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Jan 14, 2008 12:50 PM

Best place for dinner, Petaluma?

I've searched the posts, and nothing comes up as too recent...what are some faves for dinner in Petaluma? Good food with decent ambience (for a friend's birthday). THANKS!

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  1. Can you provide more information on cuisine or price range?

    Here are some possibilities:

    Central Market
    Cucina Paradiso

    4 Replies
    1. re: Scott M

      Any cuisine, really, as long as the food is good. I really love all cuisines, the more authentic the better. Given that it's a friend's bday, I thought something a bit nicer decor-wise (though I care more about the food). Open as to price range. It's good to have options! Any favorite dishes at these places? Thanks.

      1. re: LiseS

        Gohan- lovely atmosphere but big prices for tiny portions
        Central Market-- yummy
        Sugo-- inexpensive and filling
        Namaste Cafe--- my favorite--also best bang for my buck - see chowdown report.
        I avoid Risibisi, Graffiti and Cucina Paradiso type places-- too California nouvelle and pretend chic for me...

        1. re: drmimi

          Big second on Namaste Cafe! I went there based on drmimi's report and it was FAB! (I haven't been to any of the others, so can't speak to them, but drmimi, pay no attention to that little flashing light on your sleeve--it's just my gps tracker following you around so I can eat where you're eating.)

          1. re: drmimi

            Just wondering...have you been to Gohan recently? We felt in the beginning they were a little inconsistent, but have had great meals there for the last year or so. I'm wondering what you order there b/c my meals have always been huge...even their tuna entree is huge enough to take half home...

      2. Dempsey's on Washington is excellent. Check out their website to see they current menu. I'm pretty sure they change their menu to reflect what's seasonal. It's a bit hidden as it faces the river there, so if you don't see it right away...look a bit harder.

        4 Replies
        1. re: maurak19

          Anyone have any updates/ reccommendations at Risibisi? I will be having dinner there tomorrow night and would appreciate any updates.

          Our friends frequent the place saying that some things are solid but there is always a dish that is off.


          1. re: rln

            Sorry to not reply in time for your visit. Our experience is at par with what your friends have said. Some of their items are great...while others need work. An example, ordered a steak and half the items the menu listed that would accompany the dish (think roasted artichokes, tomatoes, etc) were missing when the plate arrived. A bit strange if you ask me. Even though the menu is less interesting, we go to Graziano's when we crave Italian food. At least we know it will always be good there.

            1. re: lj2899

              Thank you-- our experience was ok. The setting is nice, quaint. I think with what we get in SF and on the price point, it was mediocre but we weren't surprised since choices are more limited.

              I had the beet salad and parpadelle with short ribds. The pasta was good- sauce tasty but it could have used more sauce. On the dry side.

              My boyfriend had the artichoke appetizer which he said was not good at all. He liked the butternut squash ravioli. Service was friendly - could improve on awareness. Our waiter kept reaching over my back and literally pushing me into the table.

              We had the flourless chocolate cake which was really more like mousse or pudding

              We'll definitely check out Graziano's. We love Petamua.

              1. re: rln


                154 Petaluma Blvd N, Petaluma, CA 94952

        2. It's been several months, but when we dined at Central Market, we didn't have a reservation, and ended up waiting over 45 minutes (a couple sat and sat after their meal), but we found the food worth the wait. I hope it is still as good.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Kim Cooper

            I second the vote on Central Market.

            1. re: swag

              I'll put in a third vote for Central Market.

          2. Most of the recommendations are decent, but here are some that were missed and are a great experience in the west side of downtown Petaluma.

            Sooze Wine Bar Cafe (truely a gem) & let Sooze recommend the wines. The food is fantastic, but the restaurant is small (cosy). Sooze is my favorite to go with friends. The owner is lots of fun and knows her wines.

            Volpe's - For a really old Italian Petaluma experience

            Chinatown for Chinese

            Central Market - Nice fine food

            Cucina Paradiso for upscale Italian

            Risibisi - Over priced and very inconsistant. I heard they now have a new chef so things may improve.

            Demseys, always fresh and big plates.

            3BO - Yummy

            Graffiti - Great setting, okay food

            Hiros is a lot of fun and the owner loves to spoil his customers.

            Finbar Devine's Irish Pub - Is a great pub, but the food has become very over priced. Go for a drink, but ... ouch.

            Cafe Zazzle - Boring!!!

            Sugo - Better since the moody cook (dad) gave the business to his kids and got out. I couldn't stand the way he treated his employees.

            Graziano - Great food, but hold on to your wallet.

            Have fun. I am a local that eats out 3 to 4 times per week.