It’s the last night of Santa Cruz Restaurant Week; here are some recommendations

Goodies at Laili during last year’s Santa Cruz Restaurant Week

The fourth annual Santa Cruz Restaurant Week ends on Oct. 10; read more details in my event preview (includes list of participating restaurants). A quick overview: for eight nights, diners have the opportunity to pay only $25 for a gourmet, prix fixe three-course dinner.

Two “late joiners” to Santa Cruz Restaurant Week were Oswald and Main Street Garden & Café, but rest assured—their hesitation means nothing as far as delivering a great meal. In fact, looks like they tried extra hard as newcomers!

One of my acquaintances and her friends greatly enjoyed dinner the other night at Main Street, proclaiming the butternut squash and apple soup delicious and highly recommending two entrees in particular: the heirloom and burrata pizza, and the ricotta gnocchi. Apparently, the wild honey panna cotta with almonds and sea salt was a divine dessert (what is with all the great panna cotta this week? Remember, I had a similarly wonderful one, but it was vanilla bean panna cotta at Gabriella Café, which I mentioned – and included a photo of – in my recap of that Restaurant Week visit). Oswald’s menu sounds positively delightful, with appetizers such as mushroom soup with crème fraiche and entrees like skirt steak with fries and blue cheese butter or corn and tomato pudding with sauteed spinach.

A friend of mine dined at Casablanca Friday night, and raved about the meal–especially certain parts. She “loved, loved, loved” the brussels sprouts (Crispy Brussels Sprouts, smoked chevre, apple gastrique) and her companion really liked his entrée of Organic Roasted Chicken with squash, olive, arugula, panisse, and piri piri sauce. She wasn’t crazy about the fish tagine entrée, but they both loved the Crème Catalan dessert. And the ocean view from the restaurant is absolutely beautiful.

Can’t decide where to dine or want to see some specific menus? Read more at the Santa Cruz Restaurant Week web site.

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