Outdoor dining in a scenic setting? It’s definitely part of The Oaks at Lakeside experience. (Photo by Merrill Shindler) I’m infinitely glad to see that The Oaks at Lakeside — at the intersection of Balboa and Ventura boulevards (though the entrance is on a side street called La Maida) — is back, and indeed thriving.
For it isn’t just one of our best destination restaurants — it’s long been one of our best restaurants, period. It’s been revived by a local caterer named Bill Zoldan, who’s a constant presence in the restaurant — which right now is outside only, of course.
That’s fine, for about two thirds of the seating at The Oaks is outside. And that’s because, simply speaking, it sits so close to a state park that it’s essentially inside the park. Sitting on the patio at The Oaks, you gaze out upon the natural spring-fed duck pond, which is the centerpiece of Los Encinos State Historic Park , which, we’re told was “until the late 19th century, the hub of human habitation in the southern San Fernando Valley…the water of which was reputed to be so sweet that animals would come for miles to drink from […]