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Santa Monica for one night-need the perfect restaurant. Foodie from NY

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hi, I was hoping to get a suggestion for dinner in Santa Monica area, staying at Sheraton delfina, would love a restaurant with a great scene and Californian cousine. I'm 28, price can be anything just not rediculous
Any suggestion will be appreciated

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  1. Spago springs to mind. In Santa Monica proper Michael's on 3rd St. or Wilshire or Jiraffe or Josie's or Rustic Canyon are all viable candidates. If you want to drop over to Venice then Gjelina or the Tasting Kitchen would be likely suspects on Abbot Kinney.

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    Rustic Canyon Wine Bar
    1119 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401

    Spago
    176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

    Josie
    2424 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405

    Jiraffe Restaurant
    502 Santa Monica Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90401

    Wilshire Restaurant
    2454 Wilshire Boulevard, Santa Monica, CA 90404

    Michael's Restaurant
    1147 3rd St., Santa Monica, CA 90403

    Tasting Kitchen
    1633 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90291

    Gjelina
    1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA 90291

    3 Replies
    1. re: Servorg

      +1 for Rustic Canyon. Just great farm fresh California cuisine.
      http://www.rusticcanyonwinebar.com/

      1. re: Servorg

        Gjelina is the best option IMHO.
        There are good suggesions on this thread in Santa Monica itself but none are quite as good as Gjelina for giving you a quick feel of LA's best food and nightlife right now.

        Capo would be my Santa Monica "proper" choice but it is a bit "rediculous."

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        Gjelina
        1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA 90291

        1. re: Servorg

          No one is mentioning Sam's by the Beach - has Sam lost is touch?

        2. Whist at the Viceroy, sit on the patio.

          1. However, Gjelina is not in Santa Monica - it's right next door to Venice which is hipper and less touristy than SanMo.

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            Gjelina
            1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA 90291

            1. FIG. (Go early enough, and enjoy 50% off the entire bill.)

              A French-cuisine trained Mexican chef doing farmers market sourced cuisine. It doesn't get more "Cali" than this place. Just look at the wicker chairs. And o, they have lengua on the menu.

              1. Gjelina -- it's worth the short drive and really isn't very far from Delfina. However, they do tend to rush you out. Tasting Kitchen is another great idea.

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                Tasting Kitchen
                1633 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90291

                Gjelina
                1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA 90291

                5 Replies
                1. re: yogachik

                  Rustic Canyon fits your description perfectly.

                  1. re: maudies5

                    Yes, +1 for Rustic Canyon. Also, though they are part of a chain and not technically pure "Californian", Houston's two restaurants (under different names) on Wilshire and Montana also have a great scene, and good grill cuisine.

                  2. re: yogachik

                    2nd Tasting Kitchen. Also a good choice, very good food, cool scene.

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                    Tasting Kitchen
                    1633 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90291

                    1. re: foodiemahoodie

                      Tasting Kitchen has wonderful food, sublime cocktails and a great space.

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                      Tasting Kitchen
                      1633 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90291

                      1. re: Phurstluv

                        I fourth Tasting Kitchen.

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                        Tasting Kitchen
                        1633 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90291

                    1. re: BSW6490

                      Capo has very good food, but cutting edge prices. Too pricey for the OP. Melisse is the best choice of all - best restaurant anyway - but too expensive.

                      I wonder if the OP has come and gone by now.

                    2. Joe's or Melisse would be my two thoughts in the Santa Monica area, maybe JiRaffe.

                      Rustic Canyon is good, fun and relatively easy on the pocket book, just not sure it is a foodie place.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: scottca075

                        Critic Jonathan Gold on Rustic Canyon "An essential restaurant moves people, inspires them to think about food in a different way, inspires them to think about Southern California as a great agricultural region, a great port, a builder of the shiny symbolism that is a large factor in how the rest of the world thinks of itself. And it’s also a damned good place to eat. —J.G. 
"

                        1. re: wienermobile

                          FIG for its for the quality of the food and setting (and, can't be beat proximity). If it's for something intimate or you want a great conversation, try One Pico (but, you need to call first and get a window table) - that will be within easy walking distance for you (and, a nice bar on the water for conversation afterward - also, One Pico is more traditional than foody - it's just super nice). If you want something very unusual and memorable try Josie - very dark and clubby with very "call of the wild" food. If you want an all-out extravaganza with wines try Valentino and ask them for the three sided alcove room. All are in SM. Don't pay heed to the out-door "look" of the restaurants - that has no bearing on what goes on inside. I love Joes in Venice (sometimes food is a tiny bit uneven, but service is impeccable). And, of course, Melisse is the obvious food/service choice - but again, depending on the person, I think you could make another choice with a really nice outcome.

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                          One Pico
                          1 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405