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Moving to Oakland - Any Place to Eat??????

Hi all,

Moving out of SF and to the east-end of Oakland (near the Zoo). I haven't been able to figure out the area, and in particular, I have no idea about the dining scene. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. Not looking for anything particular, pretty much the whole range of cuisine and cost would be appreciated.

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  1. Lots of Oakland posts on the board, if you do a search...also check under "Chinatown" and "Rockridge".

    One hint if you will be living near the zoo: worth checking out San Leandro places as some of them will actually be closer to you. Daimo in San Leandro would be a good start for Chinese.

    1 Reply
    1. No, there are no places to eat in Oakland. None. Never comes up on this board.

      Seriously, there's nothing much of anything out by the zoo. As for the rest of Oakland, why don't you just read this board on a regular basis and learn?

      4 Replies
      1. re: Ruth Lafler

        I'm actually a daily reader of this board (more of a lurker than a regular poster though). Should have been more specific as to location I guess, I was hoping for some info on my immediate neighborhood. I don't even know where the grocery store is!!!

        Were actually happy to be out in the east bay, as it will be much easier to try all of the Oakland/Berkeley places I continually read about here.

        1. re: SoMaHound

          I think the best bet for a good market is Farmer Joe's (as opposed to Trader Joe's) which is four or five exits north on 580 (exit is Fruitvale, I think). Sort of a Berkeley Bowl copy cat with an extensive produce section, a meat counter with Niman and grassfed meats, and an interesting mix of shelf goods. If I lived near there I'd be in there regularly. There's a smaller branch of FJ's a little closer in the Laurel District (High St. exit) and a good breakfast place called ... drat, the name escapes me ... something to do with cards ... Full House?

          If you continue down Fruitvale you end up in the oft-discussed Fruitvale district. There's also a branch of Everett and Jones BBQ (the original, I think) on Fruitvale.

          I noted that there's a small farmer's market at Bayfair (a couple of exits the other direction -- 150th, I think) on Saturday until 1 pm. Pretty basic, but some good stuff there. For a more upscale farmer's market you can head north on 580 to 13 and into Montclair. There are no decent restaurants in Montclair, but the market is pretty good. Sundays, not sure of the hours.

          There's a lot of unexplored chow territory in that part of Oakland -- if you coast downhill there's some interesting looking stuff going on International in the 80-90 cross streets that might be worth checking out. Not the safest of nabes, though.

          1. re: Ruth Lafler

            A few months ago I drove down E14th / International all the way from downtown Oakland to San Leandro on the assumption that there would be some great chow finds but found nothing that hasn't been posted about here. Less than nothing: one promising-looking soul food place I already knew about and wanted to check out had closed.

            1. re: Ruth Lafler

              We've been living in East Oakland for a little over a year. We stopped, sadly, shopping at Farmer Joe's because of its labor union problems. We shop in Alameda at the market on Park Street or Trader Joe's. Nob Hill grocery is ok. Work commutes and driving in general make shopping elsewhere possible.

              We go out to restaurants in Alameda too. We love sushi at Angel Fish and the New Zealander for burgers.

              In Oakland, we love breakfast at the Full House on MacArthur. My other half is into the taco trucks in Fruitvale, but I'm not too impressed. They're better than drive through... .

        2. A quick search of the board with search term "Oakland" brings up 4607 threads:

          http://www.chowhound.com/search?item_...

          Lots of reading material!

          EDIT: Despite a lackluster dining scene near the Zoo, as Ruth mentioned, a search for "Oakland zoo" brings up 25 threads:

          http://www.chowhound.com/search?item_...

          6 Replies
          1. re: shortexact

            Yeah, but most of those are posts that describe places as being "a zoo" not near the zoo. There's not that much in San Leandro, either, although it's an option to keep in mind.

            1. re: Ruth Lafler

              Hahaha OK, I didn't actually check them carefully. Thanks for the follow-up Ruth! :-)

              In any case, OP might also want to do searches for Fruitvale and Alameda, which apparently should yield better results than "Oakland zoo" ;-)

              1. re: shortexact

                OK, I can't comment on any of these places, but maybe you can be a chow explorer and report back as you explore your new nabe.

                Restaurants within a mile of the zoo
                - Eastmont Hero 7300 Bancroft Ave Oakland (510) 430-9688
                - Sho Con Chicken Shack 9896 MacArthur Blvd Oakland (510) 562-6872
                - Dad's Bbq 10151 Foothill Blvd (510) 635-5858

                I'm wondering if that last is still open. The web is littered with references to long-closed BBQ's. I'd give them a call.

                As to stores within an area (not counting little liquor stores and corner markets)
                - Ken Market 10501 Foothill Blvd Oakland (510) 562-5302
                - Cobblers Bakery 9901 MacArthur Blvd Oakland (510) 568-3000
                - Frances Bakery 8919 MacArthur Blvd Oakland (510) 635-6728

                It seems heading to MacArthur or Foothill are the best options.

                There's more in a 2 mile radius

                Restaurants:

                - Cornerstone Cafe 600 Dutton Avenue San Leandro (510) 562-2535 Supposed to have a good breakfast

                - Paradiso Restaurant 685 Bancroft Ave San Leandro (510) 430-9212 An upscale restaurant with supposedly pizza in the Delfina class
                http://www.diningtips.com/paradiso/in...

                - Oriental Tea House 604 MacArthur Blvd San Leandro (510) 562-2828 Supposedly good dim sum

                - Sonoma's (formerly Cafe Encore) 1027 MacArthur Blvd San Leandro (510) 636-1143 Possilbly good wraps and small dinner menu.

                - Reed's Cajun Creole Restaurant 10700 MacArthur Blvd (510) 636-1512 Run by a mom and son from Louisiana. The catfish is supposed to be good as is all the creale food. Sometimes they have BBQ on the weekend.

                - Vila Cereja 1045 MacArthur Blvd San Leandro (510) 562-3916 Tapas & small plates. It is either great or horrid.

                - Tu's Deli in Keller Market 4400 Keller Avenue Oakland (415) 823-6335 Vietnamese and Thai food

                - Everett & Jones Barbeque 8740 International Blvd Oakland (510) 638-6400 Really? I'd call. This might be one of those false web addresses

                - Allan's Ham & Bacon 3901 Malcolm Ave Oakland (510) 663-7001 Don't know a thing, but it sounds intriguing, eh?

                - Rosita's Restaurant 10555 International Blvd Oakland (510) 568-1949 Don't know a thing, but you are less than a mile and a half from this section of International Avenue giving access to Mexican food joints.

                - Jerry's Beefburgers 560 MacArthur Blvd San Leandro (510) 569-7440 Mixed opinions. Probably just another burger joint.

                - Zocalo Coffeehouse 645 Bancroft Ave San Leandro (510) 569-0102 Coffee house that roasts its own beans. Supposed to be a place where parents with kiddies hang out, but a recent remodel may have created a place non-parents might enjoy.
                http://www.zocalocoffeehouse.com/

                - Fifth Wheel 898 San Leandro Blvd San Leandro (510) 635-7538 Supposedly good breakfast, large portions, reasonable prices. Basic American breakfast but you have an option of rice with breakfast.

                Stores

                - Monster Muffins & Such 9401 International Blvd Oakland (510) 568-5533 Health market but supposedly the vegan baked goods ... are.

                - Los Pericos Market 375 E 14th St San Leandro (510) 430-9500 Supposedly a good Mexican market y taqueria.

                - Loards Ice Cream & Candies 401 Bancroft Ave San Leandro Lots of positive Chowhound reports

                - Marita Sweet Potato Pie Co 600 Dutton Ave # C San Leandro (510) 562-3844 They sell at Old Oakland and a few other farmers markets too. Pretty good sweet potato pie and red velvet cake.

                - Aqua Fresh Seafoods 10823 MacArthur Blvd Oakland (510) 568-3382 There seem to be a ton of small mom and pop groceries, meat markets, produce stores in this area. This just had an interesting name.

                - Star'n Star Seafood & Meat Market 6839 Foothill Blvd Oakland (510) 569-9363

                - Well's Meat & Fish 7615 MacArthur Blvd Oakland, CA, 94605
                (510) 638-1586

                - New Zealand Specialty Meat Co 1699 E 14th St San Leandro (510) 352-1755 Interesting. Local kangaroo meat source?

                - Bit of Ireland Bakery 1268 Davis St San Leandro (510) 568-7398 Ok, it's 2.5 miles, but is sounds interesting, doesn't it?

                - Safeway Food & Drug 555 Bancroft Ave San Leandro (510) 632-2949 FYI

                That about it close by. Hope locals will post comments about the above.

                You are not that far from the Westgate Mall in San Leandro

                One place that I have been to and really liked is four miles from the zoo ...
                Farmer Joe's Produce & Market Place 3501 MacArthur Blvd Oakland (510) 482-8178

                Hmmm ... a new bagel place opened a few miles away. They seem to have just opened and don' have the address on the website. Says they water-boil their bagels
                Main Street Bagel 1099 Macarthur Blvd San Leandro, CA 94577 (510) 430-8700
                http://www.mainstbagels.com

                After that you are in more familiar and reported Oakland territory. The Saturday farmers market at Grand Lake is very good.

                Y'all report back now, y'hear.

                It will give others in your are info about what's out there. Drop a post now and then. No big production. Little topics are always nice and maybe others in your area will post additional info about the area you live in.

                1. re: rworange

                  This is a good list to start with.
                  I do remember having dim sum at Oriental Tea House. I can't recall now exactly how it was. I remember thinking it was delightfully cheap.

                  I don't remember anything bad about it. If anything, I probably told myself I had to remember this place if I happened to be in the area.

                  1. re: grocerytrekker

                    I guess the Japanese owners of Fifth Wheel are retiring soon. Don't know what that will means in terms of food. However currently you can get a chicken teriyaki omelet. Its is a tiny place and usually packed. They will make loco moco on request. I ran out of editing time before that could be added.

                  2. re: rworange

                    Let's see......Dad's BBQ has been out of business for a while. There is a branch of JJ's Fish in its place. Aqua Seafoods is another fried fish joint. Which reminds me..I haven't been to the place on Market? in West Oakland in forever. What's the name of it again? You know the place its been there forever (as long as i can remember and I grew up in that neighgborhood about 40 years ago, and it seems to take as long to get your fish)...oh, yeah Emma's.

                    Jerry's is your standard burger joint, Cornerstone cafe is standard breakfasts.

                    Zocalo's is my favorite coffee shop. Not that the coffee and/or pastries are memorable, its just an excellent place to kick back and read the paper. Great space, and great local vibe.

            2. There really isn't much near the zoo. I think the closet neighborhood with something is Glenview (Fruitvale/580). There's a few decent Chinese places and real mom and pop places but nothing like SF, even in the funky neighborhoods.

              I looked at places out there...nice area, quiet, not much dining. I'd look at a map, Rockridge/College Ave, Berkeley, Lake Marriot and downtown Oakland are reasonable detours along the way. Hwy 13 is a pretty good short cut to Berkeley and Rockridge from the Zoo.

              2 Replies
              1. re: ML8000

                As susancinsf suggested, San Leandro's actually closer than Fruitvale. There's the branch of Daimo she mentioned, a branch of Ohgane, half a dozen Hawaiian BBQ / plate lunch places. Luke's Grill is passable Greek, interesting wine list. Paradiso's the local attempt at Cal-Ital-Med, not bad. The great rib joint went out of business.

                1. re: Robert Lauriston

                  SL is closer so I guess it really depends on which way the commute runs. SF to OakZoo and Glenview/Laurel, Lake Merriott, etc. are on the way. From the South Bay to OakZoo and SL is on the way.

              2. Thanks for all the suggestions. I will report back as I explore the area.