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Favorite "Nice" Mexican (and Other Latin Cuisine) in Northwest LA

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Slowly eating my way through my new environs. Now on the lookout for a good Mexican place. It doesn't have to be super-pricy, but it can be a little bit up there, but not a burrito-type place either (I've already got one of those).

Same general area I often ask about -- Agoura Hills, Oak Park, Westlake, Thousand Oaks, Woodland Hills, Calabasas, Camarillo, Oxnard, Malibu, Santa Monica, and Pacific Palisades are the easiest places for me to get to.

While I have your attention... Are there any good other Latin places you would recommend in that area. I have a particular fondness for Peruvian food when done really well, but I'd be interested in recs from anywhere in Central or South America.

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  1. http://www.mercadosantamonica.com/

    1. I posted on this place in Westlake Village: http://casaescobar.com/
      Went back since and didn't have the same magical experience, but it's still fine.
      Los Agaves on TO Blvd. in Thousand Oaks is probably the best mid-range spot we've found.

      Otherwise in the Agoura area, lots of pretty bad places, as you've probably discovered. Got nothing for you in Woodland Hills/Calabasas, Palisades, Camarillo or Malibu. Imagine if Calabasas had a good Mexican restaurant. Nah, it'll never happen.

      Oxnard is a universe of Mexican food unto itself - there are a bunch of threads on this area. I can't think of a scenario in which Oxnard and Santa Monica are both "easy to get to" (unless you have a helicopter or something) but I'd spend a lot more time in Oxnard on this quest.

      1 Reply
      1. re: cant talk...eating

        >>I can't think of a scenario in which Oxnard and Santa Monica are both "easy to get to" (unless you have a helicopter or something)<<
        True. I started off living in Malibu, now in Agoura Hills. I guess Santa Monica is farther away now :(

        Coming from SF, I am used to outstanding Mexican food. I've been a bit shocked not to find similar places around here, but the menu at Mercado definitely looks promising. I'll check it out sooner rather than later...

      2. For Peruvian, I highly recommend Puro Sabor, if it's not too far east in the Valley for you (it's on Van Nuys Blvd near Victory). It's very casual, inexpensive and utterly delicious!

        1 Reply
        1. re: archer

          Another Peruvian that I also like that is just few blocks N. of Puro Sabor is Takatis Peruvian Chicken Pollo a la Brasa. Large menu, all good!

        2. I can certainly vouch for the fact that there is no decent Mexican in the Palisades. As for Malibu, I noticed a brand new spot opened on PCH just south of the pier on the north side of the street in what used to be known as Allegria. Haven't been so cannot vouch for whether it is either good or nice.