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Dine LA Restaurants

Which ones are you going to go to first??

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  1. I have a reservation for Lukshon.

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    Lukshon
    3239 Helms Ave, Culver City, CA 90034

    1. Not going. The food in those mass-produced deals is often not representative of the true offerings at a particular eatery.

      1 Reply
      1. re: J.L.

        I've had hit and miss experiences with Dine LA in the past. I find you have a better chance of a good experience if you do a lttle research first and make sure the dishes they are preparing are on the restaurants regular menu, and no tjust offered for Dine LA.

        Defintily had more positive than negative experiences with Dine LA and look forward to it.

      2. One of the better deals is Fogo de Chao in Beverly Hills. Not a special menu. This is their regular AYCE Brazilian BBQ durning DineLa. Lunch – $28 per person. Dinner – $44 per person. Normally it's $34 for lunch and $56 at dinner. Of course their great salad bar is included and those little cheese rolls too. Good Food. Great Deal!
        http://www.fogodechao.com/index.php?i...

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        Fogo De Chao
        133 N La Cienega Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

        2 Replies
        1. re: wienermobile

          Plus they include desert, which is usually around $8.00!

          Not every restaurant is a great deal, but Fogo is a nice discount off regular price.

          Also, Spago and Chinois are good deals...Wolfgang Puck embraces Dine LA.

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          Spago
          176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

          Chinois
          2709 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90405

          1. re: manku

            Spago's menu isn't up yet, but Wolfgang Puck at Universal City Walk comes out to be a little cheaper to order off the menu. Chinois you'd for sure come out paying less through dineLA (since appetizers run about $20!!), but I don't see any of the listed entrees on the regular menu.

            Interestingly, one of the best deals seems to the The Lobster!

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            Spago
            176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

            Chinois
            2709 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90405

        2. Spago (I go every year), Bazaar and Firefly Bistro. Can't wait!

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          Spago
          176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

          1. Most of the menus are worthless since if you do the math on many of them the prices come out to the same, such as with Picca.

            I would like to try Fogo De Chao again, did it last time for DineLA and would love to go back since its been 2 years.

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            Fogo De Chao
            133 N La Cienega Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

            Picca
            9575 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90035

            7 Replies
            1. re: Johnny L

              Agree on the math. But then you have exceptions like Craft:
              $44 for dinner. Mains are typically $30, but they include an extra "sides" (large enough to share), amuse, and a family style/portioned first course. That's ~5 courses for $44, with all of the DLA mains on their regular menu.

              Freakin' bargain.

              Picca? Halving its prawn into prawns? not as much.

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              Picca
              9575 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90035

              1. re: TonyC

                Didn't realize that about Craft, well I have to give it a try this year.

                1. re: Johnny L

                  We had the craft DineLA dinner last time and it was really worth it... But it's better with a larger party because they offer so much choice and it's a great way to try everything! :)

                  --Dommy!

                  1. re: Dommy

                    I agree, I went last year to Craft for DineLA and it was great. Good value for the quality of food and generously portioned

                2. re: TonyC

                  Thanks for the tip TonyC. I might have to try Craft this year as well. I did Fogo last year and it was a great deal.

                  My only other good DineLA experience was at Kiriko. If I remember correctly, it started with an appetizer sampler: hama hama oyster, carpaccio (maybe kampachi) and a house-made tofu. Omakase was next. Around 7-8 pieces. Great cuts too. I remember blue fin tuna, scallop and toro were served. Then green tea creme brulee for dessert. Everything was delicious and all for $44. The single piece of toro alone had to be around $8 right?

                  And I'm with weinermobile. Scarpetta in my sights.

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                  Kiriko
                  11301 W Olympic Blvd Ste 102, Los Angeles, CA 90064

                  Scarpetta
                  225 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                  1. re: TonyC

                    Yes, Craft's including of multiple apps and sides make it a good value.

                  2. re: Johnny L

                    Reconsidering Lukshon. Just did the math and it looks like ordering the same dishes a la carte actually turns out cheaper.

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                    Lukshon
                    3239 Helms Ave, Culver City, CA 90034

                  3. Ocean Ave. Seafood and Wilshire, for lunch.

                    1. Spago, Hungry Cat (new location), and Lawry's....

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                      Spago
                      176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: foufou

                        Did Lawry's last year. Good meal. If you want Au Jus, you need to ask for it (I didn't realize this tidbit until I was almost full). If they have the same menu again, the lobster tail was the best I ever had. I would have happily foregone the prime rib for another tail!

                        1. re: foufou

                          Hungry Cat new location is Santa Monica I hope. Have reservations there. Can't believe I missed out of reservations at Spago this year! Think I will try Craft now too!

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                          Spago
                          176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                          The Hungry Cat
                          100 W Channel Rd, Santa Monica, CA 90402

                          1. re: MarlaPR

                            Yes, new location is in Santa Monica... it has been at least 20 years since I last visited Spago so I am looking forward to it (saw menu online yesterday).

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                            Spago
                            176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                            1. re: foufou

                              Very jealous! Hope you love it!

                        2. Scarpetta

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                          Scarpetta
                          225 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: wienermobile

                            I'm conflicted with scarpetta, it's a nice way to sample their menu, but to me, you really have to go with the tasting menu to really experience the place. But if you go, skip the signature spaghetti and go with the agnolotti, that was the star of the night when I went to the scarpetta in vegas.

                            1. re: wienermobile

                              Don't know if they still have it, but Scarpetta had a business lunch weekdays for between 22-28 when they opened...you could get any two dishes of menu...which mean two mains if you wanted.

                              Unfortunately, our experience (awful service, some really mediocre dishes) didn't want to make me return...though, to be fair, my friends have and they've all enjoyed it.

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                              Scarpetta
                              225 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                              1. re: manku

                                Unfortunately, Scarpetta doesn't have that lunch deal anymore.

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                                Scarpetta
                                225 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                            2. We dined at Craft last year for DineLA, and it was fabulous. Great Deal! Four of us went, and shared everything family style.

                              1. Chinois on Main, may switch to Spago if menu looks better
                                Josie, menu just out and it look awesome
                                Dominick's for brunch
                                Trying to decide on the last choice: Cleo, the Little Next Door, or maybe Drago Centro or Rivera when menus for the last 2 come out.

                                H

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                                Spago
                                176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                Chinois
                                2709 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90405

                                Drago Centro
                                525 S. Flower St., Suite 120, Los Angeles, CA 90071

                                1. I have lunch reservations for Spago (first time dining there) but the menu doesn't look too exciting. Does anyone know what the cost of the agnolotti appetizer and/or the schnitzel dish is at Spago? My dining partner or I may have to go off the DineLA list if it's worth it.

                                  On another note, Eva's menu looks pretty good but I have never eaten there before so am not sure about execution.

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                                  Spago
                                  176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                  11 Replies
                                  1. re: Searching4Dunny

                                    I think Eva does a very good job and the folk there are really friendly. If you have not been, this is a good opportunity to give them a try.

                                    1. re: New Trial

                                      Eva is listed on a discount site recently, not Groupon, might be LivingSocial or one of the others. So you aren't limited to DineLA.

                                      1. re: New Trial

                                        Thanks for the responses. I'll need to check it out. May replace the Spago reservation with Eva if I can get the same date/time.

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                                        Spago
                                        176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                      2. re: Searching4Dunny

                                        Apps at Spago run about $25, main plates about $40.

                                        1. re: jaykayen

                                          Thanks for the info Jaykayen. Those prices will likely put us out of our budget for this lunch. Eva is sounding better and better.

                                          1. re: Searching4Dunny

                                            lunch is probably cheaper, and I think the schnitzel is one of the less expensive.

                                            1. re: jaykayen

                                              The agnolotti at Spago is amazing. I think it is somewhere around $20 and absolutely worth it! I get it every time (even one time after dinner at Bouchon when we stopped in for a drink at the bar in Spago. I cannot stay away and they have different versions depending on the season.

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                                              Spago
                                              176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                              1. re: WildSwede

                                                Wow....you're my hero! Pasta after dinner......

                                                1. re: perk

                                                  LOL! Not so sure about that... how about no self control??!! ;-)

                                        2. re: Searching4Dunny

                                          I went to Spago for DineLA last year, although delicious, and with an extra side of agnolotti ($13-$15), I was still hungry. Maybe I should've gone for another couple pieces of bread and the dessert was just ok, some type of apple and pastry dessert.

                                          On another note, tried to go to Next Little Door for lunch since it looked like a steal, $16 for 3 courses (moules frites as entree option is already $20 a la carte). Got there only to find out it started today, for dinner...fail. Can they even do that even though the website says clearly Oct 2 is the start date?

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                                          Spago
                                          176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                          The Little Door
                                          8164 West 3rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90048

                                          1. re: groover808

                                            That sucks. Have to say the LND lunch DineLA menu is a freakin' steal.

                                        3. I'm going to revise my previous post...whatever you do, DO NOT GO to Chinois on Main for Dine LA.

                                          Made the unfortunate decision to go last night...while the menu, at least on the website, looked promising, the execution was a different matter.

                                          Apps were half the normal size.

                                          The mains looked like a lunch special at a chinese restaurant , but tasted worse...a little protein with a standard sauce, a little steamed rice on one side, some steamed/sauted veggies on the other side...the chicken, which was supposed to be stuffed, was merely a broiled chicken breast with a dipping sauce on the side!

                                          The deserts were good, fwiw.

                                          I've been going to Chinois since my first visit to LA back in 1989...don't think I'll be returning.

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                                          Chinois
                                          2709 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90405

                                          1. Josie last night for dinner- frisee salad with grapes, grilled quail, jidori chicken, NY strip, peach cobbler, chocolate bread pudding, one set of wine pairings. Everything was excellent except the peach cobbler which was fine, just nothing special. Nice low key quiet place, easygoing and very good service. DineLA menu represented a 15% savings over regular menu prices, we will definitely return, the place was very relaxed, a really nice evening.

                                            Just finished lunch at Campainille, had Caesar salad, sautéed trenne, fig and speck grilled cheese, flattened chicken, apple cobble and chocolate pudding. Everything again excellent except for my fig and speck grilled cheese, which was an open-faced piece of grilled bread topped with gorgonzola, speck, figs, arugula and honey. It was good but difficult to eat (I had to request a steak knife) and not what I expected (thought I'd be getting a soft, gooey traditional closed grilled cheese). The gorgonzola seemed too sharp in flavor for the speck, just overwhelmed the sandwich. However the setting was lovely, the service very competent and amiable, we really enjoyed ourselves. Not as mellow as Josie, a little noisier, but still a really nice afternoon meal on a beautiful October day. DineLA menu represented a 30% savings for us over the regular menu, this was a pretty good deal.

                                            H

                                            3 Replies
                                            1. re: heathpack

                                              Campanile, DineLA lunch on Sunday, October 2. I dined solo at the bar. Had the Sauteed Trenne, beef bolognese as a starter. Excellent and very filling. I almost had the Fig grilled cheese, but at the last second changed to the burger from the recommendation of the bartender. Very good burger. Dessert was OK, an apple crisp, very small but after all that food I was glad. The best deal was that at the bar they have $5 glasses of wine that would've been $9-$14 had I sat at a table in the dining room. I had a very nice rose with my starter, a red with the burger and a cava with my dessert. Very nice meal!

                                              1. re: MariaFeliz

                                                We thought the cobbler was good, nice buttery crumb, tender applely apples. Smallish was a good thing, we totally agree. Meal was quite filling.

                                                Nice tip on wines at the bar, we will have to keep that in mind.

                                                H

                                                1. re: heathpack

                                                  My friend is the chef de cuisine there, i'm gonna show this post to him. If anyone goes out there say Hi to him. His name's Chef Chris Eddy.

                                            2. just had lunch at fogo de chao-
                                              nice to get the beef as rare as i like it.the lamb was fantastic

                                              1. Went to Bazaar on Wednesday. Easiest the best meal I have ever had. Everything was great. Standouts were the Philly Cheesesteak, Japanese Tacos, Mussels, Serrano ham with tomato bread, Papas Canarias (dip the tomato bread into the mojo verde - divine!), olives (ordered off menu). Items that were still great, but we would not get again: cauliflower couscous, Croquetas de pollo, shrimp. For dessert, I ordered the Panna Cotta which was my favorite by far and mom had the chocolate heart (just meh). Since it was mom's bday, they comped us several sweets: 2 white chocolate pops with strawberry powder, 2 peanut-butter rice crispy things, 2 sea salt caramels with edible wrapper (these go for $3 each! Boy are they fantastic! They also comped us another dessert the Nitro. Coconut meringue, bruleed bananas, some coffee drizzle, mangos, who knows what else. We were so stuffed. I also had a glass of the 2008 Albarino, Lagar de Costa, Rias Baixas, Spain $18 and mom had their Pinot Noir that was available by the glass ~$17. My wine was fantastic. I am going to try to find it in a wine shop somewhere. Service was phenomenal, everyone who came up to us. A truly wonderful dining experience. Cannot wait to go back! Total, DineLA x2, 2 items off menu and 2 glasses of wine, 3 fleur de sel chocolate cookies to go = $146 before tip. Definitely worth it!

                                                The rooms are so eclectic and fun to be in. I love the different chairs and tables. Makes it so interesting. I also really liked the fact that the dishes were spaced out and that when they were brought to the table (beautifully plated) the server described each one and gave tips on how to eat some of them (i.e. lean over your plate when you bite into the Philly Cheesesteak (the cheese is liquid). Really helpful.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: WildSwede

                                                  Anybody tried Michael's?

                                                  I'm looking at their lunch vs. dinner menu, and they seem to be almost exactly the same dishes so does this mean that the lunch is just smaller portions than the dinner special?

                                                2. Went to Craft last night with a group of four. We started with cocktails at the bar while our table was prepared. I thought the cocktails were the weakest part of the meal and would skip them if I returned to Craft.

                                                  We started with an amuse bouche consisting of a polenta cake topped with fennel and crispy pancetta. It was a tasty little bite.

                                                  The Dine LA menu had two changes from the version posted online. The sea bass was replaced with rainbow trout and the butternut squash pie was replaced by a steamed apple pudding.

                                                  Appetizers:

                                                  King Salmon Tartar (surprise avocado, spiced almond and tomatillo) - Very pretty plate. The tartar wasn't cut as fine as a typical tuna tartar. Lots of flavor and interesting notes from the tomatillo. One in our party thought the amalgamation tasted like fruity pebbles. The rest of us weren't quite sure what she was talking about.

                                                  Sonoma Pork Terrine (Pears and purslane) - Little plane by itself, but the cooked pears really perked the dish up.

                                                  Wild Arugula (baby beets and smoked goat cheese) - Very good salad. It was served with a light lemon dressing.

                                                  Beef Short Ribs (Celery root puree and braised greens) - I'm not a big fan beef, and usually don't care too much for braised meats, but I actually liked this dish a lot. It was extremely tender and not over cooked and had a very bold flavor.

                                                  Diver Sea Scallops (heirloom beans and lemon) - Definitely a favorite. A simple, perfectly cooked dish of three immense scallops and a generous portion of beans.

                                                  Rainbow Trout (roasted market peppers and cilantro) - This was the weakest dish of the night by far. The trout was good on its own, but the peppers were far too strong and rendered the fish tasteless. The peppers would have been great served as a side, though. Maybe the sea bass on the online menu would have stood up to the peppers better.

                                                  Squash Agnolotti (pomegranate and hazelnuts) - This was a table favorite. The pasta had a nice al dente bite and the flavor was supremely satisfying. The slightly tart pomegranate gave a nice contrast and perked up the dish.

                                                  Butter ball potatoes, assorted mushrooms, market onions - I really loved the mushrooms. The onions and potatoes, while good, just weren't that exciting.

                                                  Steamed Apple Pudding (Cider sabayon and braised apples) - Our table was most split about this dish. I thought the flavor was good, even if very simple. I also liked the light spongy textures, but some other didn't.

                                                  Peanut butter semifreddo (banana bread and chocolate) - I have a large aversion to peanut butter, but gave this dish a try. Definitely not my favorite. Everyone else loved it.

                                                  We were then given mignardises consisting of chocolate brownies (wonderful) and caramel corn.

                                                  Service was perfect and the meal was very enjoyable. The portions were all a bit small, but we didn't go hungry. In hindsight, we should have skipped cocktails and added another dish from the menu. Also, skip the valet. There is free validated parking in the adjacent garage.

                                                  We were each given a bag of granola as a parting gift.

                                                  If the point of Dine LA is to make me want to return and spend more money on the regular menu, then Craft succeeded.

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: jsandler

                                                    Agree on Craf'ts sweet peppers. The obvious solution was separately the trout from the peppers, which ended up not difficult thanks to plating. The peppers, with the pumpernickel bread, served as a viable extra side.

                                                    Our 4 top was rather fulfilled after the meal though we did order an extra dessert (beignets -- I love the pastry chef more than anyone else in LA right now). The portion was just about perfect if a second bread service was requested (and how can you not when served that fabulous arugula salad).

                                                    Again, per my earlier post, what a freakin' bargain. No 'tude from the server, accommodating pacing, ie, immediate bread / amuse after we had to wait 30min, but throttled back apps onwards, picked up again deeper into the late evening for dessert coursd. I don't know anyone else who visited during the last week who didn't enjoy their meals here.

                                                    Beyond Spago, Craft remains a tasty, consistent, DineLA bargain.

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                                                    Spago
                                                    176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                                    1. re: TonyC

                                                      Has anyone been to Spago yet? Going tonight and trying to decide what app I want to get. Any recs would be welcome. Thanks!

                                                      -----
                                                      Spago
                                                      176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                                  2. Dominick's in West Hollywood Sunday brunch is an awesome DineLA value. Three course $16. We had fall fruit plate (a big bowl of plums, pears, apples, Asian pears, grapes) and the meat foccacia (foccacia topped with venison sausage, grilled artichokes, tomatoes and cheese). Then the poached eggs fungi (two poached eggs-cooked perfectly mind you- over a grilled slice of bread, topped with hollandaise and a mixed assortment of mushrooms) and the only glitch of the morning- the published DineLA menu differs from that in the restaurant, no linguine carbonara on the restaurant version. But the manager graciously agreed to allow us to order that dish off the regular menu at the DineLA price, good thing, it was delicious! Dessert was a moist chocolately cake, very intense chocolate flavor without being dense and heavy- very, very good. Also a slice of pumpkin cheesecake, not my think but husband liked it.

                                                    Sat on their lovely patio on a perfect sunny Sunday morning, nice little fire in their fireplace. All the food was quite good and the place was very low key and relaxed. Definitely a new face for brunch. The DineLA prices represented a savings of about 40% off the regular menu. This ones a real DineLA gem.

                                                    H

                                                    1. Just got back from Cleo.

                                                      I have to say. The food is underwhelming. Everything lacked flavor. The babaganoush was just plain bad. The daurade was good and the best part of the meal. Had a greek yogurt sorbet that was pretty terrible too. All in all , I don't think I'll be back.

                                                      1. Lunch at Culina was fabulous! Top-notch service in a beautiful dining room. Excellent preparation of branzino! Rivera also exceeded my expectation. Was not thrilled by Bouchon.

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                                                        Culina
                                                        300 S Doheny Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90048

                                                        1. Have been to Spago a handful of times. This was probably the least impressive of all - in both food and service. This is the first time I sat on the patio. Waiter was nice, but we sat with empty plates in front of us for all the courses for at least 10 minutes before they came and took them away. Yes, the army of busboys and waiters were swarming around us the whole time. I guess when Sidney Poitier is sitting behind you and there are Hollywood big-wigs all around, us little people get forgotten.

                                                          For app, I got the canneloni. Tasteless. I should have gotten what my friend got - the tomato soup. Now that was fantastic. Next to the agnolotti that was the prize dish of the night. I had the halibut as a main. Overcooked and flavorless. Stewed beans and a smear of what I could detect was refried beans. So underwhelming. Friend had the duck which was very good. As mentioned, I got the agnolotti as an add-on and loved it as usual. For dessert I got the lime cheesecake. Very tart and delicious. Friend got the apple dessert. Very nice.

                                                          I have decided that I will go to Spago when DineLA is not in full swing. I also decided what I will be ordering. The tomato soup and agnolotti with a glass of wine. That would be my perfect meal. Oh, and I will be sitting in the dining room - you get more attention there.

                                                          Off to Firefly Bistro tonight.

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                                                          Spago
                                                          176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                                          2 Replies
                                                            1. re: foufou

                                                              Very disappointed. Had 3 dishes out of 4 had fried items in them. Best dish was the brussels sprouts that my friend got. All 3 of us were extremely disappointed and won't be back.

                                                          1. We ended up at Scarpetta on Friday night. We were both really impressed with the service and quality of the food. DH got the raw yellowtail, the famed spaghetti and the vanilla caramel budino. I got the creamy polenta with mushrooms, the short rib agnolotti and the coconut panna cotta with pineapple - the last was an addition to the online menu's other two desserts for Dine LA.

                                                            Everything was delicious, but the real winners were the polenta, agnolotti and the budino. These certainly were heavier, rich dishes, but we shared it all. As much as I loved it, I'm not sure I could've finished the agnolotti without a little help - though I certainly enjoyed every bite. We also had a few glasses of wine recommended by our server, which were outstanding. Nice plus, Scott Conant was present and greeted us as we were being seated. We definitely plan to return.

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                                                            Scarpetta
                                                            225 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                                            1. fwiw:
                                                              La Cachette Bistro is extending their DineLA deal until the end of October.

                                                              4 Replies
                                                              1. re: westsidegal

                                                                When I was at Bazaar last Saturday the waiter said the might be extending their DineLA too... I wonder who else (including Bazaar) is still offering the deal.

                                                                1. re: aweintra

                                                                  The Misfit is extending their DineLA LUNCH until 10/31
                                                                  they are extending their DineLA Dinner until 10/21
                                                                  according to their website
                                                                  http://www.themisfitbar.com/dinela

                                                                    1. re: aweintra

                                                                      today, it went back to Hosteria del Piccolo for the third time for their DineLA lunch special that they extended..

                                                                  1. dineLA-ed at: Capitol Grille; Craft; One Pico; Taste; Bazaar. Missed Spago this time, (usually a must-book). Thought Capitol was a particularly good value, as the package price matched the solo entree price on normal menu -- apps, sides, desert essentially free. Bazaar benefits from a group meal, (4+). With that many small plates circulating, there is more than enough food to go around.

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                                                                    Spago
                                                                    176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                                                                    One Pico
                                                                    1 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405