Diablo Dish: Roundhouse to Open in San Ramon
Lunch by the lake in Bishop Ranch; Homegrown Sustainable Sandwiches to fill Lafayette's La Boulange space; and Oktoberfest in Oakland at Lake Chalet.
Roundhouse Market and Conference Center
Food in the Round
This is just the beginning.
The Roundhouse Market and Conference Center, located next to a lake in the Bishop Ranch business park, will open its three lunch-only restaurants on Monday, but this is just the first salvo of what will be a barrage of new eateries in San Ramon in the coming years.
Roundhouse is in the former AT&T headquarters in Bishop Ranch, just up the road from the future site of the massive City Center, which is set to open in 2018. At the start, at least, the market will focus on serving business tenants and guests “accessible, familiar dishes that are made to be quick,” says executive chef Danny Guerrini.
The 600-person space will “have something for everybody,” says Guerrini. Bishop Farms will offer salads and sandwiches, Quarterly will serve a variety of Neapolitan-style pizzas, and The Pinto will feature Mexican food. All three will provide food, beer, and wine between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
Eventually, the restaurants may stay open on weekends and host happy hours to go along with the boats (available for rowing) and the volleyball and bocce courts (in the works).
As the Roundhouse Market kicks into high gear, look for other restaurants at the same site—in addition to the numerous eateries that will make the City Center a dining mecca when it opens in 2018.
La Boulange Replacement Revealed
Casual Lafayette lunchers will be happy to know the dearly departed La Boulange will soon be replaced by Homegrown Sustainable Sandwiches, a Washington state-based 10-store chain that’s rolling out in the Bay Area. But despite those Northwestern roots, the commitment will be to local, sustainable (not surprisingly), and organic (whenever possible) ingredients, and the focus will be on soups and salads as well as sandwiches.
The Lafayette locale on Mt. Diablo Boulevard is slated to open on January 20, while a second East Bay location in Danville’s Iron Horse Plaza is tentatively scheduled to open on January 9. Both with offer all-day breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
When You Have Lemons…
You can certainly get lemonade at Lemonade in Walnut Creek, the first East Bay outlet of the L.A.-based chain, but more to the point, you can get lots of high-quality, healthful eats there as well. The grand opening of this fast-casual restaurant in Broadway Plaza is October 13, and though the menu is “vegetable-centric,” carnivores can still dig into slow-cooked braised meats and traditional meat sandwiches.
The focus is on seasonal ingredients and on “eating colorfully.” Guests grab a brightly colored tray and order from a variety of fresh offerings at the counter. And get used to hearing the name—there will be six Lemonade locations in the Bay Area by the middle of next year.
A Sip of Deutschland on Lake Merritt
Beer lovers prefer “Oktober” to “October,” and they can celebrate the difference at Oakland’s Lake Chalet restaurant on Sunday. For $25, partygoers get a souvenir Regatta Red Ale Oktoberfest stein filled with a liter of house-brewed ale (there are three options), plus a great view of Lake Merritt and a performance by Deutsche Musikverein, a 30-piece traditional oom-pah band.
The doors open at 11 a.m., but the music doesn’t start ‘til 2 p.m., which gives early arrivers plenty of time to enjoy the costumed servers, Bavarian pretzels, and beer-braised bratwurst. Oh, and get ready to sing along, as the music will play until 5 p.m.—and audience participation is encouraged.
To get a prime seat on the pier, get your tickets in advance and arrive early. Last year’s event sold out quickly, as beer fans were eager to get a jump on enjoying Oktober, er, October.
Oakland gets some foodie love: USA Today just named Oakland the top food city on the West Coast—which probably won’t come as a surprise to folks who’ve been dining and snacking there regularly the past couple years.
Overall, Oakland was seventh in the nation in USA Today’s ranking, which is a good reason to go through the tunnel for dinner. Again.
Itani Ramen: The casual Uptown Oakland ramen outlet for Kyle Itani (Hopscotch) has expanded its menu and sake offerings, but it’s still a quick and delicious stop before or after a show at the Fox Theater (just across the street). And make sure to check out the vending machine desserts…yummy.
Tahoe Joe’s: The longtime steak restaurant across from the Sunvalley Shopping Center has closed, according to Claycord.com. There are still eight other locations across the state; the first was founded in 1993.
Go fish: No, this is not a seafood-related item—Uji Time Dessert in Oakland is just one of the many Japanese establishments offering taiyaki, a unique fish-shaped ice cream cone filled with Japanese-inspired soft-serve ice cream flavors, such as matcha and tofu.
No wonder USA Today loves Oakland—you won’t find this kind of dessert in Des Moines.