Suggestions for a nice dinner in the South Bay?
- South Bay-er
I have guests from Japan and want to take them to eat dinner in the South Bay on Friday night. Something "different" (and good) other than Japanese food. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
Chloe in Playa and Avenue in Manhattan Beach are my favorite places. Both are run by Christian Schaffer and are similar. I happen to enjoy the atmosphere of Chloe better but Avenue is the typical upscale Manhattan Beach scene which may be more enjoyable for an out of towner. Note--if you like expensive wine, BYOB it, since the wine prices are pretty high at both places and they treat BYOBed wine well at both places.
Gina Lee's in South Redondo is Cal-Asian fusion and very good.
Buena Sera also in South Redondo is run by ex-Drago people, and it is very good Italian.
Chez Melange in the Palos Verde in on PCH in South Redondo is Italian-Asian and also very good.
Based on my recent lunch experience (see review below), I would recommend the restaurant at Ocean Trails Golf Course in Palos Verdes. The food was excellent and the golf course is now owned by Donald Trump, so your Japanese guests might get a kick out of that.
One of my favorite restaurants in the South Bay is Kabab Curry in Torrance. It's located on Crenshaw Blvd just north of PCH - right by Torrance Airport. It's Northern Indian food. Compared to other Indian restaurants, the portions are well sized and the food is very consistent.
This is not a fancy-shmancy restaurant, but the decor has Indian flare and it's definitely clean. The food quality gets an A+. They sell beer and wine.
Their booths will seat 4, but they have tables to accomodate very large parties, so no problem there.
A good selection for the beginner would be Chicken Tikka, Vegetable Biryani (rice) and regular Nan (bread). Oh, and one must indulge in the Mango Chutney! The above fare is not too spicy and doesn't require a particularly developed palate.
I'm getting hungry just thinking about it...
What's the date and when should I arrive? ;)
I'm afraid I'll have to strongly disagree with this recommendation for a couple reasons. First, I have noticed a serious decline in Kebab Curry's food quality. Five years ago it was very good; I went for the LAST time over the Christmas holidays (a visting brother is a vegetarian, so Indian works well for him) and it was pretty awful. And, it doesn't have interesting ambiance, so I wouldn't consider it a "special" destination.
Secondly, I don't know anyone from Japan who likes really spicy food.
I think the Kincaid's recco is a good one for out-of-town visitors. It's pretty, expansive---in a very "California" way, you can stroll around the pier, and there's a good selection of different things on the menu. Like steaks, which few people can afford in Japan.