Tomate Cafe is first and foremost a neighborhood spot, so it isn’t a place you’re likely to just stumble upon. It’s in a part of West Berkeley that’s half houses and half warehouses, so if you’re here, you came on purpose. Which you should, because it does one of the best breakfasts in town. Order at the counter (get the Harvest Breakfast, which comes with fried apples and delicious zucchini potato cakes), then sit out on the patio if it’s warm enough, or grab a table inside. You’ll probably end up next to a family and an old guy doing the crossword, which makes for the perfect laid-back breakfast situation.
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Triple Rock Brewing Co.
Triple Rock Brewing Co. in Berkeley is huge and great for groups. Grab some bar food and beers made in-house.
Emilia’s is the best pizza in the Bay Area. Getting it is a huge pain in the ass. But it is 100% worth it.
Ippuku is a small, casual yakitori spot in Berkeley that might leave you smelling like smoke for days, but the food is worth it.
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Looking for a last minute reservation for a big group on a Saturday night? That’s a daunting task. Fog City enters the pantheon of great places you can get into.
Try Gardenias, in lower Pac Heights, when you’re looking to drink a bottle of wine and eat like a moderately health-conscious French king.
Nook is a solidly on-price, reliable neighborhood hang in Russian Hill. Even if they do weird things with granola.
Suggested by our writers
Rose’s Cafe in Cow Hollow has great granola, pastries and an excellent breakfast pizza. Hit it in the morning for an outdoor breakfast.
Duboce Park Cafe
Duboce Park Cafe is a laidback and dog-friendly spot in the Castro for breakfast or lunch.
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