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Restaurant Reviews for Oakland


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posted on September 29, 2017
Ordinaire
review by Barbara Haimes

This Grand Lake–neighborhood wine bar and shop is where the cool kids like to hang and talk natural wine with the young, very passionate staff. The 15 wines by the glass change almost daily, as most are from small producers or from small cuvées, like the “orange” sauvignon ...Read the full review

posted on September 29, 2017
À Côté
review by Barbara Haimes

This small restaurant in Oakland’s upscale Rockridge neighborhood boasts possibly the Bay Area’s most eclectic wine list. Locals come for the Mediterranean-focused small plates and wine recommendations from the knowledgeable staff; industry folks and some wine-geek regulars end their days at the bar, where Jeff Berlin has ...Read the full review

posted on October 13, 2016
Prizefighter
review by Erik Tennyson

After stints at Bourbon & Branch and Beretta in SF, Jon Santer crossed the Bay in 2011 to open Prizefighter in Emeryville. The drinks lean toward brisk refreshment rather than spirituous weight, perfect companions to the large outdoor patio and the East Bay’s fog-free afternoons. Start with a Oaxacan ...Read the full review

posted on June 3, 2015
Bay Grape
review by Luke Sykora

In August 2014, husband-and-wife team Josiah Baldivino (former wine director at Michael Mina) and Stevie Stacionis (who handled communications for Laura Maniec of New York’s Corkbuzz Wine Studio) breathed additional life into Oakland’s already-bustling food and drink scene by opening Bay Grape, a delightfully personal store a block ...Read the full review

posted on October 15, 2014
Homestead
review by B.H.

Homestead could be Exhibit A in a thesis arguing that Oakland really is the new Brooklyn. Hip and homey at the same time, this very personal restaurant from youthful chef-owners Fred and Elizabeth Sassen is a long, narrow room in an old building with floor-to-ceiling windows. An open kitchen ...Read the full review

posted on May 15, 2014
Ordinaire
review by Luke Sykora

Bradford Taylor opened Ordinaire while working on his PhD in English at Berkeley, studying the concept of taste in early 20th-century European novels. He modeled the store on the Parisian caves á manger, wine shops that also serve food and drink—establishments Taylor frequented back when he was working ...Read the full review

posted on September 17, 2013
Tribune Tavern
review by Lou Bustamante

This looks (quite intentionally) like the kind of establishment where the gritty newspaper reporters of old would shed the tensions of daily deadlines amid the cast iron and stained wood. Thankfully, Tribune Tavern refrains from getting too shticky—beverage director’s Paul Christensen’s drinks avoid expected tropes, opting ...Read the full review

posted on September 17, 2013
Ramen Shop
review by Lou Bustamante

Ramen Shop is the brainchild of three Chez Panisse alumni—Jerry Jaksich, Rayneil De Guzman and Sam White—who wanted to give a local and organic twist to ramen. The food may get much of the attention, but the cocktails are some of the most interesting and wellcrafted around. ...Read the full review

posted on September 17, 2013
Duende
review by Luke Sykora

Paul Canales cooked at Oakland’s Italian mecca Oliveto for 15 years before leaving to put together a place of his own. The result, Duende, found a home in a cavernous, rough-hewn space in Oakland’s burgeoning Uptown neighborhood. Here, he focuses his attention on Spanish cuisine—dishes like paella ...Read the full review

posted on September 17, 2013
A16 Rockridge
review by Luke Sykora

Like its sister restaurant back in San Francisco, the new A16 outpost in Oakland’s ever-trendier Rockridge neighborhood is all about Southern Italian wines, from the powerful, savory aglianicos of Campania and Basilicata to the mineral whites of Italy’s western coast. Only here, the focus is just as ...Read the full review

posted on November 11, 2011
Plum
review by Barbara Haimes

At Plum, Daniel Patterson’s Oakland outpost, servers and cooks may wear black and multiple dining parties may share the long wooden tables, but like its forbearer Coi, this jewel box-sized spot serves food that is both pure and ingredient-driven. The compact Modernist menu is divided into primordial themes ...Read the full review

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