Famous from their cable television cooking show, "Two Hot Tamales," and their appearance on Julia Child's "Cooking With Master Chefs," Mary Sue ... More
Famous from their cable television cooking show, "Two Hot Tamales," and their appearance on Julia Child's "Cooking With Master Chefs," Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger of Santa Monica's Border Grill have created Ciudad in downtown Los Angeles. The name is Spanish for city and the restaurant explores the cuisines of Mexico City, Lima, Barcelona and Buenos Aires. The atmosphere here is playfully campy with a '50s-inspired design. Specialties include the Argentine Rib Eye and a Cuban-style Grilled Chicken, served with fried plantains and yucca. Wines from Spain, Chile, Argentina, Portugal and California are featured, as are authentic, dreamy desserts.
WASTE OF MONEY! We intenionally went there after finding the place on the internet under Mexican Food near Staples. We traveled three hours each way. All we wanted was some chips and salsa, a good marguerita, and a tostada! They bring you this flat bread and hummus type dip. Not a tostada on the menu! A marguerita was 12 bucks! We decided to split the carnitas....which was a joke in itself. We would have left but after already having paid for vallet parking, we were stuck. We had wished we had just eaten at Staples! $60 bucks for two drinks and one dinner! It is NOT mexican food---actually an insult to it! NEVER AGAIN!
We had a Christmas lunch there today and I have to say it is one of the worst places I have been. The food was too salty (cilantro tacos). The fajitas had NO MEAT!!!!. Why not call it vegitable fajitas. The service was very, very, very poor. We complained and the manager could not even come to the table to see what the problem was. He just took to plates off the bill. I wanted to argue with that but I was with my peers. This place is a joke!!!!!!!!
Despite some of these negative reviews, my husband and I recently went to Ciudad for dinner. We dined earlier in the evening so that we could attend a performance nearby that evening. The service was excellent. We also enjoyed the refreshing pre-dinner cocktails (the red wines by the glass that we tasted were less impressive). The menu is diverse. I ordered a Peruvian dish with an unusual and delicious combination of subtle spices and flavors. Given the ideal location of the restaurant (close to Staples, Disney Hall) and the quality preparation of the menu items, I do not think this restaurant is overpriced. There was a long line of people waiting to be seated by the time we departed. I would definitely return to Ciudad.
I really wanted to like this place. It is walking distance from my place and they have tapas on Sunday evening which I was totally excited to try. I ended up going for my first time on a Saturday evening. We were told we couldn't sit in the dining room without a reservation (even tho it was empty). So we opted for one of the tall tables in the front after sitting at the bar (where the service was excellent) for a few minutes and ordering exotic beers. Once we sat down at the table, all hell broke loose. I actually had to physically GRAB someone to get water at outr table. And i hate being rude, but I had to put myself in the path of a waitress in order to place our order an HOUR after we had sat down. I watched everyone around us get yummy cracker looking flatbreads and dips and place thier orders and get thier drinks except us for a freakin' HOUR. so sad. i really wanted to like this place! I asked TWO people for those crakers and they didn't arrive until AFTER our meal. Lame. The food was extremely tasty but overpriced. Is there like NO good service downtown or something? If i hadn't wanted to give this place a chance, I would have walked out on our meal.
We live in the area, and of course had to try it. The food although tasty, is small proportioned and quite pricey for what you get. The bar area is flat out dirty with dirty glassware littering one half of the bar, and a big pile of trash in plain view behind the bar. Which was quite unappetizing, so I would recommend eating on the patio or inside, NOT the bar. We have actually been there twice, the first time we had very slow inattentive service. We figured it was a bad night for them and went back another time. But the second night was more of the same extraordinarily slow mistake filled service. Drink orders werent taken, drinks werent brought, food was forgotten, we were there a really long time... We actually complained and they comped the whole meal and gave us vouchers for free desert next time. There will never be a next time for us. This is place is not worth the hassle.
Pretentious and overpriced. Portions are decent but the food really isn't special enough to warrant the way high prices. Service is passable, depends on your server.
Desserts are the best thing about this place. The coffee ice cream dessert is very good.
Ciudad's is a greating looking spot with great Latin American food and great drinks. I especially like it for lunch, or for happy hour, but keep in mind that for dinner on the weekends, it's incredibly loud, i.e., don't go in a big group or bring anyone over the age of 40 with you. The food is mostly very good, I definitely prefer seafood dishes over other selections. Same owners as Border Grill in Santa Monica
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