The Tower of Bauer ventures down to Woodside to revisit the Bacchus Group's Village Pub. He last reviewed the joint back in '06, when he gave it 2.5 stars. This time around, MB is a bit taken aback by the price/quality ratio:
Main courses are all in the $30 range. Of course, a whole dorade ($34) is never inexpensive, but given the restaurant's commitment to freshness as illustrated by their nearby organic farm, I expected pristine. This was not ... When it came to the table I didn't get the fresh sea-breeze aroma I expected; instead, it smelled like a fisherman after a few days on the water .... Desserts have to be really good to be worth $11. What I had didn't measure up.Would someone please get the man his sea-breeze aroma? But it's not all bad news at the VP by any means, even with a staff that "need[s] to get disciplined again." The chestnut puree, grown-up interior and consistent, affordable bar menu are among the reasons that Village Pub maintains its 2.5 stars. [Chron]
We still can't figure out why the Weekly decided to run a review of Mission Beach Cafe when it is in the midst of a chef and menu shift, but it did: "One of the pleasures of Mission Beach is its laissez-faire, all-day, come-in-for-a-bite-a-full-meal-or-dessert attitude. It provided an unusually comfortable backdrop as well as excitingly conceived, well-cooked food for three meals that left us feeling better — much better — than when we walked in. That's something to be devoutly hoped for in this lately-kinda-rocky world." [SFW]
The secondary Chron review is taken by Ms. Mandy Erickson, who hands out a pair of stars to San Carlos' unfortunately-named 888 Ristorante Italiano: "888 Ristorante opened in September at the southern end of Laurel Street, in a small space with an early 20th century feel .... 888 Ristorante offers a fresh approach to a fairly standard menu: It lets the ingredients speak for themselves." [Chron]
THE ELSEWHERE: The EBX rehabs the American diner at Rico's in Oakland, Santa Rosa finally gets dim sum at Hang Ah, The CoCo Times has two stars for Castro Valley's Aroma, the Bunrabs shell out for the Dungeness roll at Nettie's Crab Shack, and Bauer's Sunday review was a biggie, as he dropped the lovely tres on The Moss Room.