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Help with choosing menu for 90th birthday party at Bottega

We're planning a 90th birthday party at Bottega in April. We have 20 people, so will need to use the private dining and special menu choices. Can anyone offer any suggestions as to stand-out menu items? The special Spring menu does limit us a bit, but I'm sure that we can make a few seasonal changes and/or plan a few additions. Anyone out there with some favorites??

Mar 01, 2012
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Group of 13-20 for a 90th birthday celebration

We're looking for a good Italian restaurant that can seat between 13 and 20 guests for a very young 90 year old's birthday dinner. (Won't know exact number for a week or so) We'll need the reservations for around 5 or 5:30. It would be wonderful if we could find a restaurant that has a separate room, or area for our group, but I'm also aware that that might not be possible.
To nail down the particulars, we could eat in Marin County, North Beach, or even Napa or Sonoma County. Moderate prices would be nice, if possible. We've thought about Poggio in Sausilito, Tra Vigne in St. Helena, (Poggio because of the setting near the water and Tra Vigne for the wine country setting and great patio, in case it's not raining.) I'm sure that there are some good places in North Beach with traditional Italian menus. I just don't know where to begin to look. I've also heard some great things about Bottega in Yountville, but I'm not sure about the expense and have also heard that it can be quite noisy, which might make it hard for that many of us to feel connected. Main concerns are that the food be good, not over the top expensive, and there is something about the place that would create a memory; whether it be the setting, a staff that would get a kick out of helping us celebrate a cool 90 year olds birthday, or ???? I'd love to hear your ideas or suggestions.

Feb 07, 2012
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Looking for good places to eat in wine country that will be open on Christmas Eve and Christmas day.

We need some suggestions for good places to eat on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. Best selections would be near Yountville, but we can certainly drive further. It isn't a requirement that the meal be festive, although that would be nice. We're mainly just looking for really good food from very inexpensive and casual to expensive & Christmasy. It may be a little late for reservations at some places, but it's worth a try. We're open to both lunch and/or dinner suggestions...................While I'm at it, it would be good to get the same suggestions for breakfast. I assume that only hotel restaurants would be open for breakfast/brunch on Christmas day. Thank you, thank you in advance!!

P.S. I've heard many conflicting reviews for Bottega. Lots of complaints about rushed service and noise. Any thoughts or opinions?

Dec 05, 2011
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Italian meatballs

No.......I realize that they're not difficult to make. It's just that I'm already making about 15 other things and am feeling kind of lazy at this point. That being said, I'm kind of particular, and want things to taste good, so I may just have to add one more thing to my list. I truly thank everyone who gave me suggestions. I may just have to save the meatball tasting trip for another time. (-:

Apr 07, 2011
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Italian meatballs

I've called both Lucca's in SF (although it would sure be easier to stay in Marin) and Tagliaferri"s and think I'll give them a taste test. I'm not sure about Trader Joe's. I truly love that place and they have lots of items there that I can't live without, but some of their frozen "meat items" have been sub par in the past. I can certainly give them a try though. Theri prices are certainly right. Thank you all. Anyone else have any ideas? Someone told me to try the Italian deli in the Corte Madera shopping center. I'm told that they do sell meatballs. Has anyone tried them?

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Tagliaferri's, moved to Novato
25 Petaluma Blvd S, Petaluma, CA 94952

Apr 07, 2011
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Italian meatballs

Help! I'm making pasta for a family gathering and don't have time....................or perhaps I just don't really WANT to make meatballs. (-: Does anyone know of a restaurant in Marin County that makes (and would sell) really good meatballs that I could add to my own sauce? I know that I have friends who do this in Orange County, but I have no idea where to start in this area.

Apr 07, 2011
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Looking for a really good bakery in Marin County for a toddler's birthday cake

I need help finding a really good, reasonably priced bakery, somewhere between Tiburon and San Rafael. I'm looking for a moist cake with either a whipped cream or other non- greasy, non- ultra sweet type of frosting. Since the cake will be for a 3 year old's birthday, I'd like to be able to choose my own design or motif for the decoration.
If you have had any experience with bakeries in the area, I'd truly appreciate any advice that you might be able to offer.

Feb 06, 2011
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Suggestions for lunch and dinner in Moab

We need some good suggestions for lunch and dinner in Moab. There is the possibility that we might be just a bit "grubby" if we haven't been able to check into our hotel before eating, as we will just be returning from a backpacking trip. Are there any really great places to eat there that wouldn't frown on our possible attire? Also.................is Jailhouse the best place for breakfast?? Thank you for any and all help.

Sep 14, 2010
runsfast in Mountain States

Good food at (or near) South Lake Tahoe

Our family needs some suggestions for dinner at (or near) South Lake Tahoe. On this particular evening we aren't looking for anything fancy..................just good food. A casual, clean restaurant would be fine, but, just to clarify, we AREN'T looking for anything like a Denny's or Applebee's. In the past we have had extreme difficulty finding any good places in the area. There will be 6 adults and a 2 year old in our group. Most any type of food will do, just as long as it's good. We also like most ethnic food, but Asian wouldn't be my first choice. (One person in our group is somewhere between vegetarian and vegan.) If there are not many places in the area we can drive to another part of the Lake, so please add those suggestions as well. Thank you for any help you can offer.

Sep 14, 2010
runsfast in California

Best inexpensive restaurants in Manhattan

I think I finally got at least a bit of clarification about the "expensive vs enexpensive" question. They're primarily looking for great food. They're not looking for Per Se type prices................. their ideas would perhaps range from very inexpensive "finds" to fun places to eat or have drinks, to a few that just offer something else that is special. Pricing (other than any less expensive neighborhood or ethnic places) might be more along the lines of Red Cat........somewhere in between those two price points, or a bit higher if totally worth it. They pretty much love all types of food and would like to have different kinds of experiences. They don't mind some noise if it fits the setting. Ideas for all 3 meals as well as fun places for drinks would surely be appreciated.

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Per Se
10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

Aug 09, 2010
runsfast in Manhattan

Best inexpensive restaurants in Manhattan

I have relatives who will be in Manhattan for a week, and are looking for the best possible places to eat where the food isn't too expensive. Very casual is fine, but not required. Neighborhood favorites, or ethnetic cuisine might be fun. Thank you for your help,

Aug 07, 2010
runsfast in Manhattan

Is Mesa Grill really going downhill??

We've got a reservation at Mesa Grill for Saturday night, but, from what I'm reading, perhaps we'd better rethink our decision. Does ANYONE out there still like Mesa Grill, or should we venture elsewhere? Are there any really good places that serve the same style of food? Anywhere in Manhattan is fine.

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Mesa Grill
102 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10011

Jul 13, 2010
runsfast in Manhattan

Places near Westin, Times Square

Thanks so much to both of you. This site is a bit overwhelming at times, because there are so many places to choose from. You've certainly given me lots of choices, and I truly appreciate your efforts.

Jul 13, 2010
runsfast in Manhattan

Places near Westin, Times Square

I already have one post about Per se, and now I'd like to ask another unrelated question. We are staying at the Westin, Times Square. I'd love to hear any suggestions about good places to eat that are nearby. Not at all sure where to go for breakfast/brunch. On past visits we've eaten in other areas at Bubbys, Pastis, Normas, and others I can't remember at the moment. We can still do that, and will if that's necessary in order to have a really good breakfast. Any ideas? We'd also love some suggestions for lunch and dinner, both in the area and out. I've read lots of ideas on higher end restaurants, and, other than Per se, we will try a few. What I need now are some thoughts for great restaurants that are more neighborhood/cozy/homey in nature. We love most ethnic cuisine, but please don't limit suggestions to that. Just not interested in take out, fast food, hot dogs or things of that nature. Thank you in advance for your suggestions!!

Jul 11, 2010
runsfast in Manhattan

Per se

WOW.........Thanks for all the information. Interesting to hear the comments about Mesa Grill. I'll do some research on a few of the other places mentioned. I'm not sure how much luck we'll have getting a reservation at this point though.
Please keep the comments coming.

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Mesa Grill
102 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10011

Jul 09, 2010
runsfast in Manhattan

Per se

We have a reservation at Per se in the coming weeks. I've been reading about it the last few days and am not so sure that I'm interested in paying a minimum of $275. per person for dinner............not including wine, tax or tip. While I truly enjoy wonderful food, I also can't imagine that I'd enjoy eating any meal that would most probably cost us close to $1000. when all is said and done. Can anyone please chime in on the subject? I'd also like to know what the dress code is for women. Thank you for any information on the subject.
We plan to eat at Mesa Grill for a casual dinner one evening. Any ideas on other restaurants? We want to have great food..............can be any kind, and can be a higher end restaurant (though we'd love for it to cost a bit less than Per se, if possible), or an inexpensive place that just has great food. Thanks again!!

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Mesa Grill
102 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10011

Jul 09, 2010
runsfast in Manhattan

Looking for Italian and Mexican restaurants in Santa Monica

We're looking for both an Italian and a Mexican restaurant in Santa Monica. We've been told about Louise's and about a kick back sort of Mexican place called El Cholo. Any thought about these two, or any other ideas.

Feb 24, 2010
runsfast in Los Angeles Area

Place for Saturday lunch in Sonoma (or nearby) for 4 "normal eaters", one vegan and one 2 year old. HELP!

WOW.........I wasn't expecting this many replies. I truly thank all of you. I'm now in the process of looking into each of them. Fingers crossed! (-:

Feb 05, 2010
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Place for Saturday lunch in Sonoma (or nearby) for 4 "normal eaters", one vegan and one 2 year old. HELP!

I guess the title says it all. We're looking for good food in a place that is not turned off by 2 year olds...................plus, our group includes one vegan. I assume that it might be difficult to find what we're looking for. We also probably won't be able to take advantage of outdoor seating anywhere as it's supposed to rain this Saturday. If ANYONE can offer some suggestions we would be forever in your debt.

Feb 03, 2010
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Any good places for breakfast or Saturday brunch in or near Stinson Beach?

We're looking for a good Saturday breakfast or brunch in or near Stinson Beach. Is there anywhere at all that would fit the bill? I've only been able to find a few listings online and they have VERY mixed reviews. Thanks for any help you can provide. (Doesn't need to be upscale..................just good food.

Jan 14, 2010
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Comparing 3 Sacramento restaurants

We want to take friends out to dinner and are thinking of either The Grange, Ella's Dining Room and Bar, or Mulvaney's. All of these restaurants are in downtown Sacramento. Can anyone provide their personal opinions on these restaurants or make suggestions as to which they would choose and/or how they compare as far as the quality of the food and overall experience is concerned? Thank you for your help!!

Jan 05, 2010
runsfast in California

Really good child friendly restaurants in Marin County.....prefer Novato or San Rafael

WOW....thank you all. Especially you, Terri. That's quite a list. I truly appreciate everyone's input.

Dec 18, 2009
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Really good child friendly restaurants in Marin County.....prefer Novato or San Rafael

Thanks so much Librarian. I'll check these out. If others have anything specific in mind I'd still love to hear about them. Guess I could narrow it down a bit by saying that I'm looking for somewhere more causal than formal. It doesn't have to be "fancy". It could just be a really good place for pizza, or pasta, or a place with lots of options.......just not Denny's or some other place that is, in my opinion, depressing and sub standard where food is concerned

Dec 17, 2009
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Really good child friendly restaurants in Marin County.....prefer Novato or San Rafael

I'm looking for a list of GOOD child friendly restaurants in Marin County. I would prefer Novato or San Rafael, but would love to hear of any at all. I'm not really interested in places like Denny's or Applebees (sp). Best case would be somewhere that parents would enjoy alone OR with a toddler. I'm open to most price ranges, but would prefer something that isn't terribly expensive and that has a fair amount of menu items to choose from. Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.

Dec 15, 2009
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Good Mexican restaurant in Napa Valley

Thank you for the suggestion. I remember hearing about this restaurant once before. Seems like it was also a very favorable review. I'll see if everyone is up for Venezuelan food this time around...............if not, we'll most certainly try it sometime soon.

Oct 09, 2009
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Good Mexican restaurant in Napa Valley

HELP!! We need to find a good Mexican restaurant in the Napa Valley by tomorrow. We have no specific requirements other than it must have really good food. It would obviously be great if it had a few other perks, but the food is the main concern. Forever thankful for any help at all.

Oct 09, 2009
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

PLEASE HELP ME FIND A SOURCE FOR MAIL ORDER FLAN, OR A SAN FRANCISCO RESTAURANT WHERE I COULD PURCHASE A FLAN "TO GO"?

i need to find a mail order source for truly fantastic flan that will deliver to the San Francisco area, or the name of a restaurant in San Francisco that makes spectacular flan that might let me purchase one "to go", The person that will be the recipient of this gift considers himself a real flan aficianado. Any help out there? Thank you in advance for your help,

Aug 14, 2009
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Napa Valley Lunch

Thanks for your replies. Are there any others? We'd love to have several to choose from.

Feb 17, 2009
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Napa Valley Lunch

Looking for a great place for lunch in the Napa Valley. (Any city) We will be there on Saturday and want to have:
1) really good food ! (no sushi)
2) a quieter atmosphere so that we can talk
3) either casual or not, inexpensive or expensive. It doesn't matter
Thanks for any suggestions you can offer. We obviously can't go to places that require a long standing reservation as we will be arriving this Saturday.

Feb 17, 2009
runsfast in San Francisco Bay Area

Help........doesn't anyone have any ideas on places to eat in South Lake Tahoe??

I put this topic out several hours ago and thought I might get lots of responses. Anyone??????? (Specifics are on my last entry this morning.) Thanks

Sep 24, 2008
runsfast in California