Danville, CA

Virtue + Vice = Eclectic comfort food

Clay Kallam

Eclectic is a good word.

The menu at Danville’s Virtue + Vice certainly covers a lot of ground, with everything from empanadas to pasta primavera, and pretty much everything in between.

Another description could be global comfort food, exemplified by something you’ve never seen on a menu before: A Mac N Cheese Flight, with three separate macaroni and cheese to sample.

But despite this apparently plebian orientation, Virtue + Vice aims relatively high on the culinary scale, with preparation and presentation both living up to the relatively high standards of Danville’s Restaurant Row. And the setting – in the long-time Peasant & The Pear Space – includes not only a suitably well-appointed dining room, but a pleasant patio with a bit of a garden.

As for the enigmatic name of the restaurant, that remains a bit of a mystery, which is ramped up by the puzzling title of the dessert menu: Redemption. After all, if you can’t be redeemed by mac and cheese, there’s really not much hope that beignets will do the trick.

Photo byMaggi Brown

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Clay Kallam is a lifelong East Bay resident who spent several decades in local journalism -- and still writes for Diablo Magazine (among others). Over the years, he has covered just about every aspect of life in the Bay Area, from rock-and-roll to the arts to political coverage to food to sports. On the food front, he does not claim to be a critic, but rather someone who enjoys a good meal, a well-made drink and a nice red wine. As for sports, he has written for national publications (including Sports Illustrated and Slam) and covers girls' basketball across the nation for MaxPreps. He is a high school coach and a serious fan of the local teams -- and savored every minute of the Giants' and Warriors' championships. He graduated from Acalanes, UC Santa Barbara (ancient history) and Cal (philosophy). He lives in Walnut Creek with his wife Maggi, who takes many of the food photos. He appreciates his readers and is always happy to talk about anything he's written. His food experiences can be found at #dishdining on Instagram, and emails can be sent to claykallam@gmail.com.

Walnut Creek, CA

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