Living in East Sacramento, I have easy access to an amazing array of restaurants. Midtown is mere moments away, and I have so many dining selections available I should be completely satisfied. And I think I might be – if only these five restaurants were as easy to get to as Lucca, The Waterboy and Zócalo…
Sunflower Natural Food Restaurant
I am often hit with real cravings for the nutburgers and tostadas at the Sunflower, a Fair Oaks institution. I like sitting amongst pecking chickens and screeching children as I devour the eatery’s overstuffed falafel, whose yogurt and cucumber moistness inevitably dissolve the pita bread holding it all together. You can’t help but feel healthy after eating this wholesome fare.
10344 Fair Oaks Blvd Fair Oaks, CA 95628 (916) 967-4331; www.sunflowernaturalrestaurant.com
When I want a really romantic dining experience, I head out to Davis’ Osteria Fasulo, a quirky little family-owned Italian restaurant hidden away in a countrified, residential neighborhood. Osteria offers a magical outdoor patio set amongst fairy light-wrapped, leafy trees, bordered by trellised grape vines and a flourishing, flower-invaded community vegetable garden. It also serves up some of the most delectable handmade raviolis I’ve ever encountered.
2657 Portage Bay East, Davis; (530) 758-1324; www.osteriafasulo.com
Lucille’s Smokehouse Bar•B•Que
Have your ever tasted Lucille’s unbelievably smoky, moist and flavorful ‘cue? If you have, you’ll understand why I want this restaurant closer to home. Raucous and popular, this roadhouse-style (chain) restaurant not only serves up killer barbecued pork and beef ribs, it also offers a lineup of terrific side dishes – don’t miss the Southern braised greens (with chunks of ham) or the BBQ baked beans.
6628 Lonetree Boulevard, Rocklin, (916) 780-7427; www.lucillesbbq.com
One of my most enduringly favorite breakfast spots in the region is cheery Katrina’s, located in the far reaches of Auburn. I have been known to jump in the car on impulse and make the trek to this wonderful spot for the kitchen’s tangy, delicate lemon and yogurt pancakes, house made corned beef hash, and the date-walnut French toast. If you plan to visit on a weekend, arrive early – the place fills up quickly.
456 Grass Valley Highway, Auburn; (530) 888-1166
If you have kids, chances are they plead for burgers and fries on a regular basis. When I decide to cave in to their requests, it’s usually because we’re approaching an In-N-Out Burger – in Davis, Roseville, or on the rare occasion that we’re visiting Ikea. The closest In-N-Out to our house is 5.14 miles away (I know, because I used their handy-dandy location search box on their website) – so I want to know: why aren’t there any In-N-Outs in midtown or downtown?