Tag Archives: Berkeley Bowl

Andronico’s files for bankruptcy

Andronico's on Telegraph Avenue will close
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Andronico’s Markets, the 82-year old supermarket chain founded in Berkeley, filed today for bankruptcy in Oakland. Four of the seven existing Andronico’s stores are in Berkeley: on Telegraph, Shattuck, University and Solano (the original store, founded in 1929).

Berkeleyside reported on the financial difficulties of the chain in May, and on a short-lived recapitalization plan.

The company’s announcement quotes CEO Bill Andronico today: “This is a bittersweet moment in our history. We have struggled mightily to keep … Continue reading »

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Bartlett’s Coffee closes its doors

Many students studied at Bartlett's on Kittredge
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Bartlett’s Coffee, a small café in the Library Gardens on Kittredge near Milvia, has shut its doors.

The café, which served as a social hub for many Berkeley High students, is not going completely out of business, however, according to Benjamin Bartlett, who owned the place with his family. It is looking to move to a new location.

“Yes, we had to close the café,” Bartlett wrote in an email. “We thought long and hard about it, but an … Continue reading »

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Slow restaurant finds fast following

Kyle Anderson, executive chef/owner and Rose Grabow, general manager of Slow./Photos: Sarah Henry.
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Kyle Anderson opened his first restaurant, Slow, nine months ago. The skinny slip of an eatery resides in an emerging food corridor on University Avenue, home to Chocolatier Blue, eVe Restaurant, OctoberFeast Bakery and New Amsterdam Coffeeshop. (Anderson is an alum of acclaimed eatery Charlie Trotter’s in Chicago, as are the owners of eVe, and Christopher Blue, who owns the gourmet chocolate shop next door.)

While Anderson comes from a fine-dining culinary background, the food he serves at Slow is simple, rustic comfort fare, albeit with high-quality, mostly organic, ingredients and thoughtful taste pairings like free-range chicken salad with golden raisin, toasted almond, and sorrel, or potato salad with radish, apple, caraway seed and whole grain mustard vinaigrette. All made from scratch and dished up fast at affordable prices. … Continue reading »

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Produce for the people at Berkeley Bowl

Nick Christopher
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Nick Christopher moved out West in the early 90s, drawn to the punk-rock scene here he toured with a band and hung out with Green Day.

These days Christopher spends more time thinking about perfect produce than the perfect tune, as an organic produce buyer for Berkeley Bowl. He started at the Bowl as a dishwasher, and quickly worked his way through various departments, including the deli and bulk section, before rising to supervisor status.

Owner Glenn Yasuda personally trained Christopher in the fine art of selecting fruits and vegetables. The Bowl has a reputation for its large and extensive produce selection, including exotic finds like durian, carambola (star fruit) and horned melon. … Continue reading »

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Jam maker turns hobby into thriving local business

Dafna Kory at Local 123 Cafe./Photo: Sarah Henry
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Dafna Kory discovered the delights of jalapeňo jam during pre-dinner nibbles at a Thanksgiving gathering. She went out to buy a jar, couldn’t find the mighty spicy condiment anywhere, so she began experimenting with making her own. It became an instant hit among her posse.

At first, the self-taught preserver thought her D.I.Y. hobby would just make nice gifts for friends and family. The she moved from San Francisco to South Berkeley, saw the abundance of plums, apples, and lemons growing in her new backyard, and a jamming business was born.

Kory foraged fruit in a hyper-local fashion. She made batches of jam in her home kitchen. She personally delivered by bike. Demand for her jams grew by word-of-mouth.

Friends who had friends who owned stores began encouraging her to branch out beyond her inner circle. So she started shopping INNA jam (the name is, indeed, a playful pun) to places like Local 123, Summer Kitchen, Rick and Ann’s Restaurant and The Gardener.

About a year ago, with orders coming in a steady stream, it became clear that Kory, now 28, needed to either gear up and focus on turning her after-hours pastime into a fully fledged business or scale back and remain a hobbyist. She decided to take the plunge.

A freelance commercial video editor, Kory hasn’t looked back. She began working in a commercial kitchen in North Berkeley, selling her pickles and preserves at events like ForageSF’s Underground Market and the Eat Real Festival, and offering workshops for other D.I.Y.ers.

The UC Berkeley graduate now spends nine months of the year working full-time on her budding food business, and supplements her income in the winter months with editing gigs.

In a year, she hopes to devote 100% of her work day to INNA jam. Kory also pickles though that product line is on hiatus while she ratchets up production to meet demand for her increasingly popular jams. She delivers locally by bike, ships interstate, and offers an annual, seasonal subscription (a 10-ounce jar retails for $12). … Continue reading »

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News

Berkeley Bowl workers get new chance for union election

Union rally at Berkeley Bowl in June 2010
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Workers at the Berkeley Bowl on Oregon Street are going to have another chance to decide whether they want a union.

The National Labor Relations Board in late December nullified the election Berkeley Bowl held in June 2010 that decertified the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 5. The NLRB has ordered the store management to hold another election in March, according to a letter sent to the company in late December.

The NLRB ordered the … Continue reading »

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Berkeley Bites: Lois Porter, Mamie & Makhi’s Sweet Potato Pie

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Lois Porter took a beloved family recipe and developed a sweet potato product that takes some of the time out of cooking with these nutritious tubers.

With the seasonal shift to fall and Thanksgiving around the corner, her perishable product was recently picked up by both Berkeley Bowls and makes its debut tomorrow at the Beehive Market. It is also available at Piedmont Grocery and hits the aisles soon at Whole Foods in Oakland. Under her Mamie … Continue reading »

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The kitchen chez Alice

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Vanity Fair, which concentrates more on Southern California stars than the more home-spun denizens of Northern California, features Berkeley’s Alice Waters’ kitchen in its October issue.

With a trip to the Berkeley Farmers’ Market, or to Berkeley Bowl, most Berkeleyans could duplicate what Waters has on her table.

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Berkeley Bites: Kara Hammond, Elmwood Café

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A decade ago, and fresh out of North Carolina, Kara Hammond landed a gig at Café Fanny, a tiny slip of a place in North Berkeley opened 25 years ago by, oh, a certain famous local chef.

Hammond, who had run a homespun bakery in Greensboro, wanted to get some kitchen experience in the Bay Area. Someone she knew knew someone who had a contact at Café Fanny; she called up and scored a job, just like that. Hammond … Continue reading »

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Michael Pollan speaks on egg recall

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Local food expert Michael Pollan was on CNN Monday night explaining why no one should be surprised that 550 million eggs have been recalled because they may have been tainted by salmonella.

Salmonella in eggs can be linked back to the 1970s and 1980s when industrial farmers started crowding chickens together to streamline their growth, said Pollan, a professor at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. Nowadays, there can be 10 chickens to a cage, … Continue reading »

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In Berkeley: The search for the perfect eclair

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By Jane Stillwater

Recently I met a doctor who told me, “The first thing that I do when I get a new patient is to take him entirely off gluten and dairy for a month. And chances are good that, if the patient takes my advice, whatever symptoms he has will improve.” I also read where autistic children do better without dairy products or gluten.

Okay. I’ve got digestive problems. I’ll try it. It works.

But … Continue reading »

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Berkeley Bowl workers decide whether to keep union

Singing "Stickin to the Union" at rally
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As shoppers go into the Oregon branch of Berkeley Bowl, they may see a table set up nearby with pamphlets talking about unions and justice.

Six years after the government ordered Berkeley Bowl to bargain with the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 5, that union is struggling to survive.

On Wednesday, workers at Berkeley Bowl will vote whether to decertify the UFCW, or continue to have it represent them. The workers’ contract with Berkeley Bowl management is … Continue reading »

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Essence of Berkeley: Food shopping as worship

Berkeley's Farmers' Markets: outdoor tent revivalists?
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In case you missed it, a post on this site last week elicited an entertaining rumination by Berkeleysider EBGuy on Berkeley’s food stores and their role as our new cathedrals — or temples, or synagogues. More Berkeleysiders weighed in with their analogies. Here’s the full list (so far):

Farmers’ Markets: outdoor tent revivalists. This is where the Food Fundamentalists go. Berkeley Bowl: non-denominational mega church. Draws from the surrounding region. You go there, right? Berkeley Natural Grocery: storefront religion at … Continue reading »

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