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Dinner with the Boss, Westside

aching Jan 18, 2013 04:01 PM

My boss has asked my husband and me to have dinner with him and his wife. He asked if there was anywhere I'd like to go (and I think he wasn't just being polite, I think would actually like to hear what we would like). Our office is in Santa Monica and they live in Marina del Rey, so I was thinking Santa Monica or Venice. I love Gjleina, but it's WAY too loud for this type of dinner. Do you think the Tasting Kitchen would be a good option? I haven't been - is it business-appropriate (i.e not crazy noisy, and with at least a few over-50 patrons)?

  1. l
    lizziee Feb 9, 2013 07:39 AM


    1. Baron Feb 8, 2013 01:52 PM

      What about Josie on Pico in Santa Monica. I have it on my try list and I've heard some good things about it. Maybe some of the Hounds who've been to Josie's can give a review.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Baron
        ThatPat Feb 10, 2013 10:50 PM

        +1 for Josie--Quiet, elegant (in the back room not the front), great food. Where did you end up going?

      2. r
        raizans Jan 19, 2013 10:15 AM

        maybe ushuaia?

        1 Reply
        1. re: raizans
          aching Jan 19, 2013 03:43 PM

          That's a interesting idea - I haven't been and would really like to go!

        2. d
          Dirtywextraolives Jan 18, 2013 08:40 PM

          Tasting Kitchen is great, if you can get an early reservation, otherwise it gets wicked loud.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Dirtywextraolives
            aching Jan 19, 2013 03:44 PM

            Oh, good to know, it probably wouldn't be until 7 or so.

          2. y
            yogachik Jan 18, 2013 05:55 PM

            Chinois, Catch, Capo, Whist, Fig (but it can be noisy), Rustic Canyon (also can be noisy), and then there's so many choices in Brentwood, if you want to venture that way (and why not?!)

            1. perk Jan 18, 2013 04:42 PM

              Tavern might be a good choice too.

              2 Replies
              1. re: perk
                ilysla Jan 18, 2013 04:57 PM

                Just don't sit in the atrium if it's crowded. I couldn't hear the people sitting across the table from me....

                1. re: perk
                  aching Jan 19, 2013 03:41 PM

                  I've been to Tavern a half dozen times and like it very much, but it's kind of the wrong direction (geographically) for my boss and his wife. Unlike Ilysia, I actually think the bar room is deafeningly loud but haven't minded the volume in the atrium room.

                2. i
                  ilysla Jan 18, 2013 04:32 PM

                  Wilshire. I've been twice (for pleasure, not work) and think it would work well for a business dinner (esp if you ask for a booth, although I hear the patio is lovely). Relatively quiet, above-average food that's still bland enough to appeal to just about anyone, unobtrusive service, pricey but not ridiculously so (I think about the range of the restaurants you've listed), and the clientele ranged from 20-60 when I went there. There's decent street parking, but there's also a valet/parking lot.

                  Never been to the Tasting Kitchen. Is this the place near Gjelina? The outside was a madhouse when I passed by on a Friday once....

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: ilysla
                    ipsedixit Jan 18, 2013 06:59 PM

                    +1 on Wilshire.

                    1. re: ipsedixit
                      nosh Jan 18, 2013 07:42 PM

                      +2 for Wilshire. You enter with a nice bar to the right, then turn left through a dining are with tables and booths, and finally get to the back patio with lovely lights and a dramatic area. Food is very good. Convenient valet parking with the lot right there. South side of Wilshire between 24th and 25th on the mideast side of Santa Monica.

                      I love Chinois, too. On the east side of Main Street in lower Santa Monica not far from the ocean. Bold flavors, everything served to share. Great service, Wolfgang Puck's original fusion flagship. Also valet parking in front, bold flavors, great cooking, interesting decor.

                      1. re: ipsedixit
                        ZoeZara Jan 19, 2013 09:36 AM

                        -2 on Wilshire - tinsy portions

                    2. moose73 Jan 18, 2013 04:11 PM

                      I love JiRaffe, and I've had several business dinners there. Venice restaurants tend to be loud in my experience.

                      1. wienermobile Jan 18, 2013 04:03 PM

                        You should also consider Fig. Sound just like what you are looking for.

                        or Tar and Roses. Both Farm to Table cuisine in Santa Monica.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: wienermobile
                          Dirtywextraolives Jan 18, 2013 08:40 PM

                          Tar & Roses can get pretty loud, too.

                          1. re: wienermobile
                            aching Jan 19, 2013 03:42 PM

                            I've been to Fig a couple times - you're right, it might be a good fit...

                            1. re: wienermobile
                              jgilbert1000 Feb 8, 2013 10:00 AM

                              Fig is perfect. Nice, good food, not too loud, good mix of people, and not crazy expensive.

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