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Really good Italian in the Valley?

BigBrother May 18, 2011 06:12 PM

Hey all, have a family dinner coming up and want something good, preferably between Sherman Oaks and Encino on Ventura. Something setting-wise along the lines of Marmalade Cafe, La Frite, etc. (convivial, fun, social!) If that can be found with great food, we'd have our match.

Anyone have tips?


La Frite
15013 Ventura Blvd, Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

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    Jack Flash RE: BigBrother May 18, 2011 07:24 PM

    Slightly east of Sherman Oaks, Mezzomondo Trattoria has been our favorite Valley Italian for many years.


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      chuck RE: BigBrother May 18, 2011 08:45 PM

      Not quite like Marmalade Cafe but for good Italian food I like Gio Cucina on Ventura Blvd a little west of the 405. Its a small place upstairs in a mini mall next to the Land Rover dealer.

      1 Reply
      1. re: chuck
        mucho gordo RE: chuck May 19, 2011 10:31 AM

        You won't go wrong at Gio Cucina. When I went, my favorite dish, Shrimp Fra Diavolo, wasn't on the menu but they were able to make a superb one for me.

      2. Kitchen Queen RE: BigBrother May 18, 2011 10:13 PM

        Spumoni Sherman Oaks on the Blvd. Intimate, friendly and used to have great food. Haven't been in awhile tho. Great house wine too.

        Spumoni Restaurant
        14533 Ventura Blvd, Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

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          cdub RE: BigBrother May 18, 2011 10:28 PM

          i typically have a good time at oliva. they have pretty decent lobster specials.

          1 Reply
          1. re: cdub
            paprkutr RE: cdub May 18, 2011 11:28 PM

            I like Oliva too, but it can be a little loud. If you go, try sitting in the first room.

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            Famous Blue Raincoat RE: BigBrother May 19, 2011 11:31 AM

            It's no Osteria Mozza, Il Grano or Valentino, but Il Tiramisu in Sherman Oaks is nice, friendly and reasonably priced. They will work with you if you want to do a prix-fixe menu for a larger group btw.

            Il Grano Restaurant
            11359 Santa Monica Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90025

            Osteria Mozza
            6602 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036

            1. Servorg RE: BigBrother May 19, 2011 12:51 PM

              You should give Emilio's Presto Trattoria a try and see what you think.

              Emilio's Presto Trattoria
              16234 Ventura Blvd, Encino, CA 91436

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                archer RE: BigBrother May 19, 2011 01:26 PM

                I really like La Cava, a relatively new Italian on Ventura, about a block east of Woodman. Delicious homemade pasta, fairly creative cooking and very warm, friendly ambiance.

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                  bigredd RE: BigBrother May 19, 2011 02:00 PM

                  Panzanella. Large menu, comfortable and reasonably good service.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bigredd
                    omakase RE: bigredd May 20, 2011 12:07 AM

                    Another vote for Panzanella - 14928 Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks.

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                    vinosnob RE: BigBrother May 20, 2011 09:20 AM

                    Ca' del Sole has been consistently good for me (mostly for work-related dinners).

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: vinosnob
                      archer RE: vinosnob May 20, 2011 12:12 PM

                      Agree w/ Ca' Del Sol as well (altho it's in North Hollywood, a little east of OP's request for Sherman Oaks). If the weather's good, highly recommend their patio.

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                      BSW6490 RE: BigBrother May 20, 2011 02:42 PM

                      Il Teramisu on Ventura at Woodman is very good. Has a full bar. Much better food than Marmalade or La Frite.

                      La Frite
                      15013 Ventura Blvd, Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

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                        carter RE: BigBrother May 20, 2011 05:00 PM

                        Of all the recs received so far, only Panzanella and Ca del Sole.
                        Last meals at tiredmisu, oliva both missed the mark in a big way.
                        La Cava - ok,
                        Spumoni - ok
                        Mezzomondo - better than ok.
                        None of them are particularly fun, however.
                        Of course it your idea of fun is Marmalade, well you might like some of them.

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