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Uptown/Downtown Oakland: any handmade foods to discover?

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I have a friend coming to town from Brooklyn, and the last time she was here we went to Hangar One, Blue Bottle, and a few farmer's markets. I'm trying to find cool, small handmade stuff (like Blue Chair Jams, etc) within walking distance of the 19th St. BART station (she has business downtown that week). I wanted to meet her for lunch every day and am also looking for delish, only in Oakland type things for her to pick-up. Ideas?

We're going to Bett's, Truburger, and I could use an ethnic rec. Something Vietnamese?
Much appreciated!

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Blue Bottle Cafe
66 Mint St, San Francisco, CA 94103

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  1. Pho 84.

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    Pho 84
    354 17th St, Oakland, CA 94612

    1. Downtown Oakland now (again) has a free shuttle service, so you're not restricted to walking distance. http://www.meetdowntownoak.com/shuttl...

      I'd check out the Old Oakland Farmer's market on Friday morning, and maybe have lunch at Restaurant B. The shuttle makes Chinatown accessible, too. Pho, bahn mi, Sichuan at Spices III, Cambodian at Battambang, etc.

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      Battambang
      850 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94607

      10 Replies
      1. re: Ruth Lafler

        Yeah, there are a lot more options near 12th St. BART than 19th St.

        1. re: Ruth Lafler

          If you do get to the Old Oakland farmers' market, look for Oaktown Jerk- I think last Friday was their first public offering of "East Oakland's Finest Artisan Beef Jerky." The star anise & habanero I'm thoroughly enjoying has the following ingredients: grass-fed beef, brown sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, water, garlic, fish sauce, star anise, habanero, black peppercorn. They have 5 or 6 flavors in all.

          At the same market, Dalex offers not necessarily "only in Oakland" but handmade and high-quality pickles and sauerkraut held in high regard on the board.

          Skip Trueburger in favor of the pastrami or sausage sandwich at the Trappist, they use David's Old World pastrami (Sonoma County product) and the excellent Taylor's sausages from nearby Swan's Marketplace (there's an Oakland product if ever there was one). If your friend likes Spuyten Duyvil, he or she will like the Trappist on the beer's merits alone.

          You could snack at the Farmers' Market, have a beer at the Trappist, and lunch at the excellent Battambang nearby.

          Vegan soul food at Souley Vegan and beers at Beer Revolution a bit further down Broadway would be pretty "only in Oakland" as well, though I can't vouch for the former as I find vegan soul food an unconscionable contradiction in terms.

          1. re: Pius Avocado III

            Trueburger's actually quite good in the griddled fast-food vein. I can't quite imagine going back to work after lunch at the Trappist.

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            Trueburger
            146 Grand Ave, Oakland, CA 94612

            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              The paired, $2 when ordered with lunch beer has always been relatively low in alcohol in my experience.

              On the same note, the pours at Beer Revolution are short.

              Shake Shack in the OP's visiting friend's area is in the same genre and better than True Burger, so I wouldn't pick that as a representative taste of our town.

              1. re: Pius Avocado III

                If you're the kind of person who can go to Trappist and drink one beer, maybe lunch would work.

            2. re: Pius Avocado III

              I really was not a fan of Souly Vegan, and I went into it with a pretty open mind. It was just sort of lots of greens and fried things, and not all that well done. I like the burgers at Trueburger a lot.

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              Trueburger
              146 Grand Ave, Oakland, CA 94612

              1. re: JasmineG

                Love Trueburger. I'm not interested in Vegan anything, so that's out. Is Chef Edwards any good? Never been, but love BBQ.

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                Trueburger
                146 Grand Ave, Oakland, CA 94612

                1. re: zunzie

                  Don't know about Chef Edwards, but Uncle Willie's has good brisket and amazing BBQ sauce (get the hot version). Just about everything else on the menu may be close to inedible though.

                  If you go, see if they'll sell you a bottle of the sauce. It's that good.

                  1. re: zunzie

                    Tastes in BBQ are very individual. I haven't been to see "the Chef" since he moved to the new location (the original location was the epitome of a BBQ dive). When I was last there the two best things he did were the brisket and the "famous piggly-wiggly" pork sandwich. I wouldn't bother with anything other than the hot version of the sauce.

                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/4079...

              2. re: Ruth Lafler

                I forgot the shuttle! Thanks. I'll skip B...it's ok, I'm not in love. But Battambang may be a good hit. I forgot about it.

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                Battambang
                850 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94607

              3. SF Forage puts on an "underground" market with locals handmade food items every so often on Broadway and 18th St. Mostly they do SF but I think twice a year they do Oakland.

                http://foragesf.com/market/

                1. The excellent Café 15 has jars of their jams and tomato sauce for sale near the register, I just picked up a jar of Persian carrot jam.

                  Tommy V’s hot sauce is available for sale behind the bar at Pacific Coast Brewing Co., and Tommy himself can often be found there.