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May 12, 2011 03:30 PM

Westside dinner spot w/good portions and entrees under $25

Hey guys,

Looking for your suggestions regarding the above. I am a big foodie, but I have relatives who are coming into town who, while they love food, are turned off by the whole snooty-small-portions scene. They are not at all, however, the Applebees/Red Lobster crowd.

I'm looking for something nicer/better than Fritto Misto or Ugo, doesn't have to be Italian, but DOES have to have good food and preferably entrees that are under $25, where you can have just an entree for dinner and not have to order apps, etc, in order to be full.

No Asian/Indian please, as that's not really their scene. Thank you!

Fritto Misto
601 Colorado Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90401

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  1. 17th Street Cafe on Montana in Santa Monica

    17th St Cafe
    1610 Montana Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90403

    1 Reply
    1. re: Servorg

      I think 17th Street is really mediocre for what they charge...

    2. persian food:
      shamshiri grill on westwood blvd.

      1712 Westwood Blvd, Westwood, CA 90024

      2 Replies
      1. re: westsidegal

        Second Shamshiri - the portions are huge, and the food is amazingly good particularly given the price range.

        Shamshiri Restaurant
        19249 Roscoe Blvd, Northridge, CA 91324

      2. westside tavern at pico and westwood!

        dont be surprised, you have to park at the mall... but they have great amazing food. and you can make a reservation (you should if you can).

        everything is under 25$.

        7 Replies
        1. re: elnora

          When did they start taking reservations at Westside Tavern?

          Westside Tavern
          10850 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA

          1. re: Servorg

            Westside Tavern now has reservations on Open Table. Who knew.

            Westside Tavern
            10850 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA

            1. re: wienermobile

              That's good news. My one problem was going in there and waiting for 45 minutes, and the bar area was generally jammed too.

              1. re: Servorg

                I second Westside Tavern. Love the place. Love it.

                Westside Tavern
                10850 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA

              2. re: wienermobile

                Some additional information. Evidently they are only taking reservations for lunch. No dinner reservations. At least that what someone there told my son after he tried to make a reservation for tonight. So if anyone learns any differently please post.

                1. re: Servorg

                  i made a dinner reservation there last month, no problem... did he try through opentable? although it was kind of an early dinner, i remember, around 4:30 pm... we were planning around a movie showing.

                  oh, that chicken liver mousse with those thin sourdough toasts! sublime.

                  1. re: elnora

                    He called the restaurant directly and they said they are not taking dinner reservations. So, what that may mean is a poorly informed employee got it entirely wrong, or they have changed their minds about letting folks make dinner reservations.

          2. Nook Bistro should fit the bill

            Nook Bistro
            11628 Santa Monica Blvd Ste 9, Los Angeles, CA 90025

            5 Replies
            1. re: Ernie

              I like Banderas. Large portions and good drinks. Also, like that they honor reservations.

              1. re: maudies5

                I have never been, but was curious, and Bandera sounds like a good spot, but most of the entrees are over $25. I counted only three entrees on their menu that were less than $25, unless you order a burger ($16) or sandwich ($15-19). I never put a price limit on where I want to go, if I think it looks good (which this does) and want to try a place, but this seems a bit over the OP's budget.

                1. re: Phurstluv

                  After I wrote my post, I had a screaming need to go to Banderas. Made a reservation, and we were immediately seated. I looked at the menu a bit more closely, given this thread. Certainly, there are wonderful main dish salads which are under $25.00. As well, one could order a couple of different appetizers and still remain within budget. As I recall, the rotisserie chicken with spanish rice is $25.00...Prime rib french dip is about $18.00.
                  This is good, well-prepared food.Portions are extremely generous. Wednesday-Sat they serve crabcakes, and I believe they are the best on the West Side. Tonight the MP for the crab cakes was $33.00. and served with choice of sides. Another reason to go to Banderas? Big, comfy booths....Oh, that is so retro and so nice......

              2. re: Ernie

                if you go to nook, i'd avoid ordering the fish.

                1. re: Ernie

                  I second the recommendation for Nook. Very good food. Nice casual atmosphere. Terrific neighborhood bistro.

                2. Mezza in DT Culver City will work as well. Their dining room is smallish though, so if you go, make reservations.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bulavinaka

                    I'm a little worried about Mezza now that they've been opened a bit and some of the initial furor has died. We were there a couple of Fridays ago, made 7 p.m. reservations. Left between 8:30-9 and the place was never more than half full.

                    A neighboring table inquired about the traffic and the answer was we made it through the first year, which is the toughest. Overall the food and service was still fantastic. Still think it's one of the best values around for that level restaurant. Two appetizers, two of their dinner plates which are big portions and we still got out for under $60 after tax, before tip. Hopefully they continue to get a steady stream of customers.