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Need some advice

Need an interesting restaurant option for a friends bday- considering corazon y miel but live on westside and seems too far. Chi spacca- but seems pricey (steak at $175). Open to all cuisines, 30 min drive or so from westside okay, want to avoid Italian and try something a bit different. Great food and service critical, ambiance less so. Funky and fun with great food would do it!! Any help appreciated.

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    1. Cafe Bizou on Ventura in S.O. for great French cuisine

      1. Cleo. Mediterranean tapas and good cocktails.
        Rivera. Latin/South American cuisine with themed rooms and a great bar.

        1. Providence. Some of the best food in LA.

          1. Unsung on this board, but I like it every now and then:

            Koutoubia - Moroccan fare, on Westwood Blvd. Really cool, exotic room, great drinks at the bar, and the chicken is tender, the couscous is wonderful.