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DINING DEALS : NO FRILLS HIDEAWAY.

Byline: Larry Lipson

Bistrot by the Water, 860 Hampshire Road, Westlake Village, (805) 381-0094. The scenic Water Court office complex provides the nearby stream, complete with ducks, inspiring the name. But this little dining room is down below and in a corner, a hidden inexpensive gem owned by the original opening chef at Studio City's Out Take Cafe. Several distinctive dishes under $10. A few between $10 and $15 and a prix-fix feast for under $20. And all artistically presented on oversize plates. You'll love it.

More dough for less dough

Rasta Pasta Pasta Co. 1464 Madera Road, Simi Valley, (805) 520-4649. Rock bottom prices and no frills here. Mix and match with traditional noodles and sauces for under $4 and designer pastas for under $5. Caesar under $1.50 and house salad under $1 add to the Rasta's bargain allure.

Rad chicken monster

Chicks, 23355-3/4 Mulholland Drive, Woodland Hills, (818) 222-4488. Huge Rube Goldberg-ish contraption cooks delish rotisserie-style chicken with a Mexican accent. Check the chicken spread, the marinated carrots and the flour crisps here. Most everything is well under $10.

No spend Nozawa

Nozawa, 6010 Laurel Canyon Blvd., North Hollywood, (818) 761-1754. Big platters of properly cooked Japanese food at ridiculously low prices (nothing over $5.50) make this a value tour de force. But you have to be patient and serve yourself.

Margarita meets Ewing

Tortilla Inn, 18114 Parthenia St., Northridge, (818) 993-9711. Steak Ewing with a tomato-chili sauce and boiled beans is still only $7.95 here. And other house specialties including several low fat dishes range from $4.25 to $8.75.This landmark Mexican cantina and cafe continues to astound in its third decade.

Candy is dandy

Candy's Meson, 226 E. Alameda St., Burbank, (818) 848-1915. This Cuban-Spanish kitchen first beguiles you with the best darned white rice and black beans in the West and goeson from there. Ropa vieja (shredded beef) is only $3.95 for lunch. Try the tortilla a la Gallega ($6) at dinnertime and soup for as low as $1.
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Title Annotation:L.A. Life
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Jun 22, 1997
Words:341
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