Judoku, Daily Pint, Imm Thai, Mollie Rose, more

Bibimbap at Bowl'd, Emeryville. Photo: Emilie Raguso
The owners of Spoon and Bowl’d have a new Oakland project in the works . Photo: Emilie Raguso

DRUNKEN FISH OUT, JUDOKU IN The team behind popular Korean restaurants Spoon and Bowl’d has a new enterprise coming to North Oakland. Chi Moon and Jessica Oh — who have two Bowl’d locations in the East Bay, in Albany and Oakland, as well as Spoon in Berkeley — are opening a new restaurant in Oakland called Judoku Sushi. [Note: Moon and Oh are using the company name of Jechi, and gave Berkeleyside the actual name of the new restaurant — Judoku — on Friday afternoon. Oh also said, via email, that Judoku means "addict” in Japanese.] The new venture is set to take the place of Drunken Fish on Piedmont at Broadway. Sushi spot Drunken Fish had quite a long run, but served its last meal Sept. 26, according to a reviewer on Yelp. No word yet on when Judoku will open or exactly what diners can expect to find, but stay tuned for details. The business does have an on-sale beer and wine license pending with the state — as well as a temporary permit already issued, which may bode well for a prompt opening. Judoku is set to be located at 3314 Piedmont Ave. in Oakland. 

Far West Brewing plans to open a craft brewery, barrel-aging facility and restaurant in North West Berkeley. Photo: Quinn Dombrowski
Photo: Quinn Dombrowski

DAILY PINT TO HIT NORTHSIDE A new restaurant and bar called The Daily Pint is headed for Euclid Avenue north of the UC Berkeley campus, in the space that used to be The Pho Bar, which closed in August (as tipped by Nosh). According to an ad on Craigslist, the business plans to open in mid-October. It’s hiring cooks, bartenders and more. The team behind The Daily Pint is Jonathan Chu and Dominic Wong. According to his LinkedIn profile, Chu is a 2008 UC Davis grad who now works in real estate for Coldwell Banker. He also owns a sausage shop franchise in San Francisco called What’s Up Dog. The Daily Pint has an on-sale beer and wine license pending with the state, and a temporary permit already issued. The Daily Pint is set to open at 1828 Euclid Ave. in Berkeley.

Su Kho Thai noodle soup. Photo: Imm Thai
Su Kho Thai noodle soup. Photo: Imm Thai

IMM THAI: SO FAR A HIT Imm Thai — which Nosh first noted in August — is up and running in Berkeley, and getting mostly positive reviews. The Thai street food spot opened in late August on University Avenue, in the former location of Ryowa. Thai tea popsicles, Su Kho Thai noodle soup (“Grandma’s secret recipe”) and Kao Mun Gai, a chicken and rice dish, were among the offerings featured recently on the restaurant’s Facebook page. Owners are Chairat Mansawataphaiboon and Atitaya Amornpan, according to the state department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. Yelpers love the spicy ginger tea, green curry and atmosphere, as well as the friendly service. As of Sept. 25, the business has an on-sale beer and wine license. Find Imm Thai at 2068 University Ave. in Berkeley and on Facebook.

Kaze black garlic oil ramen. Photo: Kelly C.
Kaze black garlic oil ramen. Photo: Kelly C.

KAZE IN BERKELEY Berkeleyside alerted readers in April to plans for a ramen and Japanese noodle shop to open on Shattuck Avenue called Kaze. News flash: The business has since launched. The Yelp reviews began in August, and many diners are pleased, though a good number say dishes are pretty good but not spectacular. (That said, the East Bay can be a tough market for those in the ramen game.) Sanh Huynh, Fanny Liang and Robert Quick make up the team behind Kaze, as per state licensing records. The business also has permission to sell beer and wine. Fans on Yelp talk about the gyoza — though it got mixed reviewsFind Kaze at 1956 Shattuck Ave. in Berkeley, and on Facebook (minimally, at this point).


Chef Saboor Zafari. Photo: Park Street Business Association
Chef Saboor Zafari. Photo: Gregory Canales

ANGELA’S KITCHEN SET FOR ALAMEDA, BUT STYMIED BY ARSON Maria and Saboor Zafari are planning a new restaurant in Alameda, with Angela’s Kitchen. Alamedans may know their work from Angela’s Bistro and Bar on Central Avenue, which became Cellar Door before that too closed. According to Open Table, “Chef Saboor Zafari creates original and classic favorites using fresh, local and organic ingredients.” Chef Zafari developed a following in Alameda after moving there as a refugee from Afghanistan — via France and Wisconsin. Sadly, Angela’s Kitchen was destroyed by fire just as it was about to open on Park Street in what had been Central Vegetarian Cuisine. (According to one reviewer on Yelp, that business, which had proven quite popular, was forced to close due to “soaring rents”.) The fire that destroyed Angela’s was one of eight started by arsonists, and the owners — who did not have insurance — are now hoping for help to get their venture on its feet. So far, six people have pledged $240 in the crowd-sourcing effort, which was started by a fan who said he has no connection to the venture, except as a satisfied customer of Zafari’s: “The Zafari family was a classic immigrant success story. After leaving Afghanistan with nothing, Saboor built a new life for his family based on hard work and skills. All that he built has now been destroyed, based on a random act of violence.” Angela’s, which is named after the couple’s daughter, hopes to open at 1613 Park St. in Alameda.

Dark chocolate vegan cupcakes. Photo: Mollie Rose Baking Company
Dark chocolate cupcakes. Photo: Mollie Rose

MOLLIE ROSE BAKERY South Berkeley has gotten a bit sweeter with the opening of Mollie Rose Baking Company on Martin Luther King Jr. Way. The idea? “Delicious, affordable food using the best ingredients possible. We do this while caring for our environment and supporting our neighbors and our community,” according to the company website. Everything is vegan and wheat-free, from baked goods and jams to candies and other food items. The business is open only on weekends and won’t be back in the shop until Oct. 19, according to a recent Facebook post. Ben Blustein is the “resident bread baker” at Mollie Rose, and Mollie Dutton-Starbuck “has been baking for over a decade. She loves the science and art of the baking process, and experimenting with new flavor combinations is her favorite pastime. When she isn’t baking or making other treats, Mollie can be found teaching elementary students in the East Bay.” Both are East Bay natives. Offerings include apple cider cupcakes, bagels, olive bread and cinnamon-glazed almonds. And also there are cinnamon rolls. (See lots of drool-worthy photographs on the company website, where orders can also be placed.) Mollie Rose opened in late June. Find the bakery at 3140 Martin Luther King Jr. Way in Berkeley, online and on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo: Diving Dog Brewhouse
Photo: Diving Dog Brewhouse

DIVING DOG BREWHOUSE (FINALLY) HERE It’s been a long time coming, but Oakland’s newest brewhouse, Diving Dog, has its grand opening set for Friday night, Oct. 3. Nosh first wrote about the business in November 2012, at which point it was planning to open the following February. Ethan Fletcher over at Inside Scoop SF says the focus will be on Northern California beer, but Diving Dog will be more than your typical brewery. Owner Rob Bailard will also offer workshops allowing participants to make their own recipes. (Read more about how that will work.) Fletcher says, according to Bailard, challenges navigating Oakland’s permitting system contributed to the delay. Tablehopper writes that the business will have 30 taps at which to sell its own brews as well as those from other companies. Find Diving Dog at 1802 Telegraph Ave. in Oakland, and on Facebook.

Other notable happenings

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A DRUMROLL, PLEASE After many months of planning and tinkering, Berkeleyside Nosh has launched its weekly email. NOSH Weekly the best way to stay connected to all the East Bay foodie news that’s fit to print. If you want free East Bay food news each Thursday morning, simply sign up here. If you didn’t get this week’s edition, and want to see what you missed, get a taste here. Featured this week: Brown Sugar Kitchen’s Tanya Holland, a gorgeous fall recipe for fig tartlets, tips from Hugh Groman about how to throw the perfect cocktail party, and more. You won’t want to miss this.

Michael Christian of Los Pilares
Michael Christian of Los Pilares

PATIO NEWS, WINE PARTY WITH THE HALF ORANGE Jay Porter over at The Half Orange in Oakland’s Fruitvale neighborhood has several bits of good news to share. First, the paperwork is complete to serve beer and wine on THO’s patio — as of this week — and the eatery is celebrating by offering eight local craft beers for $2.98 plus tax until about 7 p.m. through this evening, Friday Oct. 3. But that’s not all. On Oct. 9, Thursday, THO is throwing a party with San Diego natural winemaker Los Pilares: “Winemaker Michael Christian will be in the house pouring not just their 2011, 2012 and 2013 vintage reds, but also some of their experimental ‘garage wine’ that forms the foundation for their winemaking decisions.” Find The Half Orange at 3340 East 12th St., #11, in Oakland, online and on Twitter.


Doughnut Dolly, Temescal Alley. Photo: Nancy Rubin
Doughnut Dolly. Photo: Nancy Rubin

SATURDAY: GILMAN DISTRICT GRAND OPENING PARTY The ribbon-cutting for the new West Berkeley Whole Foods is (a mere) month away, but there’s plenty to do in the neighborhood already. The restaurants, shops and art galleries, many brand new — at Gilman Street by Ninth and 10th streets — together make up the recently christened Gilman District. And its grand opening is Saturday, Oct. 4, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. From the organizers: “Come enjoy coffee, donuts, food trucks, wine, live music, art booths, live painters, even kittens for adoption, and an open house of the new shops in the area.” Those include Firehouse Art Collective studios, Doughnut DollyCloud 9Farm BurgerPhilz CoffeeWhole Foods and Stella Carakasi. Connect with the Gilman District on Facebook.

Recent Nosh stories, in case you missed them:

Early fall recipe: fig tartlets with herbs and honey
In Berkeley, a ceramicist rethinks fermentation
Tanya Holland: A soul food pioneer in West Oakland
Create a home bar for the perfect cocktail party, with Hugh Groman
A kosher harvest at Covenant Winery in Berkeley
New beer garden, retail planned on Spenger’s block
Take your dog to dinner: It’s now legal (within limits)
Bites: CREAM, B-Dama, See’s Candies, Eat Real Fest
Berkeley’s Andy Samberg gives back with a burger

Berkeleyside’s Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas is two days of provocative thinking, inspiring speakers, workshops, and a big party — all in downtown Berkeley in October. Read all about it, be part of it. Register on the Uncharted website.