You know how every third restaurant in the Bay Area says it serves “Californian cuisine”? You have Chez Panisse to thank for that. This restaurant started the whole let’s-use-local-produce thing back in the 1970s, and is still going strong. Chez Panisse is a prix-fixe situation that costs between $75 and $125 per person depending on the night, so it’s a great place to celebrate a special occasion. The menu changes a lot, but whatever you have will be fresh, seasonal, and excellent. It might not seem like an original concept anymore, but just remember that this is the place where it all started. And if you don’t want to do the full $100-ish menu, try eating at the cafe upstairs, where you can either order a la carte or do a less expensive daily menu.
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Chez Panisse Cafe
Chez Panisse Cafe in Berkeley is the more casual (and possibly better) sister spot to Chez Panisse, which is located just downstairs.
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Bi-Rite Cafe has sandwiches and soft serve for lunch and a nice patio to sit on if you work around Civic Center.
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