DEALS ON MEALS
Arya Steakhouse, 885 Middlefield Road, Redwood
City, 650/367-4939. Fine steaks and Persian
cuisine are the focus of this upscale dining establishment,
and a variety of well-seasoned dishes
round out the extensive menu. $$$
Kumino, 580 N. Rengstorff Ave., Mountain View.
650/964-3300. This casual setting for creative cuisine
and fusion fare is a must-do destination for
frugal foodies. $
110 South Bay Accent
A Bellagio, 33 S. Central Ave., Campbell.
408/370-7705. Classic Italian dishes are served in
warm, attractive Old World setting. $$$
Bella Saratoga, 14503 Big Basin Way, Saratoga.
408/741-5115. Wonderful Italian dishes such as
salmon ravioli and eggplant parmigiana. Charming
outdoor seating available. $$
Café Pro Bono, 2437 Birch St., Palo Alto. 650/
326-1626. A local favorite for years, Café Pro
Bono offers an elaborate dining experience in a
warm, friendly atmosphere. Dinner choices are
seemingly endless, from classic Italian pasta dishes
such as spaghetti with Bolognese sauce and organic
lemon linguine and clams to creatively prepared
Mediterranean entrees such as Greek chicken
smothered in fresh oregano sauce or
Niman Ranch filet mignon with a
green peppercorn brandy sauce. These
savory meals are complemented by
select fine wines from Napa Valley,
Sonoma County and, of course,
Italy. To top it all off, dessert offerings
include Tiramisu, gelato or a
decadent chocolate cake. The restaurant
also has a full bar and two banquet
rooms available for private events seating
anywhere from 10 to 50 people. $$
Centonove, 109 W. Main St., Los Gatos. 408/384-
4007. Italian-style café specializing in wood-fired
pizzas and a wide range of housemade pastas. $$
Carpaccio, 1120 Crane St., Menlo Park. 650/
322-1211. This popular neighborhood trattoria
has become an Italian institution. $$
Doppio Zero, 10088 N Wolfe Rd #120, Cupertino.
408/863-0308. This family-friendly dining
spot prepares pastas, pies and handcrafted cocktails
with stylish ease. $$
Enoteca La Storia, 416 N. Santa Cruz Ave., Los
Gatos. 408/ 625-7272. Italian wine bar featuring
traditional small plates along with an extensive
selection of fine wines. $$
Enzo’s Italian, 21275 Stevens Creek Blvd., Cupertino,
408/255-2686. With an all-Italian crew at
the helm, this eatery dishes up authenticity—
including fresh gnocchi and seafood ravioli—in a
fast-paced, modern setting. $$
ll Fornaio, Santa Clara, 408/217-8844; San Jose.
408/271-3366; Palo Alto. 650/853-3888. Il Fornaio
stays true to authentic Italian recipes and
time-honored cooking methods. $$$
Il Postale, 100 S. Murphy Ave., Sunnyvale.
408/733-9600. This popular Italian-American bistro
has made a name for itself over the past 20 years
at the old post office building in Sunnyvale. $$
Italico, 341 California Ave., Palo Alto. 650/473-
9616. This pasta-centric bistro is popular for
meatballs and other classic dishes along with its
extensive variety of Italian wines. $$
Pasta Moon, 315 Main St., Half Moon Bay. 650/
726-5125. Charming eatery serves only local, sustainable
ingredients, fresh from the first bite of
focaccia to the last spoonful of an artisan dessert. $$
Ristorante Don Giovanni, 235 Castro St.,
Mountain View. 650/961-9749. Relaxed atmosphere
and large Italian menu ranges from charcoal
broiled steaks to assorted pastas. $$
Tigelleria Organic Restaurant, 76 E. Campbell
Ave., Campbell. 408/884-3808. Serving traditional
Northern Italian dishes prepared organically.
Also an extensive choice of a la carte antipasto. $$$
Vesta, Redwood City, 650/362-5052. The art of
the slice is elevated with the infusion of Old World
mastery of wood-fired pizza preparation. Other
delicacies include burrata and gelato. $
Vin Santo, 1346 Lincoln Ave., San Jose, 408/920-
2508. Authentic Italian pastas, meats and seafood
dishes uniquely crafted and prepared to mouthwatering
Take advantage of warm summer days by dining al fresco at
one of these affordable South Bay eateries.
Mariscos La Costa (1805 Alum Rock Ave. and 4152 Monterey Hwy,
San Jose) has a loyal following thanks to its tasty Mexican seafood
dishes—as well as many meat and vegetarian choices—generous portions
and low prices. Fresh-from-the-sea delights include many kinds
of seafood cocktails and tostadas. Meat and veggie burritos and tacos
are uber affordable and the friendly service is usually speedy.
Bella’s Bar & Grill (1111 Elko Drive, Sunnyvale) is off the beaten path in an
industrial area, but it’s worth seeking out. Bella’s serves a great mix of Mediterranean
and American sandwiches and wraps at some of the best prices around.
Classics like the BLT or roast beef sandwich go for less than $7, along with many
others. The falafel wrap is loaded with freshly made falafel, lettuce, tomato and
tahini sauce. End your meal with a piece of homemade baklava for just $2.
A popular burrito and taco joint for locals, Rio Adobe Southwest Café (10525
S. De Anza, Blvd., #100, Cupertino), features a nice patio for people watching.
The appetizers are perfect for sharing with friends: think loaded nachos and
several different tasty quesadillas from which to choose. All can be either vegetarian
or topped with marinated chicken or steak. The burritos and tacos are
excellent, as are the enchiladas and huge salads.
There is nothing but outdoor seating at Falafel Stop Sunnyvale (1325
Sunnyvale-Saratoga Road, Sunnyvale), with an ample shade
awning covering picnic tables. The Mediterranean offerings
here are some of the best in the South Bay, and the long
lines reflect that—it’s worth the wait. One side of the eatery
serves up marinated meats like chicken shawarma
or grilled beef kebabs. The other side is vegetarian with
amazing falafel and other choices like eggplant sabich,
served either in a pita or on plates with hummus and pita.
Sweet Pea’s Café and Catering (453 N. Santa Cruz Ave.,
Los Gatos) is indeed a sweet, charming breakfast and lunch
eatery with bright and cheery yellow chairs gathered around
tables on the covered outdoor patio. Crepes are a specialty here,
like the Crepes Benedict, with poached egg, ham and hollandaise sauce.
Lunch dishes include salads, sandwiches, burgers and of course, savory crepes
(and sweet crepes for dessert!). Half sandwich combos are a great deal. —P. M.