Spend an evening dining in Marin County's prettiest port town

Anyone craving a quick dose of the Italian Riviera would dowell to visit Sausalito, especially now that you can dine atPoggio, on the ground floor of the historic Casa Madrona Hotel& Spa. Poggio loosely translates from Italian as “specialhillside place,” which is just what owner Larry Mindel ― theman behind the success of Il Fornaio ― considers Sausalito,his hometown of 33 years. “I wanted people to feel comfortablehere, as if they were at home,” Mindel says.

It’s hard not to feel comfortable among Poggio’s rich,Florentine-style trappings, which include curvy mohair banquettes,hand-cut Italian terra-cotta tiles, and mahogany paneling. And it’seven harder once you taste the rustic northern Italian fare: pizzasfrom a wood-burning oven, meats and seafood off a rotisserie grill,and pastas made with herbs and vegetables grown in an organicgarden just up the hill.

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Poggio ($$$; breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily; 777 Bridgeway,Sausalito; 415/332-7771)

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