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Electric Meals

If you have ever dreamed of dining in a media womb, uWink Media Bistro, in one of the endless Warner Center malls, may be your idea of a perfect restaurant. Every flat surface is a video screen, and every resonant space echoes like the inside of Carson Daly’s speaker cabinet; the waiters have the affect of mute R2-D2 robots; and every table is equipped with a bank of touch screens on which you order your drinks, request a cobb salad served without egg, and play video games ranging from traditional shoot-’em-ups to Simpsons quizzes to rounds of Truth or Dare. UWink, the invention of Nolan Bushnell, the Pong czar who single-handedly brought video games into the American home 35 years ago, is a perfect destination for the grown-up Atari generation, a Grey Goose–serving, short-rib-flinging, full-service, sit-down restaurant where the customers don’t even have to summon the social skills required to order a crispy-chicken sandwich from a radio-operated clown. A 5-year-old could scarcely imagine a cooler restaurant. Then the food arrives — sushi rolls deep-fried inside egg-roll skins, build-your-own burgers, pulled-pork sliders, skirt-steak pizza drenched in balsamic — and you remember: Nolan Bushnell was also the visionary behind Chuck E. Cheese. 6100 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Woodland Hills, (818) 992-1100.

—Jonathan Gold

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