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New restaurants, recipe ideas, and profiles of local chefs. ■ October 7, 2009 A LSO INSIDE C A LE N DA R 25 |C LA SSI F I E D S 26 |RE AL ES TAT E 29 /MRQ <^UYMbQ^M The new restaurant at Allied Arts is a cafe for all seasons Caprese salad, featuring heirloom tomatoes, fresh mozzarella di bufala, and basil, is a popular choice for diners at Cafe Primavera. Photo by Don Feria S E C T I O N 2 Food&Drink By Jane Knoerle Almanac Lifestyle Editor C afe Primavera is the latest incarnation of the restaurant at Allied Arts. Opened just last month, it offers an appealing selection of soups, salads, sandwiches and specials. On weekdays, the clientele is mostly “ladies who lunch,” but on Saturdays there is a lively mix of couples and families with young children enjoying themselves. Prices are lower than those of the Red Currant, which closed after two years in the complex, and portions are generous. Service is a little uneven, but the waiters seem eager to please. Manager Maria Tachis often stops by to chat with diners and pitches in serving when things get too busy. While the warm weather lasts, you won’t find a prettier place for lunch than the Blue Garden adjoining the restaurant. Bistro tables surround a splashing fountain in a garden planted with hydrangeas and other blue flowers. The setting is so serene that you want to linger all afternoon. The interior of the restaurant is rather stark. It no longer has the cozy ambience of the days when it was operated by the Palo Alto Auxiliary to Children’s Hospital — black tables and chairs beg for some color. Our hostess assured us there would be plenty of decorations for the coming holidays. On a first visit to Cafe Primavera, two of us chose daily specials. My three lamb chops, served on a bed of warm cabbage salad, were a bargain for $12. One guest ordered the “grown up” grilled cheese with tomato basil soup ($10). The cheese was nicely served on Acme bread, but there was also cheese in the soup, which seemed a little excessive. A prawn salad ($10) didn’t fare as well. It was six grilled prawns on top of mixed greens that looked as if they had been poured from a bag. Creamy See CAFE PRIMAVERA, page 23 October 7, 2009 N The Almanac N21


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