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Apr 6, 2014 06:05 PM

Romantic Italian Restaurants on the West Side?

I'm planning a weekend in LA for my boyfriend's birthday, and I'm trying to find the perfect place for dinner. Does anyone know of a nice Italian restaurant that's somewhat affordable (under $100 a person) with great tasting food and a romantic ambience (dim lighting, an outdoor patio or great view?). Maybe somewhere with a great seafood pasta?

Also, if you guys have any suggestions for romantic spots to go to before/after dinner, it'd be much appreciated!

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  1. Kind of a tall order.....

    Il Cielo in Beverly Hills used to be considered one of the most romantic....but I haven't been there in ages....

    PIccolo Venice is very good Italian, a block from Venice Beach, and it has a cozy room with a fireplace, but no view or patio.....

    Melisse is the best high end restaurant on the Westside, but not Italian, and not for the faint of heart or under $100per person.....

    Sorry not coming up with much, good luck!

    11 Replies
    1. re: Dirtywextraolives

      respectfully disagree with the recommendation of piccolo venice

      1. re: westsidegal

        I know nothing of Piccolo Venice, so wondering if you disagree b/c of taste, ambiance, price?

        1. re: ilysla

          I'm guessing because of ambiance. Piccolo Venice is a fairly cramped venue and pretty loud to boot...especially when the BOH and FOH is yelling at each other in front of everyone.

          Although, IMHO, the food and service is very good, just not the perfect romantic spot.

          1. re: Novelli

            I did not experience any loud diners or staff when we visited there.

          2. re: ilysla


            the ambiance is lovely
            price is what i would expect for this type of meal.
            should be noted that their plating was simply gorgeous.

            1. re: westsidegal

              Speaking of Piccolos, we had a dynamite dinner at Piccolo Paradiso on S. Beverly...grilled langoustinos, john dory with tomato/fennel broth and black truffles, bottarga, other fresh pasta, cannolis...service is impeccable and provided free samples of various wines to sample...not exactly dark and candle lit, but i'd say romantic...there's also a small patio out front...

              1. re: jessejames

                I'd definitely 2nd Piccolo Paradiso. Food is great, it's within your budget, and if you're with that special person can certainly be romantic in a cozy Italian trattoria sort of way.

                I personally prefer Madeo for Italian food on the west side, but it's larger, has a less romantic vibe, and is likely more expensive than PP.

                1. re: jessejames

                  Absolutely agree with you on Piccolo Paradiso.
                  Their homemade pasta, their wonderful service, their wine list and the ambiance all come together for what could easily be romantic.
                  Highly, highly recommend.

                  1. re: latindancer

                    And it will easily be within budget!

            2. re: Dirtywextraolives

              Il Cielo would be my first choice.

              Viletta is also very romantic, and a few rooms to choose from.

            3. The original comment has been removed
              1. Madeo.


                Angelini Osteria.

                Nuff said.

                  1. re: Victorxxxx

                    It's open. Though maybe not on Sundays. :)

                  2. I would do Valentino. It's your best bet.

                    You could go to someplace like Pecorino and leave feeling totally ripped off.

                    Up to you.

                    (And I refuse to consider Beverly Hills as "west side" otherwise Scarpetta might work)

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: ipsedixit

                      <And I refuse to consider BH as "west side">

                      You do? Why?

                      1. re: latindancer

                        Just a mental block, I guess.

                        Everyone I know that works in/around BH (incl. CC) don't refer to themselves as "Westsiders".

                        Just ignore, a personal failing of mine.

                      2. re: ipsedixit

                        I just don't get Valentino anymore.... Maybe they've updated the uber dated interior, and then I'd be willing to give them a shot...but it doesn't scream romance to me anymore with that 80s look, and obviously no view or patio, AFAIR.....

                        1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                          Agree too. It's formal. Ish. But romantic? Could be worse, but doesn't have the charm of Viletta. Or Il Cielo (as pictured).

                          1. re: foodiemahoodie

                            Don't even think about going to Villetta. Their bankruptcy trial starts tomorrow. They are on cash only basis for most vendors and are buying much of their wine from Fireside Market. This is not inside information. Chapter 11 bankruptcy docs are all in public domain. I had a good look at their financials and it is ugly. Checks bouncing to landlord, Board of Equalization. They are trying to get B LLC, that group which owns those mozzarella bars to assume their lease. It is a pretty, romantic venue. Too bad that crappy mismanagement led to this.

                        2. re: ipsedixit

                          Agree with all of this, including the geographical/cartographical musings.

                          But if BH is in the mix, Scarpetta Chefs counter was a fun anniversary meal a few years ago.

                          Sotto and Bucato are better by a good bit, but never what I'd call romantic.

                          1. re: a213b

                            The patio at Bucato was quite romantic. They knew it was our anniversary and had prosecco waiting. It was so nice.

                          2. re: ipsedixit

                            Valentino is great, but the ambiance IMHO is very cold, the service although proper is not warm, and I guess I have a hard time considering it romantic. I'd definitely choose Madeo or even Piccolo Paradiso first.

                            Mmm...another thought..perhaps silly. It's not the westside, but it has an outdoor roof deck, very good Italian food, is romantic and is in your budget! But it's in Long Beach!! If you don't mind driving 30-40 minutes, Michael's on Naples would definitely fill the bill