Chez Panisse Cafe
Chez Panisse Cafe

Chez Panisse Cafe

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.chezpanisse.com/
  • Phone: 5105485049x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:30am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:30pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Carte Blanche,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Organic, Californian, Mediterranean
  • Executive Chef: Alice Waters
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar/Lounge, Beer, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: Chez Panisse offers private party bookings in the downstairs dining room for up to 50 guests.
  • Private Party Contact: Jennifer Sherman 510-548-5066x
  • Special Events: Celebrate Bastille Day with garlic, wine, and live French music.
    Special menu.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Vine Street
  • Public Transit: Downtown Berkeley BART station 7 blocks from Chez Panisse
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Chez Panisse Cafe
The Café at Chez Panisse, located upstairs, opened in 1980 to offer an alternative to the set menu served in the Restaurant downstairs. The Café offers a moderately priced à la carte menu for both lunch and dinner. It has an open kitchen along one side of the room with a charcoal grill and a wood burning oven. The menu changes daily and is inspired by local, seasonal ingredients. Reservations are recommended. Please call and let the reservationist know if anyone in your party requires special accommodation to access our upstairs Café dining room.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Ambiance
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
Chez Panisse Cafe reviews from OpenTable diners
435 reviews since July 2, 2014
Overall Rating4.6
  • Food4.6
    Service4.6
  • Ambiance4.5
    Noise LevelModerate
95% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (357)special occasion (305)great for lunch (211)neighborhood gem (208)romantic (144)notable wine list (132)hot spot (57)good for groups (35)great for brunch (32)late-night find (24)kid-friendly (11)great for outdoor dining (4)scenic view (4)vibrant bar scene (1)Show More
  • Dinner at Chez Panisse
    OpenTable Diner Since 2004
    Dined on 10/27/2014
    There was such a nice waitstaff the evening we dined. Everyone made us feel welcome. The food was outstanding, especially the chicken with shell beans and collard greens. We loved the apple galette with quince. There was an adequate wine list, but we chose to bring our own wine. For a memorable evening, we highly recommend Chez Panisse.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very unimpressed!
    mimi56augusta
    Dined on 10/25/2014
    We had been told that this place was a MUST when in the San Francisco area. Reservations had to be made 30 days in advance. What a huge disappointment! Nothing special at all. Food was only average. Staff was very nice and service was good. Very few choices on menu and food was nothing special. Not worth a seventy dollars round trip Über fare plus the cost of the food and gratuity. Save your money and eat in the city.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Fantastic all around restaurant Aaa
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    One of the best meals of the year. Halibut and organic greens hard to top!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • simply delicious
    Nath
    Dined on 10/21/2014
    a simple little restaurant, lovely home, all the dishes were excellent, sophisticated and lightweight, very good wine, reasonable price! All without 3h stay at the table !! perfect !!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Lovely lunch
    JKPandFamily
    Dined on 10/20/2014
    The food was fresh and delicious and the service was excellent.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Always a treat!
    Local30VIP
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    Beautiful interiors, delicious food and impeccable service. Always a treat.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Cafe also excellent
    HawaiiFoodie
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    We have been to the formal Chez Panisse restaurant, which is world class. We decided to try the Cafe as well and it is near world class all in itself. It is understandably a bit more informal than the restaurant but the food is the highlight. We were well taken care of and the highlight was the fresh pasta and shrimp. We've been going to Chez Panisse since the 80s. The cafe will still set you back, perhaps not quite as much as the restaurant, but well worth it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Birthday Bliss!
    N2Food
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    Went for a birthday lunch and was blown away with food and service.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Farm to Table Pioneer
    DeeLishVIP
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Chez Panisse is just as I remember it. It was a least a year since my last meal at Chez Panisse and the magic is still there. I ordered the excellent Riverdog Farm Chicken Leg and my wife ordered the beautifully prepared Grilled Sonoma County Duck Breast. Both entrees were accompanied by unusual combinations such as red pepper relish, mushroom persillade and juniper. I love meyer lemons so it was a complete surprise and delight to discover meyer lemon ice cream on the menu. I plan to dine at Chez Panisse every time I visit the Bay Area and I am sure each time will be different and special!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Home Again, Naturally.
    CzechMark
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Did not disappoint. Lived in Paris when Alice was discovering how the French cook and eat: simple, seasonal, local and not too many "notes." The rest is just history in the USA and Chez Panisse has really not changed much for me since I was first there in the mid-1980s. "Well done, Emily."
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Anniversary lunch
    FoodieRN
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Food here is always amazing & service is top-notch!! Great place to have a celebratory meal!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointing evening
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 10/14/2014
    I had been to CP two years ago and it was fabulous. This time, the food and service were only OK. The place itself is as gorgeous physically as ever.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Delicious!
    lagrosse
    Dined on 10/13/2014
    Everything tasted perfectly good! We will be back in no time.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Chez panise cafe disappoints
    Seekingspecialdinner
    Dined on 10/13/2014
    We went to the cafe for a birthday dinner. Food was tasty but not as spectacular as I had anticipated. Portions were small and looked it. Appetizer came out within 2 minutes and felt rushed. We could have been out of there in less than an hour but we ordered dessert and extended our stay. It didn't feel Aplus and it should have.I've been there many times before and will go again but my expectations have now been lowered. I hope next time I am surprisingly pleased.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • 1,000 places to see
    Crosscountrygirl
    Dined on 10/13/2014
    This is in the 1,000 places to see before you die book for the United states and world wide if that says anything!! Amazing food, service, I actually ate meal of the day: squid and it was yummy, fresh & had homemade squash soup!!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Chez Panisse
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    What a lovely meal. Fresh delicious preparation. Enjoyed a roasted red pepper soup, a chicken ragout with mushrooms, potatoes and beans. An exquisite desert of fresh figs, pears and a date. The most delicate fig I have ever eaten.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Caterer
    Caterer
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    Our meals were everything & more than we hoped for... wine list accompanying was terrific.. the energy of the chefs/servers was palpable...creating a wonderful atmosphere for dining..
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A unique experience
    Tintin
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    When I was living here, I loved to come for every special occasion. Today, as I'm living abroad, I'm looking forward to coming back to chez Panisse at least once a year and very often with friends. The food is so delicate and refined. Everything is so tasty! And I love the warm art deco ambiance. It is a unique experience!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great eating
    Bogey
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    We thought Chez Panisse was the best dining we have experienced in the USA. The staff are fantastic, especially the more "mature" staff. The food is fresh and the knowledge of staff is excellent when recommending various courses and matching wines. This visit was in the upstairs cafe for lunch, we had previously dined two days earlier for dinner downstairs.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • As good as I imagine it.
    luv2dine
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    I heard so many good things about Chez Panisse and had to try. It was as excellent as everyone said. Definitely will come back. They change the menu literally every meal, what a treat. If you are looking for a dining EXPERIENCE look no further :)
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Fabulous
    CarolVIP
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    Chez Panaisse Cafe rocks! The flat bread was amazing, the wine was wonderful, and the service was impeccable! Great Berekely vibe ... not to be missed!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Simply The Best!
    whatever
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    It's been several years since we've had the opportunity to dine at Chez Panisse, and it was better than we remembered! Thank you Alice Waters for your commitment to serving real food, grown by real people! Already looking forward to our next visit when we return to the Bay Area!!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The Art of Simple Food
    Hilliary
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    Yes, that's the name of one of Alice Water's cookbooks and it is for a reason. Simple food presented as a tasty art form. Fresh, local, and seasonal culinary delights await when you eat here. The menu changes daily so you are constantly surprised. Everything is cooked to perfection. Well worth every penny.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • As aways, perfect
    Redhead
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    The food and the ambience is what brings me back here with special friends, when we really want a special lunch. The waiter this time, although charming, had a touch of pretentiousness about him which kind of gave us a chuckle (we were trying to guess if he were an actor and was doing a part) but overall, it's our favorite place to get together and talk and eat fabulous food. We love Chez Panisse!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The Food Was Perfect!
    WinendineVIP
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    My 2 companions and I sampled a salad with sheep's milk ricotta in it, gazpacho, a sliced beef sandwich, petrale sole & a bean soup, all of which were excellent. Each item was lovingly prepared with the freshest ingredients, and beautifully presented. We also sampled 3 desserts: The ginger cake was light and the amount of ginger in it was perfect. The huckleberry sauce was tart and a perfect complement to the lemon, and the sorbet-meringues were unique & just plain delicious. The servings were lighter than most American restaurants, so you could eat an appetizer, main course, and still have room for dessert without feeling uncomfortably full. This was probably the best lunch I have ever eaten.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Always Marvelous.....
    SrDiner
    Dined on 10/8/2014
    Chez Panisse: still amazingly wonderful after all these years! Absolutely fresh, seasonal, elegant food. Love the cafe for any occasion!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The Temple is Still Standing
    whinenot
    Dined on 10/8/2014
    We had high expectations... and the food was superb, the service polished and poised, the salmon carpaccio exquisite, the halibut cooked to perfection in an awesome sauce with fresh veggies and beans that were delicious (ask my wife, I usually don't care for string beans), potatoes petite and only wished for more, a chocolate custard to crave for desert. Wow. Atmosphere was over the top. Our waiter, prompt, courteous, with true poise one only gains with experience. The staff all seemed in rhythm, in sync. We had High expectations and Chez Panisse Cafe lived up to them, and beyond. Someday soon, we will have to return for dinner downstairs. But, in the mean time... we came to Taste from the Temple, and The Temple is Still Standing.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • myreview
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    Excellent as always. I' ve been dining there since 1990. Keep up the good food , the reasonable prices and the great Berkeley ambience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Classic for a reason
    CNote
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    Last trip to the Bay Area, we were not able to get in. We didn't come back just for Chez Panisse, but you really couldn't fault us if we did. It's that good.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Colorado Visitor
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    I had read about Chez Panisse and Alice Waters for years. I had very high expectations, but harbored some hesitation that the restaurant couldn't be as good as I anticipated. The ambiance, the service, and the food exceeded my expectations in all regards. It was a lovely dining experience. There is a perfect rhythm to the restaurant. Efficient, but not hurried. Attentive and friendly, but not intrusive. If a restaurant can have a personality, Chez Panisse Cafe would be comfortable in its skin and fully aware that it is one of the very best without the slightest hint of being arrogant or pompous. Our evening was exceptionally pleasant in all regards.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Chez Panisse
    anhourintheevening
    Dined on 10/4/2014
    We dined at the upstairs cafe and brought along our energetic 3 year old as we were in SF area on vacation. The staff upstairs were fantastic and put us in a corner, brought crayons and a huge paper table cloth. While the food upstairs isn't as special as the food downstairs, it was still fantastic with the same attention to detail and quality ingredients. They also do a kid's pasta and cheese and it is THE best mac and cheese I have tasted! We had a Moroccan lamb dish which my hsb loved and I had house made pasta with Gulf shrimp. They do great pasta and the sauce was superb. Great wine list with some wines unique to them and lovely non-alcoholic fizzy drinks as well. And, as always, we had the milk- don't know where it's from but yummy!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Special Lunch
    YummyWC
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Of course you expect a special meal at one of the most storied restraunts in America, but you will not be disappointed. For a special occasion or just to spend time with someone special...GO!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Missing the WOW factor!
    luckyvirgo66
    Dined on 10/1/2014
    Believe it or not, I have been wanting to eat here since the 1990's. I come out here from NY almost every year. I spend most of my time visiting the wine country and SF. Every year I say I'm gonna get over to Chez Panisse but because it's out of the way and really difficult to get in. I finally made it. I must say I enjoyed my meal but it was short of wow. I guess I was kind of expecting to be left with a sense of it. I love it when I have a culinary experience that stays with you for years. Like the coconut shrimp I had in Maui at the Westin in 1992. Or the meal I had in North Beach 4 years ago. Also-our waiter, although polite, seemed tired and minimally attentive.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Chez Panisse Cafe: beyond compare
    KentuckyVIP
    Dined on 9/29/2014
    This is the fourth time we have been to Chez Panisse Café and it only gets better with every visit. The Maitre'D greeted us like old friends. Our table was in the (quieter) front room. we had the same exceptional waiter as on our previous visit. The food was absolutely magnificent. My wife and I had the seafood "stew" and our daughter and son the chicken. Starters , wine and dessert were all great compliments to the main courses. All of us rated this meal as one of the best ever. What a wonderful affirmation of the consistent high quality of Chez Panisse Café on a Monday night in Berkeley.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • What more can I say
    Foodworshiper
    Dined on 9/29/2014
    I don't think I can possibly add any more information that hasn't already been said about Chez Panisse Cafe other than everything was seasoned so perfectly! Not only are all of the ingredients fresh and local and wonderful but the sauces and dressings that are added only further to enhance them. From start to finish, the whole experience is excellent.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Thank you!
    TheBest
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    We had been wanting to come for years. It surpassed any expectations! The service was supreme and the food most exquisite, Thank you So Much!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • 5 Stars
    Karen
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Delicious, fun, great service, typical Chez Panisse experience!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Good, not Outstanding
    Dazar
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Our lunch and experience was OK for the level of restaurant Chez Panisse is, but it lacked in personality and overall delivery. I expect more from a $170 lunch for 2 (including wine!).
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Never disappoints
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    I try to go to Chez Panisse Cafe whenever I go to the Bay Area on vacation, but it's been >15 years since I made it back. It was as great as ever--outstanding food (the smoked fish appetizer, haddock as entre, and apple galette with ice cream), friendly/professional service, and lovely Arts & Crafts decor. Overall, another memorable meal and one of my all-time favorite restaurants.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • always happy to be there
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    My wife and I live in the Virgin Islands. We always try to schedule a visit to the cafe while we are here. We always love walking in to the space. We always love looking at the menu and figuring out how our whole table can taste just about everything and we always enjoy finishing our lunch and crossing the street to visit the cheese wizard Matteo to find delectables to carry home to the food desert of St Croix. This time as we at for some wine while waiting for a table, the woman who greeted us asked me how I was. When I told her that walking into the space always made me happy, she kissed me on the cheek making me even happier than I already was if that were possible
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate