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Melisse--Prime time two tops?

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We're looking to have a great meal out soon. I've been wavering between going back to Providence, which we loved, and trying Melisse for the first time. As I look at availability for saturday evenings, even a couple months in advance, I'm seeing only 6:15 and 8:45. We are likely to go for the "ten" or the "carte blanche" and we're just too old and married to take a meal into the am.....but starting at 6:15 feels a bit much like the senior citizens hour and we're still way too young for that.

So, does anyone know if they open 2-top reservations for the more prime time 7:30 slots or if those are always held for larger parties? Otherwise, we default to Providence (which is clearly not a bad plan B). Thanks!

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  1. I'm not sure....but you certainly could contact them and ask. I've always found them very receptive.
    By the way...just took a friend to Providence for her birthday. We did the tasting menu with wine pairings. I miss it already and can't wait to go back!

    1. Having done the "10" and carte blanche many times - I'd say go early. It'll be 7:00 before you know it and you'll be staying longer. I like going early for a long meal - you get the watch the place fill up and a feel for the clientel. Often good people watching. Also - restaurants spread out the meals because if everyone comes at once - they'll be under-staffed to take care of everyone at once. Being the first one's in - you get the staff fresh in the evening. Hey, if you're going that early, you might as well splurge a little more and get the carte blanche menu

      Are you making the reservations direct or thru OpenTable?

      4 Replies
      1. re: foodiemahoodie

        That's a great thought regarding being early. I was looking at open table for times, and wondering if a direct call would have different slots (some places do and others don't--they use open table for a reason). And we need to do a saturday, since hubby's work schedule wouldn't necessarily get him home from downtown and out to SM at a reasonable time.

        1. re: lrhr

          I agree with Porthos - there's a good chance if Open Table can't offer you a reservation at your desired time - there's a decent chance a direct call might.

          1. re: lrhr

            in my experience with other restaurants, i've ALWAYS been better off calling the restaurant directly rather than relying on Open Table.

            1. re: westsidegal

              A little anecdote apropo of nearly nothing - over a decade ago I was in Italy visting some New Yorker friends who'd rented a villa in Tuscany. There was a restaurant not far away that had a good reputaton - my friend called but was told they were booked up. I said "let me try", and I got on the phone and said I'd like reservations for "Dottore Rubenstein and Professori (my name). " and they immediately took the reservation. Note - when in Italy - a title helps!

        2. Very few restaurants in town are booked more than 1 month in advance. Even Gjelina and P.Mozza have prime time spots available 1 month out. Melisse is probably holding those spots and not releasing them to Opentable. Just call them directly. I'm sure you'll get your desired time 1 month out.

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

          1. I tried Open Table and on Friday, September 23, 2011 they have 7:15 and 7:45 open.

            1. Check with your credit card concierge. They've been able to get me tables at just about anyplace in town on short notice, e.g. Mozza, Saam, Cut.