Chez Panisse

The headquarters of Alice Waters, the visionary who brought the slow-food movement to the U.S., this Berkeley mecca for food-obsessed pilgrims doesn’t disappoint. There’s a strict adherence to the religion of seasonal, local produce, and it pays off on the plate. The prix fixe menu changes daily and, although wowing, doesn’t provide wiggle room. Look for standouts like grilled squab with balsamic-vinegar sauce and citrus risotto or spit-roasted chicken with wild-mushroom sauce.  Specialties: Expect to be delightfully surprised.

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