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New East Bay Restaurants You Should Know About

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Sakimoto - Walnut Creek

Taking over premises formerly occupied by the Broadway Club and Corner’s Tavern, Sakimoto is a high end Japanese restaurant specializing in steaks, sushi and sake. You can anticipate A5 wagyu, the highest grade Japanese beef, and locally-sourced seafood, on a menu that includes starters, like chrysanthemum salad with radish, seasonal fruit, nori and miso. The traditional izakaya grill will fire up a medley of proteins from black cod to wagyu.

On the sushi side, look for nigiri and sashimi offerings as well as 11 specialty sushi rolls, including the Ruby Tuesday, an avocado and cucumber roll with smoked yellowtail finished with pickled raspberries.

Website: sakimotosushi.com

Montesacro – Walnut Creek

Montesacro is a pizzeria with a difference. This where they serve the pinsa, a modern ‘cloud-like pizza’, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. This is a Roman style pizzeria with a menu that features only the freshest seasonal ingredients carefully selected from local farms plus small producers in Italy.

Located on Locust Street, in the old 54 Mint Forno premises, menu items include antipasti such as octopus, tripe and porchetta, while main courses include a 32oz bone-in ribeye (“suggested for 2”) and lamb chops. There is a full bar, and, of course, a wide variety of pinsas with prices ranging from $16 to $24.

Website: montesacro.com

Crescent Bistro – Pleasant Hill

I’ve mentioned Crescent Bistro before, but this will serve as a reminder about one of Pleasant Hill’s most interesting new restaurants situated on Crescent Drive in the downtown area. According to their website, they serve high quality food in a relaxed atmosphere, and the various reviews online seem to bear that out.

The dinner menu has some imaginative appetizers such as cured salmon deviled eggs and jalapeno cheddar donuts, while main courses include southern fried chicken, braised short ribs and wild mushroom risotto. Prices here are particularly reasonable and they have a wide range of cocktails and a full bar.

Website: crescentbistro.com

SanDai Nusantara Californian  – Walnut Creek

Not yet open at the time of writing but hopefully by the time you read this, Sandai is an up-market Indonesian-meets-Cali cuisine restaurant, bar and coffee shop in the former Prima Ristorante location on North Main. Advance publicity has created quite a buzz, so it will be very interesting to see this new venture from star chef, Nora Haron.

Website: sandai.us

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Bernard Gibbons & Michelle Hensley
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