes prices which is a real plus). Looks to be a steal at the prices they're charging. Gotta try this soon.

              2. Melisse or Ortolan.