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May 13, 2010 05:16 PM

Nice Italian Restaurant for College Graduation Dinner

I'm looking for a nice Italian restaurant on the Westside to accommodate between 12-14 people for my college graduation dinner. Many of my relatives are full-on Italian, so this needs to be great food.

I'm looking for about $25 a head, a restaurant that allows us to bring our own wine is a plus, and either a restaurant on the smaller side or one with a private room.

Thanks so much!

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  1. if your budget can expand to $25/head BEFORE tax, tip, and beverage, you could safely do that at Antica Pizzaria in marina del rey. they charge $15/bottle for corkage.

    despite being located on the second floor of a shopping center, the restaurant is pretty inside, and the food is as close as you will get to authentic neapolitan food in the los angeles area.

    there are tons of threads on this restaurant, and it is on my regular rotation.

    if you don't like the NEAPOLITAN style of cooking, don't go here.m (i.e. if sicilian is your style, this isn't the place)
    their pizzas are certified by the Verace Pizza Napoletana Association based in Naples, Italy.

    (sadly, i can't think of any really good/authentic italien food on the westside that truly comes in within your stated budget.)

    congrats on your graduation

    1. Brunello has been highly recommended. I have not been but I am sure someone from the West side will chime in.

      Brunello Trattoria
      6001 Washington Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232

      1 Reply
      1. re: Burger Boy

        this was going to be my suggestion... good bang for buck and back room.

      2. We did a dinner at Cafe Bella Roma on Robertson following a high school graduation. Great food, unbelievable value, and since they didn't have a liquor license,we brought in wine without a corkage fee. The owner even accomodated a diner with gluten allergies by providing corn pasta for him. We spent around $25/person, maybe less for, if I remember correctly, 4 courses--appetizer, soup or salad, pasta, main course and desserts (no wait--that was 5 courses??)

        Cafe Bella Roma
        1513 S Robertson Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90035

        1 Reply
        1. re: coffeebrownies

          Great idea. I second this recommendation.

        2. Great, thanks so much. I will check these places out and report back!

          1 Reply
          1. re: embumgirl

            I have been to Brunello and I think Burger Boy has a good suggestion. It seems to be family run, the food was clean and delicious and the place had a lovely, unpretentious feel to it. I don't recall if people brought their own wine in or not but they seemed very anxious to please their customer base so you could ask.

            And congratulations!

            Burger Boy
            1650 S State College Blvd, Anaheim, CA 92806

          2. May be a bit above your budget, but I Cugini on Ocean in Santa Monica has wonderful Italian food, a lot of seafood & fish, and also has a very good version of lasagne bolognese, my DH's standby. They have a lovely patio also. Pretty sure almost all places will allow you to bring your own wine, but may charge a corkage fee.

            I'm also dying to go to Il Piccolo Paradiso, in Venice, so I'm not sure if they are in your range or not, but always hear RAVES about their food. I believe they expanded so should be able to accomodate your party.

            I Cugini
            1501 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90401

            1 Reply
            1. re: Phurstluv

              i really like li cugini too, but i believe that there is no way that it could come out anywhere near the op's budget.
              here is their dinner menu:

              other than pastas, most of the entrees by themselves exceed the per/person budget, not to mention tax, tip, beverage, starter, etc.
              normally, in my experience, i cugini costs about $55/pp all in.
              (it should be noted that even my recommendation of antica pizzaria, although less expensive, also fails to meet the budget bar. when i go there with my dining group of 8 people, antica generally runs about $35/pp all in, which includes some alcohol , an appetizer plate for the table, and a few of the folks getting a salad with their meal. )