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bakesale betty's rules

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I just ate lunch from Bakesale Betty's. It was great. They are so nice and generous. Amazing sandwiches: Egg salad, and Fried chicken. The chx sandwich was awesome, it had fried tender white meat and some sort of cabbage slaw with excellent olive oil on a great roll. done deal. they also gave me a complimentary baked good. maybe cuz we ordered two sandwiches and a chx pot pie for later. while I was there they were taking the pot pies out of the oven and the whole place smelled so good. I was there at 11:30 sharp and the place was filling up fast. Betty was making each sandwich to order and I could just tell how much care was going into each one. Did I mention the delicious olive oil. Apparently they serve different sandwiches each day in addition to the fried chx. Unforunately they had no soup today which was actually one of the reasons I was there, having read the CH posts about it. anyway way to go Betty!

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  1. p
    Pius Avocado III

    I, too, just had the fried chicken sandwich and was going to post...this beauty is practically football-sized. The oil-and-vinegar slaw adds bright flavor, rendering mayo etc. utterly unnecessary, and includes bell pepper, red onion and parsley in addition to cabbage. And the chicken tastes like bona fide fried chicken (bona fride?).

    Apparently, the boneless skinless chicken breast is not inherently evil after all

    1. n
      Niki Rothman

      Where is Bakesale Betty's? I need to eat this delicious food ASAP.
      PS - cross streets, if you know them, would be great.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Niki Rothman

        51st and Telegraph, Oakland, off hwy 24 if you're coming from the city. full contact info in threads further down

      2. "Betty" and her staff also deserve lots of credit for being incredibly welcoming and friendly to all of their customers even when they're really busy. No impersonal transaction here...they obviously love interacting with customers. It's one of the few places around here that reminds me of home (small-town Illinois). Of course, they don't make scones like that back there!

        1. Is there any seating or is it all take out?

          2 Replies
          1. re: SLRossi

            No seating, all takeout. I think at some point they may expand to have seating, but they're still finding their legs.

            1. re: Ace

              There are stools and a small table. Not the most comfortable, but there are usually a few people hanging out and eating in the bakery.

          2. I concur about the customer service -- now I have to go back for the chicken sandwich.

            I went for the Lamingtons, and ordered one, and then said "No, better make it two". The guy behind the counter asked why I changed my order. "Because my husband would never forgive me if they were yummy and I hadn't gotten him one."

            So, he packaged up two for me, and then gave me an extra on the house, "that I didn't have to tell my husband about" -- said with a wink and a smile.

            And they were so yummy I had to hold myself back from eating all three!

            1 Reply
            1. re: foodnut

              The pot pie is the best I've ever had. Huge chunks of fresh chicken (breast meat) and carrots. The sauce is too good. I'm afraid it must be a diet killer, but I'm not going to ask what's in it.

              Perfect for 4-5 people.

            2. Betty checks out this Chowhound board occasionally.

              24 Replies
              1. re: maria lorraine

                Hi, Betty! (And her hubby, two of the nicest people you could ever hope to meet.)

                FYI, they're making olallieberry pies now, for those interested.

                1. re: Spatlese

                  Both the rhubarb and the peach pies I've had from her are yummy, so I imagine olallieberry would be too.

                  Much as it pains me to post this, I have to put in a plug for the new slushie machines (is there a better name for these?) at Betty's. As of this week there is one full of fantastic lemonade, and the other full of strawberry. The flavor of real fruit, with just enough sugar to make it great, but not so much as to distract from the flavors of the fruit. Such a great drink on a hot summer's day.

                  Oh, and the reason it pains me to post this? Sometimes I've gone over there for a lemonade, and they have been out of it. I do not want competition for this fantastic, refreshing beverage, yet I've gotten too many good tips from this board to keep it quiet any longer!

                  1. re: jillyju

                    Betty's just added a bunch chairs and stools outside and in.

                    I still don't understand why she has no sign??

                    I asked her a year ago and she gave me a funny look !?!?!

                    I went two days ago,it was packed,yet I got in and out of there in like 3 minutes.

                    Super employees, always on the ball. (where does she find them?)

                    1. re: Mission

                      Agree with all of the above and one other treat for those who work in Oakland...they deliver lunch!!!!! You go Betty...we Luv you, your staff and your food!

                      1. re: Mission

                        I beg to differ. While we have liked everything we've gotten from Betty's, the employees are inconsistent.

                        The first time, we went there in the evening for one of their infamous chicken sandwiches only to find out that they only serve them for lunch. The man that helped us was sooo nice and felt so bad that we came all the way there (from Berkeley) for something that they didn't have, that he gave us a complimentary lemon bar. The girl who rang us up, however, was cold and impatient. From what I've read on this board, I doubt that the rude girl was Betty, although I really don't know who Betty is.

                        The next time we went, the man wasn't there, and we only got served by the rude girl who was, once again, rude.

                        The baked goods are awesome, though, and its conveniently located near Pizzaiolo!

                        1. re: chemchef

                          Why do you think her chicken sandwiches are "infamous"? I think they're great and and the worst thing I've ever heard anyone say about them is "I was expecting them to be better" which hardly qualifies them for infamous statue.

                          Infamous: ill-famed: having an exceedingly bad reputation; "a notorious gangster"; "the tenderloin district was notorious for vice"

                          1. re: larochelle

                            sorry, maybe infamous wasn't the right word... how 'bout famous?

                          2. re: chemchef

                            The man was probably her husband - he has an Australian accent, and is really nice.

                            1. re: Cindy

                              Actually, her husband is from Fresno and he has a Fresno accent. Very distinctive.

                              1. re: leoj

                                Australia, Fresno, same difference! :D

                                1. re: Cindy

                                  WRONG! Fresno fewer sheep, Many fewer kangaroos. Not sure about the accent.

                            2. re: chemchef

                              Betty is the one with the blue hair!

                              1. re: chemchef

                                Betty (whose name is actually Alison) is easily identifiable by the blue wig she wears. She always has it on, so there's not likely to be any confusion.

                                And while not every employee there is someone I'd like to get to know, I would argue that the service/generousity/deliciousness factors--when combined- far outweigh pretty much anywhere else I can think of

                                1. re: jillyju

                                  Ok, so it wasn't "Betty" that I was referring to, however, I have found other places that have equally good baked goods and better customer service. That one girl really has an attitude. If she's there the next time I go, I will probably say something. It all but ruins the experience for me. That and the fact that there is no menu and just a bunch of handwritten signs hap-hazardly posted everywhere. I find it to be unprofessional and a little confusing.

                                  1. re: chemchef

                                    I find the handwritten signs part of the charm of the place. Like it's a neighborhood corner shop that doesn't want to spend a lot on signs but willing to spend it on quality ingredients. To me, that's a plus. (As for a sign that another poster mentioned, I don't think it's always necessary for a bakery to have their name in the front. Once you see it, you know it's a bakery. I actually like the styling of the decor. Very understated and she lets her baked goods do the selling.)

                                    1. re: singleguychef

                                      I also like the handwritten signs -- it's not a restaurant! I've never been to a bakery that had a printed menu, I'm not sure why Bakesale Betty should.

                                    2. re: chemchef

                                      please do tell about other delicious baked goods. i like delicious ginger cookies and the like - even from snarling hipsters - so please also divulge some good baked goods but not so nice staff places if'n you know of any

                                      1. re: Neilo

                                        I've recently become very attached to Crixa Cakes in Berkeley... am still working my way through their menu!

                                        My favorite ginger cookies are the ones made by Chez Panisse, but since I acquired the recipe, I no longer have to go to Chez Panisse to get them. (recipe is readily available online, and makes a lot, so you can freeze the dough and cut off slices whenever you get the craving!)

                                        1. re: chemchef

                                          Have you been to Lola's on Solano?

                                          IMO, they blow all other Bay Area baked goods away.

                                          If you have service issues, be forwarned that John is taciturn and not chatty except if it is about horse racing. Some people mistake that for rudeness. He is just not the bubbly type. However, he and his wife Donna are committed to putting out the best quality product without the usual hype associated with that. They make good food period The blueberry pie at Lola's if the finest I have eaten in my entire life ... and I'm from New England. I still obsess about the perfect caramel apple they had one Halloween.

                                          I hope one service issue at Bakesale Betty's won't turn you away. They have always been super genrous and friendly. Alison and her husband are especially warm and wonderful.

                                          Like you haven't had service issues at Crixa? I love that place especially for the rolls, but they aren't exactly smiley people either. They are quiet people too and a little reticant. It is always a struggle engaging them in conversation, but it is just their personality. If anything I'd think you'd have more issues there than BB.

                                          1. re: rworange

                                            You are absolutely right! Buy one thing and ask about another and Alison and/or especially hubby are often quick to give a free taste--often a full serving.

                                            And, bad person that I am, I have been to Pizzaiolo for coffee and calm atmosphere and darted into Betty's for cake, making sure to bring enough for the worker at Pizzaiolo. Then I've sat in blissful wooden splendor in the booth or window table at P and relaxed with my treasures. Though toast and the wonderful jams (I say yet again) by Rachel at P are not to be beat, even by the cake at Betty's. Very European feel to a morning snack/breakfast.

                                        2. re: Neilo

                                          I love the baked goods at Sketch Ice Cream. Limited selection, but everything is excellent. They have delicious ginger cookies on occasion (haven't seen them recently). I love the lemon olive oil cake, peanut butter cookie and chocolate chip cookie, but it's all good.

                                          1. re: Morton the Mousse

                                            I haven't sampled a lot of Bakesale Betty's baked goods, but so far my favorites are the chewy ginger cookies, lemon bars, and the pear and ginger scones. I met Betty at the Temescal Farmer's Market and was kinda "shocked" that she gave me a full serving of cookie and scone to sample ... they were perfect with some Blue Bottle coffee. Betty also wrote down the address of her store for me and the next time I visited with my friends, she actually remembered me and gave us cookies and shortbread fresh from the oven!

                                            I think the handwritten signs is partly what gives the store its charm, besides the warm service, the hardworking kitchen staff (my friend said there were probably 10!), and the cute "tables" (ironing board) and "chairs" (crates). Hee hee, I think I will be back soon!

                                            1. re: dreamsicle

                                              I just went to Bakesale Betty's at the Temescal Farmer's Market on Sunday and was very impressed by the quality and the generosity. I walked out with double the baked goods I bought. The highlights were the ginger cookies and the excellent shortcakes (I heated them in the oven and served them with whipped creme fraiche and macerated white peaches - perfection).

                              2. re: Spatlese

                                She is *very* nice, and they had apricot pies last weekend! I didn't get one, but I might have to go back on Saturday...

                            3. They have the blueberry pie now. Run, don't walk. I cannot stress this enough.

                              7 Replies
                              1. re: JasmineG

                                The chicken sandwich rocks, but the best pie (DO NOT MISS IT) is the Chicken Pot. All other pot pies of your recollection will be superceded. My teenager actually picked up her plate and licked it clean. Let's just say she's never done that before. I suspect it is the luscious cream in the sauce.

                                When they have the figgy pudding (or date?) it is scrumptious with that hard sauce. It doesn't seem to be a huge seller but is fabulous.

                                1. re: shaker53

                                  Yes....the date pudding! It doesn't look like a show stopper, but one bite will make you a believer.

                                  1. re: IPAforBreakfast

                                    I was in Oakland yesterday, so picked up a few items at Bakesale Betty's. I still haven't had the fried chicken sandwich, but we were too full after having Lois the Pie Queen for breakfast a couple of hours beforehand. I picked up a brownie (pretty good), lemon bar (perfect in its tart/sweet interplay), and pecan shortbread (perfect and actually complex tasting). The best thing, though, was the lemon ice. It's like the best Slurpee you've ever had in your life. She is a genius with lemon. I haven't seen a slushy drink mentioned before -- is that what people mean by lemonade? Or is the slushy machine new? It was quite expensive at $3.75 for a smallish glass (10 oz., perhaps), but I wouldn't have wanted it any bigger myself.

                                    I refrained from buying a sticky date pudding, though I've had it before and thought it was fantastic.

                                    1. re: Atomica

                                      Atomica did they have peach pie? I believe they had it last year.

                                      1. re: Atomica

                                        I think the slushy lemonade is heaven-on-earth, and would have one every day if they were available. The strawberry slushy, when she has, it is good too (though it can't beat the lemon.) This week I tried her watermelon slushy, and it was the only loser so far. It had a bitter undertone that was unpleasant.

                                        1. re: jillyju

                                          This header is misleading. It should be "Bakesale Betty RULES!" I didn't read it for a long time because I thought she had rules you have to go by to get pastry.

                                2. God you are making me hungry. I love BSB! And unless you want to gain 10 lbs, do not, under any condition, try her banana bread! It is addictive!

                                  1. We received a free apple pie from BSBfor Thanksgiving. I sent my kids in to pick up a pumpkin pie on Wednesday that a friend had ordered. She was going to come to Thanksgiving at our house but unforutnately she got sick. I parked on 51st and sent in the kids to pick up the pie close to 7:30pm. My kids came back with a pumpkin pie and an apple pie! One of the owners was there handing out pies. I reconginzed him from the article in the paper in the Chronicle yesterday or Thursday. What a great way to spread the holiday spirit. BTW, both pies were fabulous.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: Cheesy Oysters

                                      When I was there Tuesday I asked if owner had had her baby; they said yes, I believe it was Nov 8, a girl named Hazel Mary. My friend and I got 1 chicken sandwich, 1 lemon bar and they gave us a free shortbread cookie -- now I wish I'd gotten one of the scones.

                                      1. re: walker

                                        Another BSB fan. :) I love the chicken sandwiches, the chicken pot pie, and the pecan shortbread cookies. The chicken pot pie is sometimes available in individual size.