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Jan 7, 2014 02:04 PM

Fine Dining in the Valley

Anything new or interesting? Looking for Studio City area or not too far from there.


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  1. Have you been to Raphael ? We have not but I would like to try it sometime.

    6 Replies
    1. re: Servorg

      Went about a year ago. the menu is 3 levels, $10, $15, $25. The challenge: "Our menu consists of small plates meant to be shared family style." So the sharing is best with 2 diners. The nooks & crannies of the layout of the space are good for date nite. Alas, cannot recall the items we sampled, but it was a nice experience.

      1. re: Servorg

        Raphael is great. Good food, and gorgeous ambiance.

        There's also Roy's in Woodland Hills, which is also adjacent to a Flemings. If you don't mind driving a bit further, I'd do Saddle Peak Lodge. Technically in Malibu, but closer to Calabasas. Excellent food, great service and wine list, although the restaurant has a lodge theme, complete with animal heads on the walls. One of our favorites.

        1. re: boogiebaby

          Several people have mentioned Roy's. Is it really good?

          We live nearby but I'd rather have a root canal than deal with Flemings again and they have the same ownership. Is Roy's, perhaps, a little less like a meat packing plant?

          1. re: rainey

            Rainey, like you I have no desire to return to Flemings after eating there twice; however; unlike you, I think if given the choice of a root canal or Flemings, I would definitely choose Flemings--it wasn't THAT bad :)

            I've been to Roy's several times and have never been disappointed.

            1. re: brandygirl

              Thanks for setting me straight. I'm more willing to give Roy's a chance now.

              1. re: rainey

                I've been to a few different Roy's -- mostly in Florida, one in Hawaii, one in California -- and I've found both the food and service to be very good. They have a 3-course fixed price menu (might be $38.95 now) with limited choices of starter, entree, and dessert (don't miss the hot melted chocolate individual cake) that is very satisfying. Very consistent operation.

      2. Café Girasol on Moorpark has been getting good reviews. One of their dishes was on Jonathan Gold's list of 10 best.

        1. I like the Italian food at Il Tiramisu a lot. Its not overly elegant, but good food, service and a full bar.

          1. There is very good sushi all over Studio City.
            A new Mexican place took over the OutTake Bistro called La Ventura. Have not tried yet.
            Raphael is not bad, quite expensive.
            While Girasol has been getting good reviews, the décor has kept me from going, would you believe. Also fairly expensive.
            I like the food at Black Market in the former Wine Bistro building, next to the Firestone store. More tapas-focused, and noisy as ...
            La Loggia is probably as good as you will find for Italian food, which otherwise is lousy, whether in Studio City or Sherman Oaks, unless you want the red sauce stuff.
            Have you been to Vibrato in the Beverly Glen Center near Mulholland? Similar to Arroyo Chop House in Pasadena, and operated by the same people.

            6 Replies
            1. re: carter

              Arroyo Chop House is owned by the Smith Bros., which also owns Parkway Grill and Cheval Bistro in Pasadena. I don't think they have anything to do with Vibrato Grill.

              1. re: brandygirl

                They have operated Vibrato since its opening, with Herb Alpert as owner.
                A nice experience, a superb space, and worthy of anyone who wants to spend similar dollars to Arroyo Chop House or Parkway Grill.
                I have known Bob & Gregg since the opening of the Crocodile Café/now 140 South on South Lake, and worked with them over the years, and, trust me, they operate Vibrato.

                1. re: carter

                  Well, obviously I had no idea...that's good to know, as I like their Pasadena restaurants.

                  1. re: carter

                    Vibrato is very good. If you consider it the Valley, its about as good as it gets. Its a great venue when meeting some people from the City and others from the Valley.

                2. re: carter

                  In Sherman Oaks I'm a big fan of Oliva. Mmmm gnocchi al brasato (brisket meat sauce) and linguine vongole

                  1. re: Tyus4pt8

                    Funny thing - the last time I ate at Oliva, which admittedly was several years ago, I had the linguine vongole, and it was terrible, and then and there I vowed to never return.
                    Previous meals were nothing special, yet a friend wanted to try it for her first, and as it turned out, and only time.

                3. although it's a chain I do like Roy's in Woodland Hills.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: wienermobile

                    I had a terrible meal that was also overpriced at Roy's. It is very much a chain. Loud, a hang-out, cutesy plates that had lousy food on them... Definitely not fine dining to me! Sorry Weinermobile!