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Studio City/NoHo on a budget

I'm coming from the westside and trying to find a delicious place for a midweek dinner for 2. I'm on a budget so preferably entrees under $20 a person. Any recs in the Studio City/NoHo area?

Personally I like Japanese food but other suggestions (except american) are welcome.
I saw a few places that sounded good, including Daichan, Krua siri, Sri Siam, and Cedar House - any thoughts on those?

Thanks!

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  1. republic of pie is my latest NoHo discovery.

    1. Ramen Jinya is both Japanese and within your budget. Caioti has excellent pizza and pasta. A little west of your target zone is Puro Sabor for Peruvian. I love Cedar House, and highly recommend it. If you're not worried about atmosphere Skaf's Grill is another choice for Lebanese.

      14 Replies
        1. re: ns1

          Definitely recommend Daichan--warm, casual, tasty Japanese country cooking, very reasonable. Sri Siam is delicious, but be aware that it is brightly lit storefront w/ no real ambiance (Great food however). Also agree w/ Ramen Jinya recommendation w/ proviso that they don't have a wine/beer license yet (at least last time I checked) & you cannot BYOB. Also suggest Mantee in Studio City, wonderful Armenian/Meditterranean on Ventura Blvd w/ lovely patio. W/in budget, particularly if you order a selection of their small plates & appetizers, which I find more interesting than their entree kabobs.

          1. re: archer

            oh yeah I went back to visit Daichan too, very cool place albeit more expensive than you'd expect. Totally love the poke.

            1. re: archer

              +1 on Mantee. Really like their back patio & love their vegetarian options

          2. re: ebethsdad

            I also recommend Puro Sabor and Skaf's Grill.

            1. re: Dogbite Williams

              Much better selections than Ramen Jinya, where the ramen broth tastes like it just came from a can, maybe even Swansons, but at least not the pork version which is still tasteless.
              Sri Siam and Krua are fine, as is Amazing Thai Cuisine on Magnolia @ Cahuenga.
              skaf's is very good, very very affordable, yet in a fast food format, sort of.

              1. re: carter

                Your words about Ramen Jinya are your opinions, not facts. You are certainly entitled to your opinions, and so is everyone else. Seems to me that more people like RJ than dislike.

                  1. re: pizzafreak

                    Agree w/pizzafreak; Jinya's actually quite good for ramen. Wife ate there recently and says that the service problems they suffered when they first opened have been cured. No opinion on non-ramen dishes, though.

                    Big plus is a commodious parking basement. You even park out of the sun!

                    1. re: Akitist

                      dumplings and karaage are good enough.

                      1. re: Akitist

                        ditto. had jinya a few weeks back and was thoroughly impressed. yamadaya is now open in sherman oaks too.

                    2. re: carter

                      If you want to stay cheap at Skafs, stick to the sandwiches only.

                      Somehow, they didn't taste as good today as I remember.

                  2. re: ebethsdad

                    Dunno what happened here but I dropped by Skaf's and somehow dropped $38.

                    combo special (3 kebabs), 1 beef shwarma sandwich, 4 pieces of baklava, and 1 pepsi. Somehow came out to $38.

                    Comparatively we spent the same amount at Hayat's Kitchen a few days before and got lamb chops, side of kefta, vegetarian combo, baklava, and a drink.

                    Summary: Hayat's > Skafs

                    1. re: ns1

                      I had the same experience. Feel like I'd rather go to carnival over skafs

                  3. Thanks for all of the recs. I will have to visit this area more often! I suggested them to my friend and she was most interested in mofongos (which i found randomly). Any thoughts on this place?

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: silverlainy

                      Looks interesting. Let us know how it is.

                      1. re: ebethsdad

                        Mofongos was good although I dont think I would trek back. It was my first time eating mofongo so I dont really have a comparison. We ordered the mofongo with shrimp and one with beef stew. The shrimp tasted fresh, and the beef stew was good although a bit salty. Perhaps because it is to be paired with the mofongo. Their tostones and maduros were very good.

                        Right now they are undergoing some construction so they do not have a working restroom for customers and food is served to go style. Service was very friendly though.

                      2. re: silverlainy

                        For the record (and long after the fact for the OP) Mofongos is pretty awful. Doesn't come close to good NY mofongo and it's damn expensive.

                        Since it's the only place in LA that serves mofongo it doesn't need to be great but it doesn't even achieve enough of a baseline to scratch the itch.

                      3. Sammy's Woodfired Pizza is opening this month in Studio City.

                        1. Il Tarimisu on Ventura at Woodman is outstanding Italian and reasonably priced. Full bar too.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Thor123

                            Il Tiramisu is Maria's with tablecloths.
                            Truly awful for the prices paid.
                            Owners nice, food, well, at your own risk.
                            Menu - standard stuff akin to nearly every other place on the boulevard.
                            It is the reason the nearby La Cava is so busy - differences abound.

                            1. re: Thor123

                              +1 for Il Tiramisu, though it comes in right around the $20 entree range only if you're careful.

                              Not really fans of Cava.