Veg-friendly restaurant for 40th bday

Hi all - I’m trying to pick a restaurant for my 40th birthday trip to LA in August and hoping for some help! My needs/wants are a little tricky:

Needs: excellent food; vegetarian/vegan friendly (I’m not vegetarian but my friends are); good for a group (but probably no more than 10 people); under $100 pp incl tax/tip/drinks (and preferably less); celebratory but relatively low-key atmosphere (ie not too casual, but also not looking for someplace noisy/clublike)

Wants: unique to LA/CA (I’ll be coming from NYC) - high-end Mexican would be perfect, but I’m having trouble finding good recs. Or lots of local veggies/seafood?; relatively easy to get to from Silver Lake; nice view and/or neighborhood to wander around in before/after dinner; great cocktails/affordable wine list

So far Crossroads seems to be the best bet, but I’m open to any other suggestions (and to advice about how early I’ll need to make a reservation) - thanks!

Gjelina - if you’re willing to travel to venice, this place meets most of your requirements: unique, veggies, on abbot kinney. you’ll want to book as early as you can
Bs Taqueria
Broken Spanish

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http://brokenspanish.com/

Gracias Madre
http://graciasmadreweho.com/

Le Comptoir

note: le comptoir is counter seating only, so not ideal for a large group.

I figured since the counter has 10 seats, and the OP stated no more then 10 would attend, it may be a good option.

Commissary at the Line Hotel in Koreatown would fit the bill. Beautiful restaurant, good number of vegetarian options, classy but not stuffy, lots of stuff going on in the immediate vicinity, not far from Silverlake.

1 Like

Crossroads is a good option. Others:
Shojin (vegan)
Sun Cafe (vegan)
Girasol
Rustic Canyon
La Huasteca

+1 on Gjelina. Was there for dinner last night and one of my friends is vegan. They have ~8 vegetable dishes most of which are vegan. There are at least 3 pizzas and 2 pasta that are vegetarian (some have cheese). There were 2 mains that were vegetarian. The fries are amazing.

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Mohawk Bend in Echo Park is Silver Lake-adjacent.

I second this. Good signature cocktails, too!

Orsa and Winston.

AOC.

1 Like

I’m with ispe on the AOC rec. Plenty of small plates options for everyone to share. Vegetarian options in abundance, too. However, I’m a fan of the carnivore options…the bacon-wrapped dates, the fried chicken, and the forbidden/black rice dish. The cocktail and wine program there is fantastic, too. They have courtyard tables that would be perfect for your party.
Funny enough…I just noticed that OP posted this on Chowhound 9 hours ago and as of 2PM has not received any response. However, the FTC version has a healthy number of comments.

Second on Rustic Canyon, AOC, and Orsa & Winston.

I thought Commissary’s menu was kind of boring. It didn’t feel very festive / celebratory to me.

http://www.eatatpot.com/commissary-menus/

Commissary is a great choice. Meets all criteria. Another good choice would be Inn of the 7th Rey. Have not been in a long time but was recently told the food is outstanding and the venue is one of a kind - if you are willing to drive through Topanga.

Wow, thanks for all the quick and very helpful responses (and yes, I did post on CH but figured I’d try here as well after reading a “CH is dead in LA and FTC replaced it” article. :slight_smile: )

I looked around a bit at reviews/menus of the places that were recommended, and it seems like Gjelina, Commissary, and AOC are all good potential options, plus maybe Broken Spanish? They’re all so tempting (and different) that we might end up at more than one over the course of the trip - so if you’re not already tired of giving advice, of those 4, which seems like it would be the most special-occasion-appropriate?

AOC, or Broken Spanish

With AOC, you’ve also the opportunity to walk around the neighborhood to explore, if you’re still interested in that. Within walking distance is The District by Hannah An (of Crustacean fame), Petrossian, and a few other places. A quick Uber/Lyft can take you to the Rodeo section of the city where Spago, Georgie, Bouchon, and a few others reside.

In a newspaper?

Hi @rovingfoodie,

Welcome to FTC! :slight_smile: Glad you found us.

Yes, the L.A. Board here is where most of the former Hounds ended up.

Search for the many posts on those restaurants suggested (upper right corner, magnifying glass icon). I posted some pics and thoughts about Gjelina in this thread:

http://foodtalkcentral.com/t/fresh-wonderful-delicious-veggies-the-vegetable-whisperer-gjelina/3554

And Broken Spanish here:

http://foodtalkcentral.com/t/broken-spanish-chef-ray-garcias-farmers-market-produce-mexican-twist/129

I agree with @ipsedixit that the nicest of those 4 for “special occasion” are probably AOC and Broken Spanish.

Gjelina’s vegetable dishes are outstanding though (I’m not vegetarian, but after eating their vegetable dishes I could be, seriously. ;)). You can also walk around Abbot Kinney afterwards (lots of cute shops, and Venice Beach is nearby).

Enjoy!