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GOOD frozen desserts available in the marina, FINALLY

4724 lincoln blvd.
marina del rey, 90292
310 822 1404

same shopping center as US Bank, and Peets.

may not be bulgarini, but given that the marina has, until now, been a complete wasteland for this sort of food, i am ECSTATIC to find an establishment this good in my neighborhood.

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  1. We like them too. I just haven't mentioned them because the gelato trolls start shaking the bridge.

    22 Replies
    1. re: bulavinaka


      I'll try it. Same mall as the Panera bread ????

      1. re: kevin

        they will give you tastes, and, as you would expect, some flavors are better than others.
        (to my palate, any flavor devoid of chocolate is at a tremendous disadvantage anywhere)
        parking is free.

        they are open until 10.

        1. re: westsidegal

          WG, what Flavors did you like?

          Was the pistachio or chocolate chip or hazelnut really good ?

          Maybe I'll just go trough a half dozen samples.

          1. re: kevin

            it is a mom 'n pop operation.
            please be considerate and kind to them re: the sampling. . . .

            1. re: westsidegal

              ok, two samples is fair game I think usually.

                1. re: kevin

                  ok, two samples is fair game I think usually.

                  But only if you buy.

                  No "drive-by sampling"

                  1. re: ipsedixit

                    absolutely concur.

                    they are going to have a hard enough time surviving in that location.

                    as one would logically expect, all the "best" retail locations and rental rates are awarded to chains that sell mediocre or downright disgusting food.

                    this means that for mom 'n pops like this one, even when the product is good and the price is reasonably high, it's much more difficult to survive.

                    basically, I WANT THEM TO SURVIVE!!!!!
                    can't even remember any decent ice cream/gelato place ever being in the marina/playa area. FINALLY WE HAVE ONE!!!!

                    not only is it better than decent, but it's OPEN LATE.
                    i don't need to plan my whole afternoon around getting to bulgarini in culver city by 6pm (rush hour).

                    1. re: westsidegal

                      i always buy.

                      no worries about.

                      the only time i may have gottten a sample and not made a purchase in all honesty is when I went with a bunch of friends who all ordered a few scoops and i was too full to get a scoop so i just grabbed a sample while we were waiting in line. But come to think of it, i probably got a scoop to since there's always room for dessert.

                      anyhow, it is a little tacky.

                      unless by the taste of the sample, you can tell it's truly dreadful, but even in those cases sometimes i'll just buy a dreadful fucking scoop anyhow.

                      WG, anyhow, if it's good, I'll try to keep em in biz too. any clue on how late they are open ? late as in 11pm or midnight ???

                      1. re: kevin

                        "...any clue on how late they are open ? late as in 11pm or midnight ..."

                        It's all in their website that WSG was kind enough to link in this thread.

                        1. re: Servorg

                          my bad, i completely skipped that part.

                          for some some reason, i was stupidly under the impression that this joint didn't have a website.

                          anyhow, these days even mom and pop joints have websites.

                    2. re: ipsedixit

                      o.k., i'm being a weisenheimer, but has anybody gone out of business because they gave out too many free samples?

                      other than tony montana, of course.

                      1. re: linus

                        I know I'm not the only one who's seen this but it happens pretty often where some parasite samples most of what's in the case then walks out without spending a cent. It's not just about the quantity of samples and the wasted spoons. It's tying up an employee as well as the wait and awkwardness it creates for those wishing the bogart would just hurry up and leave. I'm sure potential customers have left out of frustration - I have.

                        1. re: bulavinaka

                          oh, i don't doubt that stuff like this happens. i just wonder if it ever happens often enough to make a difference.

                          1. re: linus

                            "i just wonder if it ever happens often enough to make a difference."

                            If it did there would be a posted limit on samples.

                            1. re: Servorg


                              not too shabby. not shabby at all.

                              1. re: kevin

                                11pm friday and saturday
                                10 pm monday through thursday

                                1. re: westsidegal


                                  i will be hitting it up shortly since it's kind of in my neck of the woods.

                              2. re: Servorg

                                Some of the self serve frozen yogurt shops are now posting a maximum of 3 samples per person.

                                1. re: Servorg

                                  Let's keep the discussion local to LA, folks. We've removed some posts about the sampling policies of restaurants elsewhere.

                                2. re: linus

                                  It's like this linus.

                                  Assuming one believed in environmentally conscious food choices (not saying you do or should, or that I do or will), but for the sake of argument let's say you did.

                                  So the thinking would be, your decision to have bluefin tuna for dinner tonight will not actually cause the extinction of that species, but if everyone took your (cavalier?) attitude then certainly it would.

                                  Same with drive-by sampling.

                                  1. re: ipsedixit

                                    interesting analogy. however, isn't it a fact if everyone kept eating tuna at an alarming rate, the tuna would, indeed, go away?
                                    i mean, animals HAVE gone extinct, yes? that has already happened.

                                    but, has any restaurant actually gone out of business because of drive by sampling?

                                    the other day i was with a 10 year old in the vicinity of several ice cream and frozen yogurt establishments.
                                    to help her decide, i took her into a pinkberry to see if she liked it.
                                    she went in, tasted, and didn't like it, so we went somewhere else.
                                    i didn't feel the slightest twinge of guilt.
                                    smash cut to a few weeks back, and i'm moving a delicious piece of bluefin (from shunji) around my mouth.
                                    i still feel bad about it.
                                    i will kop to this being totally subjective: pinkberry will survive 10 year olds taking two teeny tastes of yogurt.
                                    bluefin won't survive sushi fanatics.

                                    a paraphrase from the book, 'freakonomics,' which was given in the context of choosing to vote or not to vote:

                                    a litttle girl and her father walk past a tree. the girl reaches up and plucks a leaf off the tree. her father says, "don't do that, dear. what would happen to the poor tree if everyone who walked by plucked off a leaf?
                                    the girl replies, "but they don't."

              1. just checked their website they sound pretty cool too.

                1 Reply
                1. re: kevin

                  owned by a very lovely young couple that are earnestly trying to provide an excellent product and an excellent experience.
                  their mix is milk based only, so it doesn't have the mouth-feel of a high-fat product, still is so superior to anything that has been available in this area since forever.
                  went back there today.
                  the chocolate sorbet was terrific.
                  i also asked for a glass of water and it was brought to me in a glass glass-- not a cardboard/plastic cup.
                  i appreciate that kind of touch.

                2. Westsidegal, now thats great news...even more importantly, i havent been yet but have you been to Settebello in the old Antica space? i think i'll visit their soon and folow up with your reccoed Gelato...mmmmm!

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: lapizzamaven

                    just tried settebello tonight.
                    officially, good pizza has returned to marina del rey (since antica left)
                    if we are narrowly talking about the pizza, i still have to say that i believe the stella barra pizza is much better, but the convenience factor at settebello combined with better than adequate quality trumps having to arrange my life around getting to santa monica early enough to get a table.
                    also, the seating, general level of service, and general ambiance at settebello is far better than stella barra.

                    also, settebello has a few great happy hour specials available before 6pm. both in terms of food and wine.

                    all in all, a much more civilized place than stella barra with much easier parking and young waitresses that didn't treat my party as though we were invisible because we didn't fit the demographic.

                    i could easily walk into settebello with a party of other folks like myself who lived through the jimi hendrix days (i.e. lost some of our hearing) and we'd still be able to communicate with each other and be treated graciously..

                    1. re: westsidegal

                      Excellent news, westsidegal...i'll try and get over there this weekend for pizza and gelato dessert down the street! yeah, the last few times i was at Stella Rosa/Barra the pizza was inconsistent and it was way too noisy for my ears!

                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                        the main quality that, to me, stella barra offers that all the others don't, is that their tomato sauce has a VERY INTENSE tomato flavor.

                        as much as i do really value that tomato intensity, it is not enough of a pull to induce me to regularly jump through all the hoops.
                        also, at stella bara, you can see that they store quite a bit of wine near the ceiling (couldn't think of a worse place, the hottest part of a pizza restaurant) which made me very leery about actually ordering any wine there.

                        by comparison, the MDR settebello is a breeze to get to, a breeze in terms of parking, has seating that was designed to be comfortable, much more gracious service, and on, and on, and on.

                        the tradeoffs, imho, favor settebello.

                        1. re: westsidegal

                          i did like stella barra when i went there a few weeks ago for the pizza margherita. (and the last time i tried it it was still called stella rosa (?) i think).

                          shoot, haven't gone to the gelato joint, hopefully i will sometime tonight.

                          thanks again for the note.

                    2. OMG, i just checked their web site...they have something called spaghetti gelato...vanilla gelato shaped like noodles topped with strawberry sauce...a big hit in Germany, they say...love it

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                        please report back.
                        odds are i'm going to be stuck on the chocolate sorbet for as long as it's in the lineup. . . .

                        1. re: lapizzamaven

                          saw a couple sharing a dish of that tonight.
                          every drop of the stuff was scraped off of the plate.

                        2. Went to MDR Settebello last night and stopped by Gelato Lounge afterwards. Pretty good gelato for what it is. reasonably priced and excellent service.

                          I got a scoop of espresso (good!), salted caramel (so-so), and the dark chocolate sorbetto (excellent!). The dark chocolate was the standout. They were out of pistachio and hazlenut, although it was 9:30pm when we rolled in, so it was understandable.

                          My companion got the "red orange" and rasberry sorbetto. I liked the rasberry, but the red orange (I'm guessing they mean blood orange???) tasted a bit like baby asprin.

                          Not totally trip worthy, but surely a nice place to stop in, if you're in the area and want a cool treat.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Novelli

                            i, too, think the chocolate sorbetto is the best flavor.
                            intensely chocolate.

                          2. Forgot to thank you, WG.

                            It is very good. It may not be the best in town, but within a few square miles it definitely is.

                            And it's much more convenient to get to than other joints.

                            Even the black licorice ice cream was great. But so far, I like th vanilla and dulce le leche.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: kevin

                              i'm so glad that you liked it.
                              if you go there with a chocolate maniac, like me, give the chocolate sorbetto a try.
                              their raspberry sorbetto (NOT the mixed berry sorbetto) pairs well with the chocolate sorbetto.

                              they are open until 10 during the week and until 11 on friday and saturday ( as opposed to bulgarini which closes at 6 during the week).

                              1. re: westsidegal

                                good to know on bulgarini. i didn't realize it closed that early.

                                But then again, they are most likely not hurting for any business so they can afford to choose their own hours.

                                1. re: kevin

                                  those are the Culver City bulgarini hours, the mother ship probably is different.

                                  1. re: westsidegal

                                    yeah, that's the location i assumed you were referencing.

                            2. Dommy and I went here tonight after running errands. I had a combo of the Stracciatella and Biscotto Italiano. It was delicious. Dommy had Lemon Creme and Brownie Batter. She thought overall it was good but not as excellent as Bulgarini, but since have had thimblefuls of pricey, icy gelato from Bulgarini i liked Gelato Lounge much better.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

                                re: comparing it to bulgarini

                                1) re: chocolate
                                imho the chocolate sorbetto at Gelato Lounge is excellent.
                                the chocolate gelato at bulgarini was so good i felt like the top of my head was exploding

                                2) re: nut-flavored gelato
                                once i had the almond gelato at bulgarini and it was full of shards of hard almond shell, i was no longer interested in trying any more of their nut gelatos
                                i've never had a "cruchy-nut shell" experience at Gelato Lounge

                                3) the raspberry sorbetto at Gelato Lounge is the best i've had as is their banana sorbetto

                                all in all, i get more pleasure from Gelato Lounge.
                                the ease of getting there
                                the better price:quantity ratio
                                the fact that Gelato Lounge is open late (i really dislike having to plan my day to get to culver city before 6pm)
                                the fact that enough of the flavors that they offer are excellent
                                the larger selection of vegan sorbettos at Gelato Lounge than there are at bulgarini
                                the fact that i have NEVER encountered icy product at Gelato Lounge whereas i HAVE been served icey product at bulgarini
                                the fact that the product at Gelato Lounge is made fresh in small batches as the day goes on

                                all have me favoring the Gelato Lounge