Born in Rotterdam, Holland, he moved to Oakland with his family when he was six years old. He is the owner and operator of Cafe Van Kleef on Telegraph in the heart of Oakland's burgeoning "Oaksterdam" quarter. The loquacious Van Kleef knows Oakland, and is quick to point out his favorite places and things:
Heinold's First & Last Chance Saloon (48 Webster St., Jack London Sq., Oakland). He orders Jack with a beer-back: "Two drinks for the price of one!"
Children's Fairyland (699 Bellevue Ave., Oakland). Ever since he went there as a seven-year-old he has loved it, joking, "Now I just need a child to take with me."
Buttercup Kitchen (229 Broadway, Oakland). Being a night owl, he digs the 24-hour breakfast and orders the sausage scramble over hash browns.
Hand-picked fruit from the Farmers' Market (Fridays on Ninth St. between Broadway and Clay, Oakland). "There are Asians selling next to Caucasians selling next to Mexicans," he says. "It's an international milkshake of fruit."
What the Fork - March 24, 10:21 AM
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What the Fork - March 2, 5:12 PM