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Jan 7, 2011 02:03 PM

Garibaldi's + Marzano = Hudson

So apparently both the half-sized Garibaldi's and the adjacent Marzano have closed, and they're re-remodeling the space back to a single restaurant:

Web site says it will open on 1/17:

5356 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

Marzano on College
5356 College Avenue, Oakland, CA 94618

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  1. In my book
    Garibaldi's + Marzano = Garzano

    Regardless, I will be interested in seeing what the menu offers. Hopefully they also address the acoustics.

    1. What a bland, boring, horrible name. I hope that the actual restaurant is better, especially since I've had some great food and some really bland and boring food out of that kitchen.

      3 Replies
      1. re: JasmineG

        I assume it's named for the nearby cross-street. Not original, but there you go.

        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

          It is, but there's already a cafe a block away called Hudson Bay Cafe for that reason. Which makes it even less original.

          1. re: JasmineG

            My husband and I thought the name was dumb. The two places are a block apart. Tell someone you will meet them at Hudson's and then hope they pick the right one.

      2. My understanding is the reboot as HUDSON is complete (old web page still up ... Grrr, how much work is it to put in a pointer to the new page).

        Anyway, I am trying to pick a place in the PIEDMONT area to catch up with a friend around 4:30 ... any reviews on the HUDSON LOUNGE? Anyone know what's avail food and drink-wise at their 4:30-6pm Happy Hour?

        8 Replies
        1. re: psb

          Hudson is on College in Rockridge, not on Piedmont.

          On Piedmont, Cesar Latino and Cato's are open all afternoon.

          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            >Hudson is on College in Rockridge, not on Piedmont.
            I mean (Greater) Piedmont area not Strict Piedmont area and certainly not Piedmont street. i.e. Not say JLS, not Lake Merritt, not International Ave, not Montclair.
            We're not walking ... the parties invovled will be on bike/car.
            I was aspiring to something a little more interesting than CATO but that's a fallback.
            Cesar may be the default plan at this point with possible relocate to ADESSO.
            But thanks for the confirmation about CL's hours.

            Any one have experience with HUDSON LOUNGE? The GARIBALDI HH in SF isnt bad.

            1. re: psb

              Commonwealth Pub?

              Adesso doesn't open until 5 and can be very crowded and noisy. On the other hand, free food until 6.

              CommonWealth Cafe & Public House
              2882 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

              1. re: Robert Lauriston

                Adesso just added lunch hours 11-3 M-Sat.

                the HH free food has recently changed from buffet style to the waiters bringing plates . . . and they don't bring that much. turn for the worse, imo.

                edit: i didn't read the whole thread and meeting @ 4:30

                4395 Piedmont Ave, Oakland, CA

          2. re: psb

            I've visited a couple of times since they open and have to say the bar is crazy busy! It's like people were waiting for months for them to reopen but they were just down for a few weeks. I guess it reflects how hungry people are for a good eating place in the area.

            The bar has a whole slew of specialty drinks now broken into an Italian opera theme, going from mild to strong drinks. The bar menu is pretty slim with things like grilled cheese and popcorn, etc., but you can order from the regular menu in the bar area. The regular menu has lots of appetizers, etc.

            The look is more Garibaldi's than Marzano, so more refined and chic, but a few bits of whimsy (dangling light bulbs from multicolored cords) to give it a casual feel. Oven in the center is still there pumping out the pizzas.

            I didn't notice any happy hour specials, so can't speak to that. But if I were you, I would get there by 5-5:30 p.m. to beat the crowds. (It seems to get busy at the bar first, then the restaurant side fills up after 7 p.m.) The bar starts to clear out after 9:30 p.m.

            To me, it seems Hudson's is trying to be like Wood Tavern on the other end of Rockridge. It's getting closer, but I like Wood Tavern still.

            Wood Tavern
            6317 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

            4214 Park Boulevard, Oakland, CA 94602

            1. re: singleguychef

              Here's a link to some photos of the place and food:

              I think the menu is interesting but I think the kitchen is still getting comfortable cooking the items because the dishes were good, but just a tad better in execution then it would be more balanced and amazing.

              For example, the duck I ordered had a lot of slices but some slices were pink and nicely cooked while others in the center was purple-ish with almost a raw look. Then the sweetbreads had a bit too much curry flavor. A little less would have been better, and less sauce may let the sweetbreads remain crispy from the pan-roasting.

              But like I saw, the place seems pretty crowded, especially the lounge.

            2. re: psb

              Oh, just reread your post and noticed you said you're looking for a place in the Piedmont area. Hudson isn't considered in the Piedmont area, but I guess you would consider it on the way to Piedmont. Maybe Adesso on Piedmont Avenue might be closer to where you're meeting your friends?

              4395 Piedmont Ave, Oakland, CA

              1. re: psb

                Ok, we ended up just meeting later and were more or less the first people to walk into ADESSO for the evening open.
                The n-judah or whatever it is called was really good. Often I find the "n-th" bite of some pates get a little heavy or tiresome, but I was fine with this to the bitter end ... and considering the bread to meat ratio, I guess you're expected to lard it on pretty thick. There was some weirdness with our primary server, but the bus fellow and another server were on the ball so it didnt lead to major problems. Usually I dont care about spacey service as long as the staff is nice, but here we didnt have that much time and it sort of affected the dining. Anyway, not worth going into more.

                The HH has indeed changed for the worse ... I dunno of the buffet-model of HH was killed due to gluttony of some patrons but in the current system we were brought two plates of stuff:
                plate 1: olives/some kind of salami/what appeared to be grana padino
                plate 2: parsnips and greens

                i only caught the tail (really the dregs) end of one of the HHs in the buffet-era and i liked the option to sample a lot more different things over the random items delivered to your table model. But the portions werent stingy, at least with two of us at the table.

                Sounds like the "bar food" at ADESSO is better than the bar food at the HUDSON REBOOT.

              2. Happy Hour- We had a red wine with too much heat and a passable sauvignon blanc ($5). Ordered the nettle/goat cheese/ yukon gold potato pizza ($10) and the burger ($10). Food took a very long time, the bartender said the kitchen was "warming up". Eventually got a nearly raw burger (ordered medium) with fries. Meat tasted fine, just a little cooler and mushier than we prefer. The pizza came out much later. It was duck confit with blue cheese, pears and nettles. Not the same thing at all. Very difficult to get the bartenders attention, then he did not know what the pizza was supposed to be (said he did not read the menu). Sent it back. Good thing we split the burger because it took an hour and a half to get three glasses of wine and a burger. Not inexpensive, not professional service, sloppy food. I understand that they just opened, but it is the same staff and a similar menu as before, so it should not have these problems.

                2 Replies
                1. re: oaktowngirl

                  By "too much heat" do you mean it was served too warm?

                  1. re: oaktowngirl

                    That's so weird, I must have gotten your bartender right after you because when I ordered the mussels pizza at the bar, he thought I wanted the duck confit pizza. So he must be ordering that duck pizza for everyone! LOL

                  2. Made it over to Hudson this past week and overall had a mixed experience. First off, they must have over booked the restaurant because the waiting area by the hostess station was backed up to the door and we were told there would be a 20 minute wait despite our 7:30 reservation.

                    The decor is and interesting mix of repurposed wood, metal and lighting along with some softer curtains, pillows, etc. It has as nice look but noise is definitely an issue as it gets loud. Also the chairs are not suitable for long periods of sitting.

                    As for the food it was hit and miss. The blood orange salad with Maine sweet shrimp was not very good. There was too much dressing, the shrimp were a little soft and mushy, and the flavors were muddled.

                    We had to ask for bread three times before it came to the table. The bread is a very nice sampling of focaccia, bread sticks and a rustic batard. It comes with a nice chunky olive tapenade

                    We had two of the pasta dishes, with the wild nettle ravioli being the better of the two. The other was the tagliatelle with crab. The crab was missing in the first dish and was replaced with a second offering that contained crab. The delicate flavor of the crab was lost to the tomato concasse and chili. The pasta was cooked well in both dishes but the ravioli was able to remain delicate and highlight the individual flavors of the dish. The tagliatelle should have focused on highlighting the crab but instead just seemed as though it would have been the same dish with or without the crab. Since we had it both ways it was easy to see that the crab brought nothing to the dish.

                    Next was the pork sausage pizza. It was good similar to what you get at Marzano. The only minus was the braised kale was burned beyond recognition by the oven and just became charred bits on the top.

                    The ravioli and pizza were the only two dishes worth reordering.

                    The real down side was the service. It was just way too slow. The salad, pastas and pizza took over 3 hours. The wait between courses was too long, the kitchen was obviously backed up. There were a lot of servers, busser, food runners and everyone seemed to be very frenetic.

                    I won't be rushing back, there seems to be a lot of potential if they get the service and kitchen issues straightened out.

                    4214 Park Boulevard, Oakland, CA 94602