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hosting largish bbq. where to find....?

n
nbourbaki Aug 3, 2010 11:09 AM

Hi all,

I will be coming to the bay area in a few days, and almost immediately hosting a BBQ for about 40. Menu all planned, etc, but I was wondering if anyone has good suggestions on where to get a few key (but not unusual) ingredients in bulk.

leg of lamb (3-4 legs, butterflied would be nice)
figs (something like 50 of em)
15 lbs good tomatoes (not at whole foods prices if possible)

that about covers it. rest can be easily gotten in smaller quantities.

Cheers, and many many thanks.

  1. m
    ML8000 Aug 3, 2010 11:36 AM

    What city? It makes a difference.

    2 Replies
    1. re: ML8000
      n
      nbourbaki Aug 3, 2010 01:45 PM

      great point. Oakland/Berkeley.

      1. re: nbourbaki
        m
        ML8000 Aug 3, 2010 01:54 PM

        I think you have the answers here...as mentioned Berkeley Bowl (and Monterey Market) will have the tomatoes (BB will have a couple of dozen choices) and a Halal butcher, like Indus Food Center in Berkeley or Oasis Food Market in Oakland, will have lamb. Indus is super reasonable in price.

    2. soupçon Aug 3, 2010 12:04 PM

      Boneless but not butterflied leg of lamb at Costco $4.99/lb, Safeway $5.29/ lb. Both NZ imports.

      Local (Niman Ranch) butterflied but pre-seasoned leg of lamb $6.49(?)/lb. at Costco. TJ's has something similar, I think.

      I love lamb. Send me an invite ;-)

      2 Replies
      1. re: soupçon
        Shane Greenwood Aug 4, 2010 01:12 PM

        Not to nitpick, but I know that local is important to a lot of people. Niman is not necessarily local. This is from their website.

        "Niman Ranch lamb is raised on environmentally sustainable, family-owned ranches in California, Idaho and Utah."

        1. re: Shane Greenwood
          soupçon Aug 4, 2010 07:50 PM

          Local compared to NZ. And local compared to NR's pork, which may come from North Carolina.

      2. jillyju Aug 3, 2010 12:08 PM

        If you are in the Berkeley/Oakland area, I have bought leg of lamb and had it butterflied at Ver Brugge Meats on College Avenue in Oakland and been very happy with it. Tomatoes in a gazillion varieties are easily gotten at Berkeley Bowl. I would assume that figs could be gotten there as well. Prices at Berkeley Bowl are about as good as it gets for quality produce.

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        Berkeley Bowl
        2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

        Verbrugge Meat-Fish Poultry
        6321 College Ave, Oakland, CA

        2 Replies
        1. re: jillyju
          p
          peterh32 Aug 4, 2010 11:45 AM

          I second Verbrugge. And on the same block, Yasai market for the tomatoes and figs, Vino if you need wine, La Farine for the best baguette in the bay area, and Safeway across the street for your paper plates or whatever.

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          La Farine
          6323 College Ave, Oakland, CA 94618

          1. re: peterh32
            d
            Dawgmommy Aug 4, 2010 01:03 PM

            I 3rd Ver Brugge. Their leg of lamb is generally @$4.99 or so a pound, and they will de-bone, butterfly, whatever you want. I would also venture to guess that their quality would be much better than Costco (eww..).

            For veg, I say the Berkeley Bowl. The parking is much better now. I always have trouble at Monterey Market, thus have not gone in a long time. Varity, quality, price, can't be beat.

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            Berkeley Bowl
            2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

        2. Melanie Wong Aug 3, 2010 01:49 PM

          I had some very good brown turkey figs and tomatoes that my guest bought at Monterey Market in Berkeley. Prices and quality are good there. For lamb legs, I would contact one of the halal butchers for local, grass-fed lamb at good prices.

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          Monterey Foods
          1550 Hopkins St, Berkeley, CA 94707

          1. p
            pauliface Aug 3, 2010 01:56 PM

            For tomatoes, if you are in emeryville on a thursday afternoon (12-6 I believe) there is a new farmer's market (on haven st between park ave and 40th).

            There's one guy who sells only tomatoes, and they are the best I've had ijn a long time.
            3 weeks ago when they were at their peak, all were $1 a pound.(while everybody else was selling for $3-$4 just feet away).
            Last week they were anywhere between $1 (cherries) and $2 (big ones), but still a steal in my opinion.

            It's the only stand with an entire table covered only with tomatoes.

            1. rworange Aug 4, 2010 10:03 AM

              What days will you be shopping as there are some flea markets that sell at really good prices. As to shopping day, the small Sunday Fruitvale farmers market has really low prices on some of the same items from the same vendors you'd find at the Berkely Saturday market. The $4 lb tomatoes sell for $1.50 and by the end of the day are marked down to $1 lb. However, it is a seasonal thing with no guarantee. If you post your shopping days I can give you some other options.

              You might give Giovani's a call. It is a little out of the way, maybe a 15 minute drive from Berkeley, but they have outrageous prices on some things. I've bought good tomatoes for as little as 10 cents a pound. I don't know how he gets his deals, but maybe if you call he can get you what you want at a good price. No meat there though.

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              Giovanni's Produce & Grocery
              1600 Liberty St, El Cerrito, CA 94530

              1. Robert Lauriston Aug 4, 2010 10:34 AM

                I like the lamb at Indus Food Center (1920 San Pablo). Costs under $4 a pound. The lamb at Oasis is similar.

                Figs and tomatoes you can't beat the farmers markets, barring that Monterey Market or Berkeley Bowl.

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                Oasis Market
                3045 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

                1 Reply
                1. re: Robert Lauriston
                  r
                  Richard C.Spross Aug 4, 2010 07:47 PM

                  For what it's worth, the meat counter at Oakland Kosher Foods carries lamb. They do lots
                  of private catering and special orders for people and probably would cut it to order.
                  I see them do it all the time.

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                  Oakland Kosher Foods
                  3419 Lakeshore Ave, Oakland, CA 94610

                2. n
                  nbourbaki Aug 4, 2010 09:00 PM

                  Many thanks you all. I think i will give ver bruge and Berkeley bowl a shot. Both very convenient for me.

                  Should be tasty.

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