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PostHeaderIcon Chow Down in Danville

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We’ve been going to Chow Restaurant in Danville since it opened about a year and half ago.  It’s always been a fun, happening place to eat. Using an abandoned Blockbuster Video building, Chow is open, lively and colorful. 

The place is a masterful blend of design, comfort and function with its long antique bar that stretches the length of the restaurant, red pendant lights and walls of oak siding.

Although the place can be packed inside and out on a weekend night, you always feel the service is all about you. 

Where else can you dine in a place where a fireplace and ficus trees share space and the servers sport tattoos?  Add to this a second-story glass wine storage, open kitchen, funky artwork and you’ve got the most unique dining experience in the East Bay.

On our last visit, our waiter, Glenn Barrack (who insisted we just call him Barrack) was funny, attentive and knowledgeable about the menu. The specials that night were Belgian white asparagus and mushroom soup, a mahi mahi sandwich, yellowtail with beans and roasted beet, sustainable fish tacos and organic chicken taquitos.

Barrack insisted we try the soup, and he was right on the money.  Rich, creamy and brimming with flavor, it could have been a meal in itself.

For entrees we had a veggie burger and the classic pot roast. The veggie burger was piled high with goodies and the pot roast was enough to feed a small family. We ended our meal with a slice of chocolate crème pie.

Chow attracts just about every demographic. On one side of us was a table of single girls with cosmopolitans, on the other side was an older couple who at first seemed taken aback by the non-traditional waiters, but ended up joking and sharing stories with Barrack. On any given night, you’ll see families, young couples on dates and friends enjoying an evening out. 

Chow is open until 10 p.m. on weeknights and 11 p.m. on weekends, so it’s the perfect place to have a drink and light dinner before starting your night out, and a great place to end up after a movie or strolling through downtown Danville.

Prices are reasonable and you can check them out beforehand on the online menu.  In many cases they offer two sizes of entrees and always a small, medium or large salad.  It’s the perfect mix of comfort food meets organic fare.  Chow resources from local farms and the desserts are made onsite.

The wine list is simple, but clean, with good offerings in a range of prices by the glass or bottle.They stock all kinds of boutique beers and have a full bar. 

Tables can be close, the energy is high and the hip edgy servers always seem to be on the ball.  Weekends are popular for breakfast and in the summer, take advantage of the al fresco dining.  They don’t take reservations, but you can call when on your way to have your name put on the list.  There is plenty of free parking in the city lot behind the restaurant.

Chow Restaurant is located at 445 Railroad Ave. in Danville. For more information, call 925-838-4510 or go to www.chowfoodbar.com Chow restaurant also has a location in Lafayette and two in San Francisco.   --SEW

Pricing:  $$ for two

 $--cheap eats
$$$$--special occasions only
$$$$$--Get out the gold card

Last Updated (Tuesday, 22 March 2011 02:51)


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