Dinner for 4 under $80?
So the in laws want to take the hubby and I to dinner at Marie callenders. There are about 100 other places I'd rather eat and it's not cheap either - $12-18 for entrees. I can't think of anything off the top of my head that's similarly priced and not too noisy. Also not too salty. Any neighborhood between Beverly hills and downtown is fine between the 10 and 134. We like all types of food especially larin and asian. Nothing too scenery or small plates, unfortunately they are foreign, rather stuffy, and strangers to high end dining though this could be an opportunity to introduce them to real food. They don't drink but we'd like beer or cocktails. Thanks!
If you don't mind byob'ing your wine then we recently had dinner here http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/838014 and thought it was good for a local neighborhood joint. If you stick to pastas you should be fine on the total cost. Make a reservation for their patio as the inside seating is not the place you want to be.
My favorite budget stop is Cafe Bizou, but it will be a bit over $80 for the 4 of you. Corckage is $2 so that helps a lot if you want to drink, and they have a 3 course lobster dinner for $32 and most entrees with soup du jour or salad will be about $20. There are ways to get by for less there, but no guarantees. You also need to pop over the hill to the Valley, but that is the price you pay. Not gourmet, but I have always found it more than competent. I really like the crack of lamb there.
14016 Ventura Blvd, Sherman Oaks, CA 91423
Masa of Echo Park has great Chicago-style deep dish pizzas at very affordable prices. My group of 7 (seven people) gorged there (2 large deep dish pizzas, 3 salads, 2 appetizers, 4 beers, 3 sodas, 4 desserts) for $165 (before tip), and we're big eaters!
Masa of Echo Park
1800 W. Sunset Blvd.
Another choice would be 3 Square in Venice on Abbott Kinney. Entrees are all under $20 (8 under $15) and you might be able to split a couple apps too. No cocktails, but excellent (German, Austrian and domestic) beers.