Shop Talk: The ins and outs of Berkeley businesses

Cafe Clem now open on Kittredge St at base of central library

FRENCH MOVE Café Clem has moved from its former spot on Seventh Street to downtown Berkeley at 2020 Kittredge Street, right at the central library. The new location for the café, which offers a French-inspired menu including baguette sandwiches, croques monsieur, pains perdus and coffee and teas, will also serve as the catering department for both Café Clem and La Note. The new Café Clem is inviting the community to an open house to mark its opening on Friday April 20, 5-7pm.

Recycle Bicycle: closed?

WHEELS STOP Peter Moore brings us news that Recycle Bicycle on Sacramento Street has a sign in the window that says, “Business is Closed.” The store is not answering the phone so we can’t confirm details. Any tipsters have insights? If it is closed for good, Moore for one is disappointed. “It’s certainly a loss to South Berkeley. It was a nice place to get your bike fixed,” he says.

Sal's Pharmacy. Photo: ira Serkes

NEW DRUGS Sal’s Pharmacy is moving into the former post office space at 1831 Solano Avenue, next to the new Verizon (which itself used to be Front Row Video) says tipster Ira Serkes who provides photographic evidence to boot. “Yay,” says he. Owner Sadalla Nassar confirms he is hoping to open what he describes as an independent neighborhood pharmacy on May 1.

Bittersweet: new Oakland café

COCOA MOVE Bittersweet has moved its chocolate making/coffee roasting facility from Berkeley to Oakland, helping to contribute to the revival of that city’s downtown. Bittersweet already has a café on College Avenue in Rockridge, and has now also opened a café in the new Oakland spot at 1438 Broadway (between Telegraph and 15th), that offers lunch, confections and drinks such as salted caramel hot chocolate. [Read Berkeleyside’s May 2010 feature on Bittersweet.]

Shop Talk is our regular column in which we post updates on Berkeley businesses — openings, closings, new directions, relaunches, relocations. If you’re a Berkeley business with news, or a Berkeleysider who has spotted a change in your neighborhood or on your travels, shoot us an email with the details. Read previous Shop Talk columns here.

Berkeleyside publishes many articles every day. To see all our stories in chronological order, and read ones you may have missed, check out All the News.

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  • Chip

    What’s going on with Fresco Burrito at Universty & MLK?  I can’t tell if they’re closed or remodeling.

  • serkes

    Sal’s is actually moving into the space which had been a dance/exercise studio  (3 Goddesses?) … in the building which once housed Thousand Oaks Hardware.  

    We’re hoping the Landscape Station Post Office (once on Colusa next to Union 76) anchors the east side of the building for many more years  … and delighted that Verizon seems to have a steady stream of customers in the middle space that had been Front Row Video.

    Great to see the building coming back to light and life.

    Ira … having a “that used to be” moment

    “That used to be” – perhaps a new weekly feature in Berkeleyside?

  • Meliflaw

    Berkeleyside, do keep us informed of Sal’s opening. I’m not a fan of CVS, and would love to patronize an indie pharmacy, even it’s a little out of my way.

  • What happened to Recycle Bicycle is a total mystery thus far. I talked to someone cleaning up the place and trying desperately to get customer bikes back to customers; he made it sound like the owners skipped town. They certainly were doing good business and there is definitely a demand for second hand bikes.

  • Bruce Love

    They were busy every time I went there and they were very nice to have in the neighborhood.   If they’re really gone for good this is a serious loss to the greater neighborhood.

  • Thanks for that clarification, Ira. We’ve corrected the article.

  • Sharon

     Yes, the shop is closed permanently (from a former employee).  A great addition to the neighborhood but challenged in the business part of the business.  The writing on the wall was when basic items like inner tubes weren’t restocked.

  • Sharon

     Yes, the shop is closed permanently (from a former employee).  A great addition to the neighborhood but challenged in the business part of the business.  The writing on the wall was when basic items like inner tubes weren’t restocked.

  • i find it genius that Verizon picked this spot to open a big presence in Berkeley.  after all, this whole street is a dead zone for AT&T, and i’ll bet there will be a lot of Iphone defectors to Verizon in no time.

  • Bruce Love

     Perhaps a great opportunity has opened up for the right someone, if we’re lucky.

  • serkes

    Thousand Oaks and the Berkeley Hills are AT&T Dead Zones.  

    I used to drop about 1/3 of the calls when I was with AT&T; with Verizon, I can go months before dropping a call – and it likely happens because the other phone is on AT&T.

    Nice people (also nice people on the Shattuck Verizon store)

  • Chamelean75

    Any word on the old Andronico’s on telegraph?  It’s still shuttered and empty.

  • Eunice00911

    is there any way I can contact Howard? you guys still owe my $500 dollars!