Diablo Dish: Rooted Coffee Company Blossoms in Pleasant Hill
Healthy eats at Mixt in Oakland; Baygreens Gourmet Salads open near Broadway Plaza; Asian-fusion pho spot Amazing Basil heads to Dublin; Concord and Benicia celebrate restaurant week; and more Dish.
Rooted Coffee Blooms in Pleasant Hill
Locally owned and operated Rooted Coffee Company has opened on Oak Park Boulevard in Pleasant Hill. The organic and fair-trade coffee and tea purveyor developed a dedicated following at local farmers markets and other pop-up opportunities before opening its first brick-and-mortar.
Jon and Jenny Gilmore have deep Central County roots—hence the name—and donate 10 percent of Rooted’s profits to local and global charities.
Mixt Makes a Move to Oakland
After establishing nine locations in San Francisco, Mixt—a fast-casual restaurant specializing in fresh produce and ingredients—opens its first East Bay outlet Saturday, January 19 in Oakland on Broadway.
The eatery’s focus is salads and grain bowls, though chicken, fish, and steak are on the menu too, along with a variety of sides.
The next retail outlet, by the way, will be at San Ramon’s City Center Bishop Ranch, so it will be even easier to get into the Mixt (sorry).
Amazing Basil Will Mix and Match in Dublin
OK, we know what pho is, and we think we know what Asian fusion is (though the definition does vary based on opinion). But we have to confess we’re not sure what an Asian fusion pho restaurant is, which means the only way to find out is to head to the Fallon Gateway shopping center in Dublin when Amazing Basil opens later this month.
Baygreens Brings Gourmet Salad to Broadway Plaza
Baygreens Gourmet Salads is expanding from its home base on Webster Street in Oakland to downtown Walnut Creek on Mt. Diablo Boulevard, bringing with it an emphasis on fresh, healthy salads. In addition, the menu also features paninis, breakfast dishes, and juices and smoothies.
There’s Nothing Like Comfort Food on a Rainy Day
Perhaps it will clear up by this weekend, but Concord Comfort Food Week is happening rain or shine. Starting Friday, January 18, more than 30 restaurants in the city will have a Comfort Food Week special on the menu, and some spots will offer discounted prices as well.
This is the second year that Concord has opted to focus on comfort food during California’s Restaurant Month, with the “week” lasting ten days before wrapping up on January 27.
Benicia Joins California’s Celebration of Restaurants
As the Golden State’s first capital, it’s only fitting that Benicia honors an official California event. Though that moment of glory didn’t last much longer than downtown Benicia’s January 19 to 26 restaurant week, it’s still one of those little footnotes that make history fun.
In any event, more than 25 restaurants in Benicia will honor dining discount cards (available at Benicia Main Street, which is paradoxically on First Street) that will result in 15 to 20 percent off.
Eleven East Bay Food and Drink Purveyors Are Good Food Winners
The Good Food Awards (hosted by the Good Food Foundation) celebrate and recognize those who create high-quality food and drinks that bring people together and build strong, healthy communities across the nation. This year,11 East Bay producers earned top honors.
It might be hard to find some of these products, but if you support independent companies that stick to high standards in sustainability and quality, they’re definitely worth seeking out. Congrats to all.
Tomato Chutney—Akka’s Handcrafted Food, Fremont
Strawberry Rhubarb Sour—Cleophus Quealy Beer Company, San Leandro
OB Amarillo—Far West Cider Co., Richmond
Botanica Spiritvs Barrel Finished Gin—Falcon Spirits Distillery, Richmond
Salametto—Fra’ Mani Handcrafted Foods, Berkeley
Jamon Mangalitsa—Incontro Cured, Richmond
Frantoio Variety—Jack Rabbit California Olive Oil, Berkeley
Chicken Liver Mousse—Picnic, Albany
Chai Spice Pear Shrub—Purely Drinks, Oakland
Smoked Sturgeon—Tsar Nicoulai Caviar, Concord
Salted Cacao Bitters—Workhorse Rye, Livermore
Original Pattern Partnering with Good to Eat Dumplings
There are also plans to create special food and beer pairings at the Fourth Street site, but in the meantime, there will be plenty of Taiwanese-style food to complement the wide selection of beer.
And speaking of wide selection, Original Pattern will be releasing fresh cans of Haze-a-tron Hazy IPA and Hella Hull Helles Lager Saturday, January 19 at noon.
It’s Truffle Time at Lafayette’s Rêve Bistro
First, for those like me who really don’t know that much about truffles: The rare (and impossible to cultivate) fungus originated in Europe and has an ineffably delicious flavor, according to elite chefs and gourmets.
There are two kinds of truffles: Périgord (or black) and white. The cost for the less-expensive Périgord is about $1,250 per pound.
Let us pause briefly to digest that number.
Now if you want to digest a Périgrod truffle, however, all you need to do is go Rêve Bistro on Moraga Road in Lafayette, where chef Paul Magu will be offering a variety of specials, including such dishes as wild mushroom risotto with shaved truffles and a seared scallop and truffle salad, as well as whatever else he dreams up that week.
Teacher Tuesdays Put Hayward’s Plāyt on the Calendar
Past and present teachers now have an even better reason to make the trek to Hayward and enjoy Plāyt Bar and Restaurant’s southern-inspired eats.
With proper ID, current and retired teachers will receive 20 percent off any and every food item off the menu, though sadly they will have to pay full price for cocktails and other drinks.
Local Food Adventures to Support Saturday’s Oakland Women’s March
Women across the country will be marching on Saturday, January 19 to raise awareness of gender-related social issues and mobilize women to become a more powerful political force during the Oakland Women's March. After the march up 14th Street from Lake Merritt to Frank Ogawa Plaza, Local Food Adventures will offer marchers a $15 VIP upgrade on the Grand Lake Cultural Cuisine Tour.
The two-hour tour makes four stops at places owned or managed by women. Participants can sample various food and drink, and those who wear or bring their march paraphernalia will be eligible for the VIP upgrade, but please note that you are required to register for the upgrade in advance.