Tag Archives: Bartavelle Coffee & Wine Bar

Contest: Name that nosh [03.27.13]

Bartavelle Coffee & Wine Bar, Name that nosh. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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Think you know food in the East Bay? Prove it by naming the restaurant and dish in the comments section. Continue reading »

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Nosh Talk: Suzanne Drexhage, Bartavelle

Suzanne Drexhage
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Nosh Talk is a regular Q&A with an East Bay chef, restaurateur or food artisan, published on Berkeleyside Nosh, in which we snoop for inside intelligence…

What is always in your refrigerator?
Preserved lemons, butter, and for some reason, Prosecco. And chicken stock and last summer’s slow roasted tomatoes in the freezer. Just in case.

What do you cook up for a late night snack?
I don’t usually snack late, but we occasionally eat a pretty late dinner after Stan gets home from work, maybe cooked greens with pasta or eggs, or leftover soft tofu soup. [Stan is Stanislaw Sobolewski, cookbook manager at Moe’s Books.]

Where/what do you eat on your day off? 
So many good places to check out lately, it’s hard to decide, but I love Fusebox in West Oakland, the new Ramen Shop on College Ave., Ippuku in Berkeley, and Duende in downtown Oakland.

Do you have a secret ‘junk food’ vice?
I don’t eat junk food. Street food, sure. Taco trucks, yes! … Continue reading »

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Coffee and doughnuts in Oakland’s Temescal Alley

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Coffee and doughnuts (not “donuts” — we’ll explain why later) may be an American staple when it comes to food combinations, and there are certainly myriad places where you can pick up humdrum varieties as a breakfast treat or afternoon pick-me-up. But two new spots in a pair of fashionable Oakland artisans’ alleys take the classic pairing to another level.

Both Hannah Hoffman, who opened Doughnut Dolly three months ago, and Luigi Oldani, who launched his espresso place The CRO Café two weeks ago, have poured their hearts as well as their business chops into their respective start-ups. Both are intensely personal projects, and, happily for East Bay foodies, combined, the results are delicious.

At Doughnut Dolly, a beautiful space with painted striped walls, custom wood cabinetry, a black and white checkerboard floor, and an expansive marble counter, the donuts are hand-rolled and filled to order. Hoffman, who studied food anthropology, and whose mother, Lisa Goines, was a pastry chef at Chez Panisse, took a year to perfect her recipe while deciding whether to open a food truck. … Continue reading »

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Kermit Lynch: ‘I abandoned my heart to Europe decades ago’

Kermit Lynch
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It was the 40th anniversary of the founding of his famous wine store, the sun was shining, the band was playing, the wine was flowing and Kermit Lynch was all smiles.

“Long live wine!” Lynch shouted into a microphone to the hundreds of people who had gathered in the parking lot of his store at San Pablo and Cedar to celebrate the anniversary. “Let’s get on with this great party! Let’s have some fun!”

The crowd didn’t need much encouragement. With sausages and frittata prepared by chef Christopher Lee, ice cream by Ici, and a parade of dishes by the newly opened Bartavelle café (occupying spot where the revered Café Fanny once stood) there was plenty to sample.

But, as in all things in Lynch’s life, the centerpiece of the day was wine. Known for elevating the status of wine made from small French and Italian wineries (sourced from his many trips hitting the back roads to find unheralded producers) Lynch chose seven wines for the day’s celebrations that both reflected his store’s past and its future. … Continue reading »

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Shop Talk: The ins and outs of Berkeley businesses

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BARTAVELLE TAKES FLIGHT  Remember our news that Suzanne Drexhage was taking over the shuttered Café Fanny space on San Pablo Ave.? Well, she quietly opened her Bartavelle Coffee & Wine Bar today, Tuesday. It’s deliberately a “super soft opening,” she said, “relying only on the stupendous lines at Acme to get us by, and to allow us to get a few of our ducks in a row.” Word must have spread fast, however, as Sarah Henry reports that the place was serving Sightglass coffee from 7 a.m., as well as porridge and pastries for the breakfast set — and the line was out the door. “Around noon, some folks were nibbling on avocado toasts paired with a glass of white wine,” said Henry. The café will build up its menu in anticipation of Saturday, Oct. 27, when next-door neighbor wine merchant Kermit Lynch is holding his 40th anniversary parking lot party. “Then we’ll kick it into high gear,” Drexhage says. Bartavelle, 1603 San Pablo Ave. Open Tues-Sun, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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Bartavelle owner: What’s cooking for ex-Café Fanny space

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Suzanne Drexhage is living proof of the adage that things come to those who wait.

Drexhage, who has worked at Berkeley wine purveyor Kermit Lynch for a dozen years, hosted her own pop-up restaurant events, served at Chez Panisse, and cooked with some of the most creative folks on the Berkeley food scene, has been scouting around for several years for a space to open her own place.

So, when Café Fanny closed in March after 28 years of serving frothy cappuccinos, poached eggs, and Acme toast, Drexhage was delighted to get the go-ahead to open Bartavelle Coffee & Wine Bar, a café-wine bar with a modern vibe and a European feel, in the slip of a space formerly co-owned by Alice Waters and Jim Maser of Picante. … Continue reading »

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New restaurant opening in Café Fanny space in Berkeley

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Update, May 24: Because many readers have expressed an interest, Berkeleyside made inquiries about whether the Café Fanny staff who lost their jobs after the restaurant closed down received severance pay. A Chez Panisse spokesperson said that Alice Waters personally ensured all of the staff were looked after.  “Alice Waters paid the severance of all Café Fanny employees,” he said. (Separately, look out for our feature to be published tomorrow on Bartavelle!)

Two months after the sudden closure of the Alice Waters-related Café Fanny, a new coffee and wine spot is set to open in the west Berkeley space that is sandwiched between two Berkeley institutions: Acme Bread and Kermit Lynch Wines.

Details are sketchy, but Bartavelle Coffee & Wine Bar should be opening in about eight weeks at 1603 San Pablo Avenue, in part of the building that is owned by Kermit Lynch, according to a source close to the business.

Chef Suzanne Drexhage and coffee guru Sam Sobolewski are believed to be involved in the new venture, and it is rumored Suzanne Fuoco will be offering up her Pink Slip jams there. … Continue reading »

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