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Jul 27, 2006 04:09 AM

Dinner near Pacific Film Archive

I'm looking for a cheap, quick place to get something to eat near the Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley. The closer to PFA the better.


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  1. IMHO, there is nothing good to eat on Southside. (Ducking will be required, I realize, because someone always pipes up for Marios La Fiesta...the only time I ever ate there I was ragingly pregnant and crazy).

    So take yourself over to Shattuck, for beef with noodles in the Imperial Tea House in the back of the Epicurious complex. Or (depending on your budget and desire for atmosphere) Laiason, at the corner of Hearst and Shattuck. Many would probably refer you to Gregoire on Cedar, but I think it's been inconsistent lately.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Ah_Grasshopper

      Gregoire was going through a slump about 2-3 months ago due to some changes in staff. But the new head chef, Jean Claude, has brought things back to speed. He's got some impressive credentials behind him including work at a couple of Michelin starred restaurants in Europe (as well as a hilarious tattoo of the words "foie gras" on his fingers). There was a while where I was driving all the way out to Piedmont but now I'm happily eating at Berkeley again.

      1. re: Ah_Grasshopper

        You should check it out again. I would have agreed with you until this year, but as others have mentioned here, Le Petite Cheval on Bancroft (almost directly across from PFA), Shanghai Restaurant on Durant and Sunshine Deli on Bancroft below Tele have all opened recently. For a really quick bite, like between screenings, there's always Top Dog on Durant. All these places are within 2 blocks of PFA.

      2. There's a very good and inexpensive Shanghainese restaurant on Durant. Here's a thread with more information.

        Shanghai Restaurant in Berkeley -

        1 Reply
        1. re: Melanie Wong

          ditto this rec. Although I have fond memories of La Fiesta (I'm probably the only human on the planet who always loved their watery soup), I wouldn't say it's that good. Shanghai Restaurant is very good.

        2. Le Petit Cheval, right across the street, is a good standby (not outstanding, but usually better than Mario's, and a lot closer). It's Vietnamese food, cheap, cafeteria-style.

          1. I like Naan 'n' Curry.

            Gregoire and Epicurious are about a mile and a half away.

            1. Is there a standard price-rating system for this site? In my book, neither Gregoire or Epicurious is even close to "cheap" (one of the specified criteria in the orginal post). Gregoire runs easily $15-$20/person for dinner, and not much less for lunch. The food is generally fabulous, it's true, but definitely not what I'd call cheap.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Kitchen Imp

                We don't impose "standards" on Chowhounds in terms of how they post or express an opinion, it is all subjective, and it is all welcome. If you are not sure what one person's definition of something is, its best to ask for a clarification.