Downtown

★★★☆☆
  • 2102 Shattuck Ave

    Berkeley, CA 94704

    Map & Directions
  • 510-649-3810

About Downtown

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Food

Food
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We started by sharing the veggie fritto plate -- delicious zucchini and fennel -- then sampled several of the entrees. Everyone enjoyed their meals.

1
★★★☆☆

We started by sharing the veggie fritto plate -- delicious zucchini and fennel -- then sampled several of the entrees. Everyone enjoyed their meals.

Pros: Great location; nice, open space; enjoyable food

Cons: We had to leave before sampling dessert

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Our server acted like he couldn't care less - never saw him after he took our order. The 'new' menu is a disappointment. Small portions, food so-so, overpriced food & drinks. No attention to customer service.

There are so many better places to spend your time and money. Will not go back again.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Our server acted like he couldn't care less - never saw him after he took our order. The 'new' menu is a disappointment. Small portions, food so-so, overpriced food & drinks. No attention to customer service.

There are so many better places to spend your time and money. Will not go back again.

Pros: Location

Cons: Service, price, portions

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We had great pasta and halibut at downtown! Good music, but a little loud for conversation--maybe would try sitting in the back room?

2
★★★★★

We had great pasta and halibut at downtown! Good music, but a little loud for conversation--maybe would try sitting in the back room?

Pros: Food!

Cons: parking

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Our service was good, our waitress was good, the food was unimpressive, two of the three cocktails we ordered were good but not remarkable, I thought the beer list was more pretentious than excellent although it was nice to see locally made beers on the menu.

If our bill had been $100 less for the six of us I would recommend the restaurant.

1
★★★☆☆

Our service was good, our waitress was good, the food was unimpressive, two of the three cocktails we ordered were good but not remarkable, I thought the beer list was more pretentious than excellent although it was nice to see locally made beers on the menu.

If our bill had been $100 less for the six of us I would recommend the restaurant.

Pros: location

Cons: price

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First time visit was good experience. Good service, good food, good music. Will try again.

2
★★★★☆

First time visit was good experience. Good service, good food, good music. Will try again.

Pros: Nice place, Good jazz band, Good food

Cons: None

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Our server was fine, but the maitree'd came over numerous times to top off our wine (obviously trying to encourage us to buy another bottle) and he actually took the bottle before it was empty. We're talking at least a 1/3 of glass left. We mentioned it to our server, but dropped the issue even though the chianti was $65.00. On our way out, he stopped us - mind you without us saying a thing to him - and told us that we were mistaken and nothing was left in bottle. My friend began to argue with him until the maitree'd said "I know what I'm doing --- do you want to see my resume?" Our entire party was shocked. Of course we'll never go back, not withstanding that the risotto was cold and unappetizing, our oysters took probably a half hour, and the desserts tasted as universally terrible.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Our server was fine, but the maitree'd came over numerous times to top off our wine (obviously trying to encourage us to buy another bottle) and he actually took the bottle before it was empty. We're talking at least a 1/3 of glass left. We mentioned it to our server, but dropped the issue even though the chianti was $65.00. On our way out, he stopped us - mind you without us saying a thing to him - and told us that we were mistaken and nothing was left in bottle. My friend began to argue with him until the maitree'd said "I know what I'm doing --- do you want to see my resume?" Our entire party was shocked. Of course we'll never go back, not withstanding that the risotto was cold and unappetizing, our oysters took probably a half hour, and the desserts tasted as universally terrible.

Pros: music, drinks, atmosphere

Cons: food, maitree'd, cost

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Downtown is a great place to go for delicious food and great jazz. I've been with my wife a few times and took my parents there once as well and everytime it has been wonderful. The music creates a very nice atmosphere but isn't too loud for conversation. The lighting is also just right and the decor is very interesting. The house marinated olives are outstanding and the lamb dishes I've had (a coupld of different specials) were excellent every time. The wine is good but pricey. Entrees are around $20 which is very reasonable considering the live entertainment and quality of food. Portions are not huge so I suggest getting a salad or appetizer, but if you are trying to save a little money take advantage of the fresh baked bread.

2
★★★★★

Downtown is a great place to go for delicious food and great jazz. I've been with my wife a few times and took my parents there once as well and everytime it has been wonderful. The music creates a very nice atmosphere but isn't too loud for conversation. The lighting is also just right and the decor is very interesting. The house marinated olives are outstanding and the lamb dishes I've had (a coupld of different specials) were excellent every time. The wine is good but pricey. Entrees are around $20 which is very reasonable considering the live entertainment and quality of food. Portions are not huge so I suggest getting a salad or appetizer, but if you are trying to save a little money take advantage of the fresh baked bread.

Pros: Jazz, Atmosphere, Food

Cons: View of Bart Station

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THis place was totally hyped up by a friend of mine and boy was I disappointed. There were four of us and everyone had an appetizer and an entree and nearly everything tasted sub-par. I sent back my Niman Ranch Pork (one of the reasons I wanted to come) back because it was overcooked and tasted drier the second time around! We all tried everything at the table and even though everything else was edible, nobody was crazy about any of the food (unfortunate to say the least). This was VERY DISAPPOINTING especially considering how much we paid. We would have been really upset had they not bought out desserts for us and took off the Pork (nice heads-up by the waiter), but still that's the least they could do. A restaurant with $20 entrees should at least have food that is edible.

1
★★★☆☆

THis place was totally hyped up by a friend of mine and boy was I disappointed. There were four of us and everyone had an appetizer and an entree and nearly everything tasted sub-par. I sent back my Niman Ranch Pork (one of the reasons I wanted to come) back because it was overcooked and tasted drier the second time around! We all tried everything at the table and even though everything else was edible, nobody was crazy about any of the food (unfortunate to say the least). This was VERY DISAPPOINTING especially considering how much we paid. We would have been really upset had they not bought out desserts for us and took off the Pork (nice heads-up by the waiter), but still that's the least they could do. A restaurant with $20 entrees should at least have food that is edible.

Pros: jazz, near BART

Cons: FOOD, FOOD, FOOD

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I heard some bad stuff about his place but I was pleasantly surprised. My husband made the reservation through Open Table and noted that it would be our first time at Downtown. To our pleasant surprise, we received the house speciality Fried Olives on the house, so it was nice to know they're paying attention. The rest of our meal was fine and Alison, our waitress, was exceptional. Being such a food person and dining out so frequently, my husband and I are use to such poor service but not this time. Our waitress, and the rest of the staff for that matter, had many questions and everyone answered them without hesitation. I'll definatly return soon and encourage others to do the same. Take this from me -- we're restaurant people and everyone was very pleased

Donna L.

2
★★★★★

I heard some bad stuff about his place but I was pleasantly surprised. My husband made the reservation through Open Table and noted that it would be our first time at Downtown. To our pleasant surprise, we received the house speciality Fried Olives on the house, so it was nice to know they're paying attention. The rest of our meal was fine and Alison, our waitress, was exceptional. Being such a food person and dining out so frequently, my husband and I are use to such poor service but not this time. Our waitress, and the rest of the staff for that matter, had many questions and everyone answered them without hesitation. I'll definatly return soon and encourage others to do the same. Take this from me -- we're restaurant people and everyone was very pleased

Donna L.

Pros: service, food

Cons: too dark, noisy

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I wasn't expecting the music nor for it to be so busy & loud, but we enjoyed ourselves none the less. My husband and I have been twice now mainly because it's located so close to the Berkeley Rep and the food is awfully good considering how quickly it comes out. I recommend going after your show being that it is much quieter then. The wines were intimidating but the server and maitree d' helped us find something lovely for our meal (risotto & steak were very nice).

Even though we both HATED the music, we had a good time (the jazz was, both time, a downer).

P.S. It was nice to be in a restaurant where everyone smiled for a change -- such a rarity today!

2
★★★★☆

I wasn't expecting the music nor for it to be so busy & loud, but we enjoyed ourselves none the less. My husband and I have been twice now mainly because it's located so close to the Berkeley Rep and the food is awfully good considering how quickly it comes out. I recommend going after your show being that it is much quieter then. The wines were intimidating but the server and maitree d' helped us find something lovely for our meal (risotto & steak were very nice).

Even though we both HATED the music, we had a good time (the jazz was, both time, a downer).

P.S. It was nice to be in a restaurant where everyone smiled for a change -- such a rarity today!

Pros: close to theater, food, service

Cons: music, music, music

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I hadn't been to DowntownRestaurant before until a group of co-workers and I went in on a Thursday and ended up staying for dinner even though we were intending on having a just a drink. I thought the atmosphere would be stuffy but I was wrong. There was live music, which ended up being very soothing, and prices for food and drinks for the bay area were reasonable considering how exquisite the presentation of stuff was.

Try their Strawberry Cosmo -- YUMM

2
★★★★★

I hadn't been to DowntownRestaurant before until a group of co-workers and I went in on a Thursday and ended up staying for dinner even though we were intending on having a just a drink. I thought the atmosphere would be stuffy but I was wrong. There was live music, which ended up being very soothing, and prices for food and drinks for the bay area were reasonable considering how exquisite the presentation of stuff was.

Try their Strawberry Cosmo -- YUMM

Pros: Music, Bar, Food

Cons: Crowded

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First off, the music was spectacular and there's no cover charge. My friends and I had a cozy table in the middle of the dining room and stayed longer than expected because the ambience was so inviting. Our server was very accomodating too, and helped us choose an appropriate wine for dinner. The food was equally good. I had the whole fish and it was delightful as was everyone else's food I tried. I can't wait to go back. As soon as people learn about this spot it'll never be empty.

2
★★★★★

First off, the music was spectacular and there's no cover charge. My friends and I had a cozy table in the middle of the dining room and stayed longer than expected because the ambience was so inviting. Our server was very accomodating too, and helped us choose an appropriate wine for dinner. The food was equally good. I had the whole fish and it was delightful as was everyone else's food I tried. I can't wait to go back. As soon as people learn about this spot it'll never be empty.

Pros: Ambience, Music, Food

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I stopped by Downtown on a Saturday night after a show with a friend of mine for a quiet, quick drink but was surprised what a lively spot it had become. The staff was nice enough to give us a table in the dining room even though we were just drinking, and the waitress was very accomodating and gave us some helpful suggestions for wine (try a glass of the gruner veltliner -- very tasty) . The atmosphere was casual and the music was loud, but never annoying or irksome.

I actually came back the following week and had dinner with friends and we were all pleasantly surprised. The mussels with crayfish was amazing, and the german chocolate cake for dessert was such a hit at our table.

Trust me -- visit Downtown

2
★★★★★

I stopped by Downtown on a Saturday night after a show with a friend of mine for a quiet, quick drink but was surprised what a lively spot it had become. The staff was nice enough to give us a table in the dining room even though we were just drinking, and the waitress was very accomodating and gave us some helpful suggestions for wine (try a glass of the gruner veltliner -- very tasty) . The atmosphere was casual and the music was loud, but never annoying or irksome.

I actually came back the following week and had dinner with friends and we were all pleasantly surprised. The mussels with crayfish was amazing, and the german chocolate cake for dessert was such a hit at our table.

Trust me -- visit Downtown

Pros: music, drinks, food

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I was recommend to this restaurant as a the only up-scale (post theatre) dining location in Berkeley. (The negatives) The live music was way too loud for us to sit in the main dining area. We ordered mojitos, which was on the speciality drink menu, and they were awful. We ordered the Seafood Fritto and the Seared Ahi Tuna Poke and both were bland and flavorless. Our entrees [Seabass, Chicken, Salmon, Halibut] were plain, bland, uneventful and boring. We ordered the Panna Cotta for dessert and it was gross. (The positives) The decor and service were good (Overall) If it were not for the friendliness of our waitrees and the great service she gave us, we would have left. I would not recommend this restaurant for dinner or their bar for a drink.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I was recommend to this restaurant as a the only up-scale (post theatre) dining location in Berkeley. (The negatives) The live music was way too loud for us to sit in the main dining area. We ordered mojitos, which was on the speciality drink menu, and they were awful. We ordered the Seafood Fritto and the Seared Ahi Tuna Poke and both were bland and flavorless. Our entrees [Seabass, Chicken, Salmon, Halibut] were plain, bland, uneventful and boring. We ordered the Panna Cotta for dessert and it was gross. (The positives) The decor and service were good (Overall) If it were not for the friendliness of our waitrees and the great service she gave us, we would have left. I would not recommend this restaurant for dinner or their bar for a drink.

Pros: location, service, decor

Cons: bland food, bad drinks, loud music

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The food here is good in terms of taste; I'd give it a 8.5 out of 10. The servers were friendly, too. The presentation of the food could use a little work, but it all goes to the same place, as my friend always says. Get the Niman Ranch Pork Chops, and I guarantee you won't be disappointed. I'm not an avid jazz listener, but the music definitely added to the ambience. Nice place for a date. The decor is inviting and clean, though not really that intimate, since it is such a large restaurant. Parking is difficult, so you'll want to factor that in if you have reservations.

2
★★★★☆

The food here is good in terms of taste; I'd give it a 8.5 out of 10. The servers were friendly, too. The presentation of the food could use a little work, but it all goes to the same place, as my friend always says. Get the Niman Ranch Pork Chops, and I guarantee you won't be disappointed. I'm not an avid jazz listener, but the music definitely added to the ambience. Nice place for a date. The decor is inviting and clean, though not really that intimate, since it is such a large restaurant. Parking is difficult, so you'll want to factor that in if you have reservations.

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Pass this place up. We live in an area of excellent food and service and unfortunately Downtown doesn't deserve our business. My wife and I were looking to enjoy a nice dinner one Sunday and decided to try it. It's about time there was an upscale restaurant around there. The food was average to ok and the service was mediocre to poor. The worst was when we ordered a side of Broccoli Rabe. 1st it was forgotten and then when it came, it was way over-cooked (close to mush). We sent it back but the waiter returned saying the chef wouldn't take it back because that's they way it should be cooked. We didn't stay for dessert.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Pass this place up. We live in an area of excellent food and service and unfortunately Downtown doesn't deserve our business. My wife and I were looking to enjoy a nice dinner one Sunday and decided to try it. It's about time there was an upscale restaurant around there. The food was average to ok and the service was mediocre to poor. The worst was when we ordered a side of Broccoli Rabe. 1st it was forgotten and then when it came, it was way over-cooked (close to mush). We sent it back but the waiter returned saying the chef wouldn't take it back because that's they way it should be cooked. We didn't stay for dessert.

Pros: Good location

Cons: Egotistical Chef, Poor Service, Over priced

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Downtown is a chic spot for a pre-theater dinner or post theater drink. Located on the same block as the Berkeley Rep, Aurora Theater, Jazz School and Capoiera Arts Cafe, downtown gives arts patrons and business professionals a pleasant upscale dining experience. The food and service don't quite live up to the decor but with limited fine dining choices in Downtown Berkeley, you can't have everything!

1
★★★☆☆

Downtown is a chic spot for a pre-theater dinner or post theater drink. Located on the same block as the Berkeley Rep, Aurora Theater, Jazz School and Capoiera Arts Cafe, downtown gives arts patrons and business professionals a pleasant upscale dining experience. The food and service don't quite live up to the decor but with limited fine dining choices in Downtown Berkeley, you can't have everything!

Pros: City chic decor!, Great Bar!, Close to BART and Art

Cons: Unexciting food., Pricey!

 

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