Author: Nancy Lackey Shaffer

The spice is right

Akash    2310 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd.Thousand Oaks   379-4849 Thousand Oaks’ newest Indian restaurant, Akash, just opened in May, but already it has the palates of Conejo Valley customers humming. It took over the space most famously held by Cafe Provencal, the popular French bistro that closed its doors in 2012 and, judging from the buzz, it’s off to a good start. Akash has a promising pedigree (it’s a sister restaurant to the very popular Shalimar of Woodland Hills) and an auspicious name (akash means sky in Hindi), but it’s the expertly prepared cuisine that draws a crowd, even on...

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Come for the new lunch menu, stay for the nightlife

El Rey Cantina   294 E. Main St.Ventura   653-1111 With a decent happy hour and live music on weekends, the El Rey Cantina in downtown Ventura has been a happening spot since it opened in 2008. The kitschy décor (who doesn’t love a velvet Elvis?) and south-of-the-California-border cuisine are a draw for the area’s foodies. A wide array of top-shelf tequilas and 10 specialty cocktails (plus the fixings for whatever else you might want) make it a great spot for a drink before or after the show. And the kitchen closes late — it’s the perfect place to refuel after...

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