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Fodor's Northern California 2014
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Roxy's Cafe Review
The name Roxy's Café is a hold over from the former tenant, and rather than diddle with the signage, chef Manny Torres Gimenez got busy in the kitchen. This is where you go to see real talent operating on a shoe string. Gimenez, who worked at SPQR and Coi, is fusing Asian, South American, and Italian techniques and ingredients. As part of the tasting menu, you'll try soups, salads, raw oysters, and the gordita-like arepas (in deference to his Venezuelan roots), but the pastas shine, like the chitarra made with plantain rather than semolina, topped with pecorino and chorizo; and the yucca gnocchi with seasonal mushrooms. The four-course menu is $25 but you should add on a protein to make it more filling, like the tender short ribs slow cooked in 200-year-old rum. A 10-course tasting menu is $75, or you can choose one of three à la carte items (around $10). Décor is humble, and courses can seem ad hoc. Eating here requires flexibility—at times, patience. And it's cash only.
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