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Ajanta

Ajanta does elegant Indian food in a low-key and understated setting. Although they certainly offer all the old the old standbys, perfectly rendered, you're better off going for something like the tandoori scallops or the cardamom gelato.

Peter & Melissa Swanson opened Benchmark Pizzeria in July 2012. The couple met over a decade earlier when they both worked at Oliveto Restaurant in Oakland. Their pizza is "neo-Neapolitan" – thin crust, individually sized at roughly 11-inches, and light on cheese and toppings. The dough, made from a wild yeast, sourdough starter, is rolled out by hand daily.

Step inside cozy Cafeina and discover a sweet community atmosphere with a kids’ menu, flowers gracing the concrete counter, and indoor and outdoor tables. The welcoming staff serves a large variety of organic and fair trade coffee, tea, and espresso drinks as well as bulk coffee and tea. Fresh seasonal menu with real food and plenty of veggie options. Must try: bursting blueberry muffin, all-organic chicken salad sandwich, and several homemade soups, including a vegan option.

If salsa dancing is your thing, then Club Montero's is your nightclub. The Albany dance club, voted Best Latin Dance Club in the Express in 2004, features salsa lessons every Friday and Saturday, with live bands on Friday to put your skills to work. Do an underarm turn or take a dip on the huge wooden dance floor underneath a giant palm tree. If you need to take a breather, order a drink at the cabana-style bar or grab a bite to eat at Montero's Cafe next door. The cover charge is $15 on Friday, and $10 on Saturday, and the dress code requires semicasual to evening attire. No sportswear or tennis shoes allowed. Eighteen and over.

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