A combination of friendly bartenders and hefty pours make this Alameda bar a great place to get sloshed.
This spacious, dimly lit Albany tavern has a hunting-lodge-meets-tiki-lounge feel. Just look for the funky red and green neon sign on San Pablo Ave. It has two floors, two full bars, two jukeboxes, two smoking patios, five pool tables, and lots of comfortable seating. Prices are reasonable, and the drinks are strong. Club Mallard has a laid-back vibe and is great for groups. Strike a pose in the photo booth and see why women love the second-floor bathroom.
Ahna Adair co-owns the CommonWealth with her brother Pete Jeffryes and her husband Ross Adair, a Scot who learned to appreciate traditional cooking in his grandmother's kitchen. He prepares it here in the form of English-style breakfasts and pub grub with a California twist: Steel-cut oats, beans and toast, egg-and-chutney sandwiches, and the like augment an impressive selection of beers from the UK, the East Bay, and a few locales in between.
Located above Pizza Rustica Cafe in Oakland’s Rockridge neighborhood, the Conga Lounge is a laid-back, tiki-themed bar and lounge. Choose from forty cocktails and order food from Pizza Rustica. On Fridays and Saturdays the Conga Lounge turns into a popular late-night spot for enjoying mai tais, piña coladas, and mojitos while DJs spin a variety of music including soca, salsa, reggae, and R&B. Admission is free, and the bar is close to BART and accessible by the 51 bus line.
This West Oakland establishment is steeped in history. Decades back, Motown greats from B.B. King to Marvin Gaye passed through its doors. These days the venue hosts metal bands on Thursday nights, plus occasional comedy acts and DJs.
This bar is located adjacent to the historic Fox Theater, and the decor shares the same bold patterns and color. The Den isn’t just a watering hole for Fox patrons; it wants to be a destination in its own right. Graze on food from the limited-but-gourmet menu, and peruse the Den’s list of specialty cocktails. The lights are low, and the feel is sophisticated though there’s no dress code. Trivia on Tuesday nights is getting good reviews, and there’s a rotation of DJs spinning on Fridays and Saturday nights.
This sleek Old Oakland wine-and-whiskey bar boasts gorgeous design, a mind-bogglingly huge menu, and some of the best bar food around.
A soon-to-be-open craft-beer bar with brew-on-premises equipment, which will allow individuals to brew their own beer on-site.
Tucked behind West Berkeley’s slew of design warehouses on Fifth Street, Donkey and Goat is a retail store, tasting room, and full-fledged natural winery all in one. Housed in an old ink factory, the winery puts a strong emphasis on viticulture that’s all-natural, i.e., little to no added sulfur, sugars, yeasts, tannins, or acids. It’s a successful formula, as D&G was named one of five “Winemakers to Watch in 2011” by the San Francisco Chronicle. The tasting room is open Friday to Sunday from 2-6 p.m.
Soul food is a tradition for the Dorsey family, and their bar and restaurant serves it up seven days a week. The lounge has table service and plenty of seating at the bar. Dorsey’s hosts a spoken-word and comedy open mic on Tuesdays, karaoke on Thursdays and Saturdays, DJs on Fridays, and live music on Sunday evenings.
Situated in the back room of Everett & Jones Barbecue's Jack London district spot, Dotha's hosts live blues shows, allowing patrons to tap their toes while they chow down on the restaurant's delicious barbecue.
Once just a production facility, Drake's also has a 24-tap beer bar and retail store with an outdoor patio and a relaxed ambience.
This ritzy Spanish restaurant from former Oliveto chef Paul Canales is nothing if not ambitious: a 4,000-square-foot multi-use space that includes a high-end coffee shop, a wine and olive-oil retailer, an art gallery, and a performance venue for experimental jazz.
After an extensive, sixth-month transformation, this Lakeshore favorite is completely unrecognizable from what it once was, in a good way: It's now clean and bright, with a slate of highly creative cocktails and a relaxed, picnic-y vibe.