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New to West Hollywood, please help

  • m

My wife and I just moved to West Hollywood from New York City and we are looking for some good restaurant suggestions. We are just east of La Cienega and half way between Santa Monica and Melrose. I have seen tons of places around, especially on Melrose and Santa Monica, but any insight to miss the duds would be much appreciated. We love smaller mom and pop type places and nothing crazy expensive. Favorites are Thai and Mexican but really dont dislike anything. Please please help!

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  1. Marix Tex Mex, Mexico, Vito's for Pizza, Hirozen Japanese on Beverly. I like to walk to my restaurants. I would also recommend Traktir for Russian food. Thai is Joom.

    5 Replies
    1. re: chewbacca

      Alert - beware that Hirozen is in escrow to a new buyer, as of last Thursday. Who knows where the place may go as a result.

      8385 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048

      1. re: carter

        Glad to hear that carter.
        I never went back to Hirozen after an incident about 4 years ago. I was eating quite a bit and drinking good sake at the bar. Near the end they served me a frozen semi-solid order of uni and refused to take it back. I was really astonished. I told the chef/owner I would not come back, he said fine but he wasn't taking back the uni.

        8385 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048

        1. re: Ciao Bob

          Oh no - love this place.

          But alas, there is a new sushi place in the hood that I am loving these days!! It's called Uchi Sushi on Santa Monica Blvd (near Sweetzer) in the parking lot near O-Bar. They are currently running amazing drink specials for their opening. Check it out!

          Check out my brief review & a few pics on my blog: http://anniercote.wordpress.com/categ...

          1. re: Obessed

            I heard about it. Thanks for the reminder.

        2. re: carter

          That is terrible. Is Hiro retiring?

        1. Agree with all the recos thus far...and will add:

          Uchi (new sushi place on SM Blvd - behind O-Bar)
          Pinches Tacos
          Los Tacos (for late night eats)
          Irv's Burgers

          1. For a nice, but reasonably priced dinner out you should check out Taste on Melrose. Up on Sunset just a little east of La Cienega is Carney's Train on the Sunset Strip for some of the best chili dogs in LA and the Griddle for breakfasts that will take care of your nutritional needs for at least a couple of days... lol

            Griddle Cafe
            7916 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90046

            8454 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood, CA 90069

            Carney's Restaurant
            8351 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90069

            1. Marix is fun.
              Smokin' BBQ near the Beverly Center on 3rd, might be a little more than you want to spend but SHARING is big in calorie-conscious LA.


              1. Withen walking distance:
                Happy hour at La Boheme, right near you at Orland is a great deal. The food is good and the bar menu is half price. It's a beautiful room and the food and service are good too.

                Ajisai for good sushi on Palm Just above SMB.

                I love Baby Blues and Schoops sandwiches on Hayworth just around the corner is fab.

                Vitos pizza is my fav in L.A.

                I disagree about Marix - very bland for my taste.

                St. Felix on SMB at Robertson has great sliders, skewers and bar food as well as great fancy cocktails.

                5 Replies
                1. re: rednyellow

                  Second Ajisai--and this is an easy place to become a regular.

                  1. re: rednyellow

                    rednyellow, what's Schoop's? I live a few blocks from Hayworth, so would love to hear more about this place!

                    1. re: Newkie

                      I was just there for the first time. great sandwiches and a little euro import store. on hayworth just north of smb

                      1. re: rednyellow

                        That reminds me about Salades de Provence on La C. and Holloway

                        1. re: rednyellow

                          Can't wait to check it out. Thanks!

                    2. Yabu for soba noodles and other izakaya dishes is wellpriced and good. The sushi is also good but pricey.
                      Yatai on Sunset is an adorable fusion/Asian tapas place, very reasonable and good.
                      Amarone on Sunset is - dollar-for-dollar - the best Italian bargain I know of.
                      Pinches tacos and Vito's Pizza are both great. Caffe Angeli on Melrose is also great.
                      Many folks like Le Petit Bistro near you on La Cienega but I am not a fan. One of my favorite bargains is the Moules Frite at comme ca on Melrose, about 14 bucks and a very full meal at that. Luques is nearby too. SIt at the bar.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Ciao Bob

                        Pinche's has become my new go-to for Sunset Strip dining. There are some holes in their menu, but I've found I prefer it to, say Loteria for ultra casual Hollywood/WeHo Mexican. The food is perhaps best described as a meeting point between the Yucatecan stylings of the hip but overrated Lotería restaurants (at Farmer's Market, on Hollywood Blvd. and in Studio City) and your local taqueria. The servings at Pinches are larger, the offerings more kitchen-sink; my wife often complains that Lotería doesn't put enough "stuff" on their tacos and burritos. At Pinches, burritoscome with the works: beans, rice, guacamole, onions, cilantro and salsa. Tacos come with whatever the chef thinks belongs on that taco. No overachieving salsa bar here: they give you what's good for the goose, not the gander.

                        Al pastor -- though a little dry for my taste; those who prefer a gooier, sweeter pork will want to go for the excellent marinated pork adobado) -- comes with a sweetish red. The delicious Angus beef grilled carne asada comes with onions, cilantro and a fiery roasted salsa verde. The Veracruz style pescado comes with a well-matched slaw and an medium-spicy roja that adds a little heat without overwhelming the delicate fish flavor.

                        Ingredients are excellent and carefully prepared. The guacamole is tangy, chunky, perfectly seasoned; rice is fluffy, seafood items fresh and tender. Like Lotería, their rich black chicken mole is a star here, and especially nice to be able to get in that big burrito format -- with all the "stuff."

                        Longer discussion with some pics on my blog. Mmm. I wants that adobado!


                      2. I no longer live there, but if the sushi joint Yabu is still open it's definitely worth visiting, it's on the west side of LaCienega about a block below Melrose. SORRY if any of these places are no longer there, just going from my experience.

                        And although Lucque's is cetainly upscale, they used to do a bargain dinner on Sunday nights, I don't know if it's seasonal or always offered but it's a great way to try a great restaurant for a bargain price.

                        El Carmen is on 3rd between Crescent Heights and Fairfax, it's more popular as a bar but they serve good small mexican dishes in the early evening, I think they close the kitchen down later when the place fills up.

                        Joan's on Third is a good cafe with gourmet options, and there's a place called Doughboys also on this stretch of Third but only go there if you truly have all day to sit around because it's s-l-o-w. The food at both is very good.

                        Greenblatt's on Sunset near Crescent Heights is a good old-school deli with a very good wine inventory . . . the deli is very good, and you can buy wine in the store and cork it in the deli with no fees and no attitude.

                        Hope you have a chance to try some of these casual options, you're in a pretty good place considering how tricky it can be to get around LA, good luck.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: jimmyodonnell

                          Lucques still offers that "bargain dinner on Sunday nights." Great deal and great food. Prix Fixe is $45.00. Appetizer & choice of 2 entrees and dessert. Suggest getting on the mailing list.
                          I'm notified on Thursday about the Lucques Sunday supper. We love it. Example:
                          sunday, april 10, 2010

                          beluga lentil salad with fava beans,
                          avocado, cucumbers and mint


                          grilled market fish over saffron rice with
                          tomato broth, chorizo cantimpalo and aïoli


                          suckling pig with romesco potatoes,
                          grilled leeks and melted membrillo


                          strawberry torta with fromage blanc,
                          saba and toasted almond ice cream

                          45 dollars per person

                          8474 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90069

                        2. My favorite place in that area is Vito's for NY/NJ style pizza, but seeing that you're from NYC, you might not appreciate it as much. Nevertheless, excellent calzones and hot sandwiches, especially the eggplant parmigiana.

                          Irv's is a landmark hamburger joint with an excellent hamburger and the friendliest owner. She knows everybody.

                          You are a few miles west of the best Thai food around. There are old posts that would give you better recs than I could, but I like Sapp Coffee Shop. Yes it's a Thai place.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: Ogawak

                            I have to say, coming from New York, I was pretty impressed with Vito's. We tried it last week and I would definitely go back. The place even had a NY pizzeria aroma when you walked through the door.

                            1. re: MRG

                              So glad you liked Vito's, MRG: it is a lilttle slice of home for this Westchester (NY, not LAX) boy.

                              1. re: Ciao Bob

                                I'm a Westchester (NY) gal also ---- and Vito's reminds me so much of home!

                                1. re: Obessed

                                  Everytime I walk into Vito's I remember Sal's in Mamaroneck or Sunshine in White Plains. I wish they did "Sicilian" square slices and pies like Sal's. Occasionally , Vito will make an off-menu pepper and egg sub that is delightful.

                          2. I recommend Tender Greens for yummy dishes prepared from small locally farmed veggies, hormone free cows, free range chickens, line-caught Pacific tuna, etc.

                            Tender Greens, (310) 358-1919
                            8759 SMB, WeHo 90069
                            Daily: 11:30am-10:00pm

                            Also, second/third Yatai on Sunset for Japanese tapas.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: yinyangdi

                              For French bistro there is Little Next Door on 3rd near Crescent Heights.

                              The Little Door
                              8164 West 3rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90048

                              1. re: yinyangdi

                                Another vote for Tender Greens. The food is fresh and seating in the restaurant is quite comfortable. So far, no problem with parking.. I don't care for fresh, rare tuna. I was offered (at no extra cost) my choice of grilled or fried chicken or steak. I opted for the grilled chicken. This was a wonderful salad an I love the quail eggs and perfectly cooked green beans. Bonus: Great newsstand directly across the street.

                                Tender Greens
                                9523 Culver Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232

                              2. Many thanks for all the replies! I can't wait to get started.

                                1. The Counter, for good custom made hamburgers opens March 22nd across from the DGA at 7919 Sunset Blvd.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. Wa Sushi and Bistro, on La Cienega just north of SMB. 2nd floor of a strip mall.

                                    1. Another good breakfast/lunch place you're fairly close to is Cafe Verona at 2nd St. & La Brea (southwest corner). It has a nondescript exterior, but every meal I've had there has been really tasty. Awesome frittatas, panini, pastas, salads & the French Toast All'Italiana is out of this world. Small parking lot in back but plenty of free street parking on the streets parallel to La Brea.

                                      1. Hirozen, Traktir, Vito's, Joan's, Little Next Door, Buttercake Bakery, Campanile, Lucques, La Cienega Kabob House, Golden State, and BreadBar are all places to state.

                                        No much in the way locally of Thai or Mexican right here.

                                        Buttercake Bakery
                                        10595 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064

                                        8151 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90046

                                        8385 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048

                                        8474 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90069

                                        The Golden State
                                        426 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036

                                        La Cienega Kabob House
                                        444 1/2 N La Cienega Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90048

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: JudiAU

                                          Never went to La C. Kebob House, can u tell us more, JudiAU?

                                          1. re: Ciao Bob

                                            here's the website: http://www.lckabob.com
                                            i used to take classes down the street... it's not bad.