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Upper West - some yeahs. some mehs

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Checked out Upper West Friday night. Beautiful remodel, I hope that they can beat the curse of the location.

Ate at the bar, made happy hour so got a great $6 cucumber martini. Tasty and generously sized.

Fried calamari from bar menu were good - crisp, good-sized portion sitting on top of some sort of too-sweet marinara sauce. By 2nd martini, was able to ignore the sweetness.

My friend and I shared a spinach salad and sea bass. Disappointing. Salad had too much vinegar and the sea bass tasted old and undercooked. It takes real talent to make undercooked fish taste both rubbery and dry. The mashed potatoes the fish sat on were tasty but for $22 for the plate - ouch.

The kicker was, they don't serve bread? We asked for it and the bartender said they didn't have that but they had potato chips. ??? Okay... the chips were great but a little weird to be eating with an entree.

I live pretty close so I could see going back for drinks and appies but will probably not order from the main menu again.

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Upper West
3321 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90404

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  1. Have been by Bite Bar & Bakery yet? They're still in their soft opening stage (I think 7:30-2:30 for breakfast/lunch/pastries) but based on what I've tried, you're one luck eater, and soon to be drinker too. They're literally a block west of Upper West. The space is very comfortable and pleasing to the eyes. And the food is exceptional. The owner Elizabeth apparently has a great depth of training and experience (and imagination), and it shows. She has a great group of folks working with her so keep an eye on this place. Better yet, make it over there to get a preview of even better things to come.

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    Upper West
    3321 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90404

    Bite Bar & Bakery
    3221 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405

    5 Replies
        1. re: Servorg

          Hope you had a nice bike ride this AM. Have you had a chance to stop by Bite for breakfast? :)

          1. re: bulavinaka

            Sundays I save for late brunch (we go around 3 PM) someplace with my wife who only gets Sunday off from work. Lots of times we end up at 17 St. Cafe on Montana, but we may well give the Bite a try. I just hope it doesn't "bite"... ;-D>

            1. re: Servorg

              I'll have to put 17 St. Cafe on my "Servorg-Approved" list. Your wife obviously deserves a leisurely Sunday after a long week. I don't think Bite will bite unless casual comfortable places with yummy food bites in your book. ;-D> They close early for now - you're always on top of things but just thought I'd mention it.