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Food & Drink

Not Just Another Fashionable Destination

When A16 debuted in San Francisco’s Marina District in 2004, it was an immediate hit and, nearly 10 years later, it remains one of the region’s top-rated restaurants. History repeated itself in June when A16 Rockridge opened on College Avenue in Oakland. From the get-go, seats have been in high demand in the splendidly remodeled dining room, in the bar/lounge (slightly more integrated into the overall space than when Hudson and Garibaldi’s dwelled there) and at the semicircular counter around the wood-fired pizza oven. You may have thought the East Bay didn’t need another eclectic Italian restaurant with a wood-fired pizza oven. The crowds say you would have been wrong.
November 4, 2013

En Garde, Zachary’s!

To the casual observer, the sudden arrival of Pennsylvania upstart Jules Thin Crust on College Avenue earlier this year—directly across the street from Zachary’s, the East Bay’s longtime deep dish purveyor—may have seemed like the opening salvo in an all-out war for the hearts and minds of Rockridge pizza connoisseurs. But according to co-owner Heather Clapp, its presence is not intended as a bold challenge to the kingdom of Zach’s.
November 4, 2013

Sole Food

We do Mexican cuisine a disservice when we dismiss it as delicious but simplistic and spanning only a slender spectrum whose entire contents we know like the backs of our burrito-hugging hands.
November 4, 2013

Fresh Take on Classic Japanese Snacks

Onigiri are a traditional Japanese snack—a handful of rice encases a savory filling, with a seaweed wrapping for easy transport. They’re common, at least in Japan, where every convenience store sells them. But onigiri made from almost exclusively local ingredients? That’s what makes Oakland catering business Peko-Peko’s onigiri unique.
November 4, 2013

Gluten-free Gourmet

Love fried chicken? How about lick-your-fingers-clean barbecue ribs? If you were nodding your head (and no doubt you were), then you may want to take a seat at Grease Box, a tiny cafe on Stanford Street that serves up homemade Southern favorites, including buttery breads, crispy potpies, and fork-tender brisket.
November 4, 2013

Chill Out

You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone as passionate about ice cream as Scott Whidden, the Oakland born and raised masterblender at Fentons Creamery and Restaurant. He’s talking about cream; he’s talking about dairy. He’s talking about layers: of flavor, of contrast, of crunch versus creamy, and of bitter versus sweet.
November 4, 2013

Gluten-free Gourmet

Love fried chicken? How about lick-your-fingers-clean barbecue ribs? If you were nodding your head (and no doubt you were), then you may want to take a seat at Grease Box, a tiny cafe on Stanford Street that serves up homemade Southern favorites, including buttery breads, crispy potpies, and fork-tender brisket.
November 4, 2013

Miss Ollie Remembered

When Sarah Kirnon opened Miss Ollie’s in Old Oakland in December 2012, the buzz was audible.
August 30, 2013

Generally Speaking

One of the few things we know for sure about the smoky-spicy-sweet-sauced, golden-battered nuggets known as General Tso’s chicken is that the General Tso for whom it is named almost certainly existed, and that this particular General Tso was the thickly mustachioed 19th-century scholar, statesman, and military leader Zuo Zongtang.
August 30, 2013

A Touch of Kitchen Alchemy

Until we ate lunch at Juhu Beach Club, the closest I’d come to Mumbai was editing a story, for another magazine, about the Indian city’s famous street snacks.
August 30, 2013