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Fun new in Oakland

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Cheesy Oysters May 20, 2008 01:47 PM

Well we are going out to dinner on Saturday with some old friends. I was thinking of trying some of the new spots in Oakland like those downtown. Not Luka's or Tamorindo but what else would you recommend? Also wondering about Camino or the new Italian place on Park--which is the closest to where we live. I love Dopo but we don't want to wait very long or get there right when they open. Last time we went out with these folks we went to Sea Salt and Chanpa Garden. Any ideas? Not quite as expensive as Sea Salt but on the new side. Yeah I keep forgetting about Woodtavern but can never seem to remember to get a reservation and they are booked.

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  1. JasmineG RE: Cheesy Oysters May 20, 2008 02:04 PM

    You might try Flora, I've had good meals there, and it's new. Pizzaiolo isn't new, but if you like Dopo you might like it too, and they take reservations.

    2 Replies
    1. re: JasmineG
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      Cheesy Oysters RE: JasmineG May 20, 2008 03:06 PM

      Yeah I like Flora and Pizzaiolo but wanted something newer or something I haven't tried before. Roberts got a great list going. Any recommendations off that one.

      1. re: Cheesy Oysters
        Robert Lauriston RE: Cheesy Oysters May 20, 2008 05:51 PM

        Camino's my favorite.

    2. Robert Lauriston RE: Cheesy Oysters May 20, 2008 02:14 PM

      More or less new places:

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      Flora
      1900 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94612

      Franklin Square Wine Bar
      2212 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

      Bellanico
      4238 Park Blvd, Oakland, CA 94602

      Mono
      247 4th St, Oakland, CA

      Camino
      3917 Grand Avenue, Oakland, CA 94610

      1. j
        Janet RE: Cheesy Oysters May 20, 2008 04:53 PM

        We ate at Levende a couple of weeks ago. The food and service are great. Not sure how new it is.

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        Levende East
        827 Washington St., Oakland, CA 94607

        5 Replies
        1. re: Janet
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          Cheesy Oysters RE: Janet May 20, 2008 08:02 PM

          That is a good idea too and not too new for me.

          1. re: Cheesy Oysters
            Robert Lauriston RE: Cheesy Oysters May 21, 2008 10:18 AM

            We walked into Levende East and found it too noisy and bar-like and the menu dubiously unfocused (Japanese, Chinese, Indian, American comfort food, French, Italian). Ended up across the street at whatever Oaktown is called now--Restaurant B?

            http://www.levendeeast.com/dinner_men...

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            B Restaurant & Bar
            499 9th St, Oakland, CA 94607

            1. re: Robert Lauriston
              Ruth Lafler RE: Robert Lauriston May 21, 2008 10:37 AM

              So what did you think of B? It was only after the only time I ate there that I found out the had a wood burning pizza oven.

              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                Robert Lauriston RE: Ruth Lafler May 21, 2008 10:47 AM

                I remember we had some nice pork belly appetizer and a good pizza. Wine prices seemed out of line with the moderately priced food, the list was short on good moderately priced bottles, particularly reds.

              2. re: Robert Lauriston
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                David Carlson RE: Robert Lauriston May 29, 2008 11:46 AM

                I did a business dinner at Levende East a couple nights ago - not noisy, but it was 6pm Tuesday, not very busy. They do have an eclectic menu, which I like as long as each style is well executed.

                It was all good, but not great. Had their Charcuterie Plate, Fried Calamari Salad, Indian Spiced Mini Burgers and Warm Potato-Bacon and Asparagus Salad. I was ready to love it all and it was all good, but not great.

                Best part was desert - warm chocolate bread pudding w/ caramel sauce.

                My vendor liked it and I'd happily go back on the company's dime, but probably not with my own money...

          2. m
            Maya RE: Cheesy Oysters May 20, 2008 05:58 PM

            Bellanico is really great, but a little noisy sometimes.

            Camino has only been open for 2 days and their menu is extremely limited for now, if that sways your opinions at all....

            1. Chuckles the Clone RE: Cheesy Oysters May 20, 2008 08:26 PM

              I really like Franklin Square. However, I've only been there mid-week somewhat
              late when the place is close to deserted and it's mostly just me and my friends and
              the cook and the waiterperson and a bottle of wine and some great food. But there
              was a report here in the last couple of days about all sorts of service issues on a
              crowded weekend. So be prepared if you go at a busy time. Even without being
              careful you can probably get out of there for less than 1/2 what Sea Salt would cost.

              Ah, here it is: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/48179...

              1. l
                lisak RE: Cheesy Oysters May 20, 2008 08:33 PM

                Bellanico is stellar, but they don't take reservations, so, like Dopo, get there early or be prepared to wait. And, as someone else mentioned, it does get a little loud in there. I can also recommend Flora - I've had lunch their twice, both times it was great. Plus, the space is so cool!

                1. c
                  Cheesy Oysters RE: Cheesy Oysters May 21, 2008 10:38 AM

                  Well I'm toying with Mono. The menu looks good and it has a pretty good rating on Yelp. I was intrigued when I found seared scallops and pancetta mashed potatoes on the menu.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Cheesy Oysters
                    Ruth Lafler RE: Cheesy Oysters May 21, 2008 10:42 AM

                    I (selfishly) hope you do go to Mono and report back -- I've been wanting to try it myself but haven't been able to corral anyone to go with me.

                    1. re: Cheesy Oysters
                      Robert Lauriston RE: Cheesy Oysters May 21, 2008 10:50 AM

                      I had a good time there and will go back. Lots of interesting, mostly moderately-priced wines.

                    2. r
                      rccola RE: Cheesy Oysters May 21, 2008 12:42 PM

                      If you're willing to go up to South Berkeley, Maritime East is wonderful and has the best hamburger ever. Pleasant adult surroundings, quiet, nice bar, easy parking, not too expensive. A super experience.

                      10 Replies
                      1. re: rccola
                        nicedragonboy RE: rccola May 21, 2008 01:03 PM

                        ditto what rccola said.

                        1. re: nicedragonboy
                          c
                          Cheesy Oysters RE: nicedragonboy May 21, 2008 02:24 PM

                          Yeah I have been wanting to try that one too. I guess I'll let my friends chime in between Levende East, Momo, and Maritime East. Thanks everybody and I'll report back.

                          1. re: Cheesy Oysters
                            c
                            Cheesy Oysters RE: Cheesy Oysters May 22, 2008 01:37 PM

                            Well we have narrowed it down to Mono and Maritime East. Anyone know which one might be quieter? Maritime has two bells from the Chron but Mono isn't rated.

                            1. re: Cheesy Oysters
                              Robert Lauriston RE: Cheesy Oysters May 22, 2008 01:44 PM

                              Neither struck me as noisy. When you reserve you might ask for relatively quiet table.

                              1. re: Cheesy Oysters
                                JasmineG RE: Cheesy Oysters May 22, 2008 02:51 PM

                                Every time I've been to Maritime it's been pretty quiet, I think that two bells from the Chron is overstating it. I like the food at Maritime a lot, but I would say that if you're looking for something cheaper than Sea Salt, Maritime isn't going to be much cheaper, if at all.

                                1. re: JasmineG
                                  moto RE: JasmineG May 29, 2008 12:48 PM

                                  'cheap' is about the last adjective I'd apply to Maritime, not that it's overpriced in any way. The quality of ingredients and prep, service, portion size for the prices are at a level I usually wouldn't expect in a quiet and comfortable setting--I find space and ambience often have a surcharge built into the prices in many of this area's eateries.

                                  1. re: moto
                                    JasmineG RE: moto May 29, 2008 01:12 PM

                                    No one said the food at Maritime was cheap, the question was whether it was cheaper than Sea Salt in dollar amounts. I agree that the food is great.

                                    1. re: JasmineG
                                      nicedragonboy RE: JasmineG May 29, 2008 11:47 PM

                                      when I go to Maritime, I feel like the portions are more significant than at Sea Salt. The Burger at Maritime East is definitely a deal tho, for $10.75 you get the burger and side of great fries.

                                      1. re: nicedragonboy
                                        Robert Lauriston RE: nicedragonboy May 30, 2008 08:40 AM

                                        Not just a burger and fries: a Nueske's bacon cheeseburger with onion rings and fries. Oddly cheap given that the other entrees are $22-25.

                                        1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                          JasmineG RE: Robert Lauriston May 30, 2008 04:55 PM

                                          Yeah, that burger is a deal, and it's delicious. A perfect meal at the bar.

                        2. k
                          klyeoh RE: Cheesy Oysters May 30, 2008 08:44 AM

                          Has anyone tried Cocina Poblana - its Oakland branch opened in Jack London Square sometime in Jan this year.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: klyeoh
                            Robert Lauriston RE: klyeoh May 30, 2008 08:55 AM

                            There's been at least one report:

                            http://www.chowhound.com/topics/492093

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