San Francisco News


Two mainstays in the Bay Area dining scene

13 Nov 2012 4:35 PM
Two mainstays in the Bay Area dining scene

The Bay Area has long been known for its trendy fine dining options. This region has been home to some of the most respected and popular restaurants in the country over the years, and continues to add to its collection of new and interesting dining venues. Because of this, the city boasts top-shelf restaurants across a wide variety of styles and cuisines including Mexican, Japanese and French. However, the area - and especially San Francisco - may be most heralded for its locally sourced vegetarian-friendly restaurants.

Two of the most popular venues in this vein are Greens and Chez Panisse. Although these two establishments are different, they share a passion for simple, tasty food that is made from only the freshest ingredients. Owners of real estate in San Francisco have easy access to these two restaurants, which many Americans travel hundreds of miles just to visit.

Greens has been serving expertly crafted vegetarian-centered food since 1979. In that time, the restaurant has earned glowing reviews and a devoted fanbase. The menu changes daily to reflect the ingredients available and the tastes and whims of its world-class chef. Years before vegetarianism became a popular genre, Greens made sure to treat vegetable-based dishes with the same high-dining sensibility practiced by other premier restaurants in the area. As a result, Greens has been a staple of the San Francisco dining scene for more than three decades.

In a similar vein, Chez Panisse, located outside of the city in Berkeley, has established itself as one of America's most original and reliable eateries. Started by renowned cookbook author and chef Alice Waters in 1971, Chez Panisse is perhaps more daring than Greens, but no less palate-pleasing. Centered around a fixed dinner menu, the restaurant turns out well-considered dishes based on the freshest vegetables, fruits, cheeses and meats in California.

In fact, based on her creativity and prowess, Alice Waters is considered a major player in California dining. According to a Frommer's review, "Californian cuisine is so much a product of Alice Waters's genius that all other restaurants following in her wake should be dated A.A.W. (After Alice Waters)."

Between them, Greens and Chez Panisse have likely done more for the local vegetarian dining scene than any two other venues. In a city famous for its cuisine, these two eateries give locals another reason to be glad to call the Bay Area home.