Happy Hour at Bidwell St. Bistro (Closed)
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Daily Dining News: Davis's Our House 'Overpromises and Underdelivers'

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Our House in Davis has recieved mixed reviews. In Sactown Mag, Rick Kushman said that with "its eclectic vibe and its modern take on classic fare, Our House is definitely on the right track."

But the Sac Bee's Blair Anthony Robertson has a different opinion. (Click here for happy hour info.)

From a menu that looks like it was designed by a fussy eater to "live" music that included an up-tempo piano version of "Send in the Clowns," Our House might lure you in with the promise of fine dining, but it sends you packing with a lingering rhetorical thought – "You can't be serious..."

Even in Davis, where the dining standards are inexplicably lower than in Sacramento, there are certain things we shouldn't be able to do at a fine-dining restaurant – such as looking up from our table at a flat-screen TV and realize the Kings are in the midst of another drubbing...

Though we felt wildly misled by the promise of fine dining, our Our House experiences were not a failure. It's not a bad restaurant. It's a so-so restaurant, thoroughly, unabashedly and almost defiantly mediocre.

Read the entire review in the Sac Bee.

I've eaten at Our House once, and found its price point higher than the food and service would justify. A group of 4 of us went, each ordered an entree, two desserts for the group and one bottle of their most modestly priced wine, and after the $30 Groupon, we still spent $160, including tax and tip. I also recall having to wait a long time for our food -- much longer than seemed appropriate for the then half-full restaurant. If we would have gotten the same food and service at a neighborhood bistro with neighborhood bistro prices, I would have been thoroughly satisfied. But their service lacked polish and their food lacked anything to set them apart.

Have you been to Our House? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

More News:

Counter Culture: Café Vinoteca a tasty choice for pizza and pasta - Café Vinoteca is a high- energy neighborhood kind of place, largely populated with regulars who know each other by sight, if not by name. It may have a local angle, but its fare easily competes with higher-end, more-formal Italian restaurants in our area. Its lengthy lunch menu shows soups and salads (grilled prawn Louie, grilled romaine lettuce), small plates (meatball sliders, Kobe beef carpaccio), panini (eggplant Parmesan, grilled chicken), pasta (much of it house-made, served with mild, subtle sauces), and soup-salad-panini combos. Prices range from $4 to $16. Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.

Plaza Café Lounge now open - Plaza Café Coffee Lounge opened April 2 after numerous construction delays. The coffee bar at Seventh and K streets fronts St. Rose of Lima Park, and co-owner Omar Tarin said Friday that it is already attracting regulars. Brandon Darnell in Sac Press.

Upscale restaurants are dressing down - To attract younger people, fine restaurants dispense with pristine, quiet formality, revamp their menus, update their decor and extend their hours. Tiffany Hsu in the Los Angeles Times.

Goose & Gander: First Look - After sitting empty since October of 2010 and undergoing an ownership change, the former Martini House space breathed to life again on Tuesday night, bearing the plumage (and signage) of Goose & Gander. The grand old residence-turned-eatery is the work of owner Andrew Florsheim (previously of Levy Restaurant Group), and chef Kelly McCown (formerly Ella in Sacramento, and before that, coincidentally, the opening chef de cuisine at Martini House). Carey Sweet on SFGate.com.

5 tips for enjoying happy hour—without regrets - To happy hour or not to happy hour, that is the question.  “It can be a slippery slope that I think is better dictated by office culture,” said Aaron Perlut, a partner at St. Louis-based agency Elasticity. “If it's a conservative culture, greater care should be taken. However, if you have a more creative, laid-back culture, the typical happy hour and the typical loose-lipped imbibing that accompanies it might be acceptable.”  He said the employees at his firm often grab drinks together, because it fits with the tenor of their creative culture. Michael Sebastian on PR Daily.

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