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Jan 26, 2011 02:25 PM

Reading mixed reviews of Drago Centro...& love your comments on our DineLA 2011 tentative picks

Just browsing through the menu items it was very interesting, at least for me, a bit different from everyone else's chicken breast, salmon and hangar steaks. I was able to get a rez for Friday night this late, 7pm. Should that be auspicious, or perhaps a warning to stay away? :) Love to hear from those who have visited them for this year's DineLA.

PS: I did read some comments already from the other threads, but only one had gone to it, along with uhockey's review. I'm no longer in a position to kiss a bad meal to experience, so choices have to be wisely made, but at the same time wanted to try some new places.

Other places:
The Raymond (D)
Bar Celona (L)
Whist at the Viceroy (L)
Hungry Cat (D)
Elements Kitchen (L)
Water Grill (L)


The Hungry Cat
1535 Vine St, Los Angeles, CA 90028

Water Grill
544 South Grand, Los Angeles, CA 90071

Drago Centro
525 S. Flower St., Suite 120, Los Angeles, CA 90071

Bar Celona
46 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91105

Elements Kitchen
37 S El Molino Ave, Pasadena, CA 91101

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  1. I've been to Elements Kitchen twice. While it's nice, I don't appreciate the price to value/quality ratio.

    Elements Kitchen
    37 S El Molino Ave, Pasadena, CA 91101

    5 Replies
    1. re: mc michael

      Hi mc michael,

      Thanks! It *looks* good, so thanks to DineLA we'll give it a try...

      1. re: jacknhedy

        That's a better deal then. Awaiting your report.

      2. re: mc michael

        Mc Michael - you are too kind. The food is uneven with some overly large appetizers and some skimpy main dishes. In our case, there was a long wait between the bread that came around and the water from the same runner, a salad ordered wasn't anything like the description on the menu, under seasoned fish and chicken courses, and way over sized calamari pieces.

        Follow that with your mentioned out of whack price to value/quality ratio (even with the DineLA menu which we had to ask for), it was an uncomfortable meal. Service was good and we felt sorry for our server because of the missteps. We wanted to like it, but it left us wanting. It has so much potential with the location and the space.

        1. re: mpken

          Well, wife & I decided to cancel Elements after a closer look...thanks for the heads up and watch-outs.

        2. re: mc michael

          Went to Elements for Dinner last night. Would go elsewhere. Price to value ratio is not good here.

        3. I have had several dinners at Drago Centro and enjoyed them all.

          Drago Centro
          525 S. Flower St., Suite 120, Los Angeles, CA 90071

          1 Reply
          1. re: New Trial

            Thanks, New Trial. It's tomorrow night - wife & I are cautiously excited.

          2. Highly recommend generally...haven't done Dine LA there.

            1 Reply
            1. re: sushigirlie

              sushigirlie - I hope they keep it up thru DineLA... Thanks!

            2. I've had a few lunches and dinners at Whist at the Viceroy. Everything we had was very good. Love their wine list as they have one of my favorite Italian whites there that is hard to find. The setting is unbelievable, ask to sit on the patio if you can, it's the best patio in town, IMHO.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Phurstluv

                Went today - worth the 50 mile drive! Here's a letter I'm sending tomorrow. HIGHLY recommended. Actually tried all the items. I'll get myself to post some pics very soon.

                "Dear Mr. DiSalvo:

                Reviewing this year’s choices for DineLA, the chicken, hangar steak and short rib offerings were quickly skipped. Even though I was not familiar with Whist, the choices were among the most interesting.

                While my wife & I have a few more places to try, I selected Whist for a Sunday family treat. When I asked for the DineLA menus, Lauren very kindly brought up that it was NOT being offered for Sunday lunch. As we were perusing the regular menu, Nick walked over, informing us he would ask the chef to see if it was possible. To our surprise and delight, we were accommodated. Between the four of us we ordered just about every item, and everything was amazing! It was a pleasure to meet your sous chef, Mike, who made that decision on the run.

                A fine meal is one thing, but that exemplary team you have supporting a wonderful restaurant is a treasure. It was a pleasure dining at Whist, and we would not hesitate recommending it, or dropping by if we find ourselves 50 miles west of home again!"

              2. Friday night at Drago. Wife had the duck risotto & veal loin. I had venison sausage & braised rabbit. Both of us had the budino for dessert. Her duck risotto was amazing. The sausage was good, but the star was the lentils! Our entrees were both substantial, mine was a wee bit salty. We enjoyed it, and for $44 was actually a great deal. Glad we tried it. Would I make the drive back for it? Probably not. Right now our favorite places in LA are Animal & Bistro LQ.

                Drago Restaurant
                2628 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90403

                Bistro LQ
                8009 Beverly Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90048