I went with a group there, and got the most horrible service that I think I've ever gotten at a restaurant (and I eat out a lot!). The waiters were downright mean, and got about 50% of our orders wrong. When on of the waiters brought out a chicken dish for a vegetarian, she insisted that my friend ordered the chicken and didn't want to take it back. Someone else at my table who just so happened to order a vegetarian plate but wasn't vegetarian offered to switch with her. Another friend asked about two desserts and then chose one, but then they brought out both of the desserts for her. By this time we didn't even try arguing with them. In the end, they seriously overcharged us, and everything was written in Thai, so we didn't know what was wrong. No one would come help us with the receipt. Every couple ended up paying ~$10 more than what they put in originally (this is on top of a couple of people paying extra for the wrong dishes that they got). And the fact that everyone had to pay more says a lot, because usually when we eat out, we all put to much money in and end up getting a few bucks back. I have vowed never to eat there again!
By the way, the food is alright. Not great, but not any different from the Thai you can get at a lot of places around Berekely and in the Ranch 99 mall.
Skates on the Bay is located right on the water front at the Berekeley Marina, so the views are great. My company is located close to this restaurant, so when we have people not from the area come to visit, we always reccomend this place. And it's funny, because I've found that people not from the area love this place. But people who actually live around here don't think it's all that great. Don't get me wrong, the food is alright, but I don't think it's anything spectacular. I feel like for a seafood place, a lot of the dishes are heavy. They taste good, but I can literally feel my arteries hardening with the grease, cheese, and fat. I would go here for drinks though to enjoy the view.
I got my laser eye surgery done about four years ago and I don't regret it at all. I had very, very bad vision/near-sightedness, and knew I wanted to get lasik done so I wouldn't have to wear glasses. They helped me accomplish just that. (although I will admit that just this year I got glasses to help with driving at night because I'm doing that more these days for my job). The surgeon was very helpful and answered all of my questions. They even have evening sessions for people interested in the surgery to learn more about it. Afterwards, I have about five check-ups with one of their onsite special optometrist to make sure I was healing well.
I have gone to the University of California Meredith Morgan University Eye Center for about five years now. What I like about them is that they are open on Saturdays (although it can get very crowded!). The way it works is that you have a student look you over, and then everything is checked with a Doctor/Professor. In essence, you get two eye exams. On one hand, it's nice because I feel like there's no way anything is missed. On the other hand, appointments can take awhile because it can literally be like two appointments.
I went to Dr. Harlan Wong once right after college. (His office is located very close to the Berkeley campus). I have to say he provides alright service for a good price. In fact, that is how I found him. It was right after college so I didn't have a lot of money, and I had very expensive contact lenses. So I literally called around asking how much they would be at different optometrists. He was the best price. And I left feeling the the service was fine. (although I have to admit I have since left and go to a different optometrist now...it's my own personal opinion and I'm not a doctor but I feel like the equipment is more state of the art elsewhere)
I have gone to Dr. Strotz two times (same bad knee but manifested itself in different ways), both times for consultations that ended with him saying he recommended exercise and not surgery as the first method of treatment. So while I cannot rate him on his surgical abilities, I can say he seemed knowledgeable in what he was doing (and while I was secretly hoping he would not recommend surgery....I would have been surprised if he actually did).
I've been going to Mamiko Kawaii for about three years now, and I'm still on the fence about her. I came very close to trying to find a new doctor this year because of issues I had reaching her to answer my questions, but I just haven't done it yet because it's just easier not to. Mamiko Kawaii is nice, but not in an overt way. She's very business-like. And while I feel she's smart, I also feel she would never know my kid's name.
I have been going to Albany Family Practice for about two years now. My doctor is a part of this group, and I've gotten blood work done in the lab here. Some of the people I've worked with were really nice and friendly and helpful (usually when I'm there face to face). But there have been a couple of times when I called about a perscription that they weren't helpful at all and actually very frustrating to deal with. I go there because it is convenient though, and unlike at the Berkeley Family Practice, you don't have to pay for parking.
I currently have Dr. Grisanti as my dentist and I am very happy with him. So happy in fact, I have recommended him to at least three of my friends. He's really nice, and has a very friendly staff too (his receptionist is this really friendly guy with a very helpful sounding voice). My only compaint would be that he doesn't work weekends ever!
Arizmendi is a great bakery that has breads, sweet baked goods, and one style of vegetarian pizza on sourdough bread (toppings change everyday). I go there for the pizza and scones. If you've been to the Cheeseboard, this place will look very familar. It's practically the same, but not as crowded and Arizmendi's tends to be open more days. If you find Cheeseboard is closed (as it often is), definitely go here and you won't be disappointed.