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Tucked away on a sleepy lane connecting Oakland’s two most prominent thoroughfares, Broadway and Telegraph Avenue, this eatery is an unequivocally welcome exception to the trendy beer garden scene. In fact, the unpretentious restaurant is possibly the only place in the country that pulls off the collision of animal-free dining, automobile-culture worship, LGBTQ-plus safe space, and the ubiquitous craft beer. Mercifully, there’s no cruelty-free proselytizing along with your safe-space vegan chicken and waffles. “We really don’t care about trying to change people’s minds. We don’t share any weird vegan propaganda, or won’t try to get you to join some weird thing,” co-owner Silvi Esquivel assured. To that end, the fare at Hella Vegan Eats is humble and unambitious. Silvi’s childhood was in San Diego and Southern California — “a household that grew up on 29 cent hamburgers on a Tuesday” — and the ever-changing breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus at the restaurant speak to this upbringing.

— Nick Miller

Hours: Wed-Sat 11am-10pm, Sun 11am-3pm

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Price: $-$$

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