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Jan 5, 2012 07:34 PM

Thousand Oaks - Nate 'n Al's is closed

The windows are plastered with 'Coming Soon ! Umami Burger!' posters.

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  1. Thousand Oaks? And sitting right between Claim Jumper and P F Chang's. What were they thinking?

    19 Replies
    1. re: allyoucanet

      Not surprised. Folks in that part of the Valley are dedicated to Brents. I suspect that Nate 'N A'sl will be much happier in Terminal 2 at LAX

      1. re: maudies5

        I'm sure all the bad reviews (service and food) right after they opened did not help. Probably had more to do with the closure than the location..

        1. re: Sgee

          Yep, they stumbled badly out of the gate, and never really recovered.

          But do we need yet another burger?

          1. re: nikkihwood

            Not at all surprised. I heard that food and service was bad and it stayed that way. If people wanted a real deli they should have gone to Brent's very close by.

            1. re: SIMIHOUND

              Just my opinion, Simihound, but I was there once and the food, while a tad on the pricey side, was quite good. They had an appetizer (sauteed chicken liver and onions) that I wanted served as my main course. Waitperson said 'no problem' and brought me an entree size portion of the dish so I can't complain about the service.

              1. re: mucho gordo

                I am glad that you had a good experience over there. The people that I have talked to that know deli's did not.

                1. re: SIMIHOUND

                  I think I know deli's as well as anyone else and IMHO, it all boils down to personal taste and knowing how to order. I love Brent's, for example but I've learned a couple of things by making mistakes. I love chopped liver but...not their's; they make it too sweet. I've learned to ask them not to trim the fat from the meats. You might have to ask them not to do that at Nate 'n' Al's. The sauteed chicken livers I had were a very straightforward dish. There's nothing they could do to make that taste bad.

              2. re: SIMIHOUND

                Brent's isn't THAT close by. From TO, Brent's in Northridge is a good 20 minutes plus away depending on traffic on the 101.

                1. re: granadafan

                  Simihound means the Brent's in Westlake Village. It's a 5 minute drive from the former TO Nate n' Al's, a fact that was foremost in my mind during both of my disappointing meals there.

                  1. re: granadafan

                    Sorry I thought everyone knew they had a location in the area. My bad!

                    Brent's Deli
                    2799 Townsgate Rd, Westlake Village, CA 91361

                    1. re: SIMIHOUND

                      Ah, that makes much more sense. I haven't been to TO for a few years now since leaving my job there.

          2. re: allyoucanet

            What were they thinking? Maybe that the neighborhood needed some decent food for a change, and people would maybe pay for it? Just a guess.

            1. re: Will Owen

              If that's what they were thinking, they certainly failed to come up with the goods as far as "decent food" is concerned. Reviewers upthread are right; this place was a joke. I gave them the benefit of the doubt once, and then felt stupid twice. Food bore almost no resemblance to what you get at the Beverly HIlls location. In a newspaper article reporting the closing, I was interested to read that the T.O. location "was operated by Caruso Affiliated, owner of the Lakes shopping center, as a separate entity from the Beverly HIlls delicatessen." Here's hoping Umami Burger has a better outcome...and that they run their own kitchen. Same goes for the Loteria Grill location going into the Thousand Oaks Promenade down the street (another Caruso property).

              1. re: roundfigure

                Just curious; what did you order and what did it taste like?

                1. re: mucho gordo

                  Round one was limp and sad Reuben. Round two was bland egg salad. I mean, I don't expect egg salad to be President of Awesomeland, but this sandwich was prime minister of Blah-lunchistan. (I experienced none of the problems with service that others did, fwiw.) It was sad, too; I really wanted the place to be good. They did a great remodel on the site and the patio is fantastic. I hope Umami Burger puts it to good use.

                  1. re: roundfigure

                    >>I don't expect egg salad to be President of Awesomeland, but this sandwich was prime minister of Blah-lunchistan.<<

                    LMFAO - if this doesn't make, "Overheard on the LA Board," then I'm heading over to Yelp*vania...

                    1. re: bulavinaka

                      Thanks, b! And watch out for vampires in Yelp*vania. They vant to rate your blood!

                    2. re: roundfigure

                      The only thing I can think of to account for your displeasure is the meat was way too long in the steam table and the egg salad was intentionally made bland. It's the basic recipe geared to people who have no taste. My egg salad has a load of onion,pepper and mayo. Sometimes I add a can of tuna to it. You won't find that in any commercial establishment. Just like "hot/spicey" foods really aren't so they'll appeal to the mass palates.

            2. The incoming Umami Burger will be in direct competition with The Counter burger over in Westlake Village. Nice to have two good high end burger places in town.