Friday, April 1, 2011

Friday Must Read: Tax the Rich!; Brown’s Wife Screams at Republican Leader

by Robert Gammon
Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 7:05 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. A new poll shows that an overwhelming majority of Californians would support a ballot measure to raise taxes on the state’s wealthiest residents as a way to help balance the budget, the Chron reports. The poll, commissioned by a state teacher’s union, found that a whopping 78 percent of likely voters support an income tax increase of 1 percent on Californians who make more than $500,000 a year, easily eclipsing the two-thirds vote needed to pass. Support for such a measure, which has not been considered by Governor Jerry Brown and state lawmakers, also appears to cross party lines. The teacher’s union may sponsor such a measure in November as a “sweetener” for Brown’s other tax proposals.

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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

You Write Too Long: This Week's Feature, Bite-Sized

by Ellen Cushing
Wed, Mar 30, 2011 at 10:53 AM

This week, we give you three feature stories for the price* of one: see, it's our semi-annual "Taste" special issue, in which we dutifully plumb the depths of the East Bay's ever-expanding food and nightlife scene in order to introduce you to such deliciousness as the new intensely bitter, super-hoppy Double IPA beers; frozen custard, Italian-style hero sandwiches, strombolis, and other East Coast comfort foods, now making their way to the Bay Area; and Plum's burger: "juicy and sharded with bits of beef cheek and oxtail, slathered in house-made horseradish, and served on a slate-black plate with fresh, locally-grown greens." If your mouth isn't watering, you're not paying attention. Check it all out here.

*that price being "free."

Friday, March 25, 2011

Alice Waters Joins Twitter

by Ellen Cushing
Fri, Mar 25, 2011 at 9:56 AM

Big news, y'all. Berkeley's very own Alice Waters, patron saint of $10 tomatoes California cuisine, has finally joined the twitters, and the foodie universe has, unsurprisingly, gone more or less apeshit. Word of the account began spreading early this morning; before 10 a.m., she already had over 1,100 followers — despite the fact that she hasn't actually tweeted anything yet. We can only hope that Queen Alice will soon take an impassioned stance on such salient trending topics as #sheprollyahoe and #stuffthatpissmeoff.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Report: Starbucks and Peet's in Merger Talks

by Ellen Cushing
Wed, Mar 16, 2011 at 10:48 AM

Whoa. According to a report by Reuters, the East Bay's homegrown coffee behemoth, Peet's, may be considering a sale to megachain Starbucks. Though it's important to note that reps from neither company would discuss the matter with Reuters, and that rumors of this kind have been swirling for months and even years, this could be huge: Peet's has almost 200 stores and a market value of about $589 million, while Starbucks, of course, more or less runs the specialty-coffee universe, with some 17,000 stores worldwide and an estimated value of over $26 billion.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Tiger Blood Being Sold in Emeryville

by Ellen Cushing
Fri, Mar 11, 2011 at 5:05 PM

Well, sort of. Just in case you haven't yet had enough of the schadenfreudetastic Charlie Sheen feeding frenzy for one lifetime: According to the Feast, wisely opportunistic SoCal energy drink company Harcos Labs has concocted a Sheen-branded energy beverage, and it's hitting shelves at Bay Street's IT'SUGAR today. Per the Harcos website, the fruit punch-flavored drink contains some 80 milligrams of caffeine in a 3.4-ounce shot, and — in a true touch of class — comes in an IV bag. The website also notes that the product isn't actually affilaited with the former Two and a Half Men actor/noted trainwreck/terrifying human being, and sagely advises: "Don't do drugs. Seriously. Don't. Do. Drugs."

Duly noted! Except for ungodly amounts of caffeine and red dye #40, of course.


Saturday, February 26, 2011

Berkeley's Cinnaholic Becomes's First-Ever "Deal"

by Anneli Rufus
Sat, Feb 26, 2011 at 12:54 PM, a website that lets members buy avant-garde food at deep discounts and have it home-delivered anywhere in the US, has picked vegan cinnamon rolls from Berkeley-based Cinnaholic as its first-ever "deal."

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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Berkeley's Sumo Grub Basks in Publicity — and Soy Oil

by Anneli Rufus
Thu, Feb 24, 2011 at 4:38 PM

Sumo Grub — which might actually be Berkeley's most subversive hotspot, with its tempura-fried pizza, tempura-fried mac-and-cheese, tempura-fried Kit-Kats, and tempura-fried darn near everything else — has been basking in a media blitz this week.

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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Tuesday Must Read: Gang Injunction Gets Mixed Results; New Bill Would Ban Shark Fin Soup

by Robert Gammon
Tue, Feb 15, 2011 at 7:18 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. City Attorney John Russo and Police Chief Anthony Batts say in a new report that the North Oakland gang injunction has been successful in part because drug arrests in that region of the city have plummeted nearly 70 percent, the Chron reports. However, the report also notes that some violent crimes, including assaults and robberies, have increased slightly. In addition, a drop in drug arrests does not necessarily mean that drug crimes have decreased. The report also notes that the city has spent a total of $761,128 to press the North Oakland injunction and the proposed one in Fruitvale in court — money that opponents say could have been better spent elsewhere.

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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Fancy Food Show Reveals 2011's Trends

by Anneli Rufus
Thu, Jan 20, 2011 at 12:51 PM

Foodie types spent the last three days sampling olive-oil ice cream, sidestepping chipotle-stuffed chocolates, and swigging eyeball-sized cups of Peruvian pisco at the Fancy Food Show in San Francisco, where tomorrow's taste trends were revealed.

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Monday, January 17, 2011

Oakland's Restaurant Week Starts Sunday

by Ellen Cushing
Mon, Jan 17, 2011 at 3:19 PM

For a city as awash in foodie buzz as Oakland, it really was only a matter of time before we got an honest-to-God restaurant week of our own. For a week starting Sunday, January 23, restaurants all over the city will be offering various promotions — $40 prix-fixe dinners at Oliveto, Pican, and Plum; $30 for three courses at Camino and Chop Bar; multi-course lunch menus for $20 at Bocanova, Bay Wolf, and Flora; and several other promotions and special deals — in an attempt to both highlight the city's dining scene and drum up business in typically slow January. Not surprisingly, reservations are going fast; see the website for the full list of participating restaurants and to book seats.

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