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once in 6 years solo dining

Being a single dad to a now-6-year-old, my ability to dine at really nice establishments has been reduced to nil.
As it turns out, tonight at least til 10pm, I will be sans offspring.

So, what are recommendations for once-every-six-years solo dining, tonight (north of L.B., south of SFV)?
Considering it's Friday, reservations are probably out

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  1. MB Post in Manhattan Beach or Gjelina in Venice would both be good options. If you try to make reservations early today you may find out you can still get one. Don't just get frustrated if Open Table doesn't have one, call the restaurant.

    10 Replies
    1. re: Servorg

      fwiw,
      i have always been able to get a spot at the communal table at gjelina if i arrive at 5:30 on the dot. leave time to find a parking spot.

      1. re: westsidegal

        +1. Even by 6pm on Fridays. I have even been offered a table if I could finish in 1.5-2hrs.

      2. re: Servorg

        But, seriously, rotsa ruck finding a parking spot on a Friday night, in MBeach or Venice.....unless they offer valet, but I'm pretty sure Gjelina does not.

        You may have an easier time in Santa Monica, where at least there is free muni parking structures. There, I'd recommend
        Tar & Roses, Hostaria del Piccolo. Or, better yet, go to a place with valet, like Rustic Canyon, Tavern, or il ritrovo del piccolo, which has free valet.

          1. re: Dirtywextraolives

            There's a pay lot right up the street from Gjelina.

            1. re: Dirtywextraolives

              iirc,
              the muni parking structures in SM are not free after 6pm.

              1. re: westsidegal

                they changed the parking fee structure recently. now it's free for 90 minutes regardless of when you enter and I think a buck per hour thereafter. no more flat rate after 6 pm.

                1. re: soniabegonia

                  First 90 minutes free.
                  Next 60 minutes $1.00.
                  Every 30 minutes after $1.50.

              2. re: Dirtywextraolives

                There are now several public valet stations on Abbot Kinney in the evenings, so parking isn't impossible. And +2 or 3 or whatever it is on Gjelina being a great solo dining option as long you arrive by 6. Tasting Kitchen would be good also.

                1. re: cookie monster

                  Awesome!! Good to know, thanks!

                  And a HUGE +1 for Tasting Kitchen, one of my absolute favorite places to eat in that hood. Better than Gjelina with no 'tude.

              1. re: J.L.

                +1. Expensive but worth it.

                Especially if it's your first time in 6 years sans offspring.

              2. I like sitting at the bar upstairs at Mastros in BH and listening to the piano man, and eating there, or at Jar (no music).

                1 Reply
                1. re: jessejames

                  Mastro's new 3rd Floor Penthouse is rockin' - Lots of fun people-watching, too.

                2. you can probably get a reservation at Fig, however their complimentary parking is only for two hours.
                  beyond two hours you will pay dearly.
                  also, even without a reservation, if you arrive a little before they open for dinner at 5, and wait on line, you can get a seat at the bar and they will serve you your food at the bar. (no reservations for bar seats--just for tables. dunno what the policy is for their communal table)

                  1. I would not worry about reservations at all...solo... early. You have so many options. What is your favorite type of food?

                      1. According to the MB Post site: "40% of the restaurant is set aside for walk-in Guests on our communal tables."

                        Seems like the way to go