I'm back out in Westlake Village for work and my coworkers have introduced me to two new (to me anyway) places in the area that I wanted to let other Chowhounders out here know about.
Pookies Thai: 800 Hampshire Road
This little thai restaurant is hidden away on the ground floor of the Water Court business park off Hampshire Rd. It's a totally random spot but is hopping during lunch hour. I've been 3 times now and have no complaints about their noodle dishes. Duck Noodle Soup and Beef Noodle Soup come with generous amounts of meat and a rich broth. Silver Noodle Salad was terrific-ly spicy and limey, and topped with shrimp. Granted, the food not as great as what you can get out in Hollywood, but for this area, it knocks out Exotic Thai. Service is very slow though.
Mama Rita's: 31139 Via Colinas #208
Again, this is another little place tucked in the business park right off Via Colinas and Lindero Canyon. It actually shares the space with a deli so when you walk in, you need to order from the counter on the left. There is only 3 or 4 tables to sit at so it's best to grab the food to go. My Chile Verde Plate came with mediocre beans and rice, but the meat was good (not dry) and the chips and salsa were both home-made and outstanding. A friend ordered their home-made pork tamales and from the one bite I had, it was good enough for me to want to go back. Masa was smooth (not dry) and the filling nice and spicy. I spied an olive in the filling which I thought was odd but my friend loved it. I've heard good things of their guacomole too so I'll try that next time I'm back.
Also - just a quick note - Rustler's BBQ opened in the old Cravings spot at the corner of Lindero and Kanan. My Tri Tip Salad was very large with chunks of avocado and pineapple. Meat was good but was drenched in their sweet bbq sauce. Next time, I'll ask for 'dressing' on the side or maybe try their Tri Tip Sandwich.