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Jun 20, 2008 03:29 PM

east bay bar/restaurant for wedding after-party

my best friend is getting married in september and i'm planning the after party. the wedding is on a saturday afternoon, so my event will likely be around dinner time. i'm looking for somewhere with decent food and drinks, not too expensive, great atmosphere (maybe with an outdoor area), and for up to 15 people in their late 20's early 30's. more on the mellow/casual side, but still somewhat special (it's a wedding after all...). my friend has suggested jupiter in downtown berkeley but i think/know there has to be somewhere better out there (i.e. less of a college scene).
forever grateful for your suggestions...

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  1. How expensive is "too expensive?"

    - Sea Salt has a nice patio area and you could keep it pretty inexpensive as long as people weren't ordering the priciest things on the menu.
    - Fonda and especially Cesar have good food and great drinks but neither has an outdoor area that can accommodate 15.
    - Corso on Shattuck is definitely affordable and the food is great - there are a few reports on this place that just opened recently if you do a search. I believe they are only serving beer and wine at this point so that may be a deal-breaker. Also not sure whether they are accepting reservations yet which could be a problem for that size of group.

    1. First, what kind of after party are you thinking of? Will this be people sitting down to a relatively casual dinner, or do you want more of a bar kind of appetizer with drinks and snacks? If it's the former, I would suggest either Dona Tomas or Pizzaiolo in Oakland (next door to each other on Telegraph Ave). Dona Tomas has a room in the back of the restaurant (past the outdoor area) that might be perfect for that size of a party, and has great drinks and good upscale Mexican food. They also have a nice patio, though I'm not sure if you can reserve outside tables. Pizzaiolo has a great back room as well, and you can reserve the back table for a large party of about that size.

      Luka's would also be fun, but doesn't have any outdoor area. Sea Salt has a great outdoor area, good food, and a nice inside space, so that might also be a place to check out. All of these places have a sample or recent menu on their websites, except for Dona Tomas, so you can check to see what the prices are like.

      I tried to add the place link for Sea Salt, but it's giving me errors -- it's on San Pablo in Berkeley, googling will get the website.

      5008 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

      Luka's Taproom
      2221 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

      Dona Tomas
      5004 Telegraph Avenue, Oakland, CA 94609

      1. thank you both very much. looks like i'll have some fun places to scout out in the next few months. i've been to sea salt, fonda, and cesar (the three of which i think sea salt might be the best option). i'll take a look again at dona tomas (only been there once...might be to expensive...and crowded on a saturday night), a definitely check out the others. thanks!

        2 Replies
        1. re: fuhshoko

          Dona Tomas, Pizzaiolo, Sea Salt, and Cesar cost around the same.

          The back patio at À Côté might work. Same price range. One of the best bars and the best wine list in the East Bay.

          No reservations at Corso.

          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            The back patio at A Cote is a great idea. They also have excellent desserts.