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Help me decide which restaurant to go to.

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Hello. I am new to chowhound but I wanted to see you guys review. I am planning to take my friend to one of these restaurants that i have selected, Spago, Studio at the Montage or Providence. I am really curious which one I should go to. I am planning to order the tasting menu to which ever restaurant I go to. I heard that Spago and Studio have a really nice view outside at the patio which is one reason I really want to go there but I heard Providence has a really delicious full tasting menu. I am also wondering if there is alcohol involved the full tasting menu because I saw some pictures of mojito ravioli. My friend is only 18 so I don't want any alcohol involved. Please give me suggestions on what to wear and what to expect. And if you have any other restaurants on suggest with a good romantic ambiance. Thank you in advance.

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Spago
176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

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  1. For food only then Providence full Chef's tasting menu is the way to go. While the patio at Spago is very pretty thefd is no "view" to speak of like there is at Studio. I'll leave it to others to give you fashion advice because I am the last person who ought to advise on that front being so casually dressed that it regularly causes the horses to bolt and makes women and young children run in abject fright...

    You can see a prior Chowhound review of the full Chef's tasting menu at Providence here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/729222

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    Providence
    5955 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038

    Spago
    176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

    Studio
    30801 Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach, CA

    1. Not sure what you mean, "if alcohol is involved". Normally you have to "buy" the wine pairings with the tasting menus, it is not included in the food price. If you mean alcohol in the food, usually it cooks off with any heat that is used to cook the dish, but if you're unsure, you would want to inquire with your server, and request dishes that do not have residual alcohol in them.

      As far as dress code, there are only about 2 restaurants that require jackets for men in LA. Spago, Providence & Studio are not one of them, I don't believe. Again, when making the reservation, inquire if there is a dress code. Providence probably has the best food, and Studio has the best view.

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      Spago
      176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

      1. Providence for the food, Spago for the setting.

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        Spago
        176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

        1. For me:

          Spago first. If you have never been you will adore it. The food and setting cannot be beat by any other tasting menu - or restaurant - in town. My last meal in LA will likely be there, as was my first. Spago is more "LA" in that it has a deep history and still a rich present: you may see big celebs, or just the Beverly Hills beaute-ratti, and it is more than likely that Wolfgang Puck will be table-hopping and give you a quick hello that you'll never forget. The memory of the meal at Spago, and the restaurant itself, will outlive the others, by decades.

          And I really love the Providence TM (Melisse's too FWIW).

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          Spago
          176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

          1 Reply
          1. re: Ciao Bob

            agree completely and there's probably corn agnolotti right now!

          2. Of those choices - Providence. Alcohol is not an issue (but there is an appetizer - like the mojito - that you could subsitute with something else.

            My second choice would be Spago. I prefer Providence for the food and hipper, sexier, more sophisticated atmosphere. (Spago I expect to run into my Aunt Rose.) I wear a suit to Providence because for me - that's part of the experience. But dressy casual can work there too. Faded jeans would not be appropriate.

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            Spago
            176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

            8 Replies
            1. re: foodiemahoodie

              Disagree strongly. Not with the Providence over Spago notion, I only disagree mildly with that.

              Rather <<Faded jeans would not be appropriate.>>

              True for foodiemahoodie, but not Ciao Bob. I feel very appropriate in faded (hell, even in elegantly torn) jeans at Providence or Spago.

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              Spago
              176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

              1. re: Ciao Bob

                We just did the tasting menu at Providence on Friday night and it was unbelievable! We had gone to the LACMA before so my husband didn't have a jacket and I was not in a dress and fit right in. Fantastic non stuffy service.

                1. re: Ciao Bob

                  >>>I feel very appropriate in faded (hell, even in elegantly torn) jeans at Providence or Spago.<<<

                  Yeah, but you have to wear a blue sport coat, baseball cap from the last movie you produced and Cole & Hahn loafers with no socks to really fit in in your jeans at Providence and Spago :)

                  I would say go to Spago because I think an 18 year old would feel more comfortable there. I would put Spago in third place for the food behind Studio and Providence, but I still think Spago is a great experience and a great place to take a date without overwhelming them.

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                  Spago
                  176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                  1. re: scottca075

                    Ha, so true about the clothes. My laugh for the day-

                2. re: foodiemahoodie

                  do I tell them to replace the mojito because that contains alcohol and what choices do i have? and when I order the full tasting menu do they give me choices?

                  1. re: KRUKUSA

                    They would be happy to replace it, I have an allergy and they bent over backwards to accommodate me! Both restaurants are fantastic and I plan to go back to both!

                    1. re: MarlaPR

                      My son is a vegertarian and Providence did a special tasting meal just for him. Let them know any special requests ahead of time and they will accommodate you with a smile, Not only wonderful food but also great service.

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                      Providence
                      5955 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038

                    2. re: KRUKUSA

                      I am sure they can accomodate your request, but the amuse bouche at Providence often have cocktail names like "mojito ravioli", "greyhound", "margarita" etc, but the bites are so small and the flavors so intense, I can't say if they actually have alcohol in them or not and if they do, the amount is miniscule.

                  2. I would nix Montage, esp if you care about food.

                    If you go to Providence and get the full tasting menu, wear something comfortable. It's usu. at around 3.5 hour meal. Seat cushion would be good as well.

                    No view to speak of at Spago's atrium (not patio if you want to be technically correct). Food is terrific, esp. the chef's menu, although I haven't tried it for years now probably. As to what to wear? Anything that makes you feel comfortable.

                    I've been to Spago in a suit, and shorts and a tee with sneakers, at dinner and have never felt out of place. Same is true for Providence.

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                    Spago
                    176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                    1. My rec is Spago. Especially if you are trying to impress a young date -- she probably has heard of Spago so it has great bragging value with her friends. Also likely to see a star or two. Now if she is a foodie who especially loves seafood, maybe Providence, but otherwise to me it is an easy call.

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                      Spago
                      176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210