Dine LA Week is happening right now and you don’t want to miss it (January 20 through January 31). This is the perfect venue to take advantage of phenomenal food at a reasonable rate. I’ve had the opportunity to attend a few restaurants in the past couple of years. I suggest selecting a restaurant that you’ve always wanted to try and one you may consider above your price range. Restaurant participants of Dine LA give patrons the opportunity to sample their cuisine, offering 2+ course meals for lunch and/or dinner at a very reasonable price (excludes tax and gratuity).
This year I tried lunch at La Vecchia Cucina in Santa Monica. Why La Vecchia? La Vecchia is a fine dining Italian restaurant on Main Street in Santa Monica. They have hundreds of positive restaurant reviews, offer fresh seafood in their Dine LA menu, and price wise you get more bang for your buck. Based on prices and ambiance, I ordinarily would not choose to dine here for lunch, but would consider dinner for a date or special occasion.
The cuisine at La Vecchia was fantastic, especially for $20. They offered fresh, warm bread to dip in a garlic and olive oil mixture to start.
First Course: Capriccio Imperali (Chilled Seafood Salad)
My friend and I both ordered this as our first course. The shrimp, calamari, and lobster were fresh and the haricots verts, crisp. The salad was topped with a refreshing EVO and lemon dressing. Simple and scrumptious. My only complaint is I hoped for more lobster.
Second Course: Rigatoni Bolognese (a signature dish)
I selected this dish as I was craving carbs and I am sucker for good Bolognese sauce. The rigatoni was cooked perfectly (al dente). As a small eater, I ate half and took the rest home. I heated up the leftovers for dinner and it was just as tasty.
My friend ordered the Castolette D’Agnello, lamb chop with arugula, parmigiana cheese, and aged balsamic vinaigrette. The food presentation of her platter was impressive, and the meal itself was better yet. The lamb was very tender and flavorful.
There is only a few days left to experience Dine LA. Go before it’s gone! La Vecchia’s motto is “Chi mangia bene, vive bene.” (Who eats well, lives well.)