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Il Buco for dinner: views?


I will be having visitors in town, and was wondering what others' experience with dinner at Il Buco were like? We are very much into food, and prefer places that are mostly about very good ingredients and rustic, robust cooking (don't really care much about presentation, molecular stuff, stuffy service, etc).

If you are not fond of Il Buco, on top of saying so and why, maybe you can recommend some other places (Italian or otherwise, as we're open to any and all cuisines).

Thanks many in advance.

Mar 18, 2013
D Hound in Manhattan

Sushi in South Orange, Maplewood, Milburn?

Daimatsu is very good if you like *traditional* (read Japanese) sushi. Not crazy Americanized rolls (they have some of those I am sure), but old school nigiri. We are particularly fond of sweet shrimp, monkfish liver, ikura, albacore tuna, among others.

Feb 14, 2012
D Hound in New Jersey

eVe closing in Berkeley - gonna be a Peruvian Rotisserie called Brasa

I am quite sad. I was very fond of eVe. All of my meals there were quite good. Were they not doing well enough to keep going? Or is it a matter of just wanting to open a different kind of place?

Little Fish is back, better than ever

We had dinner at Little Fish on Saturday. A great experience. Highlights: scallops appetizer, and especially the skate main. The skate was, in particular, among our top 3 or 5 fish mains ever. The one weak dish was an underseasoned rock shrimp appetizer. Overall, a wonderful meal. We'd be regulars if we lived in Philly.

Jun 27, 2011
D Hound in Philadelphia

London short trip (Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, Hereford Road, and a couple of hole in the wall Chinese places in Bayswater)

We were briefly in London, and had the chance to eat at Dinner, Hereford Road, Four Seasons (roast duck) and Goldmine (char siu).

We were regulars at Hereford Road back in 2008 when we lived in London. We loved it, again, this time. Still serving phenomenal British food. Very good ingredients, unfussy cooking. Beautifully rustic and robust British food. Chef Pemberton as involved as ever - checking and finishing pretty much every single dish out of his kitchen. He was there the day we went for lunch, he was there the day after when we went for dinner.

We visited Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. We liked most of our dishes, and were happy to have dined there. Meat fruit was excellent. So was rice and flesh - albeit a tad salty. THe pork chop was good but not memorable. Ditto for the powdered duck.

Lastly, our recollection of the delicious roast duck at Four Seasons and char siu at Goldmine proved accurate. WE loved those two dishes at said restaurants. Simple but delicious hole in the wall places.

Hereford Road
3 Hereford Road, London W2 4AB, GB

May 19, 2011
D Hound in U.K./Ireland

Is Blue 13 still doing family style dinner on Sundays?

Does anyone know? Thanks!

Blue 13
416 W. Ontario Street, Chicago, IL 60610

Mar 28, 2011
D Hound in Chicago Area

Dining Dough Recommendation

I have the same question - any views on the matter would be greatly appreciated.

Dec 25, 2010
D Hound in Manhattan

Great dinner at eVe

I had a wonderful meal at eVe. I had a cold corn chowder with huitlacoche and crawfish (very nice; highlight were the dehydrated corn kernels, that added a wonderful crunch to the otherwise smooth dish), a coho salmon with yuzu served on top of noodles (one of the best pieces of salmon I've had, cooked beautifully, sous vide, at very low heat, truly enhanced by the yuzu), and a really outstanding dish of veal sweetbreads and liver (one of the very best I've had, up there with, for instance, Tom Pemberton's sweetbreads at his lovely Hereford Road in London). Congrats to the chef and his team.

1960 University Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704

Chez Panisse Cafe - RANT

I strongly prefer the restaurant over the cafe. Having said that, I've never had a truly bad experience in the cafe (and I have had consistently excellent food in the restaurant).

Great food at Slow Restaurant, in Berkeley

It is literally next door to Chocolatier.

Bear in mind this is a totally no-frills place. Food is served in plastic/paper dishes. At the same time, though, they do not skimp on the quality of the ingredients. And food is prepared to order - the chef will finish every single dish leaving his kitchen, which is always a good sign.

PS: More information at

Great food at Slow Restaurant, in Berkeley

Just went to Slow for the first time, and I must say I was well impressed with the food. We had a pulled pork sandwhich, the braised short rib with polenta and vegetables, and a fruit cobbler. All of the dishes were truly excellent. All of the elements in the pulled pork sandwhich worked really well with each other (thin slices of apple, trufle aioli, grain mustard, coleslaw, and pork). Maybe the one minor issue was the bread itself (very tasty, but perhaps not great for that kind of sandwhich, i.e. too much leakage). The braised short rib dish was superb. Meat was melt in your mouth tender (forget about knives), and had a remarkable depth of flavor. The polenta was some of the tastiest polenta I've ever had (I am not usually a fan). Lastly, the fruit cobbler was really good (pretty gooey and cakey, which I love).

You can taste the quality of the ingredients here, as well as the careful preparation and seasoning. Kudos to Slow.

Ironwood new Berkeley BBQ.

We ordered food to go a few days ago: a pulled pork dish, and a brisket dish. We really wanted to like it (we love BBQ, the place is a few blocks from us, and the owner was very friendly). Sadly, the food was very mediocre. Neither the pulled pork nor the brisket deliver. Teething problems perhaps? Not sure. But food was mediocre. At 13 bucks per person, we expected much better than that.

Ippuku - Izakaya in Berkeley

We had dinner at Ippuku today. An enjoyable experience. We had: whole squid; chicken skin; pork belly; beef tongue; chicken livers; shishito peppers; mochi w bacon; eggplant with bonito flakes. Most dishes were quite good. The only weak one imho was the eggplant one. A couple of dishes would have been nicer if a little bit crispier (in particular the chicken skin skewers). Overall enjoyable as I said. Extra thanks to Zen, our super nice waiter, who was very endearing. We will be back.

2130 Center St, Berkeley, CA 94704

Ippuku - Izakaya in Berkeley

How does this place compare relative to Kirala?

Kirala Restaurant
2100 Ward St, Berkeley, CA 94705

Ad Hoc fried chicken? When?

Does Ad Hoc serve fried chicken regularly, i.e. on a particular day of the week? I've seen it served on Mondays a couple of times, but wanted to see if anyone knew whether they *always* served it on Mondays.


Ad Hoc
6476 Washington St., Yountville, CA 94599

Best Chinese food in Monterey Park (for a Friday lunch)

We are planning to have the best Chinese food we can find this Friday, when we have the day off. We were thinking of going somewhere in Monterey Park perhaps. Can fellow hounds chip in with recommendations? Any type of food will do (dim sum, szechuan, taiwanese), as long as its very tasty. No dietary restrictions (and we have adventurous palattes). We must go there at lunch time, and on Friday, though.

PS: Some initial research suggested perhaps places such as Triumphal Palace, Mission 261, Chang's Garden, or Chung King. Any thoughts on these, or other options, would be greatly appreciated.

PSS: We will be driving from WLA.

May 05, 2010
D Hound in Los Angeles Area

Good food near the San Jose Fairmont hotel?

We had an enjoyable dinner at Vung Tau. Some dishes were better than others. Nothing memorable, but not bad either. Appetizers were surprisingly weak (we had the crisp rice flour cupcakes with shrimp, and the roasted quail). Mains were overall OK (grilled sliced pork; sea bass with garlic, fish sauce and chili; and a mild yellow curry).

Good food near the San Jose Fairmont hotel?

An out of town visitor will be staying in the San Jose Fairmont hotel. Can any fellow hounds recommend any very good food ($, $$ or even $$$, but not $$$$; any type of food/cuisine is fine) in the area? Say, within a 5-10 min drive?

Out of town visitor comes from Chicago. We live in the East Bay (so not familiar with San Jose).

Thanks a bunch.

Kirala in Berkeley

We had dinner today at Kirala, for the first time. Wow, we were very happy. We had several types of robata (beef tongue; whole squid; japanese egglplant; shishito peppers), and several types of sushi (caterpillar roll, nigiri unagi, nigiri uni with quail egg, nigiri octopus, nigiri ikura with quail egg). Everything was very good or truly excellent. We want to go back, and try both the yellowtail collar, and the short ribs. Price was reasonable for a seafood/sushi place. The robato chef was a delightful man, happy to talk to us despite being a busy night.

Kirala Restaurant
2100 Ward St, Berkeley, CA 94705

Commis -- Piedmont Ave. (Oakland)

We went for early dinner today (6pm). Most dishes we very much liked. We loved the duck, and we loved the desserts. The cod was pretty good. The sardines were OK but not great. The weakest dish was the lamb.

Overall, a good experience. We'll probably be back.

Prettiest and most picturesque winery?

Sonoma is fine too (anywhere in Wine country). I will keep an eye on reports, and soon start planning my visit(s). I will report in mid September or so, after my visit(s).

Thanks to everyone for their recs (keep them coming!)

Prettiest and most picturesque winery?

Hi. Relatives will be visiting in Sept. Though foodies, they are not really into wine. So we want to take them to the prettiest, most picturesque, winery in Wine Country.

Do people have any recommendations?


Berkeley/East Bay's best--please share!

Zaki Kebab is very friendly to a student's budget. So is Jayakarta, which I assume you';ve been to. For a bit of a splurge, Rivoli or Lalime's are not bad. For a splurge in Napa, there are a ton of restaurants worth visiting (you can have great food there and keep it under 50/60 dlls if you bypass alcohol; i.e. Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen). Chez Panisse is worth going to once before you leave (maybe on a Mon or Tues to keep the tab reasonable).

Napa/Sonoma-area restaurant picks?

We were in the area this past weekend. We went to Cindy's, which we thoroughly enjoyed. Food was excellent and unpretentious.

Any must-try restaurants for UCLA visit?

Do you have a price range and or cuisines of particular interest (or cuisines to be avoided)? Within walking distance I would recommend Attari for a quick Persian sandwich, the Persian ice-creams across the street for some wonderful saffron & pistachio, falooda, etc ice-cream. Further away (read car/taxi required), there are a bunch of places that may be of interest: all the way from Josie, Angelini, Jar, Providence, Craft (in no order whatsoever, and without meaning they are comparable) to Mariscos Chente or The Office.

Jul 28, 2009
D Hound in Los Angeles Area


We had the 9 course tasting menu back in June. Not inexpensive by any means, but we were truly impressed by the quality of the food. Pretty much all of our courses were outstanding.

Jul 24, 2009
D Hound in Los Angeles Area

Providence special pricing for tasting menus

Are you sure this will be going on throughout June? (That'd be great!)

Jun 02, 2009
D Hound in Los Angeles Area

Name your 2/3 favorite dinner spots in Sawtelle Blvd

Thanks so much. Your responses have been incredibly useful. I will report back after our dinner (choice of venue will be up to my guests... I'll show them your recs).

May 26, 2009
D Hound in Los Angeles Area

Name your 2/3 favorite dinner spots in Sawtelle Blvd

I need to take some out of town visitors for dinner, and we will be around Sawtelle. Any ideas? They asked for, generally speaking, some sort of Asian. Could you tell me a little bit about your 2/3 favorite spots in Sawtelle?


May 25, 2009
D Hound in Los Angeles Area

Venus (Berkeley) for dinner?

Thanks many. We're big into seafood & fish, so it sounds as if we should give it a try.