Special Olympics World Games, Los Angeles

The Special Olympics are from July 25 – August 2, 2015. Opening Ceremony is July 25th at The Los Angeles Coliseum.

West San Fernando Valley Host Towns

Calabasas (Great Britain):
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Host-Town-Calabasas/325901950901436?fref=ts

Chatsworth (Serbia/Timor-Leste):
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Host-Town-Chatsworth/337094323152681?fref=ts

Northridge (Azerbaijan/Cambodia/Malta):
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Host-Town-Northridge/1613137412248487?fref=ts

Winnetka (Venenzula):
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Host-Town-Winnetka/1541376712815032?fref=ts

Woodland Hills/Tarzana/Reseda (Hellas, Greece):
https://www.facebook.com/HostTownWoodlandHillsTarzanaReseda…

Burbank (Botswana/Zimbabwe):
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Host-Town-Burbank/727359777325474?fref=ts

West San Fernando Valley Event Schedule

Balboa Sports Center
The 7-a-side (soccer) competition will be played on ten fields of play at Balboa Sports Center.
Saturday July 25th, 9:00am – 10:45am
Sunday July 26th, 10:00am – 3:15pm
Monday July 27th, 9:00am – 1:45pm
Tuesday July 28th, 9:00am – 1:45pm
Wednesday July 29th, 9:00am – 1:45pm
Thursday July 30th, 9:00am – 1:45pm
Friday July 31st, 9:00am – 1:45pm

Nearby (see site for full list of events)

Griffith Park, Wilson & Harding Golf Courses
“Golf is a precision club and ball sport, in which competing players (or golfers) use many types of clubs to hit balls into a series of holes on a golf course using the fewest number of strokes. The game is played on golf “courses”, each of which features a unique design, although courses typically consist of either nine or 18 holes.” Spectator Entry Point: South of clubhouse off of Griffith Park Dr.

Griffith Park, Los Angeles Equestrian Center
“Equestrian is one of the most fascinating sports during the Special Olympics World Games. The balance, the stability and the right communication between the horse and the rider are key elements for success in Equestrian sport.”

 

 

Fireworks in the San Fernando Valley

WOODLAND HILLS
July 4th Fireworks Extravaganza
Warner Park, 5800 Topanga Canyon Blvd. Woodland Hills
One of the best Fourth of July events in the San Fernando Valley. Entertainment, businesses and a food court – what else could you ask for from a local event.  We highly recommend coming to this show but prepare for the crowd. This event is free. July 4th, Concert begins at 6pm and Fireworks around 9pm. Bring: Cash (to avoid ATM fees), blanket or chairs, food. Weather: Forecast shows a beautiful 93 degrees (based on average). What to expect: More than 20 arts and crafts booths, food vendors and a children’s play zone.
Parking: Cost is between $10 & $15 (adjacent park lots in the Warner Center structures between Topanga and Canoga or Califa and Oxnard). Check the The Metro Orange Line schedule for a hassle free option (use Sunday schedule for time information).

The show lasts about 20 minutes.

PORTER RANCH
4th of July Spectacular
Shepherd of the Hills Church , 19700 Rinaldi St, Porter Ranch
See the free fireworks show at Shepherd of the Hills Church. There will be moon bounces, face painting for the children and optional food purchases from local food vendors. This is a free event with free parking.
July 4th from 4pm – 10pm, gates open at 4 pm. Bring: Lawn chairs, blankets, food, drink, sunscreen and cooler.

STUDIO CITY
July 4th Fireworks Festival 
4024 Radford, Studio City

This is a fun-filled family festival featuring exhibits, music, food, fireworks, a children’s fun zone, and a business exposition in a back lot at CBS Studios. Parking for this event is free. See their site for admission prices. Bring:Admission does not cover cost of fun zone, have cash to avoid ATM charges.
July 4th, 5– 9:30pm, gates open at 4:30pm

LAKE VIEW TERRACE
Annual San Fernando Valley Independence Day Celebration
Hansen Dam, 11770 Foothill Blvd, Lake View Terrace
A celebration featuring music and other live entertainment, food and fireworks. Swimming facilities are open on the 4th. This event is free and parking is free.
July 4th, 10am – 10pm Bring: Blankets, sunscreen, beach towels and cooler.

CALABASAS
City of Calabasas Fireworks Spectacular 
23400 Park Sorrento and Juan Bautista de Anza Park, 3701 Lost Hills Road

The City will proudly host the community’s annual 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular at Calabasas High School.
July 4th, Gates open at 5pm and the fireworks show begins at 9pm. $10 admission price includes parking, entertainment and all activities, under 2 years old, free. No on-site ticket sales. Call City Hall for info: 818-224-1600. Bring: Picnic items. No pets, tobacco or alcohol.

BURBANK
Independence Day Celebration
1249 Lockheed View Drive, Burbank
The Surfaris, Surfin’ (Tribute to the Beach Boys) and The Tokens, 6:30 p.m.; fireworks, 9 p.m. Tickets $20-$25. No ticket sales on July 4. Parking $8 (cash only), opens, 4:30 p.m. Gates open, 5:30 p.m. 818-238-5300. www.starlightbowl.com

SIMI VALLEY
Fourth of July Celebration at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
40 Presidential Drive, Simi Valley
Event includes crafts, old fashioned games, patriotic music and president look-a-likes, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Free for outdoor activities; admission to museum exhibits $16 ages 18-61; $13 ages 62 and over; $9 ages 11-17; $6 ages 3-10. 40 Presidential Drive. 805-522-2977. www.reaganlibrary.com

Rancho Santa Susana Community Park’s Fourth of July Fireworks Extravaganza
5005 E. Los Angeles Ave, Simi Valley
Event includes children’s activities, crafts, entertainment and games, 2 p.m. Fireworks, 9:20 p.m. Free admission. www.simivalleyrotary.org, 805-660-2214.

 

Beach Bus Schedule

Getting down to the beach from the valley just got so much easier. The Department of Public Works, Beach Bus provides valley residents the option of a cheap ride! The price for a 1-way ticket is $1 per person. That is a steal!

There are several routes in Los Angeles but for the valley the starting pick up point is located at Warner Center Station (Oxnard and Owensmouth, NW corner).

A few of their guidelines: Children under 12 years old need to be accompanied by a fare paying adult. Coolers, beach chairs, blankets and boogie boards are allowed, however, no pets unless they are service dogs. Please bring proper ID for senior discount. This service runs 7 days a week.

Be sure to check out the 2015 Summer Beach Bus ScheduleTopanga Canyon Summer Beach Bus service begins on June 15, 2015. See site to verify times.

Beach Bus stops:
1 – Topanga Beach
2 – Will Rogers State Beach
3 – Santa Monica State Beach

For a more detailed schedule of times, go to the LA Beach Bus website  to view the routes or call 1-888-769-1122.

Want to stay in the neighborhood? Hop over to our list of local swimming pools.

 

Olive Garden

West Hills got a little tastier. Specifically in the Fallbrook Center. Olive Garden officially opened on May 5th and complimented it with the 20 new menu items Olive Garden has added.

Their menu has evolved over the years. One of my favorite dishes that did not survive the test of time was their Salad Pizza. I am not certain the specific entrée name. Essentially, it was Caesar salad atop crisp pizza crust. I loved it so much, I ordered it each time. Despite this, the staff at that particular location I frequented made the pizza custom for me. Now that is customer service.

Fast forward to our recent visit. We were promptly greeted by several friendly, smiling employees. I felt like I was experiencing a flash back to a time when employees were naturally concerned about service. It made the check-in easy and pleasant. Despite the busied atmosphere on this weekend night, our server managed to greet us within a fair amount of time.

When I browsed their new menu, I have to admit. I was in disbelief. I saw the Crab Topped Chicken was under 600 calories. I had to try what their lighter menu fare would taste like. When I received the plate, again shocking. It was a decent portion and I knew there would be leftovers. The pan-seared chicken was not over cooked and flavorful. Each part of the dish complimented the other. The spinach appeared more cooked than the picture in the menu. Regardless, I like my spinach sautéed. It was a solid dish and in my opinion one of the best from our entrées.

The second favorite dish was the Lasagna Classico. Again, lower in calories, 610 total. Finally our dessert favorite was the Lemon Creme Cake. Mike the waiter brought over a side of raspberry sauce to compliment the light, fluffy, lemon crème perfection. Overall, it was not too sweet.

My interest in Olive Garden is restored. Despite ditching my long time menu favorite, I will visit again with confidence especially because our overall experience and the lighter menu options.

The dishes we ordered and pictured in the collage from left to right:

Crab Topped Chicken Delicate crab meat in a flavorful lemon cream sauce atop grilled chicken breasts. Served with fresh spinach, diced tomatoes and garlic-parmesan mashed potatoes.

Lasagna Fresca Hand folded vegetable lasagna, sautéed shrimp and grilled tomatoes with sundried tomato sauce.

Lasagna Classico Prepared fresh daily with layers of pasta, Italian cheeses and our homemade meat sauce.

New Cucina Mia Choose your pasta: New Large Paccheri, New Tri-Colored Vegetable Penne, Bucatini, New Cavatappi, Whole Wheat Linguine, New Gluten-Free Rotini. Choose your made-from-scratch sauce:  New Creamy Garlic Asiago, New Primavera, New Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato, New Spicy Diavolo, Fresh Tomato Pomodoro. Add a topping (additional cost): New Chicken Meatballs, New Sausage Meatballs, Meatballs, Sautéed Shrimp.

Vanilla Panna Cotta with Strawberries Sweet summer strawberries top a rich and creamy vanilla custard inspired by Italy’s mountainous Piedmont region.

Lemon Cream Cake with raspberry sauce on the side. Delicate white cake and lemon cream filling with a vanilla crumb topping.

Our new menu is designed to give our guests an enhanced experience by giving them new flavors, more variety and everyday value,” said Jay Spenchian, executive vice president of marketing for Olive Garden. “We’re staying true to the fresh, simple Italian food, while creating more ways to delight our guests.

More information on their new dinner options:

  • Cucina Mia” Section: Introducing a new menu section that gives guests the ability to create their own entrée from a variety of six pastas and five made-from-scratch sauces—for only $9.99 every day.

  • Small Plates: Expanding the Tastes of Italy section to include eight small plate dishes for guests who want to explore different flavors.

  • Lighter Italian Fare: Enhancing variety within the under575calories menu section by introducing additional dishes for calorie-counting guests.

  • Specialty Entrees: Bringing new culinary-forward entrees to the chicken and seafood sections of the menu, enhanced by preparation on a new Piastra flat-top grill for a more evenly cooked, tender and juicy taste.

  • Antipasti and Caprese SaladsCreating new ways for guests to enjoy Olive Garden’s popular signature salad through the addition of antipasti or caprese toppings.

Olive Garden
3015 Fallbrook Avenue
West Hills
818-932-9801
Hours: Sun-Thurs 11am-10pm and Fri-Sat 11am-11pm
General Manager: Norma Rodriguez
Olive Garden specials

About Olive Garden

Olive Garden is the leading restaurant in the Italian dining segment with more than 800 restaurants, more than 96,000 employees and more than $3.6 billion in annual sales. Olive Garden is a division of Darden Restaurants, Inc., (NYSE: DRI), which owns and operates more than 2,100 restaurants that generate over $8.5 billion in annual sales.  Headquartered in Orlando, Fla., and employing more than 200,000 people, Darden is recognized for a culture that rewards caring for and responding to people.  In 2014, Darden was named to the FORTUNE “100 Best Companies to Work For” list for the fourth year in a row.  Our restaurant brands – Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52, The Capital Grille, Eddie V’s and Yard House – reflect the rich diversity of those who dine with us.  Our brands are built on deep insights into what our guests want.  For more information, please visit www.darden.com.

Disclaimer: All our opinions are our own. We received a discount on our entire dining experience.

Salata

Salata translated means salad. During the summer months and year round in California it is the perfect meal.

Thank Salata’s Granada Hills owner for deciding to open one in the San Fernando Valley. Without much competition in the area, the build-your-own salad bar concept is a welcome addition.

Inspired by her visit to one of the locations in Texas, Janine Shamoun had to bring the salad revolution back home with her. She saw the need for good food options in the valley. Janine spent years working in the medical industry before realizing her passion for working with customers and the fulfillment she gets when hearing great feedback from customers.

I love hearing a customer tell me, I tried this combination and I loved it.

Janine’s love for our community does not stop in Granada Hills. In fact, she plans to open 2 more locations in the West Valley. At this moment, they are just waiting for a few small details and hopefully the locations will be open before the end of the year. Ideally, they plan to set up in Woodland Hills and Westlake Village.

The most shocking surprise for her has been the number of younger kids who have frequented the place. She professed she did not expect to see so many teens but they have. Nonetheless, she is not complaining. She loves the idea of bringing something healthier into the neighborhood. The best part is all the customization possibilities with their menu. This is great for even gluten-free customers. The staff received training on the ingredients and can help even those with very specific allergies such as soy, nut and dairy.

We care about our customers and it starts with the us knowing what is in everything including our dressings.

 

 

What else is there besides salad? How about soups, wraps, teas and baked goodies.

Take any salad and turn it into a wrap. Awesome right? Get all that goodness wrapped up in a tortilla of your choice (gluten-free options coming soon) and turn it into a “salad burrito”.

Each day, the veggies are hand prepped for the hungry folks who gladly line up for fresh ingredients. Do not forget to get a baked goody, soup and tea with your meal. Black China, Tropical Green, and Plum Cinnamon are Salata’s signature teas.

Catering and Online Ordering

Did you know Salata has online ordering? With over 50 different items to help custom and create a unique salad, there is something for nearly everyone. If you are not sure what you want or would like to order a standard salad you can pick from Cobb, Greek, Southwest, Caesar and Asian. Plus, you can pick up a half-gallon of the teas to complete your catering order.

Shhh. I overheard some talk about a secret menu for this location. Stay tuned.

Location

Salata took over the old 1-800-FLOWERS site in the Ralphs shopping center. Keep an eye out for them on Food Truck Fridays.

Salata
18080 Chatsworth St #C
Granada Hills 91344
(818) 832-2429

Disclaimer:
We received menu items in exchange for our opinions. All our opinions are our own.

A Sweet Design

Nestled on the corner of Yarmouth and Chatsworth is a hidden confectioners delight where A Sweet Design has made its permanent home. The employees start their day well before the shop opens at 10 am. Walking by, the sweet scents waft through the air making passing by difficult.

I stopped in for a chat with Joeleen, one of the shop’s owners.

Perfecting a delicious cupcake is serious business for Joeleen and Miguel Medina. Their creations have gained national attention and fans from all over Southern California. I was able to sit down with Joeleen for a moment to chat about her bakery. Although she would not share her secret recipes for some of the best sweets in the West Valley, she did tell me a few of her special ingredients.

Dedication. For more than 7 years, A Sweet Design has been a part of the San Fernando Valley. It is hard to miss their place. The current storefront with bright pink doors is reminiscent of an online virtual bakery. The whimsical looking shop boasts ample space for baking up some real cake masterpieces.

Plus, Friday nights bring lots of foot traffic as the shop is a part of the backdrop to the hundreds of patrons on Food Truck Fridays.

Heart. Each day, A Sweet Design bakes up enough goodies to fulfill walk-in and custom orders. On the rare occasion they have leftovers at the end of the day, local non-profits like M.E.N.D. are the lucky recipients of the fresh baked goodies.

Patience. They take advance orders. They also have an understanding and patience for dilly-dalliers like myself offering help to last-minute requests.

Creativity. Each treat made receives plenty of care and attention to detail. Hence the name A Sweet Design. The ornate patterns on the cupcakes we sampled were unlike anything we have seen before. Joeleen acknowledged how much of the credit goes to her husband, Miguel. His involvement in designing projects that bring many of the ideas to life.

Customer loyalty. There is a reason A Sweet Design’s cupcakes are so well-known. For example, one of their most popular cupcakes, Pink Velvet, brings in plenty of repeat business. One bite and it is understandable what the buzz is about. Read the description below.

Our Signature pink vanilla cake, iced in strawberry buttercream, garnished in mini pink, red & white hearts, dazzled with edible glitter.

Forget the strawberry buttercream, they had me at edible glitter.

The high energy mastermind behind the shop professes she has no plan on moving to another place anytime soon. Thank heavens!

For a full list of their yummy confections, visit their website, A Sweet Design.

Get the Newsletter Specialbuy 4 cupcakes, get 2 free!
Order the voucher by June 23rd, 2 pm. Once purchased, the voucher has no expiration date.

Everyday Cupcake Flavors

Oreo
Red Velvet
Pink Velvet
Wheat Free
Chocolate Fudge
Vanilla Birthday Cake
Chocolate Cream Cheese

Monthly Cupcake Flavors

Try the Lemon Cream Cheese, yum! The menu alternates every few months, so be sure to look for updates on their social media accounts or website.

Custom Cupcake and Cake Designs

Check out their super cool creations on Flickr.

A Sweet Design
17801 Chatsworth Street
Granada Hills 91344
phone: (818) 363-9825
email: ilovecake@asweetdesign.info
Mon – Sat 10:00 am – 8:30 pm
Sun 11:00 am – 5:00 pm

National Visit a Park Day

Hip, hip, hooray! It is National Visit a Park Day on October 4th (aka get your arse outside despite the high wind advisory warnings. Just bring a few blanket anchors). With that said, It is a beautiful day to take a trip down to the local park.

Here is a list of a few popular parks:

Serrania Park
20865 Wells Drserrania
Woodland Hills, CA 91364
Neighborhood: Woodland Hills

There is a paved loop walking trail and plenty of area to spread out for a picnic.his place looks deceiving from the street. After you walk over the hill and pass the playground, it opens up. A nice wide space and is usually filled with dogs (some on leash but mostly off).

 

Lake Balboa
6300 Balboa Blvd
Encino, CA 91316
Neighborhood: Lake Balboa

A large lake, picnic tables and wildlife. What else do you need. If you haven’t been yet, go. Plus, cross the street to Woodley for even more to look at with the nature trail (no dogs are allowed on trail).


The Japanese Garden 

6100 Woodley Ave
Van Nuys, CA 91406
Neighborhood: Lake Balboa

I was completely amazed when I entered. The place is so well manicured, it reminded me of Disneyland. Minus the boat ride through. The entire walk/self tour takes approximately 35-45 minutes at a moderate pace, including stopping for pictures. However, I could picture being here for about 2 hours to really take in all the plants and information on the map.

Those are some our favorites. What are yours?

The Japanese Garden

Take a walk on the zen side. Ohm. Ohm. Ohmmm. 

Nestled next to Woodley Park, The Japanese Garden is a great little get away without leaving the valley. It is tucked away, left at the shared entrance to Woodley Park.

Many residents in the community do not even realize it exists.

I took a stroll through the garden early Spring. We walked in to the guest services area and paid for admission and proceeded inside. Boy, I felt like I entered another part of Disneyland. You know the ride Moby Dick at Disneyland? I felt teleported, with even a security guard patrolling the grounds. We saw perfectly sculpted shrubbery and sitting areas to reflect. Very pretty and peaceful.

With teens in tow, the walk through was a little over an hour.

I love the Japanese Garden.

Admission is $3 per person
Discounts available for Seniors and children under 10 years old

Tip: Call ahead to verify hours.

The Japanese Garden
6100 Woodley Ave
Tel: 818 756 8166

NOTE: The Japanese Garden is closed Aug 4-23. Call 818-756-8166 to schedule a visit before we close!

 

 

Barry S. Sanders Sports Field

LA Recreation and Parks are offering a free sports clinic for Kids with Disabilities at the Barry S. Sanders Sports Field through November 15th.

The field is specially designed for the use of children and adults with disabilities made with a rubberized surface designed for wheelchairs, walkers, and those with an unsteady gait due to physical disabilities.

Everyone should have a chance to play and that’s what the Barry S. Sanders Sports Field has set out to offer.

Opened and dedication on September 20, 2012 at the Lake Balboa park in Van Nuys, the new field is the result of a 10 year effort by LA Rec and Parks to give everyone a chance to be able to play.

Barry A. Sanders, Commission President, Recreation and Parks, said in a press release about the field:

“This new sports field is the first of its kind: a field built so everyone can play. I can think of no higher honor than having my name associated with this example of caring and equality,”

The field was made possible with partnerships from GRoW, an initiative of the Annenberg Foundation, the Weingart Foundation, LA84 Foundation, Chevrolet, and the Office of Councilman Tony Cárdenas (district 6).

The November program offers kids from 6-17 the opportunity to play softball on Monday and Wednesdays and Pillo Hockey on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Both activities begin at 4pm.

For more information, contact Irving Moreno by email at irving.moreno@lacity.org or Orit Karni at orit.karni@lacity.org, or by calling 818-756-8060.

Lake Balboa Park and the Barry S. Sanders Sports Field is located at the corner of Victory and Balboa Blvd, at 6300 Balboa Blvd., Van Nuys 91316.


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Jerry’s Soda Shoppe

Located inside De Soto Pharmacy, this little gem is frozen in time. We strolled in here late afternoon during the week. I decided to treat the kids to root beer floats.

Surprisingly, not one of them ordered floats. Only me (see picture).

The place was not crowded upon entering. It was nice and quiet. I overheard a conversation with another patron who asked about the Food Magazine feature and other local buzz. She mentioned they have been non-stop busy. The female behind the counter was pleasant and her personality was reminiscent of someone who might have worked in the 50’s. She smiled, greeted us, followed up and thanked us.

The long counter top service area had seating enough for about 10 patrons and additional tables located inside the pharmacy as well. While we waited, we looked at all the retro advertisements which included Coca Cola and laxatives.

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When we received our chilled treats, they were all delicious looking. Mine was topped with whipped cream and a cherry.

I had read Yelp reviews about the chocolate on the glass. So, I knew what to expect. My kids were determined to pick the chocolate off the glass so I gave it a try too. I should not have done that. It was definitely meant to be decorative in my opinion.

Side note: sandwiches are on the menu as well.

The service was really superb and worth the trip. If you have time this summer, stop in and check it out.

Bonefish Grill Northridge

Nestled in the corner of restaurant row at the Northridge Mall, Bonefish Grill is just across from Pacific Theaters. Before you sigh with the refrain of “yet another family sized portion restaurant in the West Valley,” they offer something different.

Sure it has the requisite swanky bar, modern dining interior and mood lighting for days, but what Bonefish Grill brings to the Valley is a unique, upscale seafood grill at the convenience of being, almost literally, right next door.

This is the newest addition to the fine seafood market in California but it comes at the subject with some delicious intensity. It is interesting given the lack of competition in the area, why enter the fish market? To find out why, we spent some time sampling the delicious fare at the Bonefish Grill. Here is what we found.

One of the most popular menu items, Bang Bang Shrimp seems to imply horrific heat from red-hot chilis. The truth is this appetizer is more akin to a night out on the town mixed with your favorite comfort food. Saying it is good is an understatement. It is no wonder that this is a top seller. Even better, Wednesday nights you can enjoy it for a lower price. We also sampled the Ahi Tuna Sashimi and the DFG Imperial Dip. Each was fantastically delicious. The BFG Imperial Dip is a creamy crab, shrimp and scallop bake that looks crunchy like a fritter but melts in your mouth with every scooped up bite.

One of things we learned is that Bonefish Grill’s managers hand select and inspect the menu items from the fishmonger daily. This is important, especially when you are talking about getting the best fish fare so far from the coast.

Appetizers are not all they are known for.  Next in our culinary adventure, we sampled Roasted Tomato + Red Pepper and Corn Chowder + Lump Crab soup.  I can definitely see both being serious contenders for the quick pick-up meals as they are hearty, rich and could make the coldest night warm. Of the two, our favorite is the Roasted Tomato but only because we tried them both and had to pick.

For the main course, we sampled a trio of entrées and sides including a land lubber favorite, Fontina Chop. A boneless pork chop in a drizzle of fontina cheese, garlic prosciutto and mushroom Marsala wine sauce. It is a perfect option for those who rather something other than seafood.  Next up was the Pumpkin Ravioli. The chef tones down the tang of the pumpkin with a mix of fresh squash which makes for a delightfully rustic side. Also on the table was a buttery cut of Chilean Sea Bass with a side of garlic whipped potatoes and potatoes au gratin. Finally, we sampled Sea Scallops and Shrimp served under a mango chick-pea medley. At this point, we were speechless with the flavor, especially from the Sea Bass with lemon butter sauce. Did I mention, you pick your own sauce for any of the Grilled Fish Entrees?

Moving on to the sweets. To keep things simple, Bonefish Grill has a small dessert menu but that is really all they need.  For our tasting, we shared a wonderful Key Lime Pie (another menu favorite) and a flourless Macadamia Nut Brownie with a wonderful raspberry sauce.  These were not overly sweet and hit the spot. Our favorite was the Key Lime pie.  It screamed with the tart shout of lime, but tempered in the sweetness of the roasted pecan crust. To close the evening, I enjoyed a delicious cappuccino.

Bonefish Grill is ideal for date nights, engagements or an evening out during the week. Their well stocked bar with 50 different types of wines, a long list of pour on demand Martini’s and well drinks are sure to set the mood for a memorable experience. Add the subtle, relaxing atmosphere and just the right amount of upscale casual and you get a seafood restaurant that is perfect.  During our meal, through the candle light you could see smiling faces and cheerful staff, all of whom have a definite attention to the details necessary to make it a place you would want to return to again and again.

We are so glad to welcome them as a new neighbor in the valley. We think you’ll enjoy Bonefish Grill as much as we did.

Bonefish Grill
9301 Tampa Ave
Northridge, 91324
(818) 998-3430

When you go, tell the proprietor Greg Howard that WSFV blog sent you. Plus check out these weekly specials:

Tuesday Tales of Lobster for $7.9*
Bang Bang Shrimp Wednesdays starting at $6, 4pm-close
Sunday Brunch, 11am -2pm
*Dine in only. Contact location for more details on hours and availability. 

Disclaimer: We were invited to sample menu items as a part of their grand opening for our honest review. All opinions are our own.

Pieology Granada Hills

make your own pizza at pieologyPieology opens 2 new locations in the WSFV!

Fresh out of the wood oven comes a new pizza shop in Granada Hills.  Pieology, a new create-your-own pizza parlor, is set to open its doors on Saturday (August 10, 2013) with a fresh and tasty menu.

Pieology in Granada Hills is the newest eatery, at Chatsworth and Zelzah, serving up a fresh menu that dares you to “Be Inspired to make a difference one pie at a time.”  While perhaps the idea of a pizzeria does not necessarily evoke inspirational thoughts, the build-a-pizza assembly line guarantees the tapping of your inner pieologist to create your very own one-of-a kind pizza.  A few minutes in the glowing oven, a couple of dashes of red pepper and grated Parmesan and what you end up with is a tasty work of inspired art.

Opened as one of several corporate stores, Pieology Granada Hills is the second foray in the West San Fernando Valley, their sister pizzeria opened in June at Nordhoff and Reseda.  Founded in the OC, Pieology is slowly making its way into the valley.

And, for the frugal minded foodie, Pieology has their price point right too.  Priced at a reasonable $7.50, you get to build your creation with your own choice of toppings, made to your taste.  And, for the non-pizza eater, they have classic and Caesar salads in full or half-sized portions.

Maybe the most important part of our visit was the vibe of the pizzeria.  With a new staff full of fresh and happy smiles, Pieology has a warm and youthful vibe that makes for a fun and easy sit down meal with out the stress and pressure of a heavy faux Italian dinner.  Pieology may not be the newest iteration of quick and easy pizza made to taste, but their atmosphere and service does bring new inspiration to the tried and true genre of restaurants. P.S. They have gluten free crusts!

We liked Pieology, and think you will too.

Pieology Granada HIlls
Open 7 days 11am to 10pm
17943 Chatsworth St.
Unit 30A
Granada Hills, CA 91344
(818) 831 8500

Thank you to the kind folks at the Granada Hills Pieology, we were able to try menu items as a part of their training, prior to opening, August 10th. See our Pieology review on Yelp!