Early dinner near UCLA?
We're visiting some friends in Los Angeles next week and one day we're going to a basketball game at UCLA that starts at 7:30. We'd like to catch an early dinner before the game. Any recommendations for some good pub food nearby? Maybe a place where I can get a nice beer with dinner? Or a good happy hour?
I went to school there and I remember that the food choices in Westwood were pretty dire at the time, so I don't mind venturing a bit farther away. But traffic will suck at that time so hopefully not TOO far.
A huge bonus would be somewhere we can leave the car during the game. I don't mind walking a mile to get there. But that might be a longshot.
It requires driving, but I'd recommend Westside Tavern - at Westwood/Pico. A short drive up westwood even at that hour. Good food and great beers.
Nothing great in westwood that serves pub food sit down with beer. westwood brewing company is pretty dire right now and not worth patronizing.
re: Senor Popusa
I agree with this rec, though Westside Tavern isn't a pub at all, but it does have great food and great drinks (incl. beer).
Some other recs in the area (closer to UCLA), though not good for beer/drinks are Shamshiri (though I've heard it's gone a bit downhill recently) and Alcazar Express.
If you want a dive bar with good pub food, I recommend Philly West, which has a great burger (and good fries) and is cheap.
Go to Nook.
There is not much worth eating in Westwood.
11628 Santa Monica Blvd Ste 9, Los Angeles, CA 90025
I go to the games all the time, and would say you definitely want to stay in the Village and walk to the game - you can find better food elsewhere, but the convenience makes it all much more enjoyable. Since The Gardens closed, I'd say the best choices are: #1 Palamino, #2 Napa Valley. Both have valet parking and you can leave your car.
If you'd like Italian instead of pub, go to Tanino on Westwood. If you want the most convenience and care less about food, Jerry's Deli is closest to Pauley. Of course, if you really want to slum it, you can always hit Chili's, BJ's or The Stand, but that's still better than eating elsewhere and having to fight traffic to get back to the Village.
Some good places have been recommended, but I think we'll do what you suggest and go to Palomino's happy hour. Reasonably cheap, hopefully convenient, and endorsed by a few people now. And maybe they won't charge two legs for parking since we'll be there a few hours before the game? I can hope.