Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Mid-Week Menu: Full House Cafe Chef Reemerges at Miliki, Burger Depot is Closed, and Cafe V Launches a Venezuelan Pop-Up

By Luke Tsai
Wed, Jul 15, 2015 at 2:09 PM

click to enlarge Miliki now serves breakfast.
  • Miliki now serves breakfast.
Welcome to the Mid-Week Menu, our roundup of East Bay food news.

1) Good news for folks in Oakland’s Laurel district who have been mourning the loss of the Full House Cafe after it closed in February: Kirk Roberts, longtime chef of breakfast-and-lunch spot, has reemerged — right next door, in fact. Roberts heads up the brand new breakfast program at the Nigerian restaurant Miliki (3725 MacArthur Blvd.). He’s brought along several members of the Full House staff, and a menu that includes most of his customers’ old favorites — the red flannel hash, cornmeal pancakes, and so forth. Breakfast and lunch are served Tuesday through Sunday, 8 a.m.–2 p.m.

Miliki co-owner Adebayo Aregbe said she had been wanting to serve breakfast for a long time, but only held off out of respect for Full House Cafe owner Fred Dozier. In addition to Roberts’ strictly American-style breakfast dishes, the restaurant will also serve some African lunch items. Of course, the old Full House spot is now occupied, very deliciously, by Sequoia Diner, the subject of this week’s restaurant review. So, all of a sudden, the Laurel is practically awash with breakfast options.

2) Speaking of dearly departed old-school restaurants, Berkeleyside Nosh reports that this past Saturday was the last day of business for Burger Depot (1116 Solano Ave.), a fixture in Albany for 35 years. Lisa Campbell, a longtime customer who called the Express to share the sad news, said she was heartbroken to lose the restaurant’s “most wonderful homespun burgers” and “1950s’ pricing.” Apparently, owners David and Daisy Cheng simply decided it was time to retire.

3) Zut Tavern (1820 4th St., Berkeley), Iyasare chef-owner Shotaro Kamio’s revamp of Zut! On Fourth, has reopened after a quick reorganization, Inside Scoop reports. Prominent on the restaurant’s impressive-looking Cal/Italian/French menu is a daily risotto that’s prepared tableside inside a big block of Parmigiano Reggiano.

click to enlarge Venezuelan food at Cafe V (via Facebook).
  • Venezuelan food at Cafe V (via Facebook).
4) Cafe V (2056 San Pablo Ave.), a Vietnamese restaurant in West Berkeley, has launched a new Venezuelan lunchtime pop-up, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. According to one report on Chowhound, the arepas are quite good.

5) Inside Scoop reports that Branch Line (5885 Hollis St.), a new bar in Emeryville from the owner of Rotten City Pizza, is now open. The most notable feature is the bar’s selection of eight cocktails on tap.

6) Here’s a sneak at the opening menu of North Oakland's Salsipuedes (4201 Market St.), courtesy of Inside Scoop. The collaboration between owner Jay Porter (The Half Orange) and chef Marcus Krauss (Meadowood) will be heavily influenced by New Baja cuisine, and is slated to open mid- to late-July — any day now, in other words.

click to enlarge Coming soon to Alameda (via Facebook).
  • Coming soon to Alameda (via Facebook).
7) Alameda has been getting an influx of fast-food burgers. First came the, ahem, “controversial” new island location of In-N-Out. Now Alameda’s first location of Smashburger, a Denver-based chain, is slated to open at 1620 Park Street on Wednesday, July 29, according to a press release.

8) Finally, ICYMI, I wrote about two upcoming wine festivals in Oakland aim to raise the Town’s stature in the Bay Area wine community (read the article to find discount codes for each one). And Juhu Beach Club is sponsoring a new parklet in Temescal.

Got tips or suggestions? Email me at Luke (dot) Tsai (at) EastBayExpress (dot) com. Otherwise, keep in touch by following me on Twitter @theluketsai, or simply by posting a comment. I'll read ‘em all.

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