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My early visits to the original Sauced, which opened in Livermore almost five years ago, were a bit uneven, but I left the new Walnut Creek restaurant duly impressed. Our service was fast and friendly, the food almost faultless, and the atmosphere—neighborhood tavern meets industrial sports bar—pleasing to partier and diner alike. No matter your personality, arrive hungry (and thirsty). Our “Hella Cali” salad—ask for the BBQ balsamic vinaigrette dressing—came spiked with knobs of juicy brisket. The brussels sprouts were phenomenal: flash fried with braised pork belly and mingled with strings of fried onion. And the ribs were great, both tender and tethered to the bone, with as much straightforward smoke as Sauced’s relatively dainty chicken wings. No doubt, Sauced is loud. But when you’ve got dozens of taps, almost as many TV screens, and more whiskeys than a sober man can count, you’ve got to expect a little excitement. Lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun.
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