Going out to eat isn't always about cravings. Often enough, mealtimes dictate our choices, limiting restaurant possibilities. When circumstances narrow the options, let 10Best help. We'll direct you to the best Lunch restaurants in Sacramento and save you the hassle of calling around for business hours. 10Best readers find much to enjoy at Virgin Sturgeon thanks to its all-around good offerings. It's also hard to beat Tower Café, which serves just what you're looking for when you're in the market for a great Lunch.

6 33rd Street Bistro
This casual bistro occupies a colorful, polished space within a red-brick building and specializes in regional American cuisine. It features grilled panini sandwiches, hardwood-roasted meats, and delectable desserts; a large variety of salads can be ordered in small or large sizes. The signature spinach salad is made with toasted walnuts, roasted red onions, chevre, and citrus-shallot dressing. Homemade soups are always popular, as are desserts like a plum tart in a shortbread crust. No reservations. Casual dress. (916-455-2282, 916-455-2233)

5 Tower Café
Perhaps Sacramento's most popular dining destination, this international restaurant has an enviable location next to the landmark Tower Theatre. The award-winning café offers world-inspired dishes like Bangkok pizza, Brazilian chicken salad, and Port of Africa chicken. Desserts are made in-house, and meals are especially enjoyable taken on the lovely patio. Historic ambience and varied, interesting dishes make Tower Café a favorite. (916-441-0222)

4 Megami Bento-Ya Restaurant
Popular for business lunches, Megami has a lengthy menu, although most people opt for sushi. The casual dining room is a great spot to grab a quick bite, and prices are reasonable. Various sushi combinations are available with both rolls and nigiri; some are vegetarian, and all have seaweed rolled inside or outside. Other possibilities include sesame chicken or charcoal-broiled beef with spicy Korean sauce. (916-448-4512)

3 4th Street Grill
This restaurant has earned a loyal following thanks to its Californian cuisine, which features oak-grilled meat dishes, fresh seafood and pasta creations, crisp salads, and hand-tossed pizzas. (916-448-2847)

2 Virgin Sturgeon
This colorfully named place is a favorite local hangout where folks enjoy great meals (try perfectly prepared rockfish) and ice-cold beers. The atmosphere is relaxed, the waitstaff is friendly, and you're as close to the water as you could be without getting wet. Things get especially busy on weekends when boaters dock at the Sturgeon and treat themselves to spicy Bloody Marys. Breakfast on Saturdays and Sundays is perennially popular, too. Reservations suggested. Casual dress. (916-921-2694)

1 Aïoli Bodega Española
Traditional Spanish and Andalusian cuisines make this restaurant one of the most popular lunch spots in the area. The extensive menu features a long list of tapas, not to mention adventurous dishes like white bean soup with chorizo, octopus with potatoes, Spanish tortillas, and shredded cod salad. Lunch sandwiches, made with hearty coca bread and featuring lamb or pork, are grilled and served in cozy, romantic environs. A guitarist plays Friday and Saturday evenings during dinner. (916-447-9440)

Maps and Directions

33rd Street Bistro 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American
Neighborhood: Old Sacramento
Tower Café 10Best List Arrow
Dining Options: Disabled Accessible, Family Friendly, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking
Cuisine: Ethnic
Neighborhood: Old Sacramento
Megami Bento-Ya Restaurant 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Asian, Japanese, Sushi
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Disabled Accessible, Family Friendly, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Take Out
Neighborhood: Downtown
COST: $$
4th Street Grill 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, California, New American
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Catering, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
Neighborhood: Downtown
COST: $$
Virgin Sturgeon 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Disabled Accessible, Family Friendly, Non-Smoking
Neighborhood: Downtown
COST: $$
Aïoli Bodega Española 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Andalusian, European, Mediterranean, Spanish
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Catering, Live Music, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
Neighborhood: Downtown
COST: $$
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