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Jan 14, 2002 08:27 PM

Tables in restaurant kitchens?

  • l

At Trotter's in Chicago there is one table available in the kitchen, where you can sit & eat while the work goes on around you. Does anyone know of any Bay Area restaurants that do the same? Or if not, at least one with an open kitchen that is visible while seated in the dining room? thanks!


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  1. One Market had a table in the kitchen available for diners under the previous "administration", don't know if they still do, but it's worth checking.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Melanie Wong

      Buca de Beppo does... but you did not hear me mention THAT restaurant in these hallowed walls. I only throw it in because I know they do, not because I recommend them.

      1. re: jose

        Our fellow 'hounds in LA talk pro and con about B d B quite a bit, but you're right, it's not mentioned much up here.

        1. re: Melanie Wong

          Does it make any difference WHICH Bocca de Beppo? I've only been to the one in Palo Alto, and it was good. and not very expensive. We were totally stuffed and about to leave when a plate of Chicken Cacciatore wafted by and stilled smelled wonderful, even that full!

        2. re: jose
          Kathleen Mikulis

          My first though was Buca, too.

          The table is actually IN the kitchen - not near an open kitchen or at a counter.

          I happen to like Buca. Although the wait and noise is terrible, the food's pretty good and it's a fun place to go.

          Counter-wise I had fun recently sitting at the counter at Homemade Cafe in Berkeley. It was fun to watch them throw unusuable food onto the floor. (I'm not being sarcastic, it really was fun.)


      2. Doña Tomas' grill, though not their entire kitchen, is visible from the main dining area. The feeling in the restaurant is usually a high-energy buzz of action; I always feel like i'm in the midst of something great.

        Doña Tomas
        5004 Telegraph Avenue
        Oakland, CA 94609
        Tue-Thu 5:30pm- 9:30pm
        Fri-Sat 5:30pm-10:00pm
        Tel:(510) 450-0522


        1. if you sit at the kitchen bar (not the booze bar) at Boulevard, you are in front of all the action.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Andrew

            The first time I went to Boulevard we sat at the counter. The guy whose station was in front of us was making deep-fried soft-shelled crabs -- draping them over the back of a large spoon so they fried in a curved shape and could be stood upright when served. But watching all the dishes go by looking and smelling delicious makes it hard to decided what to order!

          2. p
            Peter Hertzmann

            If you don't mind heading south...

            At l'Amie Donia in Palo Alto, counter seating provides a full view of the kitchen -- it's literally 18" away.

            In Menlo Park. Joey Altman's Wild Hare also has a counter that provides an up-close-and-personal view.


            2 Replies
            1. re: Peter Hertzmann

              Not to mention that the food at L'Amie Donia is very good! It's been awhile but I was very impressed by my meal here. Every plate passed by the chef for inspection and she was working the line also.

              1. re: Peter Hertzmann

                Anthony Bourdain noted that he had dinner at the Wild Hare Tuesday evening and found it quite enjoyable. That it was across the street from Kepler's Books probably also made it convenient. :-)

                Actually, I've eaten there and you can see some (but not all of the action) from the counter. And food is quite good. Wish I had taken notes.