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Apr 19, 2012 11:50 PM


Good 'ordinary non-formal' non-chain restaurant - hopefully also seafood.

(Or nearby)


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  1. This CHOW article has some good recs:

    Willow Wood was a great small place with comforting food the last time I went (but unfortunately that was two years ago).

    Zazu is a local favorite.

    1 Reply
    1. re: goldangl95

      Just spent the weekend in West Sonoma county and while it wasn't our orignial intention, we basically followed the itinery in this article. Absolutely fantastic. Barley & Hops in Occidental was a perfect Friday night brew pub dinner....nothing crazy fancy but solid beer drinking food, good stuff on tap and friendly bar staff. The wineries (Merry Edwards, Lynmar, and Iron Horse) were relaxed and inviting. Dinner at Zazu was delicious....halibut cheeks over asparagus in a butter caper sauce, pork belly poutine that will surely raise my cholesterol for months, and peanut butter cookie ice cream sandwiches that you dip in hot fudge! Oh yes!! If you can, the cedar enzyme treatment at Osmosis is amazing.

    2. K&L Bistro has been my favorite in Sebastopol for years... Consistently good, great service, and exceptional food.

      2 Replies
        1. re: wolfe

          I definitely agree. The Hole is the place to eat. Fantastic place.

          But as far as seafood goes? I don't really know of many Sebastopol places that focus on seafood. If you are driving 116 to or from Seb., I recommend both Lynn's Thai and Mai Vietnamese in the little Apple Valley shopping center in Cotati. Both have great menus and are very good value.

      1. Willow Wood (in Graton) is superb, but it's their soft polenta with pork ragu that wins the most raves.

        Just west of Sebastopol's downtown is French Garden. Gorgeous, big converted house, not cheap, but their crabcakes made with a housemade Meyer lemon relish were the BEST crabcakes I and my spouse (with 45 yrs of countless gourmet delights, and we have the tummies to prove it, LOL) have ever had. Excellent service, lovely bar area too.

        We liked K&L Bistro, but French Garden had them beat. FG was second only to Bistro 29/Santa Rosa on our last Sonoma trip March 2012.

        1. I don't know if Japanese qualifies as ordinary, but Hana Sushi is definitely not formal, and it's my favorite sushi place in the area (although recently a friend told me that Sushi Tozai, also in Sebastopol, is even better). They have special prices on Saturday, but it's not expensive even without the specials. I'm sure there could be endless controversy about which is the best sushi place, but Hana is my favorite because the fish is VERY fresh (they are busy and have rapid turnover) and the hotate gai and unagi are my favorites that I've had. Would raw seafood do? Also, don't miss Screamin' Mimi's ice cream, it's wonderful, especially if they have lavendar ice cream.

          4 Replies
          1. re: Kathleen M

            Had my week visit to Sebastopol - but actually the time primarily went with home cooking.

            Had one large pizza at Mombo's - decent - but ridiculously expensive ($25) - and was later outdone by far by the pizza stand at the Farmer's Market!

            They certainly know how to take a good price for raw materials - Whole Foods seems to have no shame no matter where they are located. I also noticed an awful lot of hype re Organic (IMO) - and prices for it to match.

            1. re: jounipesonen

              The WF in Sebastopol is notorious. I'm a WF fan and I won't set foot in there. Mombos is good but it's still just a pizza.

              1. re: Andrew H

                A while back I stopped into the WF in Thousand Oaks, where my parents live. I was looking for cardamom seeds out of the pod, which the Sebastopol WF always carries in the bulk section. I asked about them in the TO store, they didn't have them, and they asked where I had been getting them. When I told them I usually shop in the Sebastopol store, they acted like it was the Taj Mahal. "Oh! the Sebastopol store! It's famous as being one of the very best ones!" I rarely shop there because there are so many better alternatives, though, except for the cardamom seeds. For home cooking in Sebastopol, Andy's Produce is GREAT shopping.

                1. re: Kathleen M

                  Andy's Produce and Fiesta market (aka Pacific market) are places to shop instead of WF in Sebastopol.

          2. Took a drive over to Pt Reyes - it was on a Sunday - and the places saying they had oysters had mobs around them (for whatever reason) so was impossible to stop.

            Just curious what does it cost for the most informal eat-out oyster around there? Did later visit Pike Place Seattle and got a paper cup-type serving for street eating of 3 HUGE, tasty, tender oysters for $5. That i thought was a good deal (but not close to Havana where you get 6 for 20 cents :-) )

            2 Replies
            1. re: jounipesonen

              did you stop at Hog Island? five of us did the Shuck Your Own Oysters -

              1. re: Cynsa

                no - am back in Europe now - but will tip off my Seb friends - tks