Daily Archives: August 24, 2012


The Berkeley Wire: 08.24.12

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A new food line in Berkeley? The Melt opens with fanfare

The Melt line
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It was only last month that we were talking about Berkeley’s famous food lines, and now it seems another one may have come to town. The Melt, a grilled cheese spot that recently opened on Telegraph Avenue, has already attracted a loyal clientele. It probably helped that on the first day of UC Berkeley’s semester, The Melt was offering a free sandwich combo meal and drink to Cal students. The Cal Marching Band even headed to The Melt to welcome the restaurant to Berkeley.

As tipped by Berkeleyside in May, the fifth branch of the Bay Area chain opened on August 9 at 2400 Telegraph, just a few steps away from Sproul Plaza. The restaurant serves variations on the classic grilled sandwich, including fontina and provolone on garlic bread and pepper jack with jalapenos on sourdough. It’s the brainchild of Jonathan Kaplan, who founded Flip Video. … Continue reading »

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UC Berkeley

‘Remarkable job’ helps Cal navigate through tough times

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Chancellor Robert Birgeneau lauded UC Berkeley’s continued excellence at the annual state-of-the-university press conference yesterday, citing its top five position in a leading ranking of global universities, the continued flood of applications from highly qualified students, the leading number of National Science Foundation fellows in graduate programs, and a flurry of other statistics.

But Birgeneau’s exuberance was tempered at his last start-of-term press conference (he announced he’ll step down as Chancellor at the end of December) by talk of the “unprecedented” disinvestment in higher education in California, and the threat of further dramatic cuts if Proposition 30, Governor Jerry Brown’s ballot measure to raise taxes, fails on November 6.

“The progressive disinvestment [in higher education] has not had as large an impact on Berkeley as we had feared, but it has had an enormous impact on the higher education system,” Birgeneau said. “It’s the obligation of the state and its people to support its public institutions. Education is a public good, not a private good.”  … Continue reading »

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Sketch ice cream returns to Berkeley’s Fourth Street

Sketch will serve its signature soft serve, vanilla bean, organic ice cream.
Photo: Courtesy Sketch
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They’re back: and just in time for the passing of Fogest (that’s August to the uninitiated) and the arrival of real summer in Berkeley and elsewhere around the Bay. Sketch returns today — three years to the day that the popular ice cream spot shut up shop (and as tipped by Berkeleyside in June).

A culinary couple with a fine-dining pedigree, Eric Shelton and Ruthie Planas-Shelton opened Sketch on the busy shopping strip along 4th Street back in 2004 (in the slip of a space that’s now home to a Chocolatier Blue outlet). At the time, the store was one of the first small-batch, organic ice cream purveyors in the area — before gourmet cup and cone businesses took off around the Bay.

The pair weren’t planning to return to Berkeley — let along the same street — when they started scouting around for a new location for their signature sweet treats last year. Shelton, 44, and Planas-Shelton, 31, who live in Jack London Square, had their sights set on an Oakland location, but when a deal fell through, they agreed to check out a space in the new 4th & U complex on the quieter end of 4th Street. It felt like a good fit. So, yet again on the food front, Oakland’s loss is Berkeley’s gain. … Continue reading »

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Police blotter: Recent crime in Berkeley

Police HQ
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August 12:

Loud Reports, 2800 Block of Forest Avenue
On Sunday, August 12, 2012 at approximately 10:22 p.m., residents reported hearing possible gunshots in the area of the 2800 Block of Forest Avenue. Residents also reported hearing them in the area of the 2600 block of Warring Street.  Residents reported hearing one or two loud reports.  BPD officers were dispatched to the area. Officers reported the area was clear and there were no reports of damage.

Robbery, 1800 Block of Parker Street 
On Sunday, August 12, 2012 at approximately 9:52 p.m., a robbery occurred in the 1800 block of Parker Street.  Two female victims were walking in the area when they were approached by the unknown suspects.  The suspects knocked one of the victims to the ground punching her several times.  The suspects stole the victim’s purse and cell phone.  The victim suffered non-life threatening injuries during the incident.  The suspects fled the area on foot.The suspects are described as: Suspects – “3 or 4 Black Female Juveniles or Adults, dark hair pulled back wearing blue jeans.” … Continue reading »

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