HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
What's your latest food quest?
TELL US

Berkeley on Sunday evenings with no reservation

d
dump123456789 Feb 15, 2011 04:23 PM

We find ourselves passing through Berkeley on Sunday evenings occasionally while returning home from the weekend. Are there any recommended places to eat where you could get a table without a prior reservation or a long wait (15-20 minutes max) ? We typically pass through Berkeley between 5pm and 8pm.

  1. Robert Lauriston Feb 17, 2011 12:57 PM

    This Sunday (2/20/2011) only, Riva Cucina. I have yet to see the place full. Unfortunately, after that they'll be closed Sundays.

    -----
    Riva Cucina
    800 Heinz Ave, Berkeley, CA 94710

    1. wolfe Feb 16, 2011 03:59 PM

      The closer to 8 the better the chance the kids will be home in bed, Picante, easy off, easy on Gilman.

      -----
      Picante
      1328 6th St, Berkeley, CA 94710

      1. kellylee Feb 16, 2011 09:35 AM

        You could try Nizza La Bella near the corner of Solano and San Pablo. If you take the Albany exit and turn left onto San Pablo, Nizza is just a couple blocks ahead on the left. Usually easy street parking and no waiting in my experience.

        -----
        Nizza La Bella
        827 San Pablo Ave, Albany, CA 94706

        11 Replies
        1. re: kellylee
          Robert Lauriston Feb 16, 2011 09:41 AM

          Oh yeah, good call. I haven't had to wait there since the dot-com crash. A wide variety of delicious food: pizza, steak-frites, bouillabaisse, mac and cheese, great salads ...

          Little Star Pizza's just a few blocks up Solano.

          -----
          Little Star Pizza
          846 Divisadero St, San Francisco, CA 94117

          1. re: Robert Lauriston
            kellylee Feb 16, 2011 09:49 AM

            Little Star is really good, too. If you're willing to cruise up to the top of Solano Avenue, Ajanta's Indian Restaurant is wonderful.

            -----
            Ajanta Restaurant
            1888 Solano Ave, Berkeley, CA 94707

            1. re: kellylee
              b
              betterbeheaven Feb 16, 2011 02:39 PM

              Little Star would definitely not qualify for the "short wait" criteria!

              1. re: betterbeheaven
                Robert Lauriston Feb 16, 2011 03:32 PM

                Has Little Star caught on that fast? Nice to hear if so.

                1. re: Robert Lauriston
                  wolfe Feb 16, 2011 03:58 PM

                  As you know the wait is for the deep dish unless you preorder from the freeway.

                  1. re: wolfe
                    Robert Lauriston Feb 16, 2011 04:06 PM

                    Well, yes, if you order a deep-dish pizza, it takes 25 minutes to bake, but the request was for no more than a 20-minute wait for a table.

                  2. re: Robert Lauriston
                    b
                    betterbeheaven Feb 16, 2011 06:24 PM

                    When I went on a recent Sunday night I was quoted 45 minutes but ended up waiting closer to about 30. Might've been that there was a party of 10 before me. We were able to order the pizza when we arrived.

                    1. re: betterbeheaven
                      Robert Lauriston Feb 17, 2011 09:35 AM

                      Yow. Nice to hear they're doing well. I wonder if the Zachary's up the street has lost business to them?

            2. re: kellylee
              escargot3 Feb 16, 2011 10:33 AM

              I often walk in to Nizza la bella and get a table for 2 -- not one of the coveted booths, however. It's a fave place before or after a film at the theater around the corner on Solano.

              1. re: escargot3
                l
                lmnopm Feb 16, 2011 03:41 PM

                Nizza la Bella is a great suggestion.

              2. re: kellylee
                m
                Missmoo Feb 17, 2011 10:09 AM

                I third this after Robert and Kellylee!

              3. m
                ML8000 Feb 15, 2011 08:49 PM

                Off of University Ave besides Sea Salt there's also Indus Village and Lanesplitter Pizza. Casual, not even moderate dining but both are very good for what they serve, rarely a wait. Also there's Jimmy Bean's on Gilman, also part of the TRex, Sea Salt group.

                -----
                Sea Salt
                2512 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94702

                Indus Village Restaurant
                1920 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, CA 94702

                Jimmy Bean's
                1290 6th St, Berkeley, CA 94710

                2 Replies
                1. re: ML8000
                  Robert Lauriston Feb 16, 2011 07:53 AM

                  The Berkeley Lanesplitter often has a wait at dinnertime. The new one in Emeryville might not.

                  1. re: Robert Lauriston
                    m
                    ML8000 Feb 16, 2011 09:33 AM

                    You can usually get in under 15 mins as the OP wanted.

                2. r
                  Rapini Feb 15, 2011 05:31 PM

                  We just had a very good Sunday dinner at Revival. It was busy, but no wait that I can remenber. In any event, any dinner rush is over by 7:00 pm, when Berkeley Rep's Sunday performances begin.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Rapini
                    l
                    lmnopm Feb 15, 2011 06:11 PM

                    You could probably get into Lalime's at the earlier or later end of your range.

                    -----
                    Lalime's
                    1329 Gilman, Berkeley, CA 94706

                  2. JasmineG Feb 15, 2011 04:44 PM

                    What part of Berkeley are you passing through? It's not hard to get into Sea Salt and Cesar on Sunday evenings, I rarely ever have to wait at T Rex. If you want to head up Solano, China Village is a good option.

                    -----
                    Sea Salt
                    2512 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94702

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: JasmineG
                      d
                      dump123456789 Feb 15, 2011 08:09 PM

                      We always come down along 580/80, so we pass the Gilman, University and Ashby exits. T-Rex is just a few blocks away, and it looks like Lalime's and Sea Salt are both an easy 1.5 miles off the highway.

                      -----
                      Sea Salt
                      2512 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94702

                      Lalime's
                      1329 Gilman, Berkeley, CA 94706

                      1. re: dump123456789
                        m
                        milklady Feb 16, 2011 08:10 AM

                        Sea Salt is more like half a mile off the highway, right between University and Ashby. Maybe a mile, but it just takes a couple minutes.

                        -----
                        Sea Salt
                        2512 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94702

                        1. re: milklady
                          d
                          dump123456789 Feb 16, 2011 10:46 AM

                          I meant 1.5 miles from the highway off ramp. But it's good to know that it won't be a long drive timewise. I wouldn't want to go any place that took a long time to get through lights, stop signs, one way streets, traffic and limited parking.

                      2. re: JasmineG
                        Ruth Lafler Feb 16, 2011 09:10 AM

                        China Village was my first thought as well.

                      Show Hidden Posts