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Showstopping Theater Eats

Your guide to quick pretheater bites and trendy postshow spots in four local cultural districts.


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Raise a glass to Limon Rotisserie’s fresh ceviche.

Courtesy of Limon Rotisserie

Whether you’re trying to squeeze in a meal before seeing a show or seeking a spot for late-night bites before heading home, these restaurants located around some of the most popular Home entertainment venues have you covered.

WALNUT CREEK

VENUE: Lesher Center for the Arts
UPCOMING SHOW: Sinatra Sings the Big Bands will get your toes tappin’ at 7:30 p.m. on February 3.

PRESHOW BITES:
Limon Rotisserie has outdoor tables and a bustling dining room, where you can watch the exhibition kitchen churn out tangy ceviche, spit-roasted chicken, and Peruvian-style paella. .

Montecatini Ristorante specializes in Northern Italian standards, such as pollo alla schiacciata—crispy, juicy, rosemary-scented chicken—and is known for its unique lasagna. .

Prima Ristorante serves up consistently delicious dishes like the stracotto (Tuscan-style pot roast) and offers an extensive list of Italian wines; give yourself time to linger here. .

POSTSHOW SNACKS AND DRINKS:
Residual Sugar Wine Bar and Merchant
has a global selection of wines for you to enjoy until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. .

Scott’s Seafood serves fresh fish and prime-grade steak until 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays—and offers diners a 10 percent discount when they present their ticket stubs. .​

Sauced BBQ and Spirits’ Carolina pulled pork sandwich with tasty sides of smoky baked beans and mac and cheese. Photo by Eva Kolenko

LIVERMORE

VENUES: Livermore 13 Cinemas, Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center, Vine Cinema and Alehouse
UPCOMING SHOW: Singer-songwriter Lee Ann Womack hits the Bankhead Theater stage at 7:30 p.m. on February 19.

PRESHOW BITES:
Demitri’s Taverna is the destination for a juicy Mediterranean burger made with oregano, Feta, tomato, and grilled onion. .

Patxi’s Pizza has a full bar and a patio where you can enjoy a pizza or salad. (Avoid the deep dish if you’re in a hurry.) .

Sauced BBQ and Spirits serves all the meat, baked beans, and corn bread you can eat—at a fast clip. .

Uncle Yu’s at the Vineyard offers a delicious dish of crispy free-range chicken smothered in a light vinegar sauce, among other Chinese delicacies. .

POSTSHOW SNACKS AND DRINKS:
Aviation Rooftop Bar and Kitchen delivers artisanal burgers, craft cocktails, local beers, and—above all—a beautiful view of the Tri-Valley. You can also head downstairs to The Last Word to sip The Character (a stirred Scotch) with upscale sliders or Sriracha-​laced chicken and waffles. Both places keep their doors open until 1 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. , .

Sanctuary Ultra Lounge is your spot for a game of darts, a nightcap, and a snack of tuna tartare. .

Rockfish and mussels highlight the restaurant’s arroz negro paella. Photo by Paul Canales

OAKLAND

VENUES Fox Theater, Paramount Theatre
UPCOMING SHOW: Get ready for the reggae beat of J Boog and the Green at the Fox on Valentine’s Day, starting at 7:30 p.m.

PRESHOW BITES:
Aburaya doles out Japanese fried chicken and seasonal izakaya plates a few blocks from both theaters. .

Xolo—named after the hairless dogs that Frida Kahlo kept—provides quick and tasty tacos, spicy pozole, and sweet horchata. .

POSTSHOW SNACKS AND DRINKS:
Duende features specialty libations and delectable Spanish dishes—including pintxos, tapas, and multiple types of paella—​​in a trendy setting. Doors stay open until 10:30 p.m. on weekends. .

Flora’s art deco–style dining room exudes retro cool, and its bar and kitchen serve precisely prepared throwback cocktails and elegant steak dinners until 10 p.m. (Next door, Fauna offers drinks and salted caramel pudding until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.) , .

Comal’s grilled corn. Photo by Charlie Villyard

BERKELEY 

VENUES: Aurora Theatre, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Freight and Salvage, The Marsh
UPCOMING SHOW: Explore the need for human connection with Office Hour by Julia Cho, taking place from February 22 to March 25 at the Berkeley Rep.

PRESHOW BITES:
Gather is a Berkeley institution famous for its organic “head-to-tail” and “root-to-shoot” fare, in addition to its creative cocktails and local wines. .

Lucia’s offers quick plates of Neopolitan pizza, charcuterie, and house-made pastas in a homey locale. .

POSTSHOW SNACKS AND DRINKS:
Comal is lively from opening to closing (at 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays) and boasts an enticing back patio with a fire pit that can warm you up while you enjoy Oaxacan-style dishes and signature agave cocktails. .

Jupiter attracts UC Berkeley students as well as theatergoers with its house-crafted ales, finger foods, and brick-oven pizzas—​plus a heated garden and live music on most evenings. On Fridays and Saturdays, the kitchen closes at midnight, and the bar pours until 1:30 a.m. .

 

Delicious Deals

DEMITRI’S TAVERNA AND UNCLE YU’S AT THE VINEYARD
Get 15 to 20 percent off your meal with your Bankhead Theater ticket at these eateries.

GATHER AND LUCIA’S
Get 10 percent off when you show your Berkeley Repertory ticket at these hot spots.

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