Thursday, May 12, 2016

Mid-Week Menu: Tian Jin Dumplings No Longer Sells Dumplings, Josephine Temporarily Shuts Down, and Beer Bike Tours Come to Oakland

by Luke Tsai
Thu, May 12, 2016 at 12:51 PM

Sadly, the dumplings at Tian Jin Dumplings' are no longer available. - CHRIS DUFFEY/FILE PHOTO
  • Chris Duffey/File photo
  • Sadly, the dumplings at Tian Jin Dumplings' are no longer available.
Welcome to the Mid-Week Menu, our roundup of East Bay food news.

1) It saddens me to report that Tian Jin Dumplings (989 Franklin St., Ste. B, Oakland), purveyor of the best damn dumplings in the East Bay, is no longer selling its signature item. Following up on a letter from a distressed reader, I confirmed the news this morning. Owner Amy Liu said it was “too tiring” for her to keep making the dumplings — a sentiment I’m sympathetic to: She must have been making thousands of them each week, basically single-handedly.

See also:
The Dumpling of Champions

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Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Oakland Veg Week to Preach Veganism in the Fruitvale

by Luke Tsai
Tue, May 10, 2016 at 11:50 AM

Raul Medina's vegan taco cart.
  • Raul Medina's vegan taco cart.
Among the things that people associate with Oakland’s Fruitvale district — the taco trucks, the bustling Mexican markets, the grassroots activism — veganism probably wouldn’t rank too high on anyone’s list.

Oakland Veg Week, The Town’s annual celebration of plant-based eating, aims to change that. The festival will kick off an entire week of meatless merrymaking on Sunday, May 15 with “Domingo Delicioso,” a mostly Spanish-language outreach event hosted by the Fruitvale-San Antonio Senior Center, just steps away from the Fruitvale BART station (1–5 p.m. at 3301 E. 12th St., Ste. 201).

See also:
Veganism Isn't Just for White People 


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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Mid-Week Menu: Salsipuedes Closes, Hi-Life Rebrands, and Mockingbird Gets Ready to Move

by Luke Tsai
Thu, May 5, 2016 at 1:44 PM

Beef tongue and uni at Salsipuedes. - BERT JOHNSON/FILE PHOTO
  • Bert Johnson/File photo
  • Beef tongue and uni at Salsipuedes.

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

1) After about a nine-month run, Salsipuedes (4201 Market St., Oakland) has closed in North Oakland. The restaurant specialized in New Baja-style cuisine, a genre of food that isn’t really represented anywhere else in the Bay Area, and served one of the better fried chicken sandwiches in Oakland. But it seems that in the end, the restaurant — with its delicate, and somewhat expensive, small plates — wasn’t the best fit for the mostly-residential neighborhood.

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Temescal Brewing in Oakland Debuts Its Beers — And They’re Damn Good

by Nick Miller
Thu, May 5, 2016 at 11:30 AM

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It was an elbow-to-elbow, standing-room-only, three-deep-at-the-bar crowd when I arrived at Hog’s Apothecary last evening just before 6 p.m. The occasion: The debut of two beers from Temescal Brewing.

See also:
How a North Oakland Brewery Became a Hub for Local Artists Before It Even Opened

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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Barclay's Pub Forced to Leave Rockridge after 25 Years

by Luke Tsai
Tue, May 3, 2016 at 1:50 PM

Barclay's was a popular spot for soccer fans to watch the World Cup in 2014 (via Facebook).
  • Barclay's was a popular spot for soccer fans to watch the World Cup in 2014 (via Facebook).
In today’s Oakland, it’s a tale that is unfortunately becoming all too common: After nearly 25 years in Rockridge, Barclay’s Pub (5940 College Ave.) will be forced to find a new home.

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An Oakland Chef Wants to Decolonize Cinco de Mayo

by Luke Tsai
Tue, May 3, 2016 at 10:50 AM

Dominica Rice-Cisneros at Cosecha, her restaurant at Swan's Market. - BERT JOHNSON/FILE PHOTO
  • Bert Johnson/File photo
  • Dominica Rice-Cisneros at Cosecha, her restaurant at Swan's Market.
The thing Dominica Rice-Cisneros remembers the most about Cinco de Mayo was how excited she was to learn the Mexican Hat Dance in elementary school. What does the chef-owner of the Mexican restaurant Cosecha (907 Washington St., Oakland) say she doesn’t remember? Anyone in her family, or from the broader Mexican-American community in Los Angeles, taking the holiday as an opportunity to go to a restaurant and get blindingly drunk on tequila shots or oversized margaritas.

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Thursday, April 28, 2016

Josephine Seeks to Expand Homemade Food Legislation

The Oakland-based food startup is urging legislators to reform food laws to legitimize at-home food businesses.

by Sydney Johnson
Thu, Apr 28, 2016 at 2:18 PM

Homemade African peanut stew and freshly baked sourdough bread made by Josephine cooks Alex Hrvatin and Jessica Kalar. - SYDNEY JOHNSON
  • Sydney Johnson
  • Homemade African peanut stew and freshly baked sourdough bread made by Josephine cooks Alex Hrvatin and Jessica Kalar.
Around 7 p.m. last Thursday evening, the final guests trickled out of the home of Laurel residents Alex Hrvatin and Jessica Kalar. After three hours of serving and mingling, Hrvatin, a classically trained chef from Ohio, handed off the couple’s last serving of a homemade African peanut stew and freshly baked sourdough bread.


It’s a timelessly familiar exchange. A neighbor comes over, conversation is had, good food is shared. But unlike the hosts of a traditional dinner party, Hrvatin and Kalar are getting paid for the fresh, home-cooked meals they prepare for their neighbors several nights a week, with the help of an increasingly popular website called Josephine.

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Mid-Week Menu: R.I.P. Genova Deli

by Luke Tsai
Thu, Apr 28, 2016 at 9:59 AM

JOSE AND ROXANNE/FLICKR (CC)
  • Jose and Roxanne/Flickr (CC)
Welcome to the Mid-Week Menu, our roundup of East Bay food news.

1) Earlier this year, the Express broke the story that Genova Delicatessen — a Temescal institution for ninety years, and one of the last vestiges of that neighborhood’s history as an Italian-American enclave — would likely close this spring due to an untenable rent hike. Sadly, the Mercury News reports that Genova’s owners have now announced that April 30 will, in fact, be the deli’s last day of business, the desperate pleas of longtime customers notwithstanding.

See also:
Rent Hike May Force Genova Delicatessen, an Oakland Institution, to Close after Ninety Years in Temescal


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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

East Bay Tattoo Artist Publishes an Illustrated Vegan Cookbook

by Luke Tsai
Tue, Apr 26, 2016 at 2:16 PM

The artist's influences include Renaissance paintings. - CECILIA GRANATA
  • Cecilia Granata
  • The artist's influences include Renaissance paintings.
What do tattoo art, veganism, and Italian home cooking have in common? Maybe not a whole lot — unless you happen to be a vegan tattoo artist who grew up in Italy.

But these are the themes of Mama Tried: Traditional Italian Cooking for the Screwed, Crude, Vegan, and Tattooed, a new illustrated cookbook by Cecilia Granata, a Berkeley-based tattoo artist and freelance illustrator.

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Delage to Softly Open at Swan's Market with Michelin-Starred Sushi Chef at the Helm

by Luke Tsai
Tue, Apr 26, 2016 at 9:00 AM

Via Instagram, @as_bdama.
  • Via Instagram, @as_bdama.
Don't look now, but Oakland is about to get a serious addition to its sushi scene: A few months ago, What the Fork reported that Chikara Ono, chef-owner of AS B-Dama (907 Washington St., Oakland), was planning to open a new sushi restaurant at Swan's Market, in a stand-alone space at 536 9th Street, adjacent to the main "food court" area that houses AS B-Dama.

That restaurant, which Ono has since dubbed Delage, will softly open with an omakase-style prix-fixe dinner menu this week, with preliminary hours from about 5:30 to 9 p.m., Wednesday through Friday.

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