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sammy's woodfire pizza and grill in el segundo

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had three items:
Red Quinoa Salad
Golden beets, tomatoes, avocado, red onion, wild arugula, parsley, almonds, mint, scallions, Citrus Chili Vinaigrette

this salad was VERY good. went in with low expectations and was more than pleasantly surprised. even my daughter who doesn't really like quinoa nor arugula thought that it was really good.

Margherita Pizza
never again.
edible, but not much more can be said.
we were debating whether it was better or worse than a CPK pizza

Burrata and Pesto Pizza
flavorless, textureless
if i call it forgettable, i'm being kind.

if we go back there, will do a deeper exploration of the salad offerings. will not ever order pizza there ever again.

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  1. so if i happen to be in that area, should i just hit up veggie grill ?

    i always like to think of Sammy's as slightly more upscale version of CPK, slightly, and they are both chains. Sammy's seems to be growing at quite the clip. If I'm not mistaken they used to be based in San Diego, and then worked there way down to LA. There's one in Studio City too.

    1. I'm presuming you don't like the pizza at CPK.

      By the way, I think you were the one that mentioned a great pizza joint in Westchester, for some reason I can't remember the name and I'm pretty darn sure it ain't Vinny's nor Beach pizza both of which are on Lincoln.

      6 Replies
      1. re: kevin

        http://thegoodpizza.com/default.aspx

        1. re: Servorg

          +1
          (This was supposed to go under the recommendation for the Good Pizza).

          1. re: Michelly

            Ok, I'll try it very soon.

        2. re: kevin

          you're correct.
          i won't eat the CPK stuff that they call "pizza."

          there is no "great" pizza in westchester.
          the closest "great" pizza to westchester is stella rosa.

          the last time Vinny's was good was in the early 80's.
          Beach pizza is the average california neighborhood delivery pizza: commercial and insipid ingredients. crust that reminds me of the white bread that people made in the 70's using the frozen white bread dough that used to be sold in the supermarkets.

          if you absolutely MUST get a pizza in westchester (i.e. you can't see your way to getting decent Thai food at Ayara), the best local bet, imho, is The Good Pizza.
          They have two locations, i've only tried the stuff from the emerson location.
          now that i regularly eat the pizza at stella rosa and 800 degrees, The Good Pizza has lost some of its attraction to me.

          1. re: westsidegal

            Yep. that was it. The Good Pizza. Because I speficially remember someone mentioning it in Westchester. I passed by the one on Manchester, is that no good ?

            1. re: kevin

              i've never tried it.
              can't say yes or no.

        3. I've dined there twice at the behest of relatives and frankly found it to be lacking for the most part. The only thing that was memorably good was the asparagus & prosciutto appetizer / side order. The pizzas were uneventful and I would not place them above CPK, at all.

          4 Replies
          1. re: HastaLaPasta

            "...and I would not place them above CPK, at all."

            To quote Scooby-Doo "ruh roh"

            1. re: Servorg

              And yet they still have a strong customer base who deems it gourmet as opposed to CPK.

              I guess Chowhounds are the 1%, right ?

              1. re: kevin

                let's put it this way,

                the party at the table next to us asked the waiter these questions:

                "What does organic mean?"
                "What are tapas?"

            2. re: HastaLaPasta

              sammy's woodfire pizzas vs cpk pizza.

              horrid vs horrid
              hard to say which pizza is more horrid.
              tough one

            3. I used to eat here more when they were located in Torrance. But never for their pizzas. I came mainly for the Nutty Fudgy sundae and Messy sundae. Mini kobe beef burgers were tasty as well as their other side items.

              3 Replies
              1. re: jzalvidea

                I used to go to the Torrance location primarily because they were the first to offer the "hey, eat with us, buy discount AMC movie tickets." I never found their food interesting, the service was usually nonexistent even in an essentially empty restaurant, and was not surprised they closed it down. I will say that salad the OP mentioned sounds interesting.

                1. re: DrBruin

                  Sammy's used to be at Rolling Hills Plaza theaters, and then it closed down ?

                  1. re: kevin

                    Yes it did close down in Rolling Hills-Torrance but they have added a new location in Studio City on Ventura Blvd. and I will take Sammy's any day of the week over CPK.

              2. This is a general post on Sammy's, not really a reply to westsidegal, though I read your great posts!

                Sammy's originated in San Diego, and is still there. Used to eat at their Torrance location all the time - family in the area - and it was great. It would get crowded on Saturday nights due to movie theaters next door, their good food and service (for the most part), and terrific happy hour.

                They moved to El Segundo a year ago this July. Their salads aren't what they used to be, their happy hour is only during the week at an impossible time. The manager in El Segundo said that they have new vendors, etc. Have been getting lots of complaints about the new menu and tasteless food. The only things better at Sammy's than CPK are their bread and sundaes. Hope they don't change those. I can't be bothered to go a little out of my way to go there any more. I was excited about the new Sammy's in Studio City, but the menu and quality are just not the same as in the Torrance place. The owners expanded too quickly and got a little too greedy, and just about everything has gone down hill.

                I recently saw an ad (if you are on Sanmmy's email list) that they have gone back to their old menu. I guess they got the drift. Ok, Sammy, hurry up and make it the way it used to be, it WAS a great neighborhood place.

                1. If its a chain, why are you discussing it here? I thought that was forbidden.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                    National chains are discussed on the Chains board. Sammy's has 5 Nevada (Las Vegas centered) locations. All the rest are in California.

                    1. re: Servorg

                      So we can discuss them here if its not a national chain? Sorry, just trying to learn the regs....

                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                        It's a judgment call. Any further discussion needs to go here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/485584

                    2. re: Dirtywextraolives

                      Stay calm and carry on!

                    3. Sadly, Sammy's Woodfire's pizza is really not very good. Surprisingly, Tower pizza is pretty much the best you can do in Westchester. Unless you like CPK's "creative" pizzas, then Good Pizza does much superior versions. Speaking of CPK, I suggest all the haters try their Sicilian thincrust, well done. Really, really delicious -- even to this East Coast transplant.

                      1. I have been there quite a few times. I haven't really liked any of the pizzas that I have tried. Now when I go there, it is when I am wanting a salad. So far, the salads that I have tried there have been good.

                        1. westside, what do you recommend at The Good Pizza on Emerson ???

                          thanks.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: kevin

                            i recommend the pizzas as opposed to the pastas.