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Moving to Studio City

I just looked and it's been nearly 5 years since someone posted a similar thread, and we all know how quickly (some) things change in LA. My family is moving from Westwood to Studio City this weekend, and we're in search for all of your best recommendations. I will take anything and everything, but in particular I'd love to hear your suggestions, recommendations (and places to avoid) for the following:

1. Italian (Dinner-type) -- we love places like Dan Tana's, Vito, Matteo's etc.
2. Pizza
3. Mexican (Dinner-type) -- our favorite west side locales are Don Antonio's, Kay 'n Dave's, and Gardens of Taxco
4. Tacos -- think Tactus Taqueria
5. Sushi
6. Steak -- Prefer prime steakhouses like Mastro's, BLT, BOA, etc.
7. Middle Eastern -- We love Shamshiri
8. Mediterranean -- Something along the lines of Panini Cafe
9. Chinese
10. Bar/Bistro
11. Date Night (Higher-end dining)
12. Neighborhood Bar/Happy Hour

Thanks in advance Chowhounders -- we very much look forward to sampling your suggestions!

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  1. 1. Italian: I"ve heard of the places you've listed but never been myself. I've been to Il Tiramisu and Spumoni (the latter of which is *very* casual and not related to the one in Brentwood) and thought both were quite tasty. I think the places you listed, however, are red-sauce Italian-American places. There's a Micheli's in North Hollywood. Don't know if that would work for you.

    2. Caioti Pizza Cafe
    3. I don't really know much american-ized Mexican places. Maybe Senor Fred's? There's a lot of fairly non-american-ized Mexican places in the valley b/c of the large Hispanic population.... I'm sure a search will turn something up.
    4. Not familiar w/ Tactus Tacqueria....
    5. Sushi: there's a ton of sushi joints in Studio City and the Valley. What kind of sushi are you looking for (Korean-owned places where you can order "specialty" rolls or more traditional places?)
    6. Don't know. It's not that hard to hop over the hill, if you're not too deep into the valley, though
    7. There's a Shamshiri Grill in Northridge. Not sure if just driving to Northridge is closer than going to Westwood. Could also try Carnival, which is much closer. Itzik Hagadol also gets good reviews
    8. Not familiar w/ your reference. I like Amer's Falafel in Encino.
    9. Tampa Gardens. There was also a recent thread on a new Chinese place in Sherman Oaks, although the name eludes me right now.

    Can't help at all w/ the last 3....

    5 Replies
    1. re: ilysla

      Just remembered for fine dining, you could try Brandywine in Woodland Hills. I've never been, but a colleague of mine mentions that her family goes there for special occasions and very much enjoys it.... If you consider places like Roy's and Arnie Morton's fine dining, those are also in Woodland Hills. Perhaps Cafe Pinot closer to home? Someone also posted a review of a place in Granada Hills a few wks/mos ago that seemed to be in the fine-dining category, but I can't remember the name....

      1. re: ilysla

        Arnie Morton's in Burbank http://www.mortons.com/burbank/ is probably considerably closer to the OP - as far as that is concerned.

        Whoops! I see canyde has already suggested the Burbank location in this thread.

        1. re: Servorg

          Sorry, meant Morton's and Fleming's is in Woodland Hills (I think).

          I think the old-school Italian place in Valley Village (mentioned by schrutefarms) is Vitello's? It's on Tujunga near Caioti (and Aroma Cafe). That whole (short) strip of Tujunga is actually quite charming and, IMHO, one of the more pleasant parts of the Valley....

          If we're bringing up Burbank, Pinocchio's does old-school Italian (if you don't mind the 1970's ambiance and counter service).

          1. re: ilysla

            Yes! Vitellos! Thanks!

            Pinocchios is a great Italian market, as well, with tons of hard- to- find-elsewhere goods.

      2. re: ilysla

        Plus 1 on Il Tiramisu. Corner of Ventura and Woodman. Very good family owned Italian with full bar. Casual but nice atmosphere.

      3. Not too far from you do yourself the favor of visiting Joe's Falafel http://joesfalafel.net/ and you can see more about it here http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8526... on the LA CH board (definitely try their lafa bread).

        You didn't ask about chili cheese dogs but I'm going to recommend Carney's http://www.carneytrain.com/ on Ventura Blvd. right there in Studio City anyway because they make great chili cheese dogs (ask for shredded cheese and not the slice of cheese they normally give you).

        1 Reply
        1. re: Servorg

          Joe's Falafel just cannot be recommended strongly enough.
          IMHO, they ought to rename it Joe's Falafel's Studio City.

        2. Here's my suggestions to try in Studio City or within a mile or 2 from there, this is where I live too:

          1. Italian (Dinner-type) -- Il Tiramisu or Spumoni
          2. Pizza-Little Toni's, Pit Fire Pizza
          3. Mexican (Dinner-type) -- Loteria
          4. Tacos -- Casita Tacos
          5. Sushi-plenty to pick from
          6. Steak -- stick with Beverly Hills for this
          7. Middle Eastern -- Joe's Falafal or Pita Kitchen
          8. Mediterranean -- Olympus, Cedar House Cafe
          9. Chinese-Golden Chopsticks
          10. Bar/Bistro-Firefly, Federal Bar

          2 Replies
          1. re: Hypnotic23

            you can try Joe Peeps for pizza... Casa Vega for Mexican Harvest Moon Cafe on Magnolia is a pretty good cssual lunch spot senor freds for Mexican...Lidos pizza in van nuys is fairly good...there's a ton of good Thai food in the North Hollywood area which is very close. for a steakhouse I would try arnie mortons in Burbank...loteria grill is good as is the artisian cheese shop right across the street great selection of cheeses and good sandwiches. you're also very close to Hollywood so you'll find plenty of options there as well

            1. re: Hypnotic23

              I'll dissent, lil toni's makes the baby jesus cry.

            2. There's a good old-school Italian in Valley Village, the name escapes me, but it's the infamous Robert Blake place. The food is great.
              Also there's a pretty good falafel joint on the corner of Ventura and Colfax. Arams falafel? Something along those lines. Cheap, casual and tasty.
              Lalas is on Ventura, just east of Laurel, that might fit your mediterranian needs.
              There's Casa Vega on Ventura for Mexican, or Mexicali for a bit higher end. There's also a Chipotle right there, should the need arise. (Laurel/Ventura)

              4 Replies
              1. re: schrutefarms

                "There's a good old-school Italian in Valley Village, the name escapes me, but it's the infamous Robert Blake place. The food is great." = http://www.vitellosrestaurant.com/

                1. re: schrutefarms

                  amir's falafel at colfax and ventura. pretty good.

                  casa vega is so bad its hilarious to go. jammed and dark. margaritas ungodly potent yet barely tasty.
                  mexicali is just bad.

                  1. re: linus

                    Yes, Amirs! Yum.
                    Agreed about Casa Vega, Mexicali isn't too bad, but I totally forgot about Loteria, catty corner (did I spell that right?) from Mexicali.

                2. Thread about Mexican in the SFV here:
                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/343873

                  The Six (bar/happy hr) also has a Studio City branch now. I've never been to the one in the SFV but rather enjoy the one in WLA:

                  http://thesixrestaurant.com/six/