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Berkeley/Oakland birthday dinners -- overwhelmed by choice!

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Berkeley/Oakland birthday dinners -- overwhelmed by choice!

DavisSquare | Mar 17, 2010 10:10 AM

Help, please! I have to arrange a dinner for two successive nights for significant birthdays (n0 and n5 for suitably large values of n) from afar. The breadth and depth of dining choices in Oakland and Berkeley is a vast improvement since I moved East lo those many years ago, but the range of choices has me a little overwhelmed (far better than the alternative problem, however).

We're starting out near Lakeshore, so anywhere between Downtown Berkeley and Downtown Oakland would be fine. Further excursions are possible for extraordinary food, but I don't think we want or need to go into the City.

The first night will be more casual with a couple of adventurous eaters and a couple less so. I was thinking perhaps of Chinese or SE Asian (Battambang? a really good Thai?) or sit-down Mexican (where?), but would love other suggestions (and perhaps tips on getting some authentic dishes when half the party will order sweet and sour chicken :-).

The second night is a bit trickier with about 10 of us, including the four from the night before. We absolutely need somewhere that will take reservations, and diners range from adventurous to fussy. I think sticking to "New American" is safest, with B in Oakland looking pretty good. What say you?

Finally, we may try Dim Sum on Saturday morning. Any consensus on the best place in Oakland Chinatown?

I appreciate, in advance, the help, and promise to let you all know where we end up and how well we fare.

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