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Oakland/ Lake Merritt area on student budget

dimsumgirl Jul 25, 2009 04:46 PM

Looking for some places that my college student daughter can enjoy within 15 mins drive of Lake Merritt area. Think cheap eats. Best bets: Chinese, Vietnamese, Lao, Japanese, Mexican but open to other ideas as well!

  1. Stephanie Wong Jul 26, 2009 12:26 AM

    To add to Robert's list

    Banh Mi Ba Le
    1909 International Blvd, Oakland, CA 94606

    Pho Oakland
    807 E 12th St, Oakland, CA 94606

    1. a
      Allfrog68 Jul 25, 2009 10:05 PM

      Couple places that are good and cheap. Pho at vietnamese spot. Also, Mexican in Fruitvale area. Check out other posts about the Mexican spot. I went there about a week ago and was really pleased. My husband and I got a pretty big dinner w/ beans and rice for $13 total, including one drink. The next door ice cream was good as well.

      Nieves Cinco de Mayo
      3340 E 12th St, Oakland, CA 94601

      Taco Grill
      3340 E 12th St, Oakland, CA 94601

      Pho Ao Sen
      1139 E 12th St, Oakland, CA

      1. Robert Lauriston Jul 25, 2009 07:17 PM

        I think all my favorite cheap Oakland places are in that zone.

        Shanghai Restaurant
        930 Webster St, Oakland, CA 94607

        Champa Garden
        2102 8th Ave, Oakland, CA 94606

        Green Papaya Deli
        207 International Blvd (at 2nd ave, Oakland, CA

        Dan Sung Sa
        2775 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

        Geta Japanese Restaurant
        165 41st St, Oakland, CA 94611

        Jalisco Cafe
        1721 International Blvd, Oakland, CA 94606

        Chef Yu's
        3919 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

        Chai Thai Noodles
        545 B International Blvd, Oakland, CA 94606

        10 Replies
        1. re: Robert Lauriston
          dimsumgirl Jul 26, 2009 03:17 PM

          I love Champa Garden. The rest of the places that wolfe, Robert, Allfrog and Stephanie mentioned are ones that I have never heard of but then I am not familiar with the area. Thanks for all the recs and particularly the links which will help us find them.

          1. re: dimsumgirl
            wolfe Jul 26, 2009 05:26 PM

            The east side of the lake may not be as inexpensive. I like Spettro. There is also ZZa's, The Cheesesteak Shop, The Burrito Shop and Holy Land. Additional places, to which I've never been, including a new BBQ joint are also there. There are always quick, cheap lunch options at Trader Joe's.

            Holy Land Restaurant
            677 Rand Ave, Oakland, CA 94610

            Cheese Steak Shop
            3308 Lakeshore Ave, Oakland, CA 94610

            3355 Lakeshore Ave, Oakland, CA 94610

            Zza's Trattoria
            552 Grand Ave, Oakland, CA 94610

            1. re: wolfe
              daveena Jul 26, 2009 07:07 PM

              Also in that neighborhood:
              The new Lanesplitter branch has been consistently excellent - I think it's better than the one on San Pablo.

              A little further west on Grand, Jong Ga House isn't super cheap, but they give you so much panchan you don't really don't need to order much to have a satisfying meal.

              I've heard good things about Enssaro, the Ethiopian place neear Jong Ga - haven't been there yet for some reason, but plan to soon.

              Other Chinatown faves:
              Ba Le for their banh canh soup with pig trotter and shrimp paste
              BC Deli for banh mi, as well as the big rice noodles with coconut milk and shredded pigskin, and the Chiu Chao-style rice cakes with scrambled egg and preserved vegetables
              Shan Dong for steamed buns with pork and vegetables, and knife-cut noodles (I like it with shredded pork and zha cai)
              Gum Wah for duck noodle soup.
              Pho Hoa Lao for spicy beef stew with noodles (pho bo kho - #26 for skinny rice noodles, #27 for skinny egg noodles).
              Delicious Food Company for egg puffs, jook
              Napolean Super bakery for egg tarts and steamed sponge "cupcakes"
              Chef Lau for pumpkin and salted egg yolk fritter, salt and pepper fish, pot stickers
              New Gold Medal for jook, bitter melon with scrambled egg
              Gum Kuo for roast pork
              Sun Sing for baked char siu bao, rice rolls with Chinese cruller

              Shanghai restaurant is probably my favorite restaurant in Oakland Chinatown:

              1. re: daveena
                wolfe Jul 26, 2009 07:09 PM

                Which one on San Pablo?

                1. re: wolfe
                  daveena Jul 26, 2009 07:14 PM

                  The Berkeley one... forgot there were two San Pablo branches, ha.

              2. re: wolfe
                Robert Lauriston Jul 26, 2009 09:44 PM

                The food's better at the Berkeley branch of Holy Land.

                Lanesplitter's the best cheap pizza in the area. There's a new branch by the lake but it's takeout and delivery only.

                Holy Land Restaurant
                2965 College Ave, Berkeley, CA 94705

                Lanesplitter Temescal
                4799 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

                1. re: Robert Lauriston
                  Stephanie Wong Jul 27, 2009 03:27 PM

                  The Lanesplitter on LakePark has stand-up table tops so one could eat in & then get a scoop of gelato from Firenze -- good for a very quick bite or two before a movie at the Grand Lake.

            2. re: Robert Lauriston
              rcspott Jul 27, 2009 02:43 PM


              I'm curious, what are some of your favorite items at the Jalisco Cafe? I'm a big fan of their generous bowls of green salsa, the pickled jalapenos on the tables, and the mixed pork/tripe platters (I'm hesitant to call it "Carnitas" cause some may flame them verbally because their not the crispy ones) available on the weekends.

              1. re: rcspott
                Robert Lauriston Jul 27, 2009 05:03 PM

                The mixed carnitas.

                1. re: Robert Lauriston
                  rcspott Jul 27, 2009 05:54 PM

                  Your my hero...

            3. wolfe Jul 25, 2009 05:01 PM

              Cam Huong, Bahn Mi and seaafood soup, 7th and International.
              Pho Ahn Dao. Pho Tai.

              1 Reply
              1. re: wolfe
                dimsumgirl Jul 26, 2009 04:16 PM

                Found it, wolfe! 280 E. 18th Street. Thanks for the rec! I don't know how to post a link but that's the address if anyone else is looking for it.

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