Best Meal in Berkeley, CA


Berkeley, CA has such a wide assortment of restaurants from Burmese food to Korean cuisine. On our most recent visit, we went to Chez Panisse and, I will attest, this was the best meal in Berkeley, CA.

Interestingly, once you book your reservation at Chez Panisse, you have no idea what you are getting on the menu. The main course could be duck, beef, chicken or fish. Every day is a different menu.

On the day we went, it was a three-course prix fixe menu for $75. That was a Monday evening. On Fridays and Saturday evenings, the price is $125 per person for the prix fixe.

Our meal

At the best meal in Berkeley, CA, we started with an asparagus salad, which included beets, shallots, and leeks. I didn’t think I would like it but it tasted delicious. It was so fresh, all organically and locally grown.

First course on a Monday night at Chez Panisse

The main course was a paella, which consisted of octopus, mussels, clams, and chorizo. It wasn’t a large course, on the smallish side but the flavors were amazing. The mussels and clams melted in your mouth, they were both flavorful and light. I didn’t try the octopus but my husband and son said it paired nicely with the rice.

Main course

The final course of the evening was an almond tart with cinnamon ice cream and roasted cherries. I tried it but didn’t want the added calories. The tart was incredibly creamy and delicious. The cherries and ice cream paired well with it.

Third and final course

About the chef

Alice Waters is a chef, author, food activist, and the founder and owner of Chez Panisse Restaurant in Berkeley, California. According to the website, “she has been a champion of local sustainable agriculture for over four decades.” She is the author of several cookbooks.

My thoughts

At first, I was hesitant about trying out this restaurant set in the heart of Berkeley, CA. My son wanted to go. We had been there once in the cafe but it wasn’t the same menu. I was thoroughly impressed with the food and would highly recommend if you are traveling to or around San Francisco. Berkeley, California is about 40 minutes from downtown San Francisco. There is a Bart available.

If you are interested in checking out the best restaurant in Berkeley, you must make a reservation one month in advance.