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Apr 24, 2009 04:11 PM

One night off in Berkeley

Working in East Bay and have but one day off a week. Friday
is that day. Need a great dinner, casua atmosphere and excellent
service. Cafe Panisse has been done. Price and type of food not
a worry. Just superior, whatever it is. Suggestions?

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  1. If you are keeping it to Berkeley, my first two choices would be Rivoli or Lalimes. (I still haven't made it to Corso, but I bet you receive some good recommendations to go there.)

    1 Reply
    1. re: lmnopm

      Rivoli is just *barely* in Berkeley. Just over the border on the other side of Berkeley - in Oakland - Wood Tavern and Oliveto are excellent. Rivoli is my favorite; Lalimes is probably your best bet for a table of all of them. Eccolo is often overlooked in scholarly circles but I've had a couple really good meals there recently and it's a little easier to get seated there than most of these.

    2. À Côté - French / Italian small plates, Rockridge
      Adesso - Italian, Piedmont
      Anh Hong - Vietnamese, downtown Berkeley
      Camino - Cal, Grand Lake
      Cesar - tapas, Piedmont
      Chai Thai Noodles - EastLake, Oakland
      Champa Garden - Laotian, Ivy Hill, Oakland
      China Village - Sichuan, Solano
      Corso - Italian, downtown Berkeley
      Daimo - Hong Kong Chinese, Richmond
      Dopo - Italian, Piedmont
      El Huarache Azteca - Jalisco-style Mexican, Fruitvale
      Great China - Korean-Chinese, downtown Berkeley
      Jayakarta - Indonesian, downtown Berkeley
      Lanesplitter - pizza, Temescal & West Berkeley
      Ohgane - Korean, Broadway / Auto Row
      Oliveto - Italian, Rockridge
      Pizzaiolo - Italian, Temescal
      Sea Salt - seafood, West Berkeley
      Shanghai - Oakland Chinatown
      T-Rex - BBQ, West Berkeley
      Turkish Kitchen - downtown Berkeley
      Wood Tavern - Cal-American, Rockridge

      1 Reply
      1. re: Robert Lauriston

        Had a great meal recently at Corso - the chicken sauteed in brown butter is particularly good. It's a place I want to return to sooner rather than later which is rare.

      2. Digs Bistro

        Rive cocina Haven't been there in a while, but positive reports come back from time to time and they won the Chronicle's Best Italian in the Bay Area award

        1. Went to Sidebar last Wednesday for the first time after hearing favorable comments. Excellent choice--service was ideal, food delish and prices decent. A nice atmosphere, able to carry on an audible conversation and just an overall good experience. Did I mention the service was ideal?? For 3 late-40's girls,our younger, male server could not have been nicer or more attentive, and made us feel very welcome.

          1 Reply
          1. Lalime's -- small and festive, great food and service.
            Wood Tavern -- outstanding food and warm friendly service at the Berkeley Oakland border
            Oliveto -- pricey but you can't go wrong there upstairs
            Sea Salt. -- haven't been there in a year or so but it was great then
            Garibaldi on College - a standby with really good food and service and you can usually get a table there.
            Cesar on Piedmont -- casual, authentic tapas, outstanding bar

            Sea Salt
            2512 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94702

            Bar César
            4039 Piedmont Ave, Oakland, CA 94611

            Wood Tavern
            6317 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

            5356 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

            Oliveto Cafe
            5655 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

            1329 Gilman, Berkeley, CA 94706