A Cote

9 years ago, I remember it being near impossible to 1) get a reservation during peak hours of 6-8 pm or 2) walk in with a wait time of less than 1 hour to A Cote in Oakland.  These days, however, things are quite different.  I dined here with a friend yesterday, showing up 30 minutes early for my 6:30 pm reservation (which I made 2 days ago) and having my choice of tables to be seated at right away.

A restaurant specializing in small plates with a Mediterranean flare, I have always enjoyed A Cote for their use of octopus and creative flatbreads.

Tonite’s meal started off with a Cassis Lemonade and Pommes Frites with Aioli.  Frites were perfectly fried and the aioli was quite nice.  The lemonade was very sour with no hints of Cassis that I could tell.


Next came the Pork Rillettes, served with a quince jam, cornichons, greens and crostini.IMG_4398  The quince jam was delicious but the pork was too oily and rich for my taste.

As always, I order whatever they feature with octopus on the menu.  Tonite was their warm octopus salad, which unfortunately served up more potatoes than octopus.


Finally, we had the pappardelle with braised beef shank, turnips, and kale.  This was horrible.  First of all, we waited a full 45 minutes to be served this after our first course came out.  The kitchen reportedly “did not see” our order despite many “attempts” by our waitress to see what was taking so long.  When it got to us, the noodles and sauce were ok but the beef was way too overcooked.


The flatbreads actually did not look or sound interesting to me this time, which was disappointing since they are often my favorite thing to order.  Overall, while the menu has stayed consistent over the years, the quality of the food and service has not.  I was grateful to have a seat and to have my early arrival accommodated, but that was about it.


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