A California Classic, Chez Panisse is perfect.

It was a delight to accept the invitation to a small dinner party for John’s retirement next Monday.

Chez Panisse, the Berkeley landmark made famous by the acclaimed Alice Waters, the creator of California cuisine, is still going strong decades later.

Below is a recap of our evening.

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First Course.

Squash blossom budino with heirloom tomatoes, basil, wild rocket and mint.
Squash blossom budino with heirloom tomatoes, basil, wild rocket and mint.

Second Course.

Pan-roasted albacore tuna with flageolet beans, sage, and red peppers al agrodolce.
Pan-roasted albacore tuna with flageolet beans, sage, and red peppers al agrodolce.

Main course.

Grilled Sonoma County duck breast with fried sweet corn polenta, broccoli di Ciccio, and Black Mission figs.
Grilled Sonoma County duck breast with fried sweet corn polenta, broccoli di Ciccio, and Black Mission figs.

Desert.

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Ruby Red apple and Warren pear sorbetti with huckleberry granita.

It was a delightful evening, great food, lots of laughter, exceptional service, a cozy ambiance and a couple of bottles of a nice Pinot Noir!

Clockwise: John, Kathleen, John, Jim and Ricardo
Clockwise: Mike, Kathleen, John, Jim and Ricardo

The restaurant is divided on two floors.  The main dining room is on the first floor and offers a four course fixed menu with two sittings Monday through Saturday.  The first sitting is 5:30 P.M. and the second sitting is 8:00 P.M.

Reservations are essential and can be made up to 30 days in advance between 9:00 AM and 9:30 P.M. at (510) 548-5525 or (510) 548-5049.  Online reservations are also available 28 days in advance.  Prices vary by menu.  Go to chezpanisse.com for more information.

The cafe is on the second floor servicing a cafe menu of a la carte choices or the Menu du Jour.  Hours are Monday through Thursday 5:00 P.M. to 10:30 P.M.  Fridays and Saturdays 11:30 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. and 5:00 P.M. to 11:30 P.M.

Chez Panisse is closed Sundays.

3 thoughts on “A California Classic, Chez Panisse is perfect.”

  1. Thanks for capturing our evening! For me, the most best part of the evening was your delightful company in that most perfectly beautiful dining room. A memorable meal in honor of dear John.

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