Just when you thought you knew everything, everybody, and all things Oakland and the East Bay, the annual Best Of issue comes along to prove otherwise.
This year’s contest—we moved it up a month to June—lists 184 awesome winners and featured record-setting participation for phase one voting (the open nomination process) and phase two (the drop-down ballot of top vote-getters). Thousands upon thousands of Oakland Magazine readers cast votes, making this year’s Readers’ Choice poll our best yet. Tallying all those votes on the spreadsheets was a headache but so worth it. It’s gratifying to realize just how passionate people get about their go-to favorites in the categories of food and drink, goods and services, and lifestyle and leisure. The competition was fierce this year, with more than one winner squeaking by with a single vote to earn the top honors. Don’t ever think that your vote doesn’t count, especially when it comes to Best Of results.
The Best Of coverage starts on page 33 of our print edition, with readers’ faves introducing each section (print copies are available on newsstands now). This year’s Editors’ Choice picks reveal fabulous finds from Richmond to Sunol, and you’ll be able to eat with abandon, find awesome pro-sports gear, meet up spontaneously, and that’s not all by any means: Snack on bargain samosas, gather underground, suck crawfish heads. Get set with succulents, don the coolest-ever sportswear, and smash a piñata that looks like Trump. We troll the East Bay looking for the best hidden gems so you won’t have to.
As a reminder, we evaluate Best Of categories every year, jettisoning ones we grow tired of as well as ones that no longer seem to resonate with readers. Drop me an email about categories we might have left out—we always include that question on the first round of balloting. If you conveyed that when you voted, thanks.
Want to rub shoulders with the cream of the crop? They would all appreciate an attaboy, I’m betting. Show your appreciation and come congratulate the 2017 Best Of winners: We’re having a Best Of party 6-9 p.m. June 29 at the Overlook Lounge rooftop venue. Visit OaklandMagazine.com/Party to find out the details.
Published online on May 31, 2017 at 8:00 a.m.