Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Mid-Week Menu: CommonWealth, Belli, Destino — Openings and Reopenings Galore

by Luke Tsai
Wed, Oct 10, 2012 at 7:00 AM

Welcome to the Mid-Week Menu, our weekly roundup of East Bay food news.

1) Oh happy day: After a July fire put CommonWealth (2882 Telegraph Ave.) out of commission for several months, the pub completed its glorious and highly-anticipated rise from the ashes just in time for First Friday, as noted by East Bay Dish. The owners are aiming to stay open Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., for the rest of October, but it looks like they’re easing into it day by day thus far, so check the restaurant’s Facebook page for updates.

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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

‘Latte e Miele’: Pastry Heaven at Borgo Italia

by Luke Tsai
Tue, Oct 9, 2012 at 8:00 AM

A little past midnight every day, Franco Camboli rolls into Borgo Italia Bar and Caffé, rubs the sleep out of his eyes, and prepares himself for a long night of working dough and whipping cream. As the old Dunkin’ Donuts commercials used to say, “Time to make the doughnuts.

At Borgo Italia (499 9th St.), Old Oakland’s new Italian restaurant, the doughnuts in question aren’t your standard powdered-sugar-dusted or jelly-filled affairs. Instead, customers can choose from a wide array of delicate Italian pastries — the same kinds that Camboli prepared at his family’s pastry shop in Tuscany for thirty years: ciambelli, a kind of doughnut made from choux pastry that’s sliced in half and filled with cream, and little Italian-style beignets.

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Monday, October 8, 2012

A 'Gangnam Style' Progressive Dinner

by Luke Tsai
Mon, Oct 8, 2012 at 7:00 AM

If, like me, you've wasted hours of your life watching the "Gangnam Style" music video, pondered the song’s underlying cultural significance, and practiced PSY’s signature “invisible horse” dance move in the hopes of finding a socially appropriate time to bust it out — if, on top of that, you enjoy Asian food and/or wacky themed cocktails, here’s an event that is tailor-made for you: This Wednesday night, Dishcrawl is hosting a Gangnam Style flash mob dinner event wherein participants will eat their way through three Oakland restaurants and bars and, at the agreed-upon time, break into dance, gracing bystanders with a moment of Gangnam happiness.


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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Mid-Week Menu: B-Side, Nido, and Moderno Italiano

by Luke Tsai
Wed, Oct 3, 2012 at 7:54 AM

Welcome to the Mid-Week Menu, our weekly roundup of East Bay food news.

1) Eater brings news that B-Side BBQ (3303 San Pablo Ave.), Tanya Holland’s barbecue joint, will extend its hours starting this Friday, in conjunction with the launch of a brand new cocktail menu featuring Holland’s housemade syrups. The new hours will be 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Tuesday to Sunday. In October, the restaurant will also feature hapy hour specials from 4 to 6 — $10 for beer or wine and your choice of chicken wings, pork sliders, or

I’d been under the impression that after-dark hours might have been seen as risky for the neighborhood — a somewhat desolate stretch of San Pablo Avenue. But Holland told me she’d always wanted to stay open late and has just been slowly revving things up: “You can always add hours, but you can’t take them away; otherwise, people will be really upset.” Safety hasn’t been an issue, she said.

Meanwhile, the question on everybody’s mind: What about Holland’s flagship restaurant, Brown Sugar Kitchen (2534 Mandela Parkway)? Alas, the hours there won’t be extending to include dinner service — Holland said that between breakfast and lunch, the restaurant is already “at capacity.”

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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

OUSD Touted as Model for School Lunch Reform

by Luke Tsai
Tue, Oct 2, 2012 at 8:00 AM

Last week, food service directors and staff members representing 21 of California’s 58 counties gathered at the Oakland Museum of California for “Rethinking School Lunch,” a conference on school lunch reform organized by the Berkeley-based nonprofit Center for Ecoliteracy.

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Monday, October 1, 2012

A Pop-Up Event Blooms in West Oakland, Food Trucks in Tow

by Luke Tsai
Mon, Oct 1, 2012 at 4:55 PM

Peralta Junction, a new pop-up event kicking off this weekend in a vacant lot at the intersection of West Grand and Mandela Parkway, transcends easy categorization: It’s a three-month experimental art installation. It’s the site of a 1920s-style traveling carnival. It’s an outdoor performance space, an artisan retail market, and — of particular interest to What the Fork — a weekly gathering of mobile food vendors.

During the project’s grand opening weekend, the site will be open to the public from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Subsequently, the event organizers will host kid-friendly after-school workshops on Thursdays and Fridays, Thursday night community movie nights, and a variety of other community events and performances on Friday nights.

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