Category Archives: Local business
TAYLORBLUE Home design studio Taylorblue is now up and running in its new store at 2911 Claremont Avenue (at Domingo) in the 1913 firehouse that was formerly home to Giorgi art gallery (and, more briefly, the Golden Gate Creativity Center). Taylorblue owner Lani Blue Taylor worked out of the San Francisco Design Center under the name The Sherrill Collection for 30 years before relocating to Berkeley. The showroom carries home furnishings and accessories from brands including Sherrill, Hickory White, and Artistica, as well as original works of art. … Continue reading »
Berkeley may be a foodie’s idea of heaven, but just one of the city’s restaurants made it into a recently released Top 100 restaurants in the country ranking — and it’s not the one you probably thought of first.
The list is is something of a riposte to more elevated rankings like the Michelin Guide, in that it is based on the views of the ordinary man or woman on the street rather than food critics. … Continue reading »
Tilden Park’s cherished antique merry-go-round will continue spinning — but possibly in a different direction.
For the first time in 21 years, the East Bay Regional Parks District could, at its March 18 board meeting, approve new management and operation of the Tilden merry-go-round. This could spell the end of the merry-go-round’s Christmas Fantasy tradition, a month-long holiday extravaganza the current operators began 16 years ago.
Terri Oyarzùn and her family have managed and operated the 103-year-old carousel and its crew of colorful wooden animals since the previous operators retired in 1993. When her second 10-year contract expired last year, and EBRPD put the merry-go-round out to bid, Oyarzùn was among three potential operators who submitted proposals, but hers was not ultimately selected. … Continue reading »
A new shopping destination is emerging at the intersection of 10th and Gilman streets in West Berkeley. Three new businesses have just signed leases to move into Gilman Crossings, a commercial hub whose transition was kickstarted by Whole Foods’ decision to move into the area last year.
Soccer Pro and Road Runner Sports are both opening up in the complex formerly known as Gilman Village, and Jason Mann will open the first west coast outlet of Farm Burger, a farm-to-table restaurant that will hopefully incorporate a boutique-style craft brewery. … Continue reading »
The McKevitt auto dealership at 2700 Shattuck Ave. in downtown Berkeley is doing a reverse course – of sorts.
Starting March 1 it will stop selling Volvos, ending the existence of the longest continuing Volvo dealership in the United States. Instead, it will sell Chrysler cars like Jeeps, Dodge and Ram – much as the dealership did when it first opened in 1926. … Continue reading »
TCHO, the high-end chocolate company founded in 2005, will move its entire production and retail facility from San Francisco’s Pier 17 and an East Bay warehouse to 3100 San Pablo Ave. (just south of Ashby) in southwest Berkeley.
The company has signed a 12-year lease, with an option to grow, for 49,000 square feet in the Marchant Building, part of a 395,000-square-foot property consisting of retail, office, R&D, and light industrial space. The move will begin in April.
TCHO’s recently appointed CEO, Andrew Burke, said the move was prompted by the need for more space as the company is growing fast. “We looked extensively for a long time, but could not find the space we needed in San Francisco. The Marchant Building was the ideal mixed-use space –manufacturing/warehouse/
When Jessica Rollison started making her homemade ice cream available to her friends — who quickly spread the word to their friends — people went crazy for it.
“They would be calling me and saying, ‘I really need more ice cream, it was so good,’” she said. As she packaged up pints of Spiced Chai or Goat Cheese and Blackberry, she joked to her husband that she felt a little like a drug dealer.
Five months after rolling out her flavors and gleaning feedback from those original customers, Rollison has launched Bootleg Creamery, selling hand-packed pints online that are available for delivery or pick-up in the East Bay and San Francisco. Rollison also hopes to open a brick-and-mortar store one day in Berkeley. … Continue reading »
RASA CAFFE Rasa Caffe, at 3140 Martin Luther King Jr. Way (at Adeline), had its soft opening on Valentine’s Day and will be open intermittently between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. until its official opening on Saturday March 1. Owner Rasa Sun Mott said the soft opening was principally to thank the new business’s crowdsourced backers and the local community. Mott, an Oakland native and the son of two high-profile Black Panther activists, raised $16,252 on Kickstarter to help him open the new coffee shop. As we reported in October 2013, Bicycle Coffee is being served (sweet spiced coffee with nutmeg is a speciality), as well as chai from his own recipe, and a selection of locally sourced pastries. Rasa Caffe is in the former Alchemy Café space, next door to Firehouse Arts Collective with whom Mott intends to collaborate for events. The café will be featuring prints by artist Emory Douglas for its opening. … Continue reading »
Moe’s Books, Berkeley’s famous Telegraph Avenue bookstore, was yesterday honored with the installation of an historical plaque.
The 55-year-old bookstore, which was founded by Moe Moskowitz and his wife Barbara, is now run by the couple’s daughter Doris Moskowitz who said the new plaque made her and her team feel very proud.
The plaque was bestowed on Moe’s by the Berkeley Historical Plaque Project which was established in 1997 with sponsorship from the City of Berkeley and its Landmarks Preservation Commission, the Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association and the Berkeley Historical Society. … Continue reading »
YOLO BERRY YOGURT Yolo Berry Yogurt is moving into the old AT&T spot at 2114 Shattuck Ave. — because there is clearly no such thing as too many fro-yo places in a college town, particularly if you’re going to be situated close to a giant open-campus high school, right? Yolo Berry Yogurt, which follows the formula of offering self-serve yogurt with your choice of toppings — was founded by Lee Pflugrath in Davis and this will be the second site for the company.
BERKELEY BIOLABS Berkeley BioLabs, a “hackubator” focused on the development of new biotechnologies, therapeutics, diagnostics and medical devices, has opened up at 600 Bancroft Way, almost on the bay in West Berkeley. The small bio-hacker/incubator space has around 10 benches for proto companies and individual scientists who want to get to their proof of concept quickly. Berkeley BioLabs also offers scientific and business mentoring. The company is currently accepting applications from scientists interested in “accelerating the pace of innovation in medicine through collaborative co-working in a shared biotech lab space.” For details, visit the Berkeley BioLabs website. … Continue reading »
On Feb. 28, 1989, around 4:30 a.m., someone threw a molotov cocktail through the window of Cody’s on Telegraph Avenue because the bookstore was carrying Salman Rushdie’s ‘The Satanic Verses.’ Waldenbooks on Telegraph was also firebombed. The culprit was never captured. Andy Ross owned Cody’s Books for 30 years, from 1977 to 2007. Now a literary agent, Ross reflects back on the events of 25 years ago. This article first appeared on his website: Ask The Agent: Night Thoughts About Books and Publishing.
By Andy Ross
Feb. 1 was the 25th anniversary of the publication of Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses in the United States. Two weeks after publication, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, spiritual leader of Iran, issued a fatwa (a religious ruling), that declared it permissible for Muslims to assassinate Rushdie because of the “blasphemous” subject of the book.
The city of Berkeley recognized more than two dozen local businesses Thursday night for their efforts to track and cut down on greenhouse gas emissions as part of the second annual Energy Smart Awards program.
Commercial buildings make up approximately 52% of Berkeley’s overall emissions, making reductions “an essential step for Berkeley as a whole to achieve the goals of the Climate Action Plan,” according to a statement released Friday by the city.
The city of Berkeley has, in recent years, been working to make the community a better place for technological innovation via efforts to fight “brain drain,” make it easier to find office space, and create connections among its more than 300 startups to strengthen the “fabric of the innovation ecosystem,” city staff told council members during a special session last week.
The city is among the top technological and intellectual centers in the country, due to its proximity to institutions such as the University of California at Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. But it has struggled to keep creatives based within the city limits due to the pull of Silicon Valley, limited room for businesses to grow, an antiquated business permitting process and a lack of connections among startups, said city staff last Tuesday night. Some have even described the atmosphere, previously, as “toxic.” … Continue reading »