Tag Archives: Hopscotch
A slender woman with a dark sleek bob and large almond eyes hands out white wooden parcels the size of shoeboxes near the door of Nico restaurant in San Francisco. I finish a scrap of black sesame financier from the table before breaking my box’s white and red ribbon. Inside I find a long paper packet of Dashitamago omelet seasoning, a tall slender bottle labeled “Mikawa cooking rice seasoning” and a brown pouch of Kinako (soy bean powder) that looks something like tan-hued cornstarch. I have just finished a five-course Japanese tasting menu and sipped the last few dregs of my toasted rice “coffee.” Although I appreciated the meal’s exotic ingredients and elegant execution, I am clueless when it comes to the materials in front of me.
Japanese cuisine is widely spread across cultures, but has yet to reach the kitchens of American home cooks like me. Something about those unfamiliar terms and mysterious ingredients leaves even adventurous eaters wary of Japanese home cooking. It was this quandary that inspired recipe developer and food educator Ema Koeda to create Nippon Gochiso Select (NGS), a premium line of artisanal Japanese products specifically curated for Western markets. The word “Nippon” refers to Japan, and the term “gochiso” has several meanings related to feasting, hospitality and gratitude. In essence Nippon Gochiso is a reminder to celebrate and appreciate the act of enjoying a meal — a concept that rings true for Koeda, who views food as a connection point between cultures. … Continue reading »
NEW 21ST AMENDMENT BREWERY OPENING SOON The East Bay beer boom continues. This week, 21st Amendment co-founders Nicco Freccia and Shaun O’Sullivan snipped the ribbon on their new brewing facility in San Leandro. The massive, 95,000 square-foot facility was once a Kellogg’s factory. It is the brewery’s new world headquarters and, in time, will be a rollicking spot to grab a beer. While production has officially started at the new brewery, it won’t be open to the public until June 26. The public space will initially include a tasting room and outdoor beer garden. Eventually the owners plan on adding a restaurant, “floating” bars above the production facility, meeting spaces and an indoor amphitheater for events, beer classes and concerts. 21st Amendment joins long-established brewery Drake’s and new upstart Cleophus Quealy in the industrial west side of the city. But the neighbors to not plan on being competitors. “We’ll be experimenting with our San Leandro neighbors … to produce some really inventive collaboration beers,” said O’Sullivan. “We’re working to make San Leandro a craft beer mecca.” More than that, both O’Sullivan and Freccia hope to make their brewery a true neighborhood gathering spot. “It has been amazing to get to know San Leandro,” said Freccia. “We want to give back and become part of the fabric of the community.” 21st Amendment is at 2010 Williams St. (near West Gate Parkway), San Leandro. Connect with the brewery on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. … Continue reading »
Chis Wolff and Jon Tu, who are both chefs at restaurants in San Francisco, will host a pop-up dinner later this month at Uptown’s Hopscotch. Continue reading »
OVO COMES TO NORTH OAKLAND OVO, a.k.a. “Oakland’s Very Own Tavern and Eatery,” has softly opened on Martin Luther King Jr. Way in North Oakland. The new bar and restaurant is an official viewing spot for the Golden State Warriors playoff games while it continues to tweak its menu and operating hours. For now, OVO is open only from 4-9 p.m.; owner DeWayne DeGuzman aims to hold a grand opening party at the end of the month. The menu features simple bar food like tater tots, chicken wings and burgers. DeGuzman said OVO will eventually be open in the morning, with breakfast pastries from Gregory’s Gourmet Desserts and Mr. Espresso coffee. The bar has a modest selection of beers, with space for six rotating local microbrews, and a potent-sounding OVO punch (think rum and lots of fruit). OVO takes the place of Bottom of the Ninth Bar & Grill, which opened in 2013 after Looney’s BBQ closed. DeGuzman hopes the restaurant will be a lively community gathering space, and he plans on keeping the concept and menu adaptable to the changing neighborhood. “We’re going to keep it fresh, just like Oakland,” he said. Ovo is at 5319 Martin Luther King Jr. Way (between 53rd and 54th streets), Oakland. … Continue reading »
Michael Bauer’s list of the top 100 Bay Area restaurants causes a stir each spring. The San Francisco Chronicle food critic has been producing the compilation of his favorite spots for the past 20 years. His choices are typically San Francisco-heavy, but they do include a growing number — 12 this year — of East Bay restaurants.
In a nod to the increasing relevance and excitement of the East Bay food scene, none of the spots cut from the list this year came from our the right side of the Bay.
The two new additions to the East Bay list are both restaurants from James Syhabout. Bauer praised The Dock at Linden Street for its “uncanny skill for matching food to beer” and “unexpected” food combinations. He especially likes Syhabout’s crisp fried cranberry beans, curried lamb riblets with lime pickled chutney, and Caesar popcorn (“the best thing since caramel corn”). … Continue reading »
PIETISSERIE SHOP HOLDS GRAND OPENING Oakland pie maven Jaynelle St. John held a grand opening celebration for her standalone shop in the Grand Lake district this past Saturday. PieTisserie specializes in unique pies, such as mojito custard and chocolate cream pretzel. St. John has been selling her pies for the last five years, but has moved her operation around Oakland; most recently she sold pies out of Nido, near Jack London Square, and she has also made appearances at Swan’s Marketplace in Old Oakland, and Kitchenette in San Francisco. Since parting with Nido in August 2013, St. John has been working on opening her retail space while selling her pies through her website and Munchery. PieTisserie, complete with its pie window, is at 1605 2nd Ave. (at Foothill Boulevard), Oakland. Connect with the bakery on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. … Continue reading »
JOHNNY B’S COMES TO WEST BERKELEY There’s a new spot to grab sandwiches and coffee in West Berkeley. Johnny B’s Café has just opened up shop next to Strawberry Creek Park on Addison Street, in the former Café Zeste location. Owner John Bajek tells us that his corned beef and roasted chicken sandwiches are his bestsellers so far. In addition, he is serving soups, freshly made salads and pastries, with plenty of gluten-free options. Johnny B’s is at 1250 Addison St., Suite 110 (near Bonar Street), Berkeley. … Continue reading »
As the rain lashes the window-panes, gusts of wind bring down tree limbs, and the power goes out… again… what better way to mark the turn of the season and the holidays than to head to a cozy bar and order up a warming winter cocktail? Ms Barstool has tried five and recommends them all. Cheers!
Haitian Toddy at Box and Bells
Served in a teacup and garnished with orange peel and a stick of cinnamon, this drink is made with aged Haitian dark rum, Benedictine, house-made honey syrup, and seasoned with cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice (pictured above). Served at Box and Bells in Oakland’s Rockridge neighborhood: 5912 College Ave., Oakland. … Continue reading »
SUTHERLAND DISTILLING COMPANY The East Bay has a new craft distillery. Eric Larimer and his friends Barry and Ryan Sutherland have opened Sutherland Distilling Company in Livermore. Larimer said the distillery is focused on making “high-quality distilled spirits from local ingredients that are entirely grain to glass.” He said the company hand-crafts all of its products from start to finish, and practices what it calls “soil to spirit craft distilling.” Sutherland recently released its Diablo’s Shadow Silver vodka and rum, and is barrel-aging rum for a later release. “We also are excited to have our first barrels full of bourbon that is made with 100% California-grown ingredients,” Larimer said. On Sat. Aug. 23, Sutherland is one of several local artisan brands participating in the first annual San Francisco “On A Boat” event. Sutherland Distilling Co. is at 3189 Independence Drive, Livermore, CA 94551. Visit Sutherland online and connect with them on Facebook … Continue reading »
Bites is Nosh’s round-up of restaurant and bar news in the East Bay. Got a tip or a scoop? Send it our way at firstname.lastname@example.org. Bites is produced by Nosh in collaboration with Christina Mitchell, founder of East Bay Dish.
ANFILO COFFEE It’s not just about the caffeine. Ambessaw Assegued and Dagmawit Bekele have been sharing a traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony at the Grand Lake Farmers Market for months. Now the pair have opened Anfilo Coffee, a brick and mortar location, on Grand Avenue. The husband and wife team plan to add pastries, soups and salads, along with Ethiopian specialties like rolled injera filled with lentils or meat. The grand opening is scheduled for Feb. 1. 35 Grand Ave, Oakland; 510-828-2759.
CROSSROADS CAFE Crossroads Café is a worker-owned cooperative that recently opened in North Oakland. To show a little local love, sandwiches on the menu are all around $6 and named after nearby streets: the Market, the Adeline, the San Pablo, and so on, reports Oakland Local. The café not only shares the parking lot with the Phat Beets Farmers Market on Saturdays, it also sources produce from the farmers. The kitchen is available for the community to rent and there are plans to host events like film screenings for the neighborhood. 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., 942 Stanford Ave., Oakland. … Continue reading »
Berkeleyside’s online food magazine NOSH, covering the East Bay, launched in November and publishes many stories every week on restaurant openings, ethnic food finds, news, chefs’ secrets, recipes, and much more. In case you missed them, here are some of the articles that have appeared there in the past few days:
Coming to Rockridge: Jules Thin Crust pizzeria The couple behind this new venture swear being directly opposite Zachary’s will work out just fine for everybody.
Off The Grid food truck market launches in Oakland Just weeks after Off The Grid closed up shop in Berkeley’s Gourmet Ghetto it is making its debut in Oakland on Friday nights outside the Oakland Museum of California. … Continue reading »