Editor's Note: We’re Monthly Now
When I became editor of Alameda Magazine in February 2003, I arrived for issue No. 3 and couldn’t believe my fortune — working at a magazine covering Alameda, then an under-the-radar and-often overlooked East Bay gem. I was excited to get to know the East Bay from Alameda outward. We published six issues a year then, but the founders and publishers, Tracy and Robert McKean, were ambitious and soon added a seventh and grew the business.
We started Oakland Magazine a few years later, with plans to become monthly, adding a new issue each year and getting to 11 issues a year when the Great Recession hit, forcing us to brake hard, re-think, and strategize our future in tough times.
Now here we are, February 2018, 15 years later. Still at it — and growing. This issue represents our long-desired entry into the faster-paced world of monthly publishing. Now, you can read your hometown magazine every month, no lulls, no odd cycle. The goal is to provide more timely and compelling content this and every month.
To mark this auspicious beginning, this issue explores a favored Bay Area topic — restaurants — putting the focus on clever and inventive chef craft. In these competitive times, chefs and restaurateurs are revisiting the way food prep and delivery have been done, bringing new energy to their endeavors by making more staples in house, turning to underutilized cuts of meat without compromising flavor, extending service hours to an all-day model, and expanding into new markets like Alameda.
What’s restaurant news without thought of accompanying beverages? Unheard of, which is why there is also a hefty guide to great-tasting low-alcohol cocktails, known as shims, sessionables, lowtails, and other shorthand. They aren’t necessarily the next big thing, but they do represent a welcome alternative for imbibers who aren’t looking for a major buzz.
A final note: Our much-shortened Best Of contest is now underway online, and you need to vote now. Phase one, in which readers nominate their favorites in a host of categories, started in January and ends on Feb. 5, with a phase two contest between the top vote-getters slated for March. This year’s Best Of issue will appear in April.