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Santa monica lunch--with some special criteria

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I'm looking for a casual weekday lunch spot in Santa Monica, with some specific criteria that make it a bit trickier. Must be within a 10-minute drive (short walk is even bettter) from Pico & Main. The main issue is that my lunch companion is very pregnant, so it has to be someplace where it is easy (and not expensive) to park, since she can't walk very far these days. It also has to have food she can eat. She can't eat sushi, cooked fish that are high in mercury, all the good cheeses, and some other stuff you aren't supposed to eat when pregnant...plus, this particular friend does not like ethnic or spicy food...she has very plain taste. Any suggestions? (Please include a suggestion for where to park, if it's not obvious.) Thanks in advance.

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  1. I would go to the new La Cachette, which is on Ocean right around the corner.

    6 Replies
    1. re: JE33

      This is what first comes to my mind too.

      La Cachette Bistro
      1733 Ocean Ave ยท Santa Monica
      (310) 434-9509

      1. re: fdb

        Thanks for the suggestion. What is the parking situation there?

        1. re: Nicole

          I just looked at the menu...this is a possibility, but would actually prefer a lower price point if possible.

          1. re: Nicole

            Valet parking

            1. re: Nicole

              this place is a short walk from Pico and main - 1.5 blocks.

              1. re: Mateo R

                Do you mean La Grande Orange or La Cachette Bistro? La Cachette Bistro is definitely further than that.

        2. How about the Nook (Santa Monica at Barry). They have a parking lot (free) and if that's full, you can park across the street in the market parking lot. When I'm feeling picky, I have their chicken club sandwich which is non-spicy and delicious.

          1. What about La Grande Orange? The food isn't anything special, but it seems like it would be perfect for all your other requirements and is walkable from right there.

            http://www.lagrandeorangesm.com/#/Menu

            1. Bay Cities? Only five minutes away, parking is free, and while the classic Godmother is a bit spicy, the hot side has lunches such as pot roast that are surprisingly good and include sides and the hot side has very short lines even at the height of lunch hour. Outside tables.

              A second for Nook -- great mac'n'cheese, fine steak sandwich at lunch for $10 or $11.

              2 Replies
              1. re: nosh

                it is my understanding that pregnant women should abstain from cured meats such as salami, etc.

                but yeah, the godmother is darn good!

                1. re: nosh

                  And parking is not always available on a busy day, sometimes the lot is full! ;)

                  They do have a great chicken parm sub, also, if not into the Godmother at the moment!

                2. Huckleberry over on Wilshire is great for breakfast and brunch - their lunch menu looked good last time I was in there as well.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: slave1driver

                    Parking is not always easy on Wilshire in the middle of the day, tho. Will have to do a meter there.

                    1. re: slave1driver

                      i was pleasantly surprised by lunch at Huckleberry last week--i was expecting a crowd scene, but it was not too crowded and we had our choice of an inside or outside table. My friend parked in the lot in back, and I parked in a public lot a few blocks away. I love that they offer free filtered water (good for the pregnant lady).

                    2. Cora's coffee shop would seem to be a logical choice and there is free parking in the back. You might also want to consider Chinois on Main.

                      1. La Grande Orange on Main St...awesome and real low key...great area for a walk, plenty of meters