Lemongrass Bistro

501 Main Street

Martinez, CA  94553

925 387-0388



It’s time to venture out to this splendid bistro in downtown Martinez, with an upbeat vibe and beauty at every turn—the food is memorable but also lovely to look at. 

You may be surprised to learn that downtown Martinez is only 2.1 miles and less than 15 minutes away. I know, I know—the bridge toll, ugh, but sometimes it’s worth it for a change of scene.

You’ll find the usual in Asian fusion—samosas, crispy rolls, curries and noodles. But maybe you’ll try some of Gracie’s favorites—the very fresh avocado rolls, or grilled salmon over spicy spaghetti.  There’s also outstanding Pad Thai, Basil Catfish and stir fry of your choice.  Your tastebuds will explode when diving into the Lemongrass fried rice made with pineapple, raisins, cashews, onions and yellow curry powder. Wow. The salmon coconut soup is addictive, this dish alone will bring you back for another round. Mmmm, so warm and filling.

Lemongrass Bistro has been delighting diners since 2009, when their interior was redesigned by students from the Academy of Art, San Francisco.

Two sisters got together with the recipes of their mother, Boun Pheng, implementing their vision and creating what they call their “American dream.”  The menu is a fusion of  influences from Laos, Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia.  Fresh herbs and spices provide the magic. 

Did you know that lemongrass is thought to foster openness and has uplifting properties that promote a sense of joy and the release of stressful thoughts? Works for me!

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

This is a movie about reinventing one’s life and “outsourcing” retirement.

It explores the lives of the elderly, beyond what one would usually expect, and turns the story into a humorous and sometimes poignant, romantic comedy.

Several British retirees decide to move to Jaipur, India, after seeing ads for an “exotic” retirement home called the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.  Hilarity ensues during an eventful journey and the many surprises they encounter when they arrive.

Filmed in India, the photography is mostly centered in the village of Khempur, in the former palace of a tribal chieftain.

Without exception, the ensemble is fantastic and includes Judi Dench and Maggie Smith, with Bill Nighy and Tom Wilkinson.  Dev Patel is the lead after having a breakthrough performance in Slumdog Millionaire and going on to win multiple awards for his stellar acting and unmistakable presence.

The scenery is full of bustling color, with captivating street scenes that show the magnificent markets, vibrant costumes, and tuk-tuks (rickshaws) of India. The plot is uplifting and heartwarming, with generous offerings of laughter and a few tears.  We are supremely entertained while these characters face and conquer life’s challenges, giving us the pleasure of their lessons and triumphs.

This movie helped popularize the saying, “Everything will be all right in the end…if it’s not all right then it’s not yet the end.”  True that.

Directed by John Madden, 124 minutes, PG-13, 2012, available on Amazon Prime and Apple TV.

Movie Magic gives this 4 out of 5 Moons.

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel movie art