Worth the trip. Any day, any time!
Excellent, creative and authentic: italian dining at its best.I come here for more than ten years now and never was disappointed by the performance of owner/chef Sal Marino.A little bit tucked away between West L. A. And Santa Monica is it worth the trip from either direction. Any day, any time!
4/1/2013 4:00:00 PM
A bit pricy but excellant food and very attentive service.
4/8/2013 4:00:00 PM
First off, we wanted a quiet
First off, we wanted a quiet restaurant where we could talk and this was perfect. Quiet, they didn't rush us for meal, very nice. Food was good, but portions are a little small for the price. Service was a little slow, they seem understaffed in the kitchen, but the waiter explained that and the chef came out to shave the truffles on the food, so that may be the reason. If we were in a rush, we might have been upset, but we wanted a leisurely meal, so it was perfect. I would eat here again, food was tasty, but just know that portions are on the small side (probably more healthy for me in the long run).
4/12/2013 4:00:00 PM
Perfect Tasting Menu
If you love fresh ingredients from the sea, order the tasting menu! Everything from the crudo to the squid ink pasta with sea urchin was perfect and well worth the price for the quality ingredients and beautiful presentation. If you only eat in ONE Italian restaurant in Los Angeles, make it this one.
4/24/2013 4:00:00 PM
The crudo was excellent as
The crudo was excellent as was the "four hour ragu"
4/25/2013 4:00:00 PM
What a great meal! I had the
What a great meal! I had the crudo- everything so fresh , and superb sauces to go with it- the pasta with artichokes
(delicious) and the duck (best I have had in a long time). All the food was well executed. The result is always great food. The service ,however,is a little spotty. I will keep going back.
5/3/2013 4:00:00 PM
The branzino ( in salt) was
The branzino ( in salt) was the best ever. The chef is such an artist in presentation ( beet salad). The service is very attentive.
Thje bar is beautifully designed with a sophisicated , gracious bartender. We will be back soon.
5/4/2013 12:00:00 AM
The food was elegant, and perfectly prepared!! Very fresh and healthy. I would like to try everything on the menu and would certainly go back. Very interesting and fresh wine list.
5/9/2013 4:00:00 PM
A very unassuming exterior on a heavy traffic section, but once you step inside it's a different story. The food and service is top notch. The daily Crudo is a definite must; it was fish/seafood the day I went. The fish was fresh and the accompanying sauces were inventive and worked perfectly with each of the dishes. As others have noted; the Branziono is excellent. The pastas are great as well. The Italian wine list can be a tad intimidating but don't let that deter you...!
5/9/2013 4:00:00 PM
Always reliable for wonderful
Always reliable for wonderful food and great service in an elegant and relaxing atmosphere.
Everyone in this restaurant from the lovely hostess to the bartender..friendly and helpful busboy to the terrific servers enhance the delicious food...and when he can get out of the kitchen, a visit to your table by Sal himself---
A definite go back to place over and over again!
5/10/2013 4:00:00 PM
Fine Italian dining
This is truly fine dining. Delicious food, professional and attentive service, beautiful and sophisticated setting.
Il Grano has it all for the same price as many other Italian restaurants in L A.
5/23/2013 4:00:00 PM
We had the seasonal tasting menu and it was great. Each course comes out looking like a work of art. We had the crudo to start followed by puree of pea soup, both fresh and delicious. This is followed by a squid ink pasta and then halibut for the main course. Delightful. Highly recommended.
5/24/2013 4:00:00 PM
Food is off the charts!
The food is off the charts and the service impeccable. This is a place to go when you want to share good food and wine with friends you really want to talk to.
5/24/2013 4:00:00 PM
Delicious food, great wine list, warm and impeccable service and a quiet room all made for a terrific experience at Il Grano.
5/29/2013 12:00:00 AM
Absolutely delicious from start to finish. Excellent service. I don't remember being at a fine dining establishment where they bring more bread as soon as you finish the bread they served you. It just kept on coming! Will be back SOON. Everything was fabulous and delicious. Couldn't praise Il Grano more highly!
6/15/2013 12:00:00 AM
It was our first time at Il
It was our first time at Il Grano. The food was excellent. Everything had a different spin than what one normally expect -- different flavors, seasonings, consistency -- and all on the positive side. Even the bread plates/trays were clever, with a small depressed side for the olive oil to keep it from swamping the bread. If I have any complaint, it would have to be the noise level. But, it may have been where our party of four was seated in kind of a rear alcove because when we were leaving it seemed not as loud as we passed through the other part of the restaurant. Would we return? Yes.
6/21/2013 12:00:00 AM
Small portions but very very good. Right up the street from the newly renovated Royal theater, so great before movie dinner. Very lovely atmosphere, very fresh and colorful food. My husband loved the oysters.
6/22/2013 12:00:00 AM
Could be the best Italian in LA!
Sal Marino's flagship restaurant soars with wonderful food and endearing service. I had a tasting menu with a few extras from the man himself which took it to a phenomenal level. Mr. Marino's tasting menu was not only phenomenal tasty but inventive and filling! A huge surprise find... of a restaurant in West LA since '97! I can't wait to return.
6/22/2013 12:00:00 AM
Il Grano is such a forgotten treasure The food is spectacular, clean delicious flavors not at all heavy.
6/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
solid Italian restaurant
Though a bit pricey for regular dining, it is great to have such a great Italian restaurant in West LA. The pasta was perfect, the flavors were clean and light but still interesting. The staff was superb.
6/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
Il Grano is a find in a busy
Il Grano is a find in a busy neighborhood on a busy street. Hopefully the construction on SM Blvd will come to an end soon. This restaurant is a classy find. We had a most delicious lunch of very fresh seafood and salad fixings. They have been in this location for 16 years and somehow, we have missed it. The chef is young, experienced and very enthusiastic!
6/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
excellent food and service
The dishes went from excellent to outstanding. Will definitely return.
7/12/2013 12:00:00 AM
First time "lunchers"
Don't EVER underestimate Il Grano on your Italian food list. We love it for special times. This week, a scheduling conflict made us have lunch here rather than our usual dinner. What a wonderfully unexpected choice!! Same awesome food and wine list but about 30% at least less expensive. Chef Sal's summertime Tomato Wednesdays was perfect. He plants/serves about 25 different varieties of them and the choices are great. Consider three different Gazpachos - red, green and white. He guided us through the kitchen and to the outside growing area to show off several great varieties of all sizes. And, no matter the size or color, he has the perfect vino to go with it. Then again, don't go so we can always find a table for our NEXT lunch....
7/17/2013 12:00:00 AM
I have been there several
I have been there several times before but Sal keeps getting better. Each dish was exceptional and the service was superb. I cannot recommend it enough.
7/29/2013 12:00:00 AM
Everything about our experience was exceptional. Friendly and very attentive service, delicious and well-prepared food, quiet enough to have a civilized conversation. What could be better?
8/3/2013 12:00:00 AM
From a brief discussion with a regular customer and the poster art displayed on the wall , this Sal Marino restaurant LOVES all things tomato . And after having their Caprese Salad , I am onboard with that being the overriding theme for this restaurant . WAY better than the usual slabs of tomato , mozzarella & basil , this caprese had variety and the freshest ingredients I have ever had in this signature salad .
My friends steak was flavorful and cooked to perfection . The only dish that kept me from giving a 5 star review was my pasta dish . It was good , not great .
8/5/2013 12:00:00 AM
Very caring chef and staff
For our event, not only were the food and service exceptional but the chef/owner Sal and the staff were genuinely engaged in our experience and stayed attentive through the whole night. Sal made wonderful suggestions for food and wine, This was a very special dining experience. The food was perfect in every way.
8/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
Summer brings out a wide range of tomatoes from Sal's garden (and a few select markets.) Since I love tomatoes, this is a great time to visit Il Grano for a plethora of offerings. As you would imagine, almost every dish has a carb, some fat (cheese), and tomatoes but each dish stands on its own and there are no so similar that you will get bored. This is a unique offering that everyone should try. BTW, the cuisine the rest of the time is excellent so do not let Wednesday be the only day you visit Il Grano.
8/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
Best Restaurant in LA, Hands Down
I have to say Il Grano is one of the best restaurants in the world, easily holding its 1 Michelin star (they can't cuz Michelin quit LA). Chef Sal is a genius with food, from bringing out their flavor to the visual aspect as he plates them masterfully. No better place for crudo, pasta, etc. Having eaten at over 80 Michelin-starred restaurants around the world, this is by far the best food-wise. Awesome.
8/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
Best Italian in Los Angeles. Everything we had was outstanding. The staff was attentive and the kitchen was perfect! We will return!
8/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
My friend and I went to Il Grano on a Wednesday night, which happens to be Tomato Wednesday. The special menu has tomatoes in every dish, from the gazpacho soup to the dessert. Everything that we ordered exuded the fresh and flavorfulness of the tomato, with each type of tomato having a slightly different flavor profile. The panini was excellent, with melt in your mouth burrata complimented with the perfectly salted pancetta, along with the appropriate bread to filling ratio. I would also highly recommend the eggplant stuffed tortellini which was provided the perfect balance of eggplant, pasta, and tomato. Service was stellar, as well. I am looking forward to going back!!
9/11/2013 12:00:00 AM
Another satisfying dining experienc
Chef Sal and Il Grano continue to impress. My wife and I were finally able to come to Tomato Wednesday recently. Our schedule had not allowed a Wednesday night outing the past few summers. Sal and the crew did not disappoint. Each dish was artful and delicious -- a delight to the eyes and palate. The standouts were the grilled octopus salad and the pastas. Sal just seems to make the most perfect pasta dishes I've tasted. My only wish and the only negative I can think of from this latest visit was regarding the food potions. They were rather small. I savored every bite but I wasn't quite full at the end. Unbeknownst to us, they brought my wife and I each a slice of Pizza Stracciatella before we were finished with our pastas. Thank you, Chef.
9/18/2013 12:00:00 AM
The chefs home grown heirloom tomatoes prepared in a variety of dishes.The service was gracious and attentive.We had the tomato tasting menu ($45). The chef came out and introduced himself and was very welcoming. We were given a yummy complimentary "amuse" of pureed albacore. We started with a beautifully arranged bowl of green and red cherry tomatoes, that was then covered with a lightly creamed tomato gezpatcho,light, fresh and tasty, poured from little teapots onto the fresh tomatoes. Then a fresh capreese salad of rocket, heirlooms and high quality buffalo. Then a lovely cannaloni, with fresh tomato sauce Then an albacore perfectly grilled with a tomatoes salsa.We finished with a tomatoes sorbet. The chef and staff want to please. Great
9/19/2013 12:00:00 AM
I had a delicious meal at Il Grano. The caprese salad was exactly what a caprese salad should taste like! Fresh and perfectly ripe tomatoes and the mozzarella was fantastic. I had the squid ink pasta which was also very tasty. I would definitely go back.
9/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
Fresh and beautifully conceived
We had the tasting menu in which each dish involved tomatoes. (The chef grows them himself) In addition to the fresh and local ingredients, every dish was beautifully balanced, and delicious. One of the best meals I've had in LA. The Waiter was charming had great knowledge of the menu, and picked a superb wine to pair with our meal.
The room is a little banal. Very comfortable but a bit corporate in feel, which is ironic since the food is so personal. They could have spent less money and gotten a more interesting space, but that will not keep us away! I cant wait to go back.
10/12/2013 12:00:00 AM
Sal hits a home run!
We let Il Grano slip off of our radar...big mistake.
We were delighted to see Sal and once again experience his passion for cuisine.
Il Grano is a big big winner. We'll be back soon.
10/12/2013 12:00:00 AM
We have been going here off and on for several years, and have watched the chef/owner get better each year. A recent dinner was one of the best and most creative meal we have had in Los Angeles. His touch with vegetables (many home grown) is superb, his cooking of meats of all kind (fish, fowl,etc) is excellent (nothing overdone, nothing underdone, all moist and respectful of the natural taste of good products) , and his matching of tastes is unexpected but perfectly balanced. Wine list has a good variety of wines in all price ranges.
The only caveat - we had this wonderful meal on a slow weeknight. Recent Friday and Saturday meals have been very good but lacking the spark we have seen during the week. Weekend crowds?
11/10/2013 4:00:00 PM
Delighted to find this attractive
Delighted to find this attractive and very professional restaurant right in my neighborhood. The menu is interesting and unusual and the food was divine. Judging by the excellence of what we ordered (salad and pasta), we would have liked to also try many other tempting selections. We will return and do that, even though it's on the pricey side It's worth it! The service was exemplary, polished and not intrusive.
11/11/2013 4:00:00 PM
Very fine Italian food with
Very fine Italian food with some Asian influences (e.g. the emphasis on crudo seafood). Everything is meticulously prepared and served, and the food is very flavorful but comfortable rather than challenging. The wine list is comprehensive and contains wines at all cost levels, with emphasis on Italian wines. The tasting menu provides an excellent opportunity to explore the chef's range.
The staff is attentive and they do not rush you. The chef/owner comes out and greets the guests. The tables are well separated. This is one of a very few high quality restaurants in Los Angeles where it is possible to have a conversation.
The tab is on the expensive side but well worth it for a meal with top-notch food and relaxed and friendly ambience.
11/11/2013 4:00:00 PM
Best Restaurant in LA and Beyond
I must say Il Grano never does anything but awesome. Having been to over 70 Michelin starred restaurants around the world, if I had a final meal before I died, I'd go with a tasting menu at Il Grano. The most fantastic stuff, from start to finish. Sal is a genius. More of the LA foodie community should go back, as his imaginative takes change constantly and is always a total pleasure!
11/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
I dined here for the first time this weekend to celebrate my wife's birthday. I was thoroughly impressed. I enjoyed my meal. The service was excellent. My wife was very happy. I would come back again.
11/15/2013 4:00:00 PM
One of my favorites in LA
Il grano is one of our favorite LA Italian restaurants. The chef Sal is almost always there and serves up creative and traditional dishes with a focus on what is freshly available. Slightly off the beaten track, it is always the place we go when we want a quiet elegant meal.
11/19/2013 4:00:00 PM