The balloting is wrapped up, the votes are counted and we're ready to reveal who Pleasanton Weekly readers chose as their favorite local restaurants, shops, services and more in the 2014 Readers Choice contest.
With 18,216 confirmed votes this year, our loyal readers shared their opinions about which businesses, professionals and places are the best of the best in categories within services, health and fitness, beauty and style, epicure, kids and pets, home and vehicle maintenance, and rest and recreation.
Top choices varied from committed "mom and pop" operations to burgeoning businesses to popular franchises. They're located all over the city, and their Pleasanton roots range from months to decades, and everything in between.
Check out the winners. See how your favorites stacked up, and learn a little more about Pleasanton in the process.
Best Bank -- Wells Fargo. For a quick and convenient banking experience with a team dedicated to customer service, Wells Fargo is where our readers like to go. This is the third straight win for Wells Fargo.
Best Computer Repair -- Tri-Valley PC Medic. Dealing with too many pop-ups? Hard drive running slow? Computer caught a virus? Whatever the issue, Tri-Valley PC Medic can nurse your computer right back to health. Quick and reliable service is why the Medic has been our readers' top choice for seven of the last eight years.
Best Credit Union -- Patelco Credit Union. Patelco Credit Union has earned the trust of our readers to help them reach their financial goals, as Patelco has been chosen as this category's best for the second straight year.
Best Financial Planning Firm (Non-Brokerage) -- Wealth Management & Associates. Building your personal wealth requires lots of planning and strategic decision-making, which are Wealth Management & Associates areas of expertise. They've earned this title twice, back to back.
Best Financial Planning Brokerage -- Charles Schwab. For three years in a row, Charles Schwab has been the best to our readers. Individual financial help, accessibility and free workshops are just a few of the ways Charles Schwab makes financial planning smooth for its clients.
Best Local Insurance Agent -- Renee Huber-State Farm. Renee Huber has won the hearts of our readers for the second time with her warm and friendly demeanor. She provides personal and professional advice, so you'll really feel like you're talking to a good neighbor.
Best Mortgage Company -- Vintage Mortgage Group. Specializing in consumer credit help and government home loans, Vintage Mortgage Group goes above and beyond to help its clients. This is the group's first victory in this category.
Best Mortgage Professional -- Brian LeBars Vintage Mortgage. Brian LeBars is described by clients as a man of integrity who is attentive to your needs. If you need to get a loan, manage your mortgage or refinance your home, our readers say Brian LeBars is the man for the job.
Best Photographer -- Bella Luna Studios. Seven times in a row Bella Luna Studios has snagged the title of best photographer. Senior portraits, new born photos, family shots ... you name it, Bella Luna Studios snaps it.
Best Real Estate Agent -- Gina Piper, Better Homes & Gardens. Gina Piper provides quality customer service with passion and sincerity, and she stays up-to-date on the community she serves. Piper has held the top spot as best real estate agent since 2012.
Best Real Estate Team -- Fabulous Properties and Moxley Team (tie). Sisters Donna Garrison and Susan Schall are committed to helping you buy, sell and love your home, and clients agree, with testimonials describing the team as professional, patient and welcoming. The Moxley Team comes from four generations of real estate experience, and mother-son duo of Kris and Tyler Moxley know how to keep clients happy with their real estate knowledge and efficiency.
Best Real Estate Office -- Better Homes & Garden. Experienced agents with the keen ability to assess the true value of a property are what Better Homes & Garden prides its company on, and that has certainly served our readers well.
Best Title Company -- Chicago Title. Described as professional and diligent, Chicago Title provides clients with the help they need and takes the stress and frustration out of escrow.
Health & Fitness
Best Acupuncture -- Eastern Medical. Eastern Medical has proven that being poked with needles can actually be an enjoyable experience, as the father-daughter duo Mason and Theresa Shen and staff have once again been voted the best.
Best Chiropractic Office -- Amador Valley Chiropractic Group. The team at Amador Valley Chiropractic Group offer the keys to living a healthy and holistic lifestyle in addition to joint- and muscle-related healing. The group shared this title last year; this year it's in a league of its own as readers' favorite chiropractic office.
Best Health Club -- ClubSport Pleasanton. ClubSport is where our readers go to get fit in a modern and relaxing environment. It offers a variety of classes and training to be active and healthy, and it has been our readers' top choice for eight years straight.
Best Hearing Services Provider -- Hearing Services. By now you've probably heard that Hearing Services uses state-of-the-art technology to make hearing crisp and clear, and that's part of the reason Hearing Services has been named the best twice in a row.
Best Massage -- Healthy Necessity Massage. The staff at Healthy Necessity Massage sure know how to give a great rubdown, according to our readers who have praised these massage therapists' gifted hands by voting them as the best massage around for five of the last six years.
Best Martial Arts Studio -- Crispim BJJ Barra Brothers. Crispim BJJ Barra Brothers provides a family-oriented environment that promotes strength, discipline and teamwork. They've been leading the way as the best martial arts studio each year since 2012.
Best Optometrist -- Foothill Optometric Group. If your vision is blurry, get there in a hurry. Our readers have chosen Foothill Optometric Group for the second time as the best place to get your peepers checked.
Best Place to Buy Fitness Equipment and Apparel -- Fleet Feet. On your marks, get set, go! Fleet Feet, for the third time in a row, has been named the best one-stop shop for your walking, running and fitness needs.
Best Place to Walk, Jog or Bike -- Pleasanton Ridge. If the great outdoors is calling your name, Pleasanton Ridge is where you can experience multiple trails and a spectacular view that will strengthen your love for nature's beauty. Just ask our readers; they've voted the ridge as the best walking, jogging and biking location every year since 2008.
Best Yoga/Pilates -- Zen Pilates & Fitness. For the fourth year in a row, Zen Pilates & Fitness has been chosen by our readers as the best place to find peace, tranquility, healing and a great workout through its friendly classes and personal training.
Beauty & Style
Best Clothing Store -- Christesen's Western Wear. Great customer service and a wide selection of shirts, boots, hats and belts are among the reasons our readers have chosen Christesen's Western Wear as the best for getting dressed in the West.
Best Day Spa -- A Touch of Health. A Touch of Health provides a welcoming and relaxing environment. It offers services for skin, hand and foot care as well as massage therapy. To top it off, you can purchase professional products to use at home. This marks the third win for A Touch of Health in this category.
Best Dry Cleaner -- Rosewood Cleaners. Rosewood Cleaners has our readers raving about their organic dry cleaning methods and efforts toward conserving water and electricity. Rosewood also offers free pickup and delivery, and you don't even have to be at home.
Best Hair Salon for Men -- Cosmo's. Cosmo's offers hair services for men, women and children, but our male readers especially love the fair priced, speedy haircuts. The stylists at Cosmo's are definitely keeping up the good work, as they've been voted the best in this category for the second consecutive year.
Best Hair Salon for Women -- Hairlights. It must be true what they say ("when you look good, you feel good") because our readers are feeling great about Hairlights salon. Voted as the best for the third year in a row. Hairlights can satisfy numerous cosmetic needs including hair, make-up, nails and facial waxing.
Best Jewelry Store -- Pleasanton Jewelers. Scott Pfefer, owner of Pleasanton Jewelers, provides quality service to customers and handles their precious jewels with care. He does jewelry repairs and creates handcrafted pieces that are admired by his patrons.
Best Medical Spa -- American Laser Skincare. American Laser Skincare specializes in body shaping, laser hair removal and skin rejuvenation. Registered nurses perform the treatments using state-of-the-art technology to assure the best results.
Best Nail Care -- Bollinger Nails. For the third consecutive year, Bollinger Nails has won our readers over with its upscale mani and pedi services. In addition to nail care and waxing services, Bollinger Nails allows you to host small parties so you can bring your friends along for a nice pampering session.
Best New Retail Store 2013 -- Main Street Sunglasses. Independently owned and established in 2013, Main Street Sunglasses is making a positive impact on our readers as its attentive and friendly staff help customers find premium, fashionable eye-wear.
Best Place to Buy a Gift -- Berry Patch. Berry Patch has won in this category four times in the last six years. Our readers love the unique variety of toys, party supplies and hand-crafted artworks found in this family owned and operated shop.
Best American Food -- Eddie Papa's. Paying homage to our country's melting pot of cuisine, Eddie Papa's has a little bit of everything from different regions of America, including Seattle seafood Louie, Memphis pulled pork, and Alaskan fish and chips.
Best Atmosphere -- Blue Agave. Blue Agave is true to its name with a blue color pattern inside and painted blue trim on the outside. Transformed from a historic house in the core of downtown Pleasanton, the inside is fit for an intimate setting and the front and back patios can fit hundreds of guests.
Best Bakery -- Jelly Donut. If you're in the mood for warm, fresh coffee and donuts at a cozy "mom and pop" style cafe there's no other place than the Jelly Donut to fulfill that craving. Whether you're grabbing breakfast or just satisfying a sweet tooth, its donuts will keep you coming back for more.
Best Barbecue -- Kinder's BBQ. Much more than a restaurant, Kinder's is also a meat market and deli. Three generations of the Kinder lineage has been committed to maintaining their restaurant's legacy and providing quality meats and marinades.
Best Breakfast -- Jim's Country Style Restaurant. Flavorful dishes, filling portions, excellent customer service and reasonable pricing have customers over the moon about Jim's Country Style Restaurant. It's no surprise this home-style diner has won this title twice in a row.
Best Burger -- In-N-Out Burger. The freshest fast food burger around, made to order right before your eyes. Maybe it's the special sauce, or the grilled onions, or the perfectly melted cheese? Whatever it is, our readers can't get enough because this is the second win for In-N-Out in this category.
Best Chinese Restaurant -- Chinese Szechuan. This is round two for Chinese Szechuan as being voted best Chinese Restaurant. Customers rave about the hot and sour soup, vegetable chow mein and walnut prawns. The service is also friendly and speedy.
Best Coffee House -- Tully's. Located in the center of Main Street, Tully's Coffee provides a variety of flavored coffee drinks for their customers' daily caffeine fixes. They also serve tea, shakes, fruit smoothies and a wide selection of pastries. The atmosphere is perfect for reading, studying, socializing or people-watching while enjoying a delicious beverage.
Best French Fries -- In-N-Out Burger. You won't find a frozen bag of pre-cooked French fries in In-N-Out's freezer. The staff individually slices fresh potatoes with a fry-cutter then cooks them to golden brown perfection. Not too salty and not too greasy, served in a fry boat to make munching easy.
Best Grocery Store -- Gene's Fine Foods. The produce, deli, meats and cheese sections of Gene's Fine Foods is described by customers as the freshest in town. Along with grocery items, Gene's also offers weekly wine tastings and the opportunity for customers to to speak with a holistic nutrition specialist every other Saturday.
Best Health Food Store -- Valley Health Mill. Valley Health Mill cares about your nutritional health. The staff of nutritionists strive to keep their customers educated about the foods and supplements they put into their bodies. Valley Health Mill also carries the largest variety of gluten-free items in Pleasanton.
Best Ice Cream/Frozen Yogurt -- Meadowlark Dairy. Meadowlark Dairy can't be beat when it comes to a cold, sweet treat. Our readers love their flavor selections and have voted Meadowlark for this title four times in the last five years.
Best Italian Restaurant -- Fontina Ristorante. Fontina Ristorante prides itself on its authentic Italian cuisine. It offers a variety of lunch, dinner and vegetarian options as well as catering for special events.
Best Main Street Restaurant -- Nonni's Bistro. Owner, operator and chef, Jon Magnusson, first opened Nonni's in 2010 and over the last four years it has become a down town hot spot for a diverse menu of quality meals. Nonni's serves lunch and dinner daily and breakfast and brunch on weekends.
Best Meal Under $20 -- Cafe Main. Whether it's dine-in, take-out or delivery, Cafe Main has got you covered when you're in the mood for some gourmet pizza and comfort foods. With filling sandwiches and pizza by the slice ranging between five to ten bucks, it's no wonder Cafe Main was voted the best meal under $20.
Best Mediterranean/Middle Eastern Food -- Oasis Grille. For a dining experience that will, with every bite, make you feel like you're eating on a terrace overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, Oasis Grille is where you need to be.
Best Mexican Food -- Casa Orozco. This family owned and operated Mexican restaurant has been serving the Tri-Valley for over three decades. It serves all the traditional favorites, including enchiladas, burritos and nachos as well as several other gourmet Mexican dishes flavored to perfection.
Best New Restaurant 2013 -- Farmhouse. Chicken and waffles, French press coffee and an array of omelet styles are what await you at Farmhouse Eatery and Bar. Its "Millionaire Bacon," described as thick cut strips topped with a sweet glaze and minced pecans, is all the rage with customers, and the service is friendly and swift.
Best Pizza -- Gay 90's Pizza & Pasta. At the corner of Main and Abbie streets, Gay 90's Pizza was the first pizza parlor in Pleasanton and sustains popularity among the entire Bay Area. Everything is made fresh from scratch and they have a plethora of toppings and special recipes.
Best Restaurant Not in Downtown -- The Hop Yard. The Hop Yard is hopping with our readers loving the selection of beers of beers on tap, old-time pub atmosphere and multiple food options for whether you're craving a refreshing salad or a filling burger.
Best Sandwich -- Erik's Delicafe. With the option of gluten-free whole grain bread and cold or heated sandwiches, Erik's Deli adds variety to the art of sandwich making. Its staff members are known for their fresh meats and produce and topping their sandwiches off with crunchy sprouts.
Best Seafood -- Strizzi's. Coming in the No. 1 spot for the second year in a row, Strizzi's is still serving up mouth-watering seafood dishes. You don't need to take a trip to the coast for a good seafood meal, just follow our readers to this downtown restaurant.
Best Sushi/Japanese Food -- Sozo Sushi. At Sozo Sushi, you're in for deliciously fresh sushi rolls and portions of food so grand you might have to share or save some for later. It offers complimentary edamame and miso soup to start off your meal, and the restaurant atmosphere is pleasant for dining in.
Best Take-out Restaurant -- In-N-Out Burger. There's rarely a time you can catch In-N-Out without long lines of hungry patrons, inside and at drive-thru. It's no secret In-N-Out is a California favorite for fast food and Pleasanton is no exception as our readers consider it the best take-out in town.
Best Thai Food -- Little Home Thai. The food portions at Little Home Thai are anything but little as it serves some of the most famous Thai entrees such as variations of Thai curry, rice paper rolls and vegetable stuffed chicken.
Best Vegetarian Cuisine -- Oasis Grille. The chefs at Oasis Grille make sure all their meals are unique and flavorful using an assortment of veggies, cheeses, fruits and nuts in their salads with light and tasty dressings.
Kids & Pets
Best Pet Groomer -- Priscilla Aguilar (Feline Medical Center). Priscilla Aguilar is the "kitty stylist" and veterinary assistant at Feline Medical Center. She owns cats of her own and knows how to give extra special care while grooming your feline friend, and she gives an awesome "lion cut."
Best Pet Store -- Pet Food Express. Healthy food options, fair pricing and hosting pet adoption events are just a few of the ways Pet Food Express keeps customers and pets happy. Pet Food Express has been voted best by our readers every year since 2011.
Best Place for Dance Lessons -- Jazz N Taps. Whether you're dancing for fun or competitively, the instructors at Jazz N Taps can help you reach your goals in dancing. They offer classes in several genres including hip hop, ballet, and of course, jazz. It's no wonder why they've won this title eight years in a row.
Best Toy Store -- Golden Apple Learning Center. As Golden Apple celebrates 35 years in business, it can also rejoice in being named the best toy store six consecutive times. Its educational toys and games are popular among parents and teachers.
Best Tutoring Center -- Pleasanton Tutoring. Pleasanton Tutoring offers help to students of all ages in multiple subject matters including SAT and ACT prep. The tutors are experienced college graduates, and client testimonials praise their professionalism and passion for teaching students.
Best Veterinarian -- Susan Marshall (Feline Medical Center). Susan Marshall is a cat doctor and a cat owner. She provides compassion and gentle care to the cats she treats and gives sincere, professional advice to their owners.
Home & Vehicle Maintenance
Best Auto Dealership -- Lexus of Pleasanton. The Lexus of Pleasanton Dealership provides a luxury experience while purchasing a luxury vehicle. With a friendly staff that is knowledgeable about the vehicles they sell and a slew of models on the lot, it's no wonder Lexus of Pleasanton has been voted best by our readers twice in a row.
Best Car Wash -- Pleasanton Hand Car Wash. Whether you need your car, truck, boat or motorhome washed and detailed, Pleasanton Hand Car Wash services all of the above. Its workers are gentle yet thorough, and can get you and your vehicle back on the road in no time.
Best Carpet Cleaning Service -- Glover's. Accidents happen, and when they occur on your carpet, it could be tough to remove stains and odors. But this is Glover's area of expertise. Not only are its employees able to deep clean your carpets so they are as fresh as the day you moved in, but they offer tips on preventative care and how to quickly and easily clean urgent carpet messes on your own.
Best Carpet/ Flooring Store -- Carpetland. Carpetland has been offering quality carpet and flooring since 1986. They sell a variety of flooring styles besides carpet including hard wood, porcelain and vinyl as well as decorative area rugs and design styles.
Best Domestic Car Repair -- Scott's Automotive. Reliable and trustworthy are two adjectives commonly used by customers to describe Scott's Automotive. Scott's friendly and pleasant customer service is a plus for customers as it makes them feel secure about leaving their vehicles in his shop's possession to make repairs.
Best Florist -- Alexandria's. Holiday arrangements, wedding bouquets, corsages and more are created with a modern and unique style at Alexandria's. The staff at Alexandria's is committed to providing floral arrangements that exude beauty and artistic flair.
Best Foreign Car Repair -- Precision Auto Repair. Located off Stanley Boulevard, Precision Auto Repair consistently delivers on maintenance repairs and customer service. It also continues to deliver in this contest, winning for overall repairs 2006-10 and in the new foreign category every year since 2011.
Best Hardware Store -- Workbench TrueValue Hardware. A longtime readers choice, Workbench TrueValue Hardware is Pleasanton's go-to for hardware supplies, home improvement products and sage advice. Owner Fred Nichandros opened his second Workbench location in Pleasanton this year.
Best Heating & Air Conditioning Service -- Richard's Heating & Air. The first-ever winner in this new category, Richard's Heating & Air offers HVAC assistance for residential, light commercial, emergency repairs and preventative work. Owner Richard Westwood aims to keep you, "Warm in winter, cool in summer."
Best Home Furnishings -- Clover Creek. A Readers Choice favorite in several categories over the years, downtown's Clover Creek offers home furnishings, accents and gifts to customers looking for various special items.
Best Nursery/Garden Center -- Western Garden Nursery. Offering to be your one-stop shop for garden needs, Western Garden Nursery -- located on Vineyard Avenue -- provides a wide selection of plants, fertilizers, accessories and every garden need in between.
Best Pest Control Company -- Terminix. Terminix says it will protect local homes and businesses from all sorts of pesky critters. And many of our readers must agree, voting Terminix as the best in this category's first year on the ballot.
Best Plumber -- Valley Plumbing. Started as a small local family business in 1982, Valley Plumbing has evolved into a well-respected repair and installation corporation that has served the greater Tri-Valley for the past two decades.
Best Pre-Owned Car Dealership -- Classic Cars Ltd. In business for 21 years and having owners with more than 30 years of classic car experience, Classic Cars Ltd. is the place to go for buying, selling, consignment and trades.
Best Roofer -- Wicks Roofing Company. Wicks Roofing Company is who our readers say they turn to for roofing projects all across the spectrum. From leaks to fixtures to full-on replacements, Wicks has you covered.
Best Senior Living Community -- Stoneridge Creek. The Stoneridge Creek continuing life retirement community offers a plethora of amenities, activities, services and dining options to its residents -- no wonder it was our readers' top choice.
Rest & Recreation
Best Bookstore -- Towne Center Books. Locally owned and located downtown, Towne Center Books is a haven for those who still love to flip pages instead of screens. One of few bookstores still going strong, it has been voted as the best place for a good read eight years in a row.
Best Golf Course -- Callippe Preserve. Snagging this title again, Callippe Preserve has consistently provided golfers a memorable experience with beautiful views surrounding the course and unique holes requiring strategic putting methods.
Best Kept Secret Treasure of Pleasanton -- Pleasanton Ridge. Whether you're a nature enthusiast or just in the mood for an outdoor activity, each marked trail at Pleasanton Ridge has breath-taking scenery for a pleasant day in nature. This is the second win for Pleasanton Ridge in this category.
Best Local Winery -- Concannon Vineyard. As a pioneer of the local wineries and responsible for introducing America's first petite sirah, Concannon Vineyard provides patrons with hand-crafted, award-winning wines. It offers wine tasting and tours as well as a dining experience from a menu designed to pair with its wines at the Underdog Wine Bar.
Best Place to People Watch -- Main Street. Restaurants, cafes and retail shops galore draw people to Main Street in downtown Pleasanton. On a warm, sunny day, you can walk down Main Street and catch all walks of life exploring, shopping, eating and socializing.
Best Place to Watch a Televised Ballgame -- Sunshine Saloon. Sunshine Saloon is a place where you can wet your whistle and chow down some good comfort food while watching any big sporting event going on. They also host social events like karaoke, trivia and dancing nights to groove to the latest tunes.
Best Place for Live Music -- Concerts in the Park. Concerts in the Park gets our readers dancing in the street. The free event is an open environment for all to enjoy live bands. Concerts in the Park has been our readers' longtime choice as the No. 1 place for live music.