Dining News: Piatti Swings, Misses in Revamp

Piatti, which closed for several months over the summer for a remodel, reopened in Decemeber.

During that time, they took time to revamp the menu. Nick Deider, Piatti's director of operations who worked more than 5 years at the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group in Yountville where he worked at Bouchon and Ad Hoc, told the Sac Bee in December that, "We've refined things and updated the recipes. (The dishes) have gotten a lot simpler and much more flavorful. Our new chef is Lance Carlini, who was a chef at Scott's Seafood Grill and at High Steaks steakhouse at Thunder Valley Casino Resort."

Did it pay off? Sac Bee restaurant critic Blair Anthony Robertson didn't seem impressed.

We left our three recent visits to Piatti in the upscale Pavilions shopping center a bit baffled by the remodel and underwhelmed by the inconsistent food – some good, some misguided, some poorly executed, nothing excellent and little we'll ever remember.

The room, the cooking and the decent but unexceptional service don't go nearly far enough. Amid the many ups and downs, what's clear is that Piatti has fallen further behind the standards set by both the new and established restaurants in east Sacramento and midtown just a few miles away.

Piatti's does enough to qualify as a neighborhood restaurant for Italian cuisine ranging from marginal to good, but it certainly isn't the dining destination we anticipated.

Read the entire review in the Sac Bee.

Click here for more posts about Piatti.

More News:

Assembly on K to open in late March - Assembly, local restaurateur Randy Paragary's latest baby, is almost ready for visitors. "This is adult entertainment," Paragary said. "Other cities have ammenities like this and there isn't anything like that in downtown now."  The concert venue at 10th and K streets is set to open Friday, March 22, said Callista Wengler, marketing director for Paragary Restaurant Group. Cover band Pop Fiction is set to perform at 10 p.m., and the night's show is free to the public, Wengler said. Karen Wilkinson in Sac Press.

SactoMoFo 6 food truck festival coming April 27 - Ah yes, it's starting to feel like spring, the sun's shining a bit more and Daylight Savings is about to start. You know what that means ... time for a food truck festival! SactoMoFo 6 is on board for April 27, and will be held once again at 6th and W streets in downtown Sacramento - the site of the Sunday farmers market. More than two dozen trucks from northern California are being booked, including such first-time SactoMoFo participants as Roli Roti. Many of the perennial favorites will also be whipping up their food truck fare, including Chando's Tacos, The Chairman and Krush Burger. Chris Macias in the Sac Bee.

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Dining News: BarWest Embroiled in Dispute with Neighborhood

BarWest, which many people call BroWest for the crowd the bar attracts, is in another battle with the neighborhood, this time over an entertainment permit.

Before opening in Midtown in summer 2011, BarWest's owners told neighbors and the press that they wouldn't seek an entertainment permit from the city.

Not quite two years later, the bar/restaurant that took the place of Aura on J Street is doing exactly that, inciting the wrath of neighbors who say BarWest isn't holding to its original agreement.

"Needless to say, I'm incredibly disappointed that they have gone back on their word," said Julie Murphy, co-chair of the Marshall School/New Era Park Neighborhood Association. "And we have grave concerns about how an entertainment permit will affect the ecosystem on that block."

The owners say that they want an entertainment permit so they can again host a trivia night, worth $5,000 in weekly revenue. The city shut their trivia night down recently due to the lack of an entertainment permit.

I understand the owner's desire to find a way to get more business. I was in there on Monday for an after work drink, and there were fewer than 5 people total in the entire restaurant.

Read the entire story in Sac Press, or watch KCRA's news report.

Click here for more posts about BarWest.

More News:

Mahoroba Japanese Bakery - After seeing their ads in the Sacramento News & Review and driving by a million times, I finally stopped in to check out Mahoroba. For waiting this long, I'm a fool! Whoever created their recipes must have sold his or her soul to the devil, because the product here is unbelievable.  Doughs are phenomenally soft, fillings are light, airy and not too sweet, and the marrying of the two is simply perfection.  No sweet tooth today?  Pick up a savory bun with hot dogs or dim sum  baked right in.  That's right, I said dim sum, people! Stacy Barawed on The Fun Junkie.

Staff pick: Uncle Vito's Slice of NY - There is nothing not to love about pizza; It tastes good hot or cold, for breakfast or dinner, or to satisfy drunk munchies. My mouth waters at the thought of that first bite of cheesy, greasy pie-shaped dough. Uncle Vito’s Slice of N.Y. is a small pizza joint on 1501 16th St. in midtown Sacramento connected to the restaurant Pronto. After hearing good things about this “slice of New York,” as they advertise it, I decided to give it a whirl. Anna Puccinelli in the Sac State Hornet.

Continue reading "Dining News: BarWest Embroiled in Dispute with Neighborhood" »

Save $5 at Sutter District Restaurants This Month

The Sutter District, the area surrounding Sutter's Fort in midtown, includes so many great resturants, including:

Through the end of Feb, save $5 when you spend $25 or more. Not valid with other offers.

Click here to get the coupon. Make sure you print it out and bring it with you.

Top 15 Happy Hours of August 2012


The 15 most popular Sacramento happy hours of July 2012 on were:

  1. BJ's Restaurant & Brewery (Last month's rank: 1)
  2. Firestone Public House (Last month's rank: 2)
  3. Republic Bar & Grill (Last month's rank: 3)
  4. Lucca (Last month's rank: 5)
  5. Blackbird Kitchen & Bar (Last month's rank: 4)
  6. Burgers and Brew (Last month's rank: 7)
  7. Nishiki Sushi (Last month's rank: 12)
  8. McCormick and Schmick’s (Last month's rank: 6)
  9. Pizza Rock (Last month's rank: 8)
  10. Chicago Fire Pizza - Midtown (Last month's rank: 13)
  11. Paesanos (Last month's rank: 11)
  12. Red Rabbit (Last month: Unranked)
  13. KBAR(Last month's rank: 10)
  14. BarWest (Last month: Unranked)
  15. Fat's Asia Bistro (Last month: Unranked)

Thanks for visiting Cowtown Eats! We had more than 52,750 page views (up 48 percent compared to last year) and more than 16,400 unique visitors (plus 106 percent over last year).

Thank you all for coming. If you have any suggestions/thoughts, please e-mail me at

Don't forget to check back daily for new posts and Cowtown Eats resources like the Cowtown Eats on TwitterFacebook and the Sacramento Happy Hour Map.

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Daily Dining News: Is Barwest to Blame for Noise, Fights?

Some Midtown residents are blaming Barwest for what they say is a surge in noise and fights since Bar West opened a year ago. Bar West patrons say that if they don't want to put up with it, neighbors should move to Natomas. Video from CBS 13.

More News:

Harry's Cafe a fine deal for Vietnamese, Chinese and American fare - When you see a menu offering both Chinese and Vietnamese food, experience probably tells you to be wary, that the quality of the cooking is apt to be watered down for the sake of expediency. That's a reasonable conclusion to draw – except in this case. Harry's Cafe is the real deal because the food is a reflection of everything Harry Luong is all about. He's an American immigrant success story through and through, modest and unsung as he may be. Blair Anthony Robertson in the Sac Bee. 

Feeding Crane Farms poised to launch product line, acquire commercial kitchen - If you follow the local food scene, you're probably already familiar with Feeding Crane Farms, a new boutique organic farm in within the city limits (in Natomas) that focuses on growing for local restaurants. The small urban farm has big plans. I recently caught up with Mike Ward to learn more. Ward, you may recall, was the talented chef de cuisine at Lounge on 20 where he was best known for his amazing charcuterie plates. When the restaurant went under, he quickly landed a job at Feeding Crane Farms in a newly created position - culinary development manager. That was back in May. Since then, Ward has been very busy - working, planning, dreaming. Blair Anthony Robertson in the Sac Bee.

Continue reading "Daily Dining News: Is Barwest to Blame for Noise, Fights?" »