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Fun Date Spot in East Bay

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Hi- My sweetie and I are looking for a fun date place for tomorrow night. We are trying to beat the winter blahs so we want somewhere lively. She is a veggie who eats fish. I eat anything but beef. We were thinking about Cesar. What do you all think? Cesar? Other suggestions?

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  1. Luka's Taproom is my favorite when I want lively. You can enjoy the buzz from the bar but the dining area's far enough away that you can have a conversation, too. Hipper, younger crowd than Cesar.

    1. What about Sea Salt? I find myself there mostly at lunch when it's quite, but I bet a Friday night could get hip and lively. I really enjoy the food, plenty of fish on the menu!

      1 Reply
      1. re: oaklandfoodie

        Food's great at Sea Salt, but even when it's full with a line out the door it's not all that lively. Older Berkeley crowd. Of Krikorians' five places, Fonda Solana's by far the liveliest.

        Pizzaiolo draws a lively crowd.

      2. A'Cote might also be fun, especially if you sit in the front area near the bar. Nice variety of small dishes like Cesar. Or if you want to try it out, Cesar has a new, second location on Piedmont Avenue that's a bit more spacious than the Berkeley location.

        1. Pearl Oyster Bar is a fun place for drinks and fish nibbles.

          1. I'd probably go to Luka's, but if you want something in downtown Berkeley, Raphael could work. Italian vegetarian and seafood, with a nice cocktail list. Sit in the window, near the bar.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Glencora

              I've found Raphael to be fairly staid on my few visits....not necessarily something I mind, but if I were in fun, dating mode, I'd probably prefer A Cote or Luka's...

              1. re: susancinsf

                Same here. Though Raphael's bar is very nice.

            2. Cesar's very fun, but you can't make reservations, so be prepared to wait. They always have good vegetarian and seafood based items, so it might be a winner for you guys. I also love A Cote.

              2 Replies
              1. re: JasmineG

                I like the food, drinks and atmosphere at A Cote a lot more than at Cesar, though I haven't tried Cesar Piedmont. The Mrs. and I always have a fun, fabulous time at A Cote, and we often wonder why we don't eat there more often. Their desserts are particularly excellent, and they have Delerium on tap.

                1. re: Morton the Mousse

                  I completely agree with you, actually, and I've been to both Cesars mutiple times. I like them fine, but I always come out of Cesar having spent a lot more money than at A Cote, and while I've had really great food at Cesar, I've also have had some iffy food there, and I've never come out of A Cote dissatisfied. And you're right, the drinks and the desserts are all particularly good (and the bartenders at A Cote are great). That said, I still like Cesar a lot (especially the Piedmont location), and its atmosphere is a bit more lively and hip than A Cote (which I'd describe as more romantic and upscale).

              2. Another reason to go to A Cote --- Michael the bartender is among the best in the bay-area. Have him make you a side-car. The best since I left NY.

                1. Is club jupiter still around? We always enjoyed that spot, and then the other was Casa Orinda. maybe too old of a crowd, but a terrific bar, and the food is very good.

                  Also Lafayette Park hotel - The Duck Club