HOME > Chowhound > Los Angeles Area >

Discussion

5 hour layover at LAX - accessible by taxi

My friends and I have a 5 hour layover at LAX on a weekday, from 3-8 PM. We would like to go grab a tasty bite somewhere, but it would probably have to be open earlyish for dinner (4ish, or 5) or be a spot that doesn't close between lunch and dinner, and not too far, as we would have to take a cab (which I understand can get pricey in LA). We are from NYC, so great mexican or asian would be awesome, but anything chowhound-worthy and delicious is fine.

Help us west coast Chowhounds! :)

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. In n Out Burger is just right outside the airport. Did you say Double Double Animal Style?

    2 Replies
    1. re: wienermobile

      The In n Out Burger near LAX is the first place Anthony Bourdain hits when ever he lands in LA.
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12...

      1. Just south of the airport is the city of El Segundo.
        Don't know what price range you're looking at but there is restaurant row South on Sepulveda Blvd and left on Rosecrans Ave...
        Houstons
        PF Changs
        McCormick and Schmick
        Romano's Macaroni Grill
        Daily Grill
        Flemings
        Cozymels
        il Fornaio
        Of course there are more in and aroudn the city and further down Sepulveda Blvd
        and neighboring cities..

        -----
        Cozymel's
        2171 Rosecrans Ave, El Segundo, CA 90245

        Macaroni Grill
        , Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

        10 Replies
        1. re: flylice2x

          Everything on that list above is a chain and should be avoided. There's not one restaurant on that list worthy of a cab ride from LAX.

          1. re: yogachik

            In that area I'd suggest Paul Martin's American Bistro, The Counter, or Lido. All are pretty good. From the above list, Houstons is good (but you have them in New York) and the others I'd probably not bother with.

            -----
            Paul Martin's American Bistro
            2361 Rosecrans Avenue, Suite 180, El Segundo, CA 90245

            1. re: HastaLaPasta

              If you mean Lido di Manhattan, I respectfully disagree.

          2. re: flylice2x

            One slight glimmer of hope in that list. Fleming's (yeah fine-right-it's-a-chain) does a happy hour menu and has an outstanding $6 prime beef burger with smoked applewood bacon that's absolutely worthy of a cab ride. Open at 5 p.m.

            However, if I had 5 hours of time to kill at LAX I'd probably opt for Al Noor or Mariscos Chente (listed below).

            Then of course (if you don't feel like cabbing it), there's always Encounter (at LAX) for a few martinis and the Ahi Tuna Tartare that's not half bad.

            -----
            Al Noor
            15112 Inglewood Ave, Lawndale, CA 90260

            Mariscos Chente
            4532 S Centinela Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90066

            1. re: cagey

              Not to quibble, but I would absolutely say that Encounter - the cheesy, pan-LAX non-bar - is at least half bad. Maybe all bad. Ugh.

              Once and never again.

            2. re: flylice2x

              the only two on flylice2x's list that i could tolorate are houstons and il fornaio.
              il fornaio has italien food that is ok or sort-of ok.
              houstons has a great veggie burger and vegetable plate, but other than that, nothing you wouldn't find in most chain restaurants.

              i absolutely would avoid PF chang's at any cost.

              1. re: westsidegal

                "...but other than that, nothing you wouldn't find in most chain restaurants."

                I don't find anything equaling their prime rib dip sandwich at most chain (or even non chain) restaurants.

                1. re: Servorg

                  since i've never been a fan of prime rib, didn't even consider that.

                  in the days that i consumed "hunks 'o beef" i liked steaks better.

                  1. re: westsidegal

                    This is a sandwich which has been recommended very, very favorably here on the LA board at least a 100 times (if not more) over the years. Thinly sliced, beautifully rare and meltingly tender, with one of the most savory examples of au jus I've ever had the pleasure of running across and a horseradish sauce that has real bite to it.

                    1. re: Servorg

                      i'll say it, overall, houston's is pretty darn good for a chain whether a cheeseburger with the shoestring fries, an ahi tartare, or a thick steak, or the famous prime rib sandwich, and if they are offering it, also the beef back ribs, actually any joint in the hillstone group from houston's to bandera to gulfstream is pretty darn good, not only for a chain but for pretty decent food in general. though i try not to go to often since a lot of the food is heavy, and there's other places besides chains to check out in LA.

            3. There've been a couple of fairly recent threads on the subject of LAX layovers:

              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/728096
              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/686929

              Pann's is almost always mentioned on this subject, less than ten minutes from the airport perimeter. One of the very last of the classic Googie 1950s diners, with a surprisingly excellent comfort-food menu. Don't miss the biscuits!

              -----
              Pann's Restaurant & Coffee Shop
              6710 La Tijera Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045

              5 Replies
              1. re: maxzook

                Pann's! Get the 1/2 chicken Pann's Special with mashed potatoes and the best gravy on the planet, plus any other side, a buttermilk biscuit and a glass of strawberry lemonade. You won't regret it. Went there last night with a group of friends and it was incredible, again. We keep thinking one day we will try something other than the chicken, because it all looks so good...but we never do.

                My second choice would be Three Flames Mongolian Barbeque. Really the only mongolian barbeque in the area that I enjoy. Lots of fresh produce and good quality meat.

                Lastly, as some have said above, Houston's does a very good prime rib.

                -----
                Pann's Restaurant & Coffee Shop
                6710 La Tijera Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045

                1. re: Noclue

                  I think the issue with Pann's is when you do venture beyond and try something else--and nothing else is really that good--especially as compared to great diner food back east. Not sure that a traveller would find it that extraordinary. (Same problem I have with Bay Cities--best in LA, but not necessarily in a category with that much competition. )

                  -----
                  Pann's Restaurant & Coffee Shop
                  6710 La Tijera Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045

                  1. re: coffeebrownies

                    actually, i think claro's is better than bay cities, and pinocchio monte carlo comes close. (for market, not for the deli). claro's is in sgv, pinocch in burbank, but then bay citiies is in s monica -so none are in la.

                      1. re: coffeebrownies

                        the location, yes. but i think claro's is better. that's an opinion. check i tout. on valley blvd in san gabriel.

              2. Gjelina. Head straight to Gjelina on Abbot Kinney.

                -----
                Gjelina
                1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, CA 90291, USA

                1 Reply
                1. re: yogachik

                  It is the perfect (perhaps, ONLY) time of day to get into Gjelina without significant pre-prep.

                  -----
                  Gjelina
                  1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, CA 90291, USA

                2. If you are all interested in more of the "ethnic dive" type places that are really very, very good you might like either Al Watan or Al Noor, both easily reachable from LAX by cab in no more than 20 minutes.

                  -----
                  Al Watan
                  13619 Inglewood Ave, Hawthorne, CA 90250

                  Al Noor
                  15112 Inglewood Ave, Lawndale, CA 90260

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Servorg

                    Bilal Restaurant (310-641-4435) on Manchester is about 7 minutes by cab from the airport and has really wonderful ethnic dive (Pakistani Halal) food - great birani on Fridays too which sells out before noon.
                    Its in a well lit strip mall cheek by jowl to a 7-11 and truly is airport adjacent. Good take away too if you call when you arrive at LAX

                    -----
                    Bilal Cuisine
                    1117 W Manchester Blvd, Inglewood, CA 90301