Lalime's

4.1
2570 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Californian
Since 1985, Lalime’s has been a family run culinary homestead championing locally sourced, organic, sustainable ingredients. It’s a gathering spot where we've seen our community celebrate their successes and family milestones. It's where we have been blessed with loyal staff who maintain the standards of service that are the true bread and butter of any neighborhood venue. And it’s a special place where we have been able to drawing a connecting line between the classic dishes of our ancestors and the contemporary tastes of our Northern California home. We look forward to welcoming you soon.
What 2570 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.1based on recent ratings
4.1
food
4.0
service
4.3
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
83% of people would recommend it to a friend
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B
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent GF duck entree !
Excellent chocolate mousse with berry compote!

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GF
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

Food was bland and uninteresting...maybe my halibut was okay, but the accompanying veggies were watery and over cooked. Service was okay but nothing to write home about. We’ve gone to Lalime's many times and this was the most uninspired yet. I doubt we’ll go back.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 5

I have been going here for many years and have to say that this was not up to par with the restaurants history and quality. Our cocktails were not what we wanted my main dish lacked flavor and my dessert seemed like it had been in the fridge for two weeks.

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DK
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

Parking was a challenge. Service was slow, maybe because of Mother's Day crowd. Food was excellent, but portions were small.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

The host at the front should please develop a friendlier personality. He doesn’t make eye contact, never smiles and doesn’t attempt to even have a smile in his voice. Is it something that we did? No, he’s like that with everyone, every time. Typically, one expects to be greeted warmly. I’ve been to the restaurant several times in the last 12 months and the food is wonderful and beautifully presented.

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K
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Mother's Day visit and service was a tad slow as might be expected. But the wait was well worth it and the server we had was most excellent. The food was absolutely delicious, flavorful and satisfying!

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SB
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 5

This visit was extremely disappointing. The previous dinner experiences have been great but Brunch in Mother’s Day was not good. My poached eggs on smoked salmon were ice cold, like just out of the fridge cold, and not at all tasty. The herb salad on top of it was far too overpowering. My daughter’s chocolate mousse had the consistency of ice cream and was served in a dish too small to handle the berry coulis topping. There were no special “offerings” for Mother’s Day. We drove over an hour for this, very disappointing

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 2ambience 4

Very underwhelmed by the food- especially for the price. The flavors were bland and watery. There were also a couple of service related items that seemed odd - for example, the wine my husband and I ordered didn’t appear until more than half way through our first course. I would not be interested in returning or recommending.

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D
San Francisco
28 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 5

A busy Saturday night isn’t the right time to train a new waitress.

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SP
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 2

We had a reservation and the gentleman at the front desk was rude and very short with us.

Our server was okay but I got the impression that they could care less about their customers.

They also had a patio door that when opened swept anything not nailed down with big gusts of air.

They are not a warm, welcoming restaurant.

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SB
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 5

Lalime’s is great for a quiet dinner. Our cocktails and appetizers were good, but entrees were more mixed. Lamb kebab plate was great, ravioli uninspired, duck breaststroke fine but nothing special. But family had a great time and older relatives who have a hard time in loud restaurants enjoyed that the restaurant has worked to manage the noise.

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A
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 4

90% of the times, Lalimes is terrific. Every once in a while, the chef appears to left the kitchen and absconded with all the capable help. Thursday night was one of those: everything was gloppy (the tired mezze plate) and/or without flavor (the halibut and its accompanying vegetables). Even the galette featured an undercooked and soggy crust. It was a sad night, made worse by the fact that it was meant to be a treat for my young teaching assistants who rarely go to a nice restaurant. Lalime's at its best is very good. Last Thursday night wasn't even mediocre.

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F
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was deliciously prepared. My friend & I usually order many courses but was full after appetizer. We shared a Cesar salad, combination appetizer, lamb meatballs & halibut. The portions are generous. With cocktails we were surprised at how reasonable the bill was. Everything was amazing.
Our server Yonka was attentive & very nice.
The only item was the ice cream with our dessert. It had creme fraiche in it & it would have been better without it. Can’t wait to go back.

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V
San Francisco
65 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 5

The food was amazing. Beautifully presented, tastily seasoned, perfectly cooked. Our young server, Nevita, was warm and welcoming and worked very hard to meet all our requests.

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J
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I had not dined at Lalime's in about five years and I found that it is just as lovely as I remembered. The space is intimate and attractive and the service outstanding. The wait staff were there when we needed them but they did not hover. I ordered my favorite drink from the bar, a kir royale, and it was perfect. My entree was cameroni pasta with cauliflower, basil and parmesan. The ingredients were fresh and it tasted fantastic! I am hard of hearing but I was able to talk all evening with my friends. I really appreciate that there is no background music soundtrack which I find irritating in restaurants, and which makes it more difficult to have a conversation. Thank you Lalime's for a lovely dining experience! I will be back again for sure!

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TP
1 review
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 3

As usual Lalime's is a constant for fine dining in Berkeley and the surrounding area. The food is always well thought out and finely prepared.

The only down point was the young hostess, upon arrival she barely looked up from being bent over the front entry podium and stated "name?" Whatever happened to "Hello"...or even "Welcome to Lalime's."..it appeared to be a chore or bother for her to seat us. The remaining service and staff were excellent.

Someone should speak to the you lady regarding her poor attitude. I have been coming to Lalime's for years and highly recommend a visit...

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m
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on May 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I recently took my staff to Lalime‘s for a farewell dinner for a long time employee. I had not been there in many years, and I was so pleasantly surprised. I loved the food, it is well prepared, fresh and delicious with many interesting, flavorful twists. I appreciate the focus on local and organic! I and my companions are beer lovers, and they had a well-thought-out selection of beers to complement the food. Overall a delightful experience, and I will be back soon!

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DS
Phoenix
15 reviews
Dined on May 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent as always. Menu was less Middle Eastern themed than a month ago. We also learned that there is only a $20 corkage fee if you bring your own wine, and it is waived if you buy a bottle there.

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OT
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

We will probably never return. The dishes were brought out in the wrong order. The lettuce salad that arrived 10 minutes before the other 3 people were served was wilted and old looking. 3 entrees arrived together while the 4th person waited 15 minutes. When we complained to the general manager he said "that's the way it is ".

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BB
Phoenix
51 reviews
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Stopped in for lunch on a Saturday and was so pleasantly surprised. Great bar, great handcrafted cocktails and the food was excellent. I had the lamb kebab pictured here. If you’re looking very nice quiet bistro where you can actually hear one another talk, this place is for you!

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JD
San Francisco
28 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Wonderful food. Some loud neighbors and had to ask for wine with dinner but the food was wonderful and the staff pleasant.

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EW
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Had a wonderful meal at Lalime's. The one-page menu had plenty of variety for different eaters. The wine list was reasonable and had great options. The service was lovely and I liked the neighborhood feel of the restaurant. We will be back!

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BB
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

Great food and service in elegant and relaxed surroundings.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on April 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Super fresh ingredients served in unexpected and flavorful dishes.

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OT
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on April 17, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 4

We have been coming to Lalime’s since it opened decades ago. The last several years the food has been excellent. However our experience recently was disappointing. The food, except for a mezze plate, was bland to bad. Perhaps they have a new chef? We hope that the restaurant will rectify this as the ambience and decor are delightful. But, we will not return unless there is a change.

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s
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 1ambience 3

We have been there many times and we like it. However, we had a rather surly waiter last time -- big contrast from all previous times. He was not very attentive. Our food took forever to come, and we were ready to leave (hungry). But it did come and because we complained, they comped our food. So, although we were tempted to not leave the waiter a tip, we did leave a tip...although it was not for him, but really the rest of the staff. We appreciated that the manager recognized the delay (1.5h after ordering). We would go again but will hope to get a different waiter.

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SN
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lalime’s is still as good as it was years ago. A truly enjoyable meal

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C
San Francisco
79 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 1ambience 2

I somehow had the impression that this restaurant served Middle Eastern food. There were a few such dishes on the menu, but the taste of Middle Eastern food was not here. The chef and cooks were not, either. Service as bumbling, and the bartender served up a gimlet instead of a Gibson. All-in-all a disconcerting experience.

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n
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The food was very, very good and the service was attentive and professional. I would go there again and would recommend it to anyone.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 5

Tuna tartare was excellent, Halibut was very tasteless in a bland, unimaginative, and runny sauce

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F
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 3

Food was awful. Disappointing.

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KC
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on March 31, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 4

We used to come often in the 90s and suffered disappointment as it has ( inevitably) changed. Food options for a veggie limited to a few Mediterranean dishes. Waitress seemed to dislike us. It was odd.

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OT
1 review
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

We hadn’t been there in over 10 years and were VERY disappointed in both the service and the food. It took over 20 minutes to receive the cocktails we ordered, and the restaurant was less than half full. The food ranged from bland to merely okay. It got progressively noisier until you had difficulty hearing your companion sitting right next to you. Our whole party of 4 was amazed at how popular it still seems to be, given all the above and all the good restaurants in Berkeley. We used to love it, but will not go back.

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P
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

We've been off & on patrons of Lalime since their early days on Solano Ave. For our early evening reservation we were met by the hostess with barely a nod and led to our table. Things improved greatly when our very personable waiter answered what questions he could, or quickly obtained the answers when he did not know. I am a pretty reasonable home cook and like dining out to sample food I cannot prepare as well or to get new ideas on preparation and presentation.
We started with very nice kir royales; my dinner companion ordered a creamy carrot and turnip soup with lime and cilantro. She liked it. I sampled it and found it too thick and no trace of either lime or cilantro. I ordered an appetizer of sauteed calves liver after inquiring about the size of the portion. I was told about 2 1/4 ounces which seemed just right for an appetizer. When it arrived it turned out to be about double that, almost dinner size. Though not pink on the inside (as I had requested) the liver was tender and tasty, but overwhelmed by the heavy flour dredge and the brown onion sauce that topped it.
We are both fond of seared duck breast. Again, a most generous serving of duck - served on a bed of cooked kale - a classic combination. All it needed was a few slices of boiled or roasted potato. Perhaps that did not seem fancy enough, because instead, there were a few 1/2 inch thick slices of boiled, room
temperature rutabega on our rectangular platters. The rutabaga had little to say and needed at least a touch of salt and wound up remaining uneaten. (Fortunately our friendly waiter keep the bread basket full of pain epis, so who needs rutabega?) On the opposite end of the platter the duck was "bookended" by a garnish of thin sliced, crisp fried fennel root which not only tasted very good but added to the visual appeal of the presentation. I'll have to remember to prepare it that way. We had a 2016 Herrman, Mendocino Coast, Pinot Noir with dinner and a a couple of double espressos.

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SM
1 review
Dined on March 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Dinner on Sunday evening, attentive server, delicious pasta, lobster, white wine, leisurely pace, varied menu items: luxury fit for a birthday celebration with your partner.

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r
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Kudos to Raul - he was very friendly and accommodating.

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M
Washington DC
44 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I have entertained guests at LaLime’s about 10 times in the last 3 years, and the experience has always been great. This has to be the best restaurant in Berkeley for every day casual dining. You need a reservation for sure, and even then be prepared to wait. This is a very popular place. The craft cocktails are fun. I have had and loved all of the salads, and the tuna tartare is always a favorite of mine. This trip the table ordered the pesto fettuccini, the mussels, the scallops a a fresh fish entree. Everything was fabulous. The service is efficient, and the vibe of the restaurant is upbeat. There is a reason why I take guests here every several months.

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LG
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

On our most recent dining experience at Lalime's, I had the lamb chops and my husband had the ribs. Both of us were very pleased. My chops were cooked medium rare, and combined very well with the sauce. The ribs came with mashed potatoes and cole slaw on the side and were also enjoyable. The only negative of the evening was the dessert was a little dry (walnut caramel cake).

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OT
Salt Lake City
1 review
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Drinks were a bit slow coming to the table, food was delicious and atmosphere is quaint and lovely.

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YM
San Francisco
87 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

So Glad that the Menu now includes their classic Mediterranean dishes!
Lalime's has been a forerunner in Mediterranean cuisine...and for awhile, this was not
on their menu. But they have now returned that to their menu with a great balance in their
menu. We are thrilled, and enjoyed an utmost delightful mix of cuisines - the 5 of us so
enjoyed the meal, savoring every taste!
Kudos, Lalime's Chef and staff!

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