The first Left Bank was opened in July 1994 in Larkspur, Marin County by our illustrious co-founders Ed Levine and Chef Roland Passot. They had a vision of opening a European-style brasserie in the heart of Marin, celebrating "cuisine grand-mere" with the local bounty of Northern California. The restaurant was named for the left bank of the Seine River which winds its way through the center of Paris. The Left Bank area of Paris is known as a haven for artists and bohemians. It is the site of many wonderful and famous brasseries including Les Deux Magot, Café Flore, and Brasserie Lipp. As a fun coincidence, our first Left Bank's location is on the left bank of the canal sailed by early settlers and visitors to Fort Ross and Larkspur.
Left Bank restaurants are Parisian style brasseries. Patrons can enjoy a casual, spontaneous meal on the street side terraces, a quick cocktail and snack in the convivial atmosphere of the bar, a more leisurely and intimate meal in the dining room, or a privately catered party in a private banquet room (Salle des Amis).
Left Bank Larkspur is located in the Blue Rock Inn, which was the first hotel in Marin County. The building was originally constructed in 1895 and achieved distinction as a popular resort for San Francisco residents. The building was remodeled and renamed the Blue Rock Inn in 1910, deriving its name from the blue rock building façade quarried from the base of Mount Tamalpais. The Downtown area, where the building is located, has been designated a Historic District and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
In August 1998, Ed and Roland opened Left Bank Menlo Park in downtown Menlo Park, in the heart of the Silicon Valley area. The building has had a colorful past as a bank, a movie theatre and most recently a Chinese restaurant.
Left Bank Santana Row has a prime location at the heart of the 40-acre Santana Row project modeled after European boulevards. Opened in March 2003, the outside seats are a wonderful venue for enjoyable people watching.
In June of 2009, Ed and Roland decided to open a new concept called LB Steak. Opened on Santana Row, this casual elegant American steakhouse features a large meat locker display in the entry, custom built wine cabinets to showcase the all world selections, and accordion doors that allow the entire front of the restaurant to open onto the main thorough fair for great people watching.
LB Steak Menlo Park opened in June 2012 in downtown Menlo Park, only 4 blocks from the Brasserie. Relaunched in September of 2018 as Camper Restaurant, this remodeled restaurant serves rustic Californian cuisine, and dynamic, creative, and seasonal fare. The interior embraces the design of a cozy, modern home; inviting guests to camp out, settle in and unwind.
Meso Modern Mediterranean is an oasis in the heart of Santana Row, opening its doors in late-October 2019. Meso, meaning "middle," signifies the coming together of culinary influences from across the region coupled with vibrant hospitality to bring people together around the table from near and far to reinvigorate connection, conversation, and community.
With 2020 came the COVID-19 pandemic, and despite the challenges it brought, we were able to pivot and open virtual concepts available for pickup and delivery. Our Mac'n Cheese Shop is dedicated to delicious macaroni and cheese in all its forms, and our LB Cru Wine Club was launched by our Wine Director and Sommelier to bring restaurant-quality wines into the homes of our guests.
We were very fortunate in 2021 to open another full-service restaurant, this time a new LB Steak location in the mixed-use shopping center of City Center Bishop Ranch in San Ramon. Opened in May of 2021, LB Steak delivers an elevated dining experience in a comfortably elegant space. The menu features a wide variety of hand-cut, perfectly prepared Prime Angus Steaks and imported, rare, and exclusive A5 Japanese Wagyu selections, all aged and hand cut in our butcher shop.
In September of 2022, we opened Petite Left Bank in Tiburon! Petite Left Bank is a traditional French café and bistro set in the heart of Marin County, in the charming downtown area of the coastal Tiburon peninsula. Like its sister restaurant Left Bank, Petite Left Bank is named in homage to and inspired by the iconic brasseries of La Rive Gauche, the southern or “left bank” of the River Seine which winds its way through the center of Paris. Whether grabbing an espresso and pastry in the morning, a glass of wine at the bar or on the patio, celebrating with a meal of French favorites, or picking up a roasted chicken dinner or picnic pack to go, Petite Left Bank is a fun and lively experience for locals and visitors alike.
In February of 2023, we opened our newest restaurant, Left Bank at Jack London Square in Oakland, bringing our original concept back to the East Bay with a new look and feel. Located along the waterfront in the historic Jack London square district, the location offers breathtaking waterfront views, a beautifully redesigned 5,500-foot space, and the traditional French brasserie cuisine our guests know and love.
Our newest concept, Rollati Ristorante, debuted in September of 2023. Rollati Ristorante is a modern Italian-American restaurant nestled in the heart of downtown San Jose. Located in the brand new Miro residential development, the menu is a love letter to Italian-American cuisine, embracing the iconic dishes of Italy’s many regions, as well as those that developed in Italian kitchens across America. Fresh pasta, made in house, is at the heart of the menu with a window in the dining room giving guests a behind-the-scenes view of pasta being made. The fresh pasta forms traditional and seasonal dishes, including filled and hearty baked pastas.
Unfortunately, while Ed passed away in 2017, we continue to build his vision of our Company and honor his legacy. We are grateful to have Chef Roland continue in an active role in the restaurants and new projects to share his wealth of culinary knowledge and experience.
Check back soon for news about our latest projects and openings.
We look forward to our continued growth with the support of our loyal guests!