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May 16, 2013 08:30 AM

Dinner for visiting relatives - Ventura Blvd

Need a restaurant rec please for out-of-towners tonight in Studio City or Sherman Oaks on Ventura Blvd. and it has to be a non-scary, welcoming experience. Any cuisine except Mexican okay. Not too fancy, somewhere we can sit and talk for awhile. We're eating at 5 p.m. (I know, I know) so getting a reservation shouldn't be a problem. Am throwing myself on your mercy and thank you!

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    1. re: Servorg

      A place that was casually mentioned in the thread above that I have not been to, but intrigues me, is The Local Peasant. They have the original one in Sherman Oaks and now have a second location in Woodland Hills that just opened in the old Casa de Carlos location on Ventura Blvd.

      1. re: Servorg

        Been to Local Peasant a few times and it's a pleasant gastropub with the requisite blackboards, mood lighting (or open windows during the day), etc. Good food, great drink selection.

    2. I really like Il Tiramisu on Ventura and Woodman in Sherman Oaks. Family run Italian with very good food and relaxed atmosphere.

      1. Spumoni on Ventura, just west of Van Nuys is a casual, neighborhood Italian. Family-run and very welcoming. They have excellent gnocchi and great bolognese. They usually throw in a free order of Tiramisu for dessert.

        Cafe Bizou just east of Hazeltine is always reliable. It's one of my stand-bys for meals with relatives and out-of-towners precisely because it isn't noisy and doesn't feel rushed.

        Neither place will wow anyone with innovative food, but they fit your bill. Be wary that a lot of the newer places in the Sherman Oaks/Studio City area are designed as gastropubs, so they have happy hours and may be crowded and noisy. I've heard good things about the Local Peasant's food, for instance, but looking at the photos of communal tables and closely set tables, I suspect it gets pretty noisy.

        1. Late, I know, but if you haven't decided yet you might check out Smoke City Market a few blocks north of Ventura on Van Nuys blvd (right where it starts to curve into Chandler). Texas style BBQ place that I like a lot. Jonathan Gold reviewed it a while back and threw some shade on their pork bbqing (while salivating over their brisket), but I actually think their pulled pork might be the best thing they have now.

          1. We had mother's day lunch at Mantee in Studio City. It's a Mediterranean restaurant with lots of options. The service was great and the food was awesome

            1 Reply
            1. re: Kalivs

              Great food there and the patio is a plus in the spring and summer PMs.