Best Restaurant Reinvention

Sapphire Grille & Sushi Bar

Who says change isn't good? Surely not the folks at Sapphire Grille, the bright and beautiful dining room that has been fashioned from the former Eugene's. Owners Eugene and Larisa Em, along with partner Mary Ann Davis, now have a restaurant as light and airy as a Southern California daydream. And Chef Chris Feuerborn's classy menu -- a sort of "West Coast larder meets classic Continental style" -- is a delight, all awash in coherent, contrasting flavors and textures. Other draws include the gracious, well-appointed outdoor dining room; a handsome lounge; and a "floating boat" sushi bar, where your order sails to your seat on a little wooden barge.