Bites: Noah’s to Genova Deli space, Belotti on Piedmont soft opening, Fifi wines

The space once occupied by Genova Delicatessen will be split into two retail spaces, one to be occupied by Noah’s Bagels. Photo: Emilie Raguso

ONCE BELOVED DELI WILL BE A NOAH’S The East Bay mourned when family-owned Genova Delicatessen closed after 20 years in the space on Telegraph Avenue (and 90 years in Oakland). Its diehard fans came out in droves right before it closed at the end of April 2016. So we have a feeling this latest piece of news will rub some the wrong way: Noah’s Bagels is the first of two tenants taking over the now vacant Genova space in Temescal. Eater announced this week that the former deli location has been divided into two separate retail spaces and that Noah’s is currently under construction in one of these spots. (The other 1657-sq. ft. space is still up for lease.) Although Noah’s was first founded in Berkeley in 1989, it is now an ubiquitous chain owned by Einstein Noah Restaurant Group, which also owns the Einstein Bros. and Manhattan Bagel chains, making it the largest bagel company in the U.S. Noah’s is not the first chain food purveyors to open in the Temescal Plaza strip mall; Round Table Pizza and Peet’s are current tenants. For those holding out hope for another family-run business to carry the flame for Genova, we’ll all just have to wait and see about the new tenants who occupy that second space. We’ll keep you abreast of any updates on Nosh. Noah’s Bagels will be at 51st and Telegraph Ave. in Oakland.

BELOTTI BOTTEGA SOFT OPENING Pasta lovers, take note: Belotti Bottega on Piedmont Avenue is set to have its soft opening next Tuesday, Oct. 10. As Nosh first reported in August, Michele and Joyce Belotti, co-owners of Belotti Ristorante e Bottega in Rockridge are opening a second location, Belotti Bottega, which will serve primarily as a quick-service shop for customers to buy fresh pasta, sauces and spuntini (appetizers and snacks). Although it will have limited seating for dining in, the main focus here is take out. On soft opening day, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Belotti Bottega will be offering a selection of its to-go offerings. Eventually, it will offer its full menu as well as online ordering, but for now, expect to take your agnolotti or pappardelle to prepare and enjoy at home. Michele Belotti told Nosh that he’ll be on hand for the soft opening, handing out samples of cooked pastas, so you can get a taste before you buy. Belotti will be at 4001 Piedmont Ave. (at 40th), Oakland.

Photo: Juanita & Maude

NEW ALBANY EATERY FROM CORSO CHEF Chef Scott Eastman left Berkeley’s Corso this spring to start something new. With his wife, Ariane Owens, he’s opening Juanita & Maude, on San Pablo Avenue in Albany, within the former Nizza La Bella space. The cuisine will have a heavy European influence, which shouldn’t be too surprising, as Eastman spent the last nine years at Corso, where he honed his craft for northern Italian cuisine (which shares flavors and influence from French and German cuisine). Still, Juanita & Maude calls its food New American. Owens said that the restaurant’s initial European slant is “just a jumping off point” and to expect Eastman to branch out from there. Juanita & Maude will offer a menu that changes daily, “driven by whole animal practices and seasonal offerings.” As for drinks, the restaurant’s general manager Nicholas Danielson will also oversee its bar program, which will serve a variety of craft cocktails and wine. You may notice none of the players we’ve mentioned so far are named Juanita or Maude, so you may wonder, who are these namesake women? Juanita and Maude are Eastman’s grandmother and mother, respectively. “When we were searching for a name we wanted it to be personal,” Owens said. They also liked that the names played with and challenged assumptions about identity — Juanita is a Spanish name and Maude sounds French, but both women were African American from Southern California. The takeaway: expect the unexpected and keep an open mind. Juanita & Maude will open on Oct. 17. Juanita & Maude will be at 825 San Pablo Ave. (near Solano) in Albany. 

CLOVE & HOOF TO OPEN OLD TIMEY ICE CREAM SPOT Temescal butcher shop-restaurant Clove & Hoof announced some exciting news for sweet lovers last week — it’s expanding into the space next door to open a soda fountain.  The Fountain at Clove & Hoof will offer ice cream in the form of cones, sundaes, milkshakes, as well as old-fashioned style sodas, including phosphates and egg creams. Not that we’re searching for reasons to open an ice cream place, but Oakland history buffs may be interested to know that the frozen treat has roots in this location. Clove & Hoof stands where once there was Mullen’s, a neighborhood pharmacy and soda fountain. The Fountain at Clove & Hoof will open in December. Until then, stop into Clove & Hoof to get a taste of its new limited-edition fried pork chop sandwich, which the shop announced via Instagram this week. The invention of Clove & Hoof co-owner John Blevins, it’s made with seven to 10-day brined and smoked Llano Seco pork, which has been fried and dipped in hot cayenne lard paste, and served with blue cheese dashi mayonnaise (made with Southern favorite mayo, Duke’s), early girl tomato jam and pickles. Clove & Hoof only offers 12 fried pork shop sandwiches a day, so if you want one, get there early. The good news is, even if you don’t get one, everything else on its menu is tasty, too. Clove & Hoof is at 4001 Broadway (at 40th) in Oakland.


TAKE A LICK OF AUTUMN Speaking of old-fashioned ice cream joints, Fenton’s Creamery announced that starting this month, it will be serving three new fall-inspired flavors: pumpkin pie, apple caramel pie and cinnamon. The trio of seasonal, spice-laden ice creams are now available at Fenton’s Oakland and Vacaville locations. Fenton’s Creamery is at 4226 Piedmont Ave. (at Glenwood) in Oakland.

WINES, NATURALLY Natural wine aficionados know the name Fifi. Also known as Philippe Essome but better known by his one-word moniker, Fifi’s a French wine importer whose passion and knowledge has made him a legend amongst those who love natural wines. He moved from France to New York, opening a wine bar in 2008 called The Ten Bells, which became the center of the East Coast natural wine movement. Fifi later sold his bar and opened a wine shop in Brooklyn, but these days he’s primarily a wine importer/distributor. This week, he’s making two East Bay appearances (it’s a rarity to see him on the West Coast at all). From 6 to 9 p.m. tonight (Wednesday, Oct. 4), he’ll be at Ordinaire in Oakland, where he’ll be pouring six wines for $10. If that’s too short of notice for you (or if you can’t get enough Fifi and want to do a doubleheader), from 5 to 6 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 7, Fifi will be at Vintage Berkeley in Elmwood, where he’ll be pouring five, possibly six wines for $5. Dan Polsby, manager/buyer at Vintage Berkeley said Fifi is “arguably the hottest and most talked about natural wine importer right now,” and that his wines are some of his favorite wines to drink. So, if natural wines are your thing, you don’t want to miss Fifi this week. And if you’re still new to natural wines, take a gander at our guide to natural wine. Ordinaire is at 3354 Grand Ave. (near Mandana) in Oakland; Vintage Berkeley is at 2949 College Ave. (at Ashby) in Berkeley. 

KOREAN BITES & WINE FLIGHTS California-Korean pop-up Nokni is collaborating with wine shop Oakland Yard for a fun wine-pairing event this Friday. Friday Night Bites will feature snacks and four small plates prepared by Steve Joo and Julya Shin of Nokni, paired with three wines from California, Austria and Germany, curated by Oakland Yard’s co-owner Julia Rhodes Davis. While Korean food isn’t often matched with wine, Nokni’s all about breaking stereotypes and challenging expectations. Seasonal ingredients play a large role in Nokni’s food, and for this event, Joo and Shin will prepare Korean bites made with fresh, beautiful produce and seafood that should pair beautifully with wine. Tickets are $35 (NB: leave the kids at home; this event is 21+). Friday Night Bites takes place in two rounds, at 5 and 7 p.m., on Friday, Oct. 6 at Oakland Yard at 420 40th St. (at Webster) in Oakland.

Berkeley-based distiller Mosswood will be at Limewood on Oct. 11 for a bourbon and whiskey dinner. Photo: Mosswood

BOURBON & WHISKY DINNER Another noteworthy food and alcohol pairing is taking place next Wednesday, Oct. 11, at Limewood at the Claremont Hotel. As part of the restaurant’s “Dining on the Deck” series, chef Joseph Humphrey has invited two local East Bay distillers to join him on Limewood’s gorgeous bay-view deck to present a meal of his California cuisine paired with bourbon and whiskey. Oakland’s Wright & Brown Distilling Co. will be serving its small-batch rye whiskey and bourbon, both made in all-copper pot stills and aged in charred American oak barrels. And Berkeley’s Mosswood Distillers, which specializes in barrel aged and blended whiskies, will be serving its Mosswood’s apple brandy barrel aged whiskey and espresso barrel aged whiskey, made with cold brew from Oakland’s Bicycle Coffee. The dinner starts at 7 p.m. on Oct. 11. Tickets are $125 per person; reservations are required. Limewood is the Claremont Hotel at 41 Tunnel Rd. in Berkeley.  

Growlers and self-service kombucha taps at Berkeley Bowl West. Photo: Berkeley Bowl

SELF-SERVE KOMBUCHA AT BERKELEY BOWL We stopped into Berkeley Bowl West this week and noticed a new self-service kombucha stand next to their salsa/hummus section. Shoppers can fill up 64 oz. growlers with their choice of eight kombuchas from Humm, GTs, Health-Ade, Brew Dr., and Lev’s. Berkeley Bowl West is at 920 Heinz Ave. (between 8th and 9th), Berkeley.


Nosh Weekly is a free weekly email that will keep you bang up-to-date on all the delicious food, drink and restaurant news in the East Bay. Sign up here.