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Need some advice on restaurants in the pasadena/glendale areas

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Im looking to take my girlfriend out for her birthday. Looking for a nicer restaurant to go to, something little more upscale, but not looking to spend like 80$ a person or anything. Im a pretty basic guy, but looking to show her a good time, so if anyone has any recommendations that would be great....

If you can drop names/price range and for sure dress code (dont wanna go to under/over dressed) haha.

Looking mainly for the pasadena/glendale areas ideally but open to anything even down towards LA/long beach.

Italian/mexican/Mediterranean preferred!

thank you

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    1. there's raffi's kabob in glendale...it's casual, but ok to dress a little nicer too.

      1 Reply
      1. re: miteymike

        I like Raffi's but their lovely garden is walled off with construction. I would wait until things are back to normal.

      2. I ate in downtown last night and saw this place http://www.kitchentabledtla.com. No idea how the food is, but a stunning setting. It's within your budget and the ambiance alone will wow your girl.

        1. You might like Briganti in South Pasadena. Italian, it's a kind of simple-upscale place. They have a pretty walled-in brick patio with string lights. The food is good, regular Italian and prices are reasonable, and it's not scene-y. So hopefully it could be special for your girlfriend while simple and enjoyable to you too. And going to South Pasadena always feels like a mini-adventure back to Main Street U.S.A. If you're not interested in the desserts at the restaurant, you could walk a block down to Fair Oaks Pharmacy after dinner and share a malt or ice cream sundae.

          1 Reply
          1. re: avivale

            +1 for Briganti - it immediately came to mind for your 'italian' request.

            OP - does the b'day girl have any favorite restaurants? That would help give us an idea of what she's used to/what she likes.

          2. You might like the boutique Skaf's in Glendale, 367 North Chevy Chase Drive Glendale, CA 91206
            Its excellent Lebanese food in a nice location, and reasonably priced.

            1 Reply
            1. re: ebethsdad

              Skaf's is good but the restaurant leaves a bit to be desired on the decor front, esp. for a birthday.

              Colori Kitchen in DTLA would be my pick - my favorite Italian joint in the city and BYOW to keep the costs down. A loud and lively environment (which can be good or bad depending on your preferences...)

              We drop 100 for 2 after tax and tip, and that's splurging the hell out of the meal - 2 entrees, 2 apps, 2 desserts.