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Restaurant Week is coming up soon and most of the menus are already posted

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  1. Thanks for posting this.

    It looks like they did away with the 85 dollar spots?

    1. Waiting for chrishei to do his cost-benefit analysis.

      5 Replies
      1. re: TheOffalo

        In progress - should be done before end of the week. Will have a buy/hold/sell of my previous 30+ choices, and 18 new choices (3/price point).

          1. re: TheOffalo

            But they have AOC listed. Haven't multiple other posters here stated that there is little savings involved in their menu?

            1. re: TheOffalo

              This season's list is pretty hard to compile...

        1. Yippee!

          I would be interested to see which ones in the Santa Monica/Venice/Culver City areas you've short-listed, westsidegal. I'm feeling overwhelmed with choices (a good problem to have).

          11 Replies
          1. re: spoonlicker

            my #1 pick is Catch.
            will go there as often as i can during restaurant week.

            1. re: westsidegal

              Not been to Catch b/f but made a reservation for next wk based on your rec. I'll report back when I've tried it....

              1. re: ilysla

                the last restaurant week their meal was so good i ended up going there three times for the same meal.

                hope it's as good this time!

                1. re: westsidegal

                  I hope so, too! The apps look particularly appealing....

            2. re: spoonlicker

              Spoon, Avoid 041 Bacaro which is first on the list and is in Culver City. I had an awful experience there. Unclean, terrible food and service. If anyone had a good experience, I would like to hear.

              1. re: Baron

                Baron: thank you for preventing me from making that mistake!

                1. re: westsidegal

                  I think 041 rivals Polantino as the WORST restaurant in recent memory. Catch looks great. Will have to try.

                  1. re: Baron

                    i'll throw one in to avoid based on my absolutely horrid last restaurant week experience there:
                    AVOID BOA santa monica until another hound goes and confirms that it is acceptable this round.
                    good service, TERRIBLE food. (among the terribles)

                    1. re: westsidegal

                      Ooh, dish, sister. Let's hear some details.

                      I've carried what has felt like an unfair bias against that place since it opened, so I'm interested to hear if my silly prejudices have any basis in reality (or reality as you experienced it, at least).

                      1. re: spoonlicker

                        i wish i could.

                        let's see if this will work:

                        the only thing acceptable about the meal was the good work done by the server.

                        1. re: westsidegal

                          The brevity says it all. Oof, must've been BAD.

            3. I went online but I couldn't open any of the menus. Which ones look the most promising?

              4 Replies
              1. re: paprkutr

                go to the link i posted.
                scroll down
                click on VIEW MENU

                1. re: westsidegal

                  Thanks, that's what I did but it wasn't coming up. I will try again.

                  1. re: paprkutr

                    @paprkutr -- a few restaurants don't post until the last minute like Lukshon, but the majority already have.

              2. I am very bummed that Fogo de Chao has dropped lunch and now will do only dinner for DineLA.

                  1. Scarpetta has always been my go-to when DineLA comes around. Looks like a great summer menu.

                    1. Petrossian and Bouchon are my 2 choices this year. AOC has a good lunch menu, so that is also a possibility

                      20 Replies
                      1. re: maudies5

                        a.o.c.'s lunch menu violates the spirit of DineLA -- at $25, the highest priced lunch. But only two courses, two of the three entrees are a veggie dish and a sandwich, and they have the gall to charge an additional $6 for dessert. They should be ashamed. If Chinois can offer three courses for $25, including their szechwan beef as an entree, then a.o.c. is trying to profit from the ignorant.

                        1. re: nosh

                          I am going to disagree with you on the AOC lunch I have had lunch there several times and I can tell you that the sandwich offered as an entree is my favorite sandwich anywhere. Homemade bread, roast turkey ,Castelvetrano olives(sliced), fresh mozarella and served with a choice of salad or fries. IMHO, the quality of the food is far superior to that of Chinois. Just a difference in opinion, but I think your characterization of AOC "trying to profit from the ignorant" is flat-out wrong. One of the veggie dishes to which you refer is a beautifully prepared homemade pasta dish. BTW, one of the appetizers offered is their Spanish fried chicken, which is one of the most popular dishes on their menu. I see your point about the $6.00 surcharge for dessert, but can't get too excited about that. Several restaurants have surcharges. Petrossian, where we have a reservation has a $20 surcharge for lobster roll substitution. Scarpetta is asking for an
                          Extra $20 for their marinara sauce spaghetti.

                          1. re: maudies5

                            Scarpetta's special spaghetti is nothing special.

                            1. re: Baron

                              The only reason this dish is ever discussed is Frank Bruni, hands down the worst food critic the NYT ever employed, raved about it.

                              The dish is better than most versions, but you can take Hazan's version (onion and butter), throw in some basil leaves and have virtually the same dish.

                              FWIW, the service was so dismal last time I went to Scarpetta BH the manager comped our meal without a complaint from our table!

                              Finally, since I seem to cranky this Monday morning, I'd avoid almost all Dine LA experiences. A few years back they were great deals - a way to generate new business and reward loyal customers. Now, with few exceptions (Bouchon lunch), they are extremely poor values.

                              1. re: manku

                                I take TJ's tomato basil sauce, add fresh garlic olive oil and fresh basil. Same thing.

                                1. re: Baron

                                  baron: it could easily be argued that your doctored TJ's sauce is BETTER

                                  1. re: westsidegal

                                    And it certainly doesn't cost $24 a plate. Tax and tip not required.

                            2. re: maudies5

                              a.o.c.'s online lunch menu -- fried chicken starter, $12. torchio entree, $14. So if I make my ultimate combination I save a glorious $1 from the regular menu. Where is the discount, value, or generosity in that?

                              Chinois chicken salad at lunch, $13.50. Szechwan beef, $27.50. So even before dessert, I'm at $41 for $25. And they don't reduce the portions.

                              At least in my mind, DineLA was designed to be a three-course menu where people could come in and get a bargain (their benefit) while the restaurant would draw new customers who might become repeat customers (their benefit). What is the current usefulness where if a patron doesn't carefully do the math, their DineLA "special" could actually cost MORE than the usual menu?

                              1. re: maudies5

                                Not to nit pick, but Scarpetta is only asking $12 for the supplemental spaghetti course, which I think is a good deal.

                                Granted, it's nothing mind blowing (GF said it tastes like my sauce), but it's very good, and a proper pasta course we enjoy.

                                1. re: Novelli

                                  As I recall, the $12 buys you a 1/2 order of their special spaghetti.

                                  1. re: Baron

                                    Thanks for this info - didn't know that.

                                    1. re: Baron

                                      Really? Last time I went they gave us, what appeared to be, a full order of the spaghetti. It was definitely enough for me and the GF to split between the 2 of us.

                                      I'll have to take note when I go.

                                  2. re: maudies5

                                    Here is another reason I love AOC. They make a perfect Manhattan

                                    1. re: maudies5

                                      one of my favorite drinks. thanks!

                                      1. re: perk

                                        find a good sazerac, it's a manhattan plus

                                              1. re: jessejames

                                                I like the Sazerac at Bar Toscana as well (ALL the cocktails here are great). Also liked the one I had at Rustic Canyon.

                                  3. re: maudies5

                                    Petrossian also has some of its best dishes available at happy hour at reduced prices!

                                  4. Looking at the menu and costs, Restaurant Week seems really underwhelming this year. :<

                                    It doesn't matter if it's a "good deal" or not, but I look at many of these menu offerings and nothing really jumps out.

                                    I'm skipping the hype this time.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: chowseeker1999

                                      So far, the Petrossian menu is the most appealing and will be a good use of my $100 from Open Table.

                                    2. Night + Market's menu is up. Looks pretty darn good. I've had the larb meatballs and they were perfect. But I guess the whole point of Night + Market might be to share dishes so I'm not sure how well it translates to a set menu

                                      16 Replies
                                          1. re: set0312

                                            Obviously - I'm a Bruin and you're a Trojan (joking...somewhat)

                                            Btw, just saw Lukshon's dineLA menu. Initial math says it's a HOLD for the first time ever (maybe even SELL).

                                            1. re: chrishei

                                              Lol I of course got into UCLA too. Just wanted a school that would actually help me in the future ;)

                                              Ugh I really wanted to check out Lukshon. What other spots are looking good to you?

                                              1. re: set0312

                                                Still doing my analysis - hope to have something up over the weekend. What places did you have in mind?

                                                I only said HOLD for Lukshon because it looks like you're only saving ~$2 tops.

                                                Also, did the math for N+M. BUY ONLY if you refuse to go to Silver Lake. Otherwise, it's a SELL, because you'd actually save money ordering a la carte at Song.

                                                1. re: chrishei

                                                  I'm not set0312, but what about JiRaffe?

                                                  1. re: ilysla

                                                    Haven't looked at their menu yet, but they're usually a BUY. Will look later.

                                                    1. re: ilysla

                                                      Lunch is a BUY - anywhere from $10-25+. Just remember it's only on Fridays. Dinner is a BUY as long as you don't order the soup to start. If you get the black linguini + filet, you can save ~$15.

                                                      1. re: chrishei

                                                        last restaurant week, the food at the Jiraffe lunch was horrid.
                                                        not one thing was good.
                                                        bad food is never a buy in my mind.
                                                        unless someone else goes first, i would avoid them for restaurant week.

                                                        that said, i have had many lovely meals there when paying full price.

                                                        1. re: westsidegal

                                                          Chris's analysis is definitely more price-centric, though of course he considers the quality of the food as well if he has the data points. Not sure if he's been to Jiraffe before (or recently).

                                                          That is the hazard of Restaurant Week. The best deals may not be the best representation of what a restaurant can offer.

                                                          On the other hand, if a restaurant keeps its A-game during dineLA, as we all hope they do, but the savings is minimal, then people have less incentive to try a place that might be out of their price range, or to deal with the potential headaches of Restaurant Week crowds when they can get the same thing anytime, if the restaurant is within their price range and consideration outside this two week period.

                                                          1. re: TheOffalo

                                                            <<Chris's analysis is definitely more price-centric,>>
                                                            that's why i added the qualitative info on Jiraaffe.

                                                            there is no way anybody can have comprehensive qualitative info on a list this size.
                                                            we are extremely fortunate/grateful that chris is willing to do the quantitative calculations.

                                                            1. re: westsidegal

                                                              Yup, definitely heavy on the cost-analysis when I'm doing these things. But it's not as if I'm doing research on EVERY restaurant - they either have to be intriguing to me as a restaurant first, or have a good reputation of being a deal during the dineLA season. And of course I haven't been to every restaurant (but I do try to recommend places I'm familiar with).

                                                              With regards to JiRaffe, the dishes are on the regular menu, so at least from that perspective you're not getting a dumbed-down experience? And last time I went was in college, so personal experience would not apply here lol.

                                                              Thanks again guys :)

                                                    2. re: chrishei

                                                      Hmm, there are a lot of places I'm up in the air about.

                                                      Hakkasan is kinda tempting. Also intrigued by Lazy Ox, Post and Beam, Mo Chica, Sotto, and Drago Centro.

                                                      Have you been to Post and Beam yet? I keep meaning to check it out, and this seems as good an excuse as any.

                                                      1. re: set0312

                                                        Spoiler alert: Lazy Ox might be the best deal this season.

                                                        Been to Post & Beam twice - very good. Haven't seen the menu yet, but they were featured last time.

                                                        Also, Lukshon's lunch is a BUY ($4 savings). But dinner confirmed as a HOLD.

                                                        1. re: chrishei

                                                          Ooh, that's good news for those of us who like Lazy Ox. Although I doubt I'll make it out in time.

                                                          Thanks for future analysis of JiRaffe. =)

                                                      2. re: chrishei

                                                        the lukshon situation (no real discount coupled with an abbreviated dish) really disappointed me last time.

                                                        imho, if you're going to charge virtually the regular price, at least have the dish be the REGULAR dish. it was a dish that i had enjoyed many, many, times there and i believe that they intentionally changed it for restaurant week.

                                                        haven't been back since.

                                              1. OK, I have a logistical/strategy question that is probably kinda dopey, but here goes:

                                                I can't eat a huge amount in one sitting, so I'll probably opt out of any meals at the higher-end places where service and pacing are part of the appeal.

                                                But in terms of just the chow: I really like the idea of doing a casual dinner at Komodo Venice. I don't want to be "that person" who is all high-maintenance and/or goes against the spirit of the event, but if it considered OK to get some of the portions or courses boxed up for later, I'd be interested to know that.

                                                My recent dinner at Komodo Venice was super low-key and casual, so I didn't get the vibe that it would be completely ridiculous to ask for doggy-bags for parts of a meal, but I could be missing the mark there.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: spoonlicker

                                                  I'd think you could just get the food as served and then get doggie bags at the end. Unless you're getting something that would be better packed separately to start with, like salad with dressing or items that have to remain separate to be crisp, or whatever.

                                                  1. re: spoonlicker

                                                    Komodo does look like a good dineLA deal!

                                                  2. Hmmmm...looks like some things have changed.

                                                    Scarpetta is no longer listed for DineLA, and some of the menu selections have changed for some of the other restaurants I was looking at.

                                                    Going to have to go through this again.

                                                    4 Replies
                                                    1. re: Novelli

                                                      I noticed that too. Too bad, as it was a good deal.

                                                      1. re: Novelli

                                                        Thanks for the heads-up @Novelli. I made my Scarpetta rez 2 weeks ago when they had their DineLA menu up.

                                                        I called them today to reconfirm and was told Scarpetta's no longer participating in the July 2014 DineLA, but will still offer a 3-course $45 Tasting Menu (similar to a DineLA deal) from Mon 7/14 - Sun 7/20.

                                                        Also found out they will be closed from Mon 7/21 - Mon 7/28/2014 for a private event.

                                                        1. re: FoodShutterbug

                                                          That's probably why - some really big baller bought out the place during dineLA.

                                                      2. Anyone know anything about Adoteca in Brentwood (from the Ado/ Casa Ado family)? If the food is good, then this might be a good place to try. Full bar too, I think!

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. I have another rube question:

                                                          What's the appropriate tipping protocol on these meals? For example: Chinois lunch at $25; assume, for the sake of discussion, very good to excellent service (i.e., an ideal dining experience).

                                                          What would you guys throw down, since the bill will be less than the normal menu, but the service (fingers crossed) will still be "full price"?

                                                          4 Replies
                                                          1. re: spoonlicker

                                                            $25 + tax will be $27.++, and a beverage will add to that. If it is the $27.++ and good service, I'd tip $6, a bit over 20%, and feel fine about it. Hopefully the servers are benefiting from more patrons filling their tables.

                                                            1. re: nosh

                                                              I wouldn't hesitate to drop more for good service. You saved on the food.

                                                              1. re: jessejames

                                                                for a $25 lunch, with tap water for beverage, my friends and i have been tipping either $7 or $8/pp when service was good

                                                                1. re: westsidegal

                                                                  Here is what would happen when I got the check:

                                                                  Lunch with ice water = $25.00 + tax = $27.xx. I'd estimate a 20% tip rounding up at $6. I almost always add the tip line to an even dollar so $6.xx if the service was good. Another buck or two if exemplary, round down if not up to standards.

                                                                  Anyway, more discussion of tipping probably belongs on the "Not About Food" board.