We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“disappointed” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of La Botte Ristorante - CLOSED

La Botte Ristorante
Price range: US$41 - US$80
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Dining style: Fine Dining
Neighbourhood: Santa Monica
Cross street: 7th Street
santa monica, ca
1 review
“disappointed”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 March 2013

My husband and I had been meaning to check this place out for a long time. Every time we were able to go out for dinner, La Botte was booked. We happened by here on an off night and were able to get a table. Now I've long since stopped ordering seafood and pasta together because it's usually a disappointing dish. When it's good, it's so good though. Because we were at a restaurant with a great reputation, I thought I'd take a chance and ordered the linguini with crab. It was fishy and almost inedible. My husband got a pasta with rabbit ragu though, and that was fantastic. I doubt we'll be back though.

  • Visited March 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank katmsantamonica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

51 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    23
    9
    11
    2
    6
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Westlake Village, California
1 review
“Better to be Chef's Friend than Have Reservations”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 February 2013

Can't comment on the food but service was so poor we left before eating. Wife and I had friends in town staying at hotel near La Botte. We made Sat night reservations a week in advance. We arrived timely. Hostess apologetically offered us a breezy four top situated near the hostess stand and the front door. Upon our hesitation, she suggested a table towards the back would be clearing shortly if we were ok to wait a bit. About 20 mins later a foursome walked in, greeted the hostess with some familiarity, the chef came out to say hello, and they were promptly seated at aforementioned table. The hostess next offered to seat us at a corner of a large empty 20 seater picnic style bench in the center of the room. We declined, drove a few blocks up to The Wilshire restaurant, had some fantastic cod and bolognese and enjoyed the more lively atmosphere.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Steve A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Santa Rosa, California
Level Contributor
234 reviews
72 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 163 helpful votes
“La Botte: Italian in Name Only”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 January 2013

After having visited the Getty Museum and the Getty Villa, my wife and I along with a good friend decided to end a beautiful day with a stop in Santa Monica for dinner before heading back to San Diego. Having looked over several possible Italian restaurants on the Internet the day before, we settled on La Botte because a number of people said it was a very high quality Italian restaurant. What we discovered in short-order after our arrival was that Rita, our hostess, later to fill in for our waiter, was all that was authentic Italian about La Botte, aside, of course, from the Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra background music.

When we arrived at La Botte, the table at which we were seated was only the second table occupied by customers. A few minutes after we were seated, Antonio brought us the menu, an unimaginative list with only a couple of entrée selections that also listed the Dine LA selections. The only comment Antonio made about the menu was that the Dine LA selections were also available as specials; he made no mention of any other possibilities or the regular menu that appears on La Botte’s website. After he brought us a bottle of Italian wine, noting that our selection of Sicilian Nero d’Avola was no longer available, that was the last we saw of Antonio until the end of our meal.

Though he was working tables nearby, we waited and waited for Antonio to come back for well over an hour; we tried to get his attention by signaling him, to no avail. Seeing that a group of four that had come in after us and was preparing to leave two tables away, Leila, a server who had just begun work there, realized that we were being ignored, intentionally or not, and came to our table to offer her assistance in getting things going. Within a few minutes, Rita, the hostess, like Leila, very nice and pleasant, came to our table and assumed the duties of Antonio, our waiter. After we were finally able to order, Leila brought more olive oil and another in the basket – our third – of La Botte’s thin-sliced, very salty bread, which we ate until our meals finally arrived – more than two hours after we were seated.

My wife and I have eaten in some of the best Italian restaurants and cafés all over Italy for the last 14 years; several were Michelin-rated. We have also eaten with Italians in their homes and accompanied Italians to their favorite restaurants. And if there is one thing that’s clear, La Botte is an Italian restaurant in name only. We have come to expect only the best effort coming out of the Italian kitchen, which in this case failed to produce a quality product – more frozen-bag supermarket than primo Italian. Worse, though, as hard as it is to believe, the kitchen stood in the shadow of the waiter, Antonio. It is possible to overlook a bad day in the kitchen for our three entrées, but for the waiter, there is no excuse. He is the face of the restaurant, the owner’s front-line diplomat. Given the abominable service, I can only assume that “our” waiter, Antonio, is a good friend or relative of the owner.

We might have even overlooked the execrable service had the food been worth the wait. Sadly, it wasn’t. I ordered “Pappardelle Al Pistacchio Con Brasato Di Agnello” (“homemade pistachio pappardelle with braised lamb ragout”), $20; and our friend ordered “Spaghetti Alle Lenticchie” (“spaghetti with autumn lentils, oven roasted tomatoes and spinach”), $19. The pappardelle pasta tasted as lifeless as it looked, and the pistacchio was only in color, not flavor, with the meat being no friend to the dish either. Add to that, the fact that the portions were of modest consequence, the entrée was, as the restaurant, in name only. Our friend, who has eaten many times in Santa Monica over the last decade, was equally disappointed with his entrée.

Unfortunately, my wife ordered from the Dine LA menu – “Tortellini alla Bolognese” (“pork, prosciutto and mortadella tortellini, Bolognese sauce”), the “Linguine Nere al Granchio e Aglio Arrosto” (“homemade black linguine served with red deep sea crab, heirloom tomatoes, garlic and basil”), and “Pannacotta alla Limoncina” (“lemon verbena pannacotta”), $45. I tasted both the Tortellini alla Bolognese and the Linguine Nere al Granchio e Aglio Arrosto that she was served; we both agreed – the tortellini and sauce were marginal and the black linguine was only okay – not very good, just okay.

When my wife ordered the pannacotta for dessert, I advised Rita that my wife “knows pannacotta,” that we had “ordered it in restaurants all over Italy,” and that we had ordered it in “Italian restaurants all over” the U.S. Since the server brought us three spoons, all three of us – my wife, our friend, and I – tasted the Pannacotta alla Limoncina and were extremely disappointed. The pannacotta was runny and tasted like instant pudding; it had hard, unripe strawberries on top. It was the worst pannacotta my wife had ever had, anywhere.

Eventually, at the very end of our meal, over two hours since we last saw him, the waiter stopped by our table and asked how my wife liked the pannacotta. After she replied, in so many words, that it had the flat texture and bright color of an Oliver Twist gruel, he sped away without comment.

La Botte was only about one-third full when our dinner finally arrived and about two-thirds full when we left. Again, being crowded cannot possibly be used by La Botte to rationalize the waiter’s inexcusable, boorish behavior and service. The food and service were so marginal that we will never return – in fact, we should have walked out; no question: when it comes to Santa Monica “Italian” restaurants, La Botte has to be the bottom of the barrel.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Paolo-Chris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
california
Level Contributor
438 reviews
245 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 124 helpful votes
“should have been better, though nice”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 January 2013

kinda funky interior with nicely spaced tables wine motiff. menu limited and expensive. food nicely prepared and quite fresh, but lacking in taste and distinction.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank pandpCalifornia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York, NY
Level Contributor
116 reviews
67 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“Inventive Italian in Santa Monica”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 January 2013

We had a delicious dinner here late of an evening after a very long, very stressful day. Although we were by far the last people in the place, the staff never made us feel rushed, or hurried us towards the end of the meal. The food was terrific - inventive twists on classic modern Italian, with that lightness that marks so much of California cuisine. No heavy sauces or too much of anything. A sensational wine list, which our waiter and the manager both knew intimately. ("I come from this region in Italy." Really.) I'll surely be back here next time we go to LA.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank bulldogNYC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed La Botte Ristorante also viewed

 

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing