This week, the Bauer Rerun plays at Station 1 where former sous chef Ryan Harris has stepped up to run the kitchen, post Zach Freitas' departure. Bauer doesn't like it as much has he used to: "Under Freitas, the plates were refined and tailored; now they've loosened up somewhat. Flavors are often good, but at times there are one or two ingredients too many on display...A little more finesse in the wine service and the food would go a long way toward making Station 1 shine as brightly as it once did." The food rating is knocked from 3 stars, to 2 for food and 2 stars overall. [Chron]
The Kauff Man heads into Trace this week, where "the dream of the '90s is alive." Here, "the food, for an expense-account lunch, is solid...Dinner, though, leads to more dramatic expectations, which the kitchen rarely fulfills." The "most commanding dish is the Piedmontese-beef ribeye," but overall, there's "an aesthetic disconnect between the artifice-glorying spectacle of the room and the peasant food the kitchen." [SF Weekly]
Holiday Unterman takes up this week's review space to recommend some restaurants for your Thanksgiving meal. Her picks start with One Market, Bistro Boudin, and Bluestem Brasserie. Or you can do a "Blowout Thanksgiving" at Michael Mina, eat with an ocean view at Beach Chalet, have a "cozy" dinner at L’P’tit Laurent, or be adventurous with chef Hiro Sone's foie gras stuffed quail at Ame. [Examiner]
THE ELSEWHERE: The Marin IJ approves of the changes new chef Nicolas Abrams has brought to Novato's Hilltop, EBX finds Oakland's Kitchen 388 "chilly," despite "a mean pulled pork." and The Merc files a 2.5 star review of new Handles, calling it "exactly what downtown Pleasanton needs."