Studio City Recs Needed

We just moved our offices yesterday to the Studio City-ish area (technically it’s probably still LA, but it’s barely over the hill) off of Cahuenga and Barham (up in the hills between Lake Hollywood and Universal Studios). After a dreadful thai lunch delivery today, I’ve come to you amazing folks for some much needed help.

What would make our work lives immensely better is to find decent lunch food in the area (any type plus some “healthy” options).

Here’s what we need:

  1. take-out/pick up options that are less than $15 per person. Easy parking would be great.
  2. decent delivery that holds up well and doesn’t take forever (more than 45min).
  3. some nice sit down lunch places with a full bar (and decent wine) around $25-$30 or less pp w/o drinks.


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For a sit down lunch you might look at The Gadarene Swine, which has gotten some positive reviews (beer and wine only, however). Never been myself.

For a quick, relatively inexpensive lunch, I would go to Fortyone Fortyone. Get the poutine, some Swedish meatballs (with a heaping plateful of mashed potatoes), a shrimp po’boy, and then go back to the office, close the door, recline the chair. And sleep. (Oh, and they deliver.)


Barrel & Ashes for BBQ (get the hoe cake, brisket)
Salt & Straw (because ice cream itself can be lunch)

Not open for lunch, but for a drink after work: The Bellwether.


Food trucks park over by universal @ Weddington Park. Follow @unifoodtrucks on Twitter.

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What I wouldn’t give to be back in that area, near Joe’s Falafel! Takeout, though there is seating for dine-in. Only a mile or two from you.


I don’t know what their take out/delivery policies are, and I doubt if they have a full bar – but I crave Mantee a lot and frequently want to drive over the hill just to taste their delicious food. Certainly worth checking out.


I’ll second Joe’s falafel. Also, for a slightly more high end lunch ($40 to $50 range) I’d keep Asanebo in mind as it’s one of the best sushi restaurant in Los Angeles.


i don’t know which side of the freeway you’re on, but if you go north down the hill to toluca lake, umami burger, the new jinya ramen, olive and thyme and sweetsalt come into play.
more towards studio city, joe’s falafel is good and there’s a poquito mas near you.

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Haven’t yet been myself but I’ve read good things about Cocina Condesa.

Great food but one of the worst parking situations especially if you go during prime time.

Good choices. Stay away from bland pulled pork.

There is a Loteria Grill and Tender Greens in same plaza on Laurel and Ventura which is good for pick ups.


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any of the wraps at Rodini Park

and the Chicken Iliki or Gyro at Hy Mart

Most of the menu

My office is also in the area, and we get food from a restaurant every day. My opinions so far echo a lot of what’s been said here already, but FWIW:

Joe’s Falafel is great. Spitz is pretty good. Poquito Mas has good meats but bad salsa.

Most of the stuff in Toluca Lake is pretty boring but decent - simplethings, Sweetsalt, Olive & Thyme, Cafe Magazzino, Arde’s. Jinya is good. Forman’s is not bad for an eat-in lunch in a bar atmosphere. Umami is Umami.

Most of Ventura has been pretty well covered here, but I also like Take a Bao - not particularly interesting, but better than a lot of stuff around and a nice change from the sandwich and salad places that are all over. And they do have a full bar.

Depending on how much time you get, there is also Mendocino Farms a little further West in Sherman Oaks, and it might also be worth going up to Coffee Commissary in Burbank.

For after work, I’d recommend SmokeHouse for old school vibes, a martini and a snack at the bar, but not for an actual meal.


that’s a pretty wide ranging menu! how’s the food?

I’ve been wanting to go to Joe’s for ages. When I heard we were moving over by them, I told my co-worker that we need to check them out (she’s a big fan of Ta-eem and falafel in general, so it won’t be difficult to get her motivated)

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It’s fine. There are some highlights, like the poutine and the meatballs, but it’s certainly not a life-changing or destination kind of place.

we’re on the Universal Studios side, but there seem to be more options on the Studio City side. Do any of the Toluca Lake places deliver?

I’ve been to Barrel & Ashes and that location of Loteria before. I think those might be some good sit down choices.


I’m going to start a list of everybody’s recs for our office manager so that she can downloading menus and we can start trying some places soon.

Oh I almost forgot: Cafe Sierra (buffet), at Hilton Universal City…

The menu looks great! What do you like here?

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I haven’t had a bad thing there (the lamb chops are great but tiny!), but I really love the “saucy” things on offer. For example, their namesake dish, traditional mantee. Last time I was there, the owner instructed us to eat them with a spoon rather than a fork (like tortellini in brodo) so that we could get as much of the sauce in every bite. The hot feta is great, as well as the dolma with yogurt. Their fattouch is really nice, with a healthy bunch of purslane thrown in the mix. Variation on hummus are nice. I’m getting really hungry as I type this!

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