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Comment Archives: stories: Blogs: Food & Drink

Re: “Izakaya-style Shinmai Opens Tonight in Oakland

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Posted by Murphy DE Escobar on 08/21/2017 at 2:30 PM

Re: “Paradise Park Cafe Brings All-Day Dining to Oakland

My boyfriend and I were invited to the grand opening. We ordered the Paradise Salad which I found to be delicious . Ingredients were a wonderful curry tumeric lightly fried chick pea squares, sliced whole pea shoots, grilled asparagus, carrots, radish,and lettuce with a lemon vinagarette. Simply amazing and incredibly fresh. We also had the burger which came with long thin onion rings, tomato and lettuce with a spicy aoili which was requested I strongly disagree with the article that this place has unremarkable food although the editor of this article historically seems to shy away from California contemporary

Posted by Everitt Leifermann on 08/18/2017 at 12:16 PM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

I hope Lakeshore Colonial won't be next. Shops which have been here many years are ousted and it takes forever for new ownership to get various permits and permissions out of the city to open up something new. Wasn't stream-lining permitting for renovation and new construction on the Mayor's short list when she was elected?

Posted by Francesca M. Austin on 08/17/2017 at 10:55 AM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

I work and live near this block. Does anyone get the sense the landlords are overreaching a bit? I recently looked at a lease in the same building as Donut Savant, they wanted 3.25/sqft-month for class A commercial a few floors up. Market rate in SF is high 40s/low 50s per year. Given how much churn is going on, on this block (Henry's just closed and the smoke shop a few months back, and now this) I'm having a hard time seeing who's going to absorb all this space.

Posted by David Albrecht on 08/12/2017 at 8:58 PM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

Oops! No burritos at Cholita Linda. Guess sometimes one has to settle for tacos.

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 08/12/2017 at 5:48 PM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

Interesting observations, Nate and Linda! Forage Kitchen on 25th St. may be a variant of the sort of cooperative/shared space Linda suggests. Swan's Market may another model. (For struggling new businesses, pop-ups are yet another.) As for burritos, Cholita Linda seems to be doing well up in Temescal, despite the ostensible horrors of gentrification.

Then, too, consider all the wonderful ethnic (Asian and Latino) places east of the lake -- businesses in varying degrees of maturity... Again, methinks the author doth protesteth too much.

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 08/12/2017 at 5:41 PM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

I think the argument is that donuts and burritos always had slim margins of profit and at today's current market rate there is no way such a business can survive in Oakland. Savant will close as well within a few years time if not sooner, we are saturated with choices of how to spend our money and the food industry is suffering as a whole because of it. There is NO money in the food industry. Throw in market value rents and forget it, the top end profit at a restaurant is about 10%, so let's do the math. Rent is $7000. Sell $70,000 in burritos per month just to pay rent, not taxes, not labor, not bills, just rent. Yeah there is a line out the door at Happy Burrito, is there a line worth $70k? They need about 4k per day in sales to make ends meet. Every restaurant I know that appears successful in the eyes of customers is struggling behind the scenes.

Posted by Nate B on 08/12/2017 at 5:28 PM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

Small businesses need to unite and buy their own building. Put funds together for a tenants in common situation. There are buildings too expensive for an individual, but would work wonderfully for as collective.

Posted by Linda Fong on 08/12/2017 at 8:31 AM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

Didn't know Donut Savant might be on the way out, too. I agree about supporting local businesses, and generally do so myself. (Will likely try out Grocery Cafe tonight!) Ike's has other branches locally, but it's no McDonald's (and for that matter, appears to be owned by people "of color" [i.e. immigrants from the Middle East]).

My basic beef is with complaints about "gentrification" and "displacement" that are, in effect, demands to Keep Oakland Poor. Prosperity and innovation should not be seen as enemies -- through astronomical commercial rents certainly are. So far, however, most of the new Uptown spots appear to be local, so the notion that everyone's being driven out but the chains (what chains? where?) may be misleading or, at the very least, highly premature.

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 08/11/2017 at 4:00 PM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

Donut Savant is in a site that has been for sale too, and has some building permits. Small businesses are having a hard time continuing to operate. It would be great to not have the place paved solid with franchises and chains. Support locally-owned businesses.

Posted by Naomi_Schiff on 08/11/2017 at 3:34 PM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

Donut Savant is a couple of blocks away, taking a slightly more creative approach to the business. Affordable lunch? Try Ike's.

For nostalgia's sake, the old 24-hour Colonial's still open on Lakeshore. What's the big deal? Another opportunity for some more tired kvetching about "gentrification"?

There's no Woolworth's in the neighborhood, either. Tragic and unfair!

Posted by Mitchell Halberstadt on 08/11/2017 at 3:16 PM

Re: “After 28 Years, Colonial Donuts Faces Closure as Uptown Oakland Rents Continue to Rise

I worked in that neighborhood for a long time. If Happy Burrito is scraping by with the amount of business they do, the rent must be too high.

There's no loyalty shown by landlords. Being a good tenant isn't enough. They want to kick everybody out, so they can get market rate.

Capitalism sux.

Posted by Eric Sisneros on 08/11/2017 at 2:47 PM

Re: “Diamond Dogs Brings Affordable Dining to Oakland's Jack London Square

You can tell which entities EBX want to hit up for future ad space

Posted by Vincent Blafard on 08/11/2017 at 2:15 PM

Re: “Nellie's Soulfood Will Reopen in JK's Brickhouse in West Oakland

did they open?

Posted by Andrew Chang on 08/10/2017 at 2:58 PM

Re: “Diamond Dogs Brings Affordable Dining to Oakland's Jack London Square

$9 for a Hot Dog ain't worth an "affordable" tag line, bro

Posted by Jono Schneider on 08/09/2017 at 10:23 AM

Re: “Izakaya-style Shinmai Opens Tonight in Oakland

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Posted by Maria Joao on 07/22/2017 at 4:33 PM

Re: “Kainbigan Team's New Restaurant Craft & Spoon Opens Next Week in Uptown Oakland

Well that sucks, congrats and good luck but I don't think we needed another fru fru kale place, especially when good Filipino food was hard to find - gotta serve the gentrifiers though

Posted by Joseph Adams on 07/21/2017 at 10:23 AM

Re: “Picán Restaurant in Uptown Oakland Closing ... For Now

I went for the first time a few years ago and had a biscuit that melted in my mouth and some delicious pork belly. I went again for brunch and dinner a few more times and it seemed that each time they had a new cook who wanted to experiment with a different food technique. I looked forward to seeing what the hiatus will bring food wise and decor and I appreciate them for taking a change back in 2009.

Posted by Marissa Selhorst on 06/20/2017 at 3:59 PM

Re: “Picán Restaurant in Uptown Oakland Closing ... For Now

I took a friend there for a special dinner last year, inspired by a CheckPlease review on KQED... some items were good, but a tough and smallish piece of "signature" fried chicken was a disappointment with overpriced side dishes required to make a meal.
The coup de grace was my friend's request for some sparkling water being met with a fancy, imported bottle of something brought to the table without comment. It later showed up on the bill as a $19 charge. Really?! Never went back. End of story. Have a nice "hiatus" Pican. And au revoir.

Posted by Jack Vincent on 06/11/2017 at 10:51 AM

Re: “Picán Restaurant in Uptown Oakland Closing ... For Now

Thanks for all the great food. Haters gonna hate, but I had great food, great drinks and great times there for years. Sure there were misses and a couple of bad service moments, but that's the industry. Thanks for making a great place for POC's and soulful White folks to get their grub on and socialize with style. You can always find a soul shack somewhere. Pican brought Black elegance and power to the center. The food wasn't cheap, but the cultural contribution was enoromous.

Posted by Ted Russell on 06/10/2017 at 1:05 PM

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