Saturday, November 17, 2018

Two restaurants

Eastside Road, November 17, 2018—
NO PHOTO TODAY: sorry. I didn't think I'd be writing this — not because I don't think the restaurants are worth writing about, not at all: because I thought I had definitively stopped writing about eating every day at all.

But habits die hard, so here I am again — to tell you that we really like this place in Santa Rosa: nothing special, a quiet, comfortable Italian restaurant, mostly veering toward the North Italian cuisine — the family owning it was, I think, from the Lago Maggiore area.

They bought a Victorian house in a residential neighborhood on the edge of downtown years ago, installed the restaurant downstairs, and lived upstairs. Over the years they've done well: they no longer live on the premises; the upstairs is now I've heard a private dining room.

There's a snug little bar to one side of the dining room, whose tables are set wide apart. The ceilings are high and there are pleasant landcapes painted on the walls. White tablecloths, of course.

Wednesday we dined with an old friend, beginning with cocktails — a Fernet Negroni for me — continuing with salad, then sole piccata, very nicely cooked in butter and flavored with white vinegar and capers. I had a decent zabaglione for dessert.

Ca' Bianca Ristorante Italiano, 835 2nd Street, Santa Rosa, California; 📞 707.542.5800

THE NEXT NIGHT we were in Oakland, dining with a couple of friends in a favorite restaurant we've neglected too often — there are so many favorites to juggle!

And this one is closing soon, after ten quite successful years — the frequent combination in this area: fatigue on the part of the principals; great difficulty finding and retaining good staffers in an area where housing is expensive and in short supply.

So this was our final dinner. We opened with cocktails — a "Gin Drink" for me, involving lime, genepi, and something else. Then a salad and then grilled duck leg and breast. We've known the principals for years; both Russ and Alison used to be significant members of the team at Chez Panisse. Russ cooks everything in a huge fireplace, and the duck was about as good as it can be — superb.

     🍷Mondeuse, Domaine Dupasquier, 2014: also superb

•Camino, 3917 Grand Avenue, Oakland, California; 📞(510) 547-5035

RESTAURANTS VISITED, with information and rating: 2016      2015     2017

1 comment:

rchrd said...

Sad Camino is closing. We need to get there before it does.