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Upscale Italian or Steak in Beverly Hills, or Santa Monica- quiet with spacious dining room?

Hi there. We will only be in town one evening, and it will be the Sunday after Thanksgiving. I need a really good restaurant for 3 people that is not incredibly noisy, nor has the tables on top of each other. This is a birthday celebration for my husband. It shouldn't be stuffy, nor a seafood restaurant- just great food, and a bit of spaciousness. We live in NY, and a restaurant such as Del Posto would be a prime example. Can you think of any in the Beverly Hills or Santa Monica area? It seems as though every fine Italian restaurant is noisy and crammed. Does the Beverly Hills Boa fill my needs?

Thanks

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  1. You might consider La Botte in Santa Monica. The tables look close together in the pictures, but I didn't find it to feel cramped or loud at at all. Felt more intimate.
    http://www.labottesantamonica.com/

    1. I think that you'd find Valentino in Santa Monica to be very quiet, sedate and with excellent food. The main dining room is not at all crowded.

      1. Valentino is definitely upscale. In Santa Monica, I'd go to Josie.

        1. I guess what I am looking for barely exists. We don't want sedate... just not a screaming match. Our friend wants us to go to Giorgio's in Santa Monica, but I have heard it is just too loud.
          In regard to Valentino- I had been to the one in Las Vegas, and was not blown away- but that restaurant has a different chef, etc.

          8 Replies
          1. re: verysleepy

            Tables are pretty close at Giorgio's if you mean Giorgio Baldi. Go to Josie. Or go to Mastro's in BH for steak.

            1. re: mc michael

              Tables are pretty close, the noice level is high and the staff has some attitude at Baldi.

              1. re: TomSwift

                The tables are MORE than close at Giorgio Baldi's - you're on top of one another. And it's overpriced with MAJOR attitude.

                1. re: TomSwift

                  Last time I went to Giorgio Baldi our server gave me attitude for attempting to buy a bottle of wine under $120. He told me they didn't have a decent bottle under that. The attitude just grew worse from there...

                2. re: mc michael

                  when i went to mastros it was pretty noisy.

                  1. re: westsidegal

                    Depends when you go and where you sit. Upstairs is not that noisy.

                    1. re: westsidegal

                      Many words describe my 7 or so visits to Mastro's... "Quiet" is not one of them.

                  2. re: verysleepy

                    You should not compare Vegas branches with the "real" restaurants. They sell themselves on their names rather than their food. I was going to suggest Craft or Wolfgang's for steak, but you already have that in NY. I agree with some other posters, and would suggest Cut for steak. Madeo on Beverly Blvd is very solid for Italian and you will be able to hear each other without shouting. The food at Boa on Sunset is not very good.

                  3. Since your from New York, I would suggest you consider Cut, as it would appear to be about the only steakhouse in L.A. that would compete with your N.Y. options. You really might consider Spago. Although not Italian, their food is superb and the space itself would be perfect for your needs.

                    1 Reply
                    1. A little east of what you are looking for, but ....Eating on the back patio at Luques in West Hollywood (just east of Beverly Hills) is always a pleasure. The food is wonderful and interesting, the service professional, and I don't recall it ever being too loud. Although it has been around a while, it is still wonderful. Sunday night is family style--I believe--others might know more if that is of interest.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: coffeebrownies

                        Lucques used to be stellar, both food & service, but seems to have suffered during the last few years during the expansion of Goin's empire. I would not chance it for a birthday celebration. But it seems her Tavern restaurant in Brentwood may fit the bill, reserve a table in the Atrium, if interested.

                        1. re: coffeebrownies

                          Dinner last Sunday at Lucques was marvelous. I get an e-mail each week with each Sunday's prix fixe menu ($45.00 pp). We love Sunday night at Lucques.

                        2. I'd head a little past Santa Monica to Malibu and scoot up the canyon road to Saddle Peak Lodge. Deb and I are from NYC and pulled this off last Friday. Highly recommended. They know meats, pastas and wines in a very private setting. The fireplace in the main dining room is a plus.

                          1. Capo in Santa Monica.

                            Up the coast, Giorgio Baldi.

                            1. Hi.... thanks for the suggestions.. but a few people I know have recommended Angelina Osteria. Would that be a good choice? Also... they say that Madeo's is fine again for what I am looking for.

                              9 Replies
                              1. re: verysleepy

                                While the food is quite good there, it is neither quiet nor spacious and is considerably East of your requested location. Valentino is a good suggestion and you should also consider Vincenti for Italian. For steak, I would agree with Cut (as most of the other choices would be branches of places you have in NY).

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                                Vincenti Restaurant
                                11930 San Vicente Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90049

                                  1. re: shelbo

                                    Well.... I have made reservations for us for Angelina Osteria. The food looks excellent, and hopefully it will not be too noisy. I will report back next week. Have a great holiday, and thanks, all.

                                    1. re: verysleepy

                                      It's noisy and cramped...not sure what people are smoking here? Furthermore, it's east of SM and Beverly Hills...

                                    2. re: shelbo

                                      My husband and I just had a dinner at Vicenti this evening. It is not the restaurant I used to love. Something has changed in the last few months. They cannot prepare their meat right anymore. My veal chop was overcooked and tasteless and their steak was mediocre and flavorless.

                                      But worst of all, I am very upset that they started to screw up with their BUCATINI which was the reason we fell in love with this restaurant in a first place. We went there with our friends last month. As soon as we sat down, I started raving about their BUCATINI - wonderfully balanced tomato sauce and the bacon fat with perfectly cooked pasta. It was our favorite dish. But when the dish arrived to the table, I was so embarrassed and could not speak a word about it anymore. The Guanciale (unsmoked Italian bacon) was burned and edges were almost like a charcoal. There was no flavor of bacon left in these pieces of carbon but the chef did not hasitate to serve them to the dinners. I thought it might have been a bad night and I gave them a second chance tonight. Sadly It was exactly the same. No flavor what so ever. Very disappointing. There are many more interesting and great Italian restaurants in LA, and I'm afraid we won't be back to Vincenti. By the way, their amuse-bouche never changes (smoked salmon and goat cheese) - pretty boring for a regular customer.

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                                      Vincenti Restaurant
                                      11930 San Vicente Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90049

                                      1. re: Ashibi

                                        I was not happy with Vincente. Too much hype and attitude and the food failed to live up. I had the dover sole which was small and dry. I prefer Locanda Vinente and Drago Central.

                                        1. re: Baron

                                          We were also disappointed the last couple of times we went to Vincenti. I also thought that the prices were very very high. Service was fine.
                                          All things considered, I would rather go to Toscana. It isn't fancy and it is overpriced, but it is a local trattoria with no pretensions. It is what it is, a comfortable, neighborhood restaurant.

                                        2. re: Ashibi

                                          my condolences.
                                          nothing is more heartbreaking than when an old, reliable, favorite falls apart.

                                          1. re: Ashibi

                                            I was a bit shocked after reading this comment! I am also a regular at this restaurant and have been for years. I too am a huge fan of the bucatini plate...so much so that I know what you're speaking of and this change was actually on purpose because of so many requests that the guanciale not be hidden inside, rather on top of the bucatini and TOASTED... not burnt. Just a friendly suggestion... perhaps next time you should let the very accomodating staff know of your preference rather than simply writing them off. They are simply trying to meet the needs of an ever increasing population of "regulars". This sort of opinion is much better served if you give it straight to the chef! They're ALWAYS very eager to please! And too bad you missed tonight! The stuzzichino was arancino...very nice precursor to the never faltering...monday night pizza (porcini/mozzerella/truffle wow)...!

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                                            Vincenti Restaurant
                                            11930 San Vicente Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90049

                                      1. Best Italian, possibly one of the best restaurants in LA. Logistically great for visitors - Go to happy hour and watch the sunset over the ocean at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica, then a short walk here for dinner. Many people criticize this place as overpriced. I disagree - their ingredient quality is unbelievable, and anything cooked in their woodburning oven (such as the porterhouse for 2) is quite memorable and IMHO better than many steakhouses. Their pastas are homemade and extraordinary. Search the board for it. Request a corner table.

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                                        Capo
                                        1810 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90401

                                        1 Reply