Diablo Dish: Don’t Bury the Lede
Longtime chef at Chez Panisse debuts unusual Old Oakland concept; French pastries are coming to Walnut Creek; Tartine Bakery opens in the East Bay; Kitchen Story unfolds in Rockridge; Homeroom tackles sexual harassment; and more Dish.
The Scoop on The Lede
One of the more interesting aspects about Cal Peternell’s new dining concept, The Lede, is where it’s located. The longtime Chez Panisse chef’s new eatery—named after the industry term for a newspaper story’s opening sentence—operates out of Studiotobe, the innovative coworking restaurant concept that took over Pacific Coast Brewing Company in Old Oakland.
The Lede is currently in soft opening mode, with takeaway-only fast-casual lunch service. However, dinner service begins at 5 p.m. on Saturday, October 5, when Studiotobe’s daytime coworking space transforms into the Lede’s 50-seat formal dining room. Peternell told the San Francisco Chronicle that the restaurant will offer simple, seasonal, and family-friendly Cal-Italian fare “not unlike the food we served at Chez Panisse Café.”
Croissant You Very Much
Downtown Walnut Creek will have another lunch option, as Brioche de Paris will open on Monday, September 30 on Locust Street across from Sauced BBQ and Spirits.
And of course, there will be brioche itself available, which means (I confess, I had to look it up) a light, sweet yeast bread that’s usually a small round roll, in addition to French pastries, crepes, tarts, bread, coffee, sandwiches and salads.
Berkeley’s Southside Gets a Super Bakery
Long ago, there was the Hotel Durant, CalFlowers, and the sports-bar atmosphere of Henry’s.
Now, the hotel is Graduate Berkeley, the bar is upscale, and CalFlowers is the latest outpost of foodie favorite Tartine Bakery, which just opened.
Tartine is known for its wonderful bread, but also expect the usual morning treats to be available at Durant Avenue and Bowditch Street—and most likely a line out the door during peak times.
Sexual Harassment Not on the Menu for Homeroom’s Erin Wade
Erin Wade is best known now for Homeroom, which serves up a deliciously wide variety of mac and cheese, but her new “Not on the Menu” project may eclipse her comfort food fame.
“Not on the Menu” is a sexual harassment prevention project that restaurants anywhere can easily adapt to their own situations, and it springs from an op-ed that Wade wrote for The Washington Post on the topic. The column was one of the paper’s favorite opinion pieces of 2018, and her policies have been recognized by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission as a “national best practice.”
Posters supporting the project are available at Homeroom (on 40th Street in Oakland between Telegraph Avenue and Broadway), and a portion of the proceeds will benefit La Cocina in San Francisco, which promotes female food entrepreneurship.
Need an Excuse to Drop by a Bar? It’s Oakland Cocktail Week
It just might be the golden age of cocktails, with every bar and restaurant hiring mixologists and featuring all sorts of strange and wonderful concoctions on their menus—and through Sunday, September 29 there will be even more going on in Oakland than usual during Oakland Cocktail Week.
More than 50 participants will offer special cocktails, live music, and even cocktail-themed movies, and for $7, serious imbibers can buy the Town Cocktail Passport, which contains more than $50 in coupons.
Oh, and don’t forget special events such as the All Good in the Neighborhoods: A Bartender’s Tour of various watering holes and Tropic Magic: Remixing Tropical Cocktail Classics, which will teach novices how to liven up their mai tais.
Kitchen Story Hopes to Change the Narrative in Rockridge
It’s been 18 months since Duchess Oakland closed in Rockridge, and now Kitchen Story will finally occupy the space—and may have its doors open by November.
There’s a Kitchen Story in San Francisco, serving an eclectic mix of breakfast, burgers, and Thai-inspired dishes, along with Millionaire’s Bacon, which was invented by owner Steven Choi, so expect the same kind of menu and all-day service on College Avenue.
Squeeze Juice Bar Makes Some Moraga News
Just ask some Campolindo students about all the exciting things there are to do in Moraga, and after the obligatory eye roll, it will become clear that even a new spot for smoothies, fresh juice, and hot bites counts as something to talk about.
Squeeze Juice Bar is now open in the Rheem Center—and no, it’s not named for local officials who’ve been trying to squeeze a little extra cash out of civic organizations.
Benvenuti Ristorante Celebrates Fall with Wine Flights and Special Entrées
The Walnut Creek favorite Benvenuti Ristorante (across from the library) will offer two California whites and two California reds on Wednesday, September 25 in a $20 wine flight to go along with a risotto or pork chop special.
Curry Up Now Customers Will Celebrate the Chain’s 10th Birthday
The soon-to-arrive San Ramon outlet won’t join the party, but fans of fast-casual Indian food can head to East Bay locations of Curry Up Now in Alameda and Oakland on Thursday, September 26 to enjoy giveaways and special events. And speaking of giveaways, the first 100 customers at any of the Curry Up Now restaurants this Thursday will get a free burrito if they’ve downloaded the company’s app.
The chain got its start as a food truck back in 2009, but after serving nearly a million tikka masala burritos, expansion plans not only include California but also Georgia and Utah.
Mimosas Make Cal Football Even More Fun—Win or Lose
The Bears are off to a good start—so hopefully Cal fans will be cheering for a victory and not drowning their sorrows at ZINO. The Hotel Shattuck restaurant (a block down from the BART station) is hosting a game day mimosa bar with a variety of mixers—and even some octopus on offer.