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East Bay Casual Special Occasion Restaurant - Not Commis?

Anniversary dinner coming up but it's a Tuesday and Commis, my initial choice, is closed. We often go to Chez Panisse but I thought something a bit more casual would work better for such a weekday night, and I thought we'd try something new. What do you all think? Marzano? Four? Corso? Other? Pican is probably out, since he's not all that enthused about even upscale Southern food.

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  1. How about À Côté or Wood Tavern?

    I like Corso a lot. It's up there with Dopo and Pizzaiolo.

    I haven't been to the original Marzano but I'm in no hurry to try it after my visit to the new one on College. Good food but I felt like they were putting profits ahead of service.

    I like Five but maybe not for a celebration.

    1. Commis doesn't seem that casual, considering it's the most expensive restaurant in Oakland, and the second most expensive in the East Bay (behind Chez Panisse)

      What about Chez Panisse Cafe?

      1. How about Rivoli? Same owners as Corso.

        Rivoli Restaurant
        1539 Solano Ave, Berkeley, CA 94707

        1 Reply
        1. re: Scott M

          Rivoli's great. It's not as informal as Corso.

        2. What about Oliveto? But I'd go to either A Cote or Wood Tavern.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JasmineG

            I enjoy Wood Tavern but it can be very noisy.

          2. I too would recommend À Côté.

            1. I would suggest Digs Bistro, but unfortunately that's closed on Tuesdays as well.

              I've really been digging B Restaurant (in Old Oakland) lately. I've only been for the Sunday Suppers, but the regular dinner menu looks great too.

              Marzano, for me, is meh. Definitely not where I'd want to go for a special celebration, casual or not.

              Otherwise, I like Wood Tavern and Corso among the choices that others have mentioned. Wood Tavern is the priciest and probably the most refined (food-wise) of the bunch, but certainly still casual enough.

              Wood Tavern
              6317 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

              B Restaurant & Bar
              499 9th St, Oakland, CA 94607

              1788 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

              2 Replies
              1. re: abstractpoet

                I second(or third)A Cote,Rivoli(nice for special occasion) or Corso.I was also going to mention Digs Bistro,but see by last poster is closed on Tues.B Restaurant is only so-so to me as is Pizzaiolo, Dopo and Pican.Mezze on Lakeshore is a possibility also.

                Mezze Restaurant & Bar
                3407 Lakeshore Avenue, Oakland, CA 94610

                1. re: casalbore spirit

                  Mezze is OK but I wouldn't go there for a celebration.

              2. I would agree with the Dopo suggestion, but they don't take reservations so if you get there after about 6:00 p.m. you may have to wait.

                1. Thanks all! I think we're going to end up at Wood Tavern. We've only been there for lunch, so dinner will be nice.