2012-03-01 / Dining & Entertainment

T.O. fun-seekers fired up over Fiamme

By Stephanie Bertholdo

It’s been three years since Liz Beddow took over a failed Italian restaurant in Westlake Village’s Paseo Marketplace and retooled the business from the inside out to create a hot new entertainment venue without sacrificing tasty cuisine.

Beddow said although the eatery was renamed Fiamme Restaurant and Bar to encapsulate the fiery Italian vibe, she and managing partner Jerry White are now considering other name changes.

White explained how they initially came up with the name Fiamme. In Italian, the word translates into fire or flames, which was a fitting name for the place since the original restaurant featured fire elements throughout its decor, including a custom red glass bar top, dramatic columns and, of course, a fireplace that keeps guests toasty and the ambiance intimate.

“We added an entertainment element almost immediately,” White said.

A professional stage was created in the dining room to accommodate bands. Musical groups previously performed in the bar area.

“We made the dining room kind of a showroom, so everybody could see them,” White said.

The owners tweaked the food and entertainment options over the years. In addition to Italian fare, the menu includes homey meals of fajitas, meatloaf and fish tacos.

Since its new start, Fiamme changed from being a restaurant with great food to a “cool place” to hang out that just happens to have great food, White said.

Dueling pianos replaced a comedy show last year, and last month pool tables were added to the entertainment mix.

In January, a race car simulator was added to the bar.

White said other changes took flight in 2012.

In addition to the dueling grand pianos, there’s karaoke, open mike night and music galore that have ignited a newfound vibe for singles and families who want a little more out of their dining experience. The owners also stopped charging cover in January.

A light remodel is currently underway at Fiamme to promote a more casual ambiance. Tablecloths are being removed, and the dark brown and red walls will be repainted in brighter colors.

Fiamme is open seven days a week. Happy Hour is every day from 4 to 7 p.m., and the dueling pianos are featured Thursday through Saturday.

Open talent night and karaoke have been combined into a program called “Dress Up & Get Down Karaoke.”

“Singers can dress up in a silly hat, glasses and wig, and sing with live talent or with hosted karaoke,” Beddow said.

The attraction is featured on Wednesday evenings.

Fiamme is at 3731 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. in Westlake Village. For information, call (805) 497-9444.

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