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Dining out in Berkeley, Temescal, Grand Lake, and Uptown
September 04, 2014

Justin Mi and His Lobsta Truck

What if all the food gods got together and staged a succulence contest? Patterned after a beauty pageant, it would pit against each other the tenderest morsels of land, sea, and sky, seeking the single sweet or savory that explodes between the teeth most effortlessly and most exquisitely, making even the steeliest diners stifle helpless, open-throated moans.
September 03, 2014

Cholita Linda Sets Up Permanent Home

There are few places in Oakland that make you feel as though you’ve journeyed to a tropical beach town where the sun is shining on your shoulders and your cares are miles behind. But such is the way with the Latin American mercado-inspired Cholita Linda, a taco haven nestled in the Temescal district near 51st Street.
September 03, 2014

alaMar Docks In Uptown

Saucy fingers flecked with herbs and crayfish mustard tear the slippery abdomen from the carapace, the pink flesh taking a dunk in Meyer lemon pepper sauce before lips close around it, slurping the dripping sauce off fingertips. Sure, you could use utensils, but dining at alaMar should be, as co-owner and Chef Nelson German describes it, a "nitty, gritty style of eating."
September 03, 2014

Tis the Season for Heirloom Charentais Cantaloupes

Cantaloupes are still met with skepticism, even at farmers’ markets, perhaps due to years of eating insipid supermarket specimens. But at many market stalls, skepticism fades after a bite of Charentais melon, an heirloom cantaloupe.
September 03, 2014

Doukkala Puts a California Slant on Moroccan Cuisine

For all its food-loving extravagance, the Bay Area has little in the way of Moroccan cuisine. But if you ask Jamal Zahid, whose family has owned a Moroccan restaurant in Oakland’s Temescal district for 13 years, he’ll tell you there’s a natural connection between the local, sustainable culinary ethos of California and the traditional foodways of his native Morocco.
July 03, 2014

Venga Paella’s Manchego Con Membrillo

Certain food combinations are inextricably associated with specific locales. Fish and chips. Red beans and rice. Certain partnerships are so particular, so otherwise obtuse, as to evoke all by themselves the look, feel, history, and heritage of somewhere. That’s why Manchego con membrillo leads the dessert list at Venga Paella, a laid-back slice of Spain in industrial West Oakland.
July 03, 2014

Nectarines In Season Now

Poems to peaches are common enough. Google “ode to a peach” and there are plenty of hits. But odes to nectarines, their smoother-skinned cousins? They’re fewer and farther between. But they are just as deserving of elevated praise, especially ones from organic orchards like Blossom Bluff, a family farm in Parlier.
July 03, 2014

Venga Paella’s Manchego Con Membrillo

Certain food combinations are inextricably associated with specific locales. Fish and chips. Red beans and rice. Certain partnerships are so particular, so otherwise obtuse, as to evoke all by themselves the look, feel, history, and heritage of somewhere. That’s why Manchego con membrillo leads the dessert list at Venga Paella, a laid-back slice of Spain in industrial West Oakland.
July 02, 2014

Nectarines In Season Now

Poems to peaches are common enough. Google “ode to a peach” and there are plenty of hits. But odes to nectarines, their smoother-skinned cousins? They’re fewer and farther between. But they are just as deserving of elevated praise, especially ones from organic orchards like Blossom Bluff, a family farm in Parlier.
July 02, 2014