Dining Out in the East Bay this September

Magret de Canard served at La Sen Bistro in Walnut Creek. Photo via Facebook.

With the busy summer season coming to a close, it’s the perfect time to enjoy a date night or meal out with friends. From breakfast to dinner, here are some suggestions I hope you enjoy.

La Sen Bistro

WALNUT CREEK – When it’s time to unplug and enjoy a relaxing evening out, head to Walnut Creek’s La Sen Bistro where the menu showcases French-Vietnamese cuisine.

Salads here are a work of art. The salade au roquefort – mixed greens, roquefort cheese, slices of green apple and pistachio nuts tossed with champagne vinaigrette – is big enough for two if you have a hankering for both salad and an appetizer.

The menu features a handful of decadent entrée selections. The salmon served with saffron sauce, artichoke hearts, tomatoes and spinach was excellent. If you like scallops, La Sen’s are a home run. They were perfectly seared with sherry wine sauce and served with parsnip puree and snap peas.

Entrées start at $17. Beer and wine only. Open Tuesday – Saturday 11am – 3pm and 5pm – 10pm, and Sunday 5-10pm. 1606 North Main Street, Walnut Creek. LaSenBistro.com.

Breakfast selections from 833 Brick Cafe in Livermore. Photo via Marco B./Yelp

833 Brick Cafe

LIVERMORE  – If breakfast is your favorite meal of the day, you’re in luck. Livermore’s 833 Brick Cafe is newly open and features dozens of selections. As the name indicates, brick is the main feature of the restaurant’s decor. Mismatched coffee cups, some with random sayings, complete the homespun feel of the place.

Omelettes are huge and come with a choice of hash browns, country potatoes or roasted vegetables. I generally opt for the roasted veggies when they are offered, and I’m usually underwhelmed. This was not the case at 833 Brick Cafe, where the veggies were comprised of a generous serving of broccoli, cauliflower, bell peppers, and onions. I paired my veggies with the meat lover’s omelette stuffed with chopped bacon, ham and sausage.

Sandwiches and burgers are served up at lunch time.

Breakfast starts at $7.99. Beer and wine only. Open daily 7am – 2:30pm (3pm on weekends). 833 East Stanley Boulevard, Livermore.

Beef Pad Thai served at Pleasanton’s Eathai. Photo: Wendy T./Yelp.


PLEASANTON – Eathai in Pleasnaton surprises with its clean lines and modern look. Long tables situated in the center of the restaurant make it an ideal spot for a work lunch or gathering of friends.

For a great value and variety, opt for a combo. First, pick an appetizer form a list of options. I decided on eggs rolls stuffed with noodles and veggies served with sweet and sour sauce.

Then pick a basil, eggplant, cashew, mixed vegetable or ginger entrée. I opted from my favorite, basil loaded with minced chicken. Next, add a curry. The red curry with thinly sliced beef included lots of veggies. Finally, finish up with a drink. Everything is prepared to your spicy  specifications. I ordered mine medium, which was plenty spicy for me.

Combos start at $13.95. Beer and wine only. Open Monday – Saturday 11am – 3pm and 5pm – 9:30pm, and Sunday 12pm – 4pm and 5pm – 10pm. 4000 Pimlico Drive, Suite 106, Pleasanton.

Auburn, a new speakeasy-style lounge has arrived in downtown Danville. Photo: Carry S./Yelp.

Auburn Lounge

DANVILLE – Check your worries at the door when you walk into Danville’s Auburn Lounge. Billed as a 2.0 “speakeasy,” the lounge is a great date night spot to enjoy a drink, conversation and small bites while listening to standards. Libations include a selection of bubbles, whites and reds form around the world, beer, and a handful of specialty cocktails.

The menu is oriented around small plates that are perfect for sharing and sure to hold you over until dinner. The chef’s charcuterie and cheese board includes two cheeses, two meats and Marcona almonds. Chicken satay and Italian-style meatballs are heartier options on the menu. Whatever you do, don’t miss the elote bites! These roasted corn fritters are the perfect blend of sweet, savory and spicy.

Small bites start at $5. Open Monday – Friday from 4pm and Saturday – Sunday from 2pm. Closing times vary by day. 321 Hartz Avenue, Danville. AuburnLounge.com.

Janet Fazio writes ‘Tastes of Your Town’, a monthly feature on East Bay dining in the print editions of Your Town Monthly. A version of this article was originally published in September 2017 editions.

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