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Mar 17, 2010 01:16 PM

Lake Elsinore, Murrieta, Temecula

Hey, Chowhounds,
Can we start another list for these areas? We need an update.
Please list your good meals, not just favorite restaurant. We have some great places here (and some closures). I would like to keep this area list updated.

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  1. ok, i guess i'll start. we moved to canyon lake about a year ago, and while we do eat at home a lot, we've done some restaurant dining.

    imo the two best restaurants in the area are:
    D'Canter's in Wildomar and Ravioli's in Lake Elsinore. Both places are very comfortable and pleasing and offer a full bar. both places have entertainment on certain evenings.

    the owner/chef at Ravioli's is from southern italy, but cooks very light italian food. the osso bucco (when available) is fantastic, bet we have never had anything that is not very good. they also have cooking classes (not hands-on, more like demonstrations) and they are both entertaining and informative.

    the chef at D'Canters is from New Orleans. lots of creole/cajun influence. fantastic crab/cheese appetizer (get it every time regardless of time of day). also very nice sunday brunch with unlimited champagne.

    the other decent italian place is Vincenzo's in lake elsinore. also a full bar and occasional entertainment. much more traditional italian with heavy red sauces. excellent calamari appetizer.

    Pepe's (canyon lake) has a great bar and horrible food. never again!

    Amato's (canyon lake). older place, nothing to write home about. ok food. bar opens at 6am and they serve breakfast - have never been. the bar has a lot of people who know each other. has entertainment pretty regularly, but closes on the early side. the dinner specials can be very good, but hit-or-miss.

    more later....

    Raviolis Italian Bistro
    123 N Main St, Lake Elsinore, CA 92530

    D'Canters Wine Bar & Grill
    32100 Clinton Keith Rd, Wildomar, CA 92595

    Amato's Italian Restaurant
    31714 Railroad Canyon Rd, Canyon Lake, CA 92587

    Vincenzo's Olive Tree
    31712 Casino Dr Ste 3B, Lake Elsinore, CA 92530

    Pepe's Catering
    31780 Railroad Canyon Rd, Canyon Lake, CA 92587

    1 Reply
    1. re: justanotherpenguin

      Thanks justanotherpenguin. Totally agree with the first three. Vincenzo's is truly old school, home-style Italian that some feel boring. I like it alot, as the other two. Quality.

      I haven't tried Pepe's and Amato's and hadn't planed to because of others comments. Is is really worth it? Is Pepe's better than Guadalajara? (Guad.. is popular, but I don't like it much-pedantic, plain, and waaaay too loud)

      I would add to this list Crivello in Wildomar on the corner of Clinton Keith Road and Palomar. That is also Italian and very well prepared old standards. Can get loud at night with the bands in the bar. Neighbors all know each other there and they sell nice cigars (eeeeeech) for the outside patio.

      For breakfast, I would list Big Jim's Grill. And, they are good coffee shop style for lunch and dinner, homestyle. Large beer selection. But, can be a little hit or miss . Near the skydiving airport.

      Best Pizza, so far, is the Pizza Bowl on Riverside Drive. But, "best" means you just aren't a Ceasars or Pizza Hut.

      Nice afternoon Mexican is at El Unico; 243 South Main Street
      Lake Elsinore, CA 92530-4106; (951) 674-2390 They are counter order with nice outdoor park area seating. Not open at night, though.

      Asian cuisine, includng sushi is good at Mekong River in Temecula Promenade Mall.
      41377 Margarita Road
      Temecula, CA 92591-5568
      (951) 719-3178

      There's more to list. Hoping for continued updates. Anybody agree or add?

      Pizza Bowl
      31681 Riverside Dr, Lake Elsinore, CA 92530

      El Unico
      243 S Main St, Lake Elsinore, CA 92530

      Mekong River Restaurant
      41377 Margarita Rd, Temecula, CA 92591

      Big Jim's Grill
      19980 Grand Ave, Lake Elsinore, CA 92530

    2. just to let people know that Ravioli's is doing well and is opening another location in Murrieta. here is link to grand opening:

      1. we really should try to keep this thread alive.

        new place opened a few months ago in the stater bros shopping center at railroad canyon and canyon hills rd. called "grapes & tomatoes". we and several friends have been and are very favorably impressed. they have gourmet pizzas and italian inspired food. very nice wine selection. definitely worth going to.

        immediately next door is a new donut place: "wolfee's". excellent and open 24 hours.

        Grapes & Tomatoes
        29997 Canyon Hills Rd, Lake Elsinore, CA 92532