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Bakesale Betty's (Uptown) WTF?

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jsteingarten Jul 6, 2011 01:38 PM

Bakesale Betty's has a sign up saying that they are closed indefinitely with a reopening date TBD. Anyone know what's going on?

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Bakesale Betty
5098 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

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    Oakland Barb RE: jsteingarten Jul 6, 2011 02:06 PM

    Are you talking about the Telegraph and 51st ST shop?!

    1 Reply
    1. re: Oakland Barb
      Robert Lauriston RE: Oakland Barb Jul 6, 2011 02:13 PM

      Telegraph and 51st is Temescal. Uptown is the new location at Grand and Broadway.

    2. drewskiSF RE: jsteingarten Jul 6, 2011 04:03 PM

      adding link.

      i've grabbed a sandwich @ Porky's / Plum a few times in the last month or two and there never was a line at BB 2 so maybe business wasn't going well.

      haven't been to this location, but never had a great sandwich at the original. always (4 of 4) dry chicken. coleslaw was sometimes OK, other just bland and oily.

      the fried chicken sandwich @ Gregoire's is much better executed

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      Bakesale Betty
      2228 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

      7 Replies
      1. re: drewskiSF
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        lmnopm RE: drewskiSF Jul 6, 2011 04:14 PM

        Temescal wasn't the same after this one opened.

        1. re: lmnopm
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          lmnopm RE: lmnopm Jul 6, 2011 10:00 PM

          From their FB page on 30 Jun - this might explain the suddenness.

          We're thrilled to announce a brand new addition to the Bakesale Betty Family! Baby George Camp was born at Alta Bates Hospital an hour ago weighing in at 6 lbs., 8 oz. He surprised us with an early arrival, but everyone is healthy and over the moon for the girls to have a baby brother! Stay tuned for photos... We can't wait to introduce him to you. ♥

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          Bakesale Betty
          5098 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

          1. re: lmnopm
            t
            TopoTail RE: lmnopm Jul 6, 2011 11:41 PM

            I went to the original location on a Friday a couple of weeks ago for the first time in about a year. The line was way down the block and the sandwich was every bit as good as in the past. The lemonade/granita was also a real treat.

            1. re: TopoTail
              Mission RE: TopoTail Jul 7, 2011 01:39 AM

              Bakesale Betty's has a sign ?!

              That would be a first!
              I thought she was anti-sign?

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              Bakesale Betty
              5098 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

              1. re: Mission
                c
                Celery RE: Mission Jul 7, 2011 08:23 AM

                It's a piece of paper in the window, that replaced the other piece of paper in the window with their hours. I appreciate the Uptown location so I don't have to stand in line for my ginger cookie fix.

                1. re: Celery
                  drewskiSF RE: Celery Jul 7, 2011 08:35 AM

                  I do like her cookies even if her sandwiches have failed (for me).

                  1. re: drewskiSF
                    r
                    redrover RE: drewskiSF Aug 11, 2011 10:23 AM

                    Bakesale Betty Uptown (or Downtown) at Broadway & Grand has reopened, just from 11-2, Tuesday-Friday.

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                    Bakesale Betty
                    2228 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

        2. Robert Lauriston RE: jsteingarten Sep 7, 2011 04:44 PM

          Inside Scoop reports that to avoid spreading themselves too thin the Uptown space will now be open Tuesdays and the original space Wednesday through Saturday, 11am to 2pm. They hope to extend the hours in the spring.

          http://insidescoopsf.sfgate.com/blog/...

          5 Replies
          1. re: Robert Lauriston
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            lmnopm RE: Robert Lauriston Sep 7, 2011 09:07 PM

            I hope whatever the real scoop is ("Inside Scoop" or not), I hope something improves soon. I was at the original within the past couple of weeks, at opening time, and I had soggy-ish chicken and slaw with no spicy bite at all. The quantity of chicken was a lot smaller than in the past. My parents (when they recently visited) had a similar experience, and this is one of their favorites when visiting town. I am also distressed that I can't get a pie anymore. Without the apple pie, I am a lot less inclined to go altogether. I have also been distressed that over the past several months, I've shown up (at either location) to find it closed, with modified hours.

            So, I hope whatever it is, something happens. I loved the chicken sandwich, and I loved the pies. Now, I like the sandwich, but I won't drive across town to get one, and I can't get a pie.

            1. re: lmnopm
              JasmineG RE: lmnopm Sep 7, 2011 09:15 PM

              Yeah, what in God's name is going on there? Those are stunningly limited hours, especially considering that the original used to be open from something like 10-7.

            2. re: Robert Lauriston
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              dordogne RE: Robert Lauriston Sep 7, 2011 09:40 PM

              When I went by the Temescal location last Saturday morning, I was told that new hours for Temescal would be Wednesday-Thursday 11am to 2pm, Friday and Saturday, 7 or 8am (can't remember which) to 2pm. Another casualty of the limited hours is that their crumbly, gargantuan, goodie-studded scones will only be available on Fridays and Saturdays. I haven't had the chicken sandwich there for well over a year--they became overextended by huge demand and quality control went out the door. Staff is still friendly and obliging but Alison is rarely there to keep things running smoothly, and opening the second site stretched things further still. Hope they don't suffer a Yogi Berra fate: Nobody goes there anymore; it's too crowded.

              1. re: Robert Lauriston
                asianstamp RE: Robert Lauriston Sep 7, 2011 10:09 PM

                Their explanation really doesn't make sense. So they are paying rent on two locations yet they are working on severely limited hours? How do they make a profit to pay the rent and employees?

                1. re: asianstamp
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                  shanghaikid RE: asianstamp Sep 7, 2011 10:15 PM

                  maybe the point is not to make any profit this year. letting costs continue to cancel out accrued profits.

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                Eat.Choui RE: jsteingarten Sep 8, 2011 01:38 AM

                It would be fantastic if Bakesale Betty make one of their locations strictly a bakery with a stocked display case full of goodies like they used to. Dude, I miss being able to go in and get a lamington or a slice of pie or banana bread or ginger scone. Then again, maybe it's a good thing that they are going in another direction because I used to drop $$$ on their baked goods alone. But I really do miss the lamingtons.

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                Bakesale Betty
                5098 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

                1. Cindy RE: jsteingarten Sep 6, 2012 11:53 AM

                  Uptown location is closed.

                  http://www.bakesalebetty.com/location...

                  http://insidescoopsf.sfgate.com/blog/...

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: Cindy
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                    ML8000 RE: Cindy Sep 6, 2012 01:56 PM

                    "These days, that location (the original) is opening at noon and closing by 1:30pm, five days a week (Tuesday through Saturday)."

                    1. re: Cindy
                      singleguychef RE: Cindy Sep 6, 2012 03:19 PM

                      I feel Bakesale Betty brought this on to themselves by not building customer loyalty, creating more frustration with its inconsistency. To me, it always felt like they didn't care about their patrons because they knew people would still stand in line for their chicken sandwich.

                      It's a real strange business model, IMHO. They started out with such interesting variety of pastries and baked goods and then focused on just a few items. Then opening another location only to work only a few days. Someone told me that they made their money through catering and was using the Uptown location as a baking center to prep their sandwiches.

                      To me, I feel like they're destroying their "brand." I don't eat deep fried stuff so I never got their fried chicken sandwiches, but always would want a scone or sometimes the fresh strawberry shortcakes. But after a few mis-fires in walking all the way there and finding it "closed" I've pretty much given up on them.

                      1. re: singleguychef
                        drewskiSF RE: singleguychef Sep 6, 2012 03:31 PM

                        from the Diablo link in the SFGate story
                        "And most importantly... look for apple pies and chicken pot pies to return to the menu this fall!"

                        and Ike's is going to be taking over the East Bay. another sandwich shop i don't fully understand the popularity of
                        http://www.diablomag.com/D-blog/Diabl...

                        1. re: singleguychef
                          Robert Lauriston RE: singleguychef Sep 6, 2012 03:42 PM

                          Not building customer loyalty? They sell 300 to 500 sandwiches in an hour and a half five days a week.

                          From what I've read, they imagined that the second location would let them do something different, not that they'd just be doing the same thing in two places.

                          1. re: singleguychef
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                            ML8000 RE: singleguychef Sep 6, 2012 04:15 PM

                            I don't know about destroying their brand but opening for only 1.5 hours a day, 5 days, is a really odd way to do business. Seriously, if you like their stuff, you only have a 1.5 hour window. That's just not realistic imo. Thus I haven't gone for quite a while. If they have a loyal following good for them perhaps they should change their name to Fried Chicken Sandwich Betty.

                            1. re: ML8000
                              Robert Lauriston RE: ML8000 Sep 6, 2012 04:27 PM

                              It's not that they want to be open for only an hour and a half! The customers are driving that. The BB staff make all the food they can, open the doors to a line down the block, and the stuff flies out until it's gone. They're victims of their own success.

                              1. re: Robert Lauriston
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                                Spatlese RE: Robert Lauriston Sep 6, 2012 04:35 PM

                                As far as the fried chicken sandwiches go, that may be true, but their offerings used to be far more extensive than they are now. And they weren't selling sandwiches to the morning crowd back when they were still open that early, so it's not a question of running out of fixings early for the lunch crowd. I'm happy for their success, as Alison and Michael are perhaps 2 of the nicest, sweetest people I've ever met, but yeah, that 1 1/2 hour business window, along with their severely-scaled-back menu, means that I haven't set foot in the place in a year or more.

                                1. re: Spatlese
                                  singleguychef RE: Spatlese Sep 7, 2012 09:44 AM

                                  Totally agree!

                                  1. re: Spatlese
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                                    BAnders RE: Spatlese Sep 7, 2012 10:18 AM

                                    Also completely agree--I miss their pumpkin bread and ginger cookies (and pies for that matter) but cannot bring myself to stand in the sandwich line to obtain any baked goods. Happy for their success, but do wish they would open a tad earlier, even if just on Saturdays.

                                    1. re: BAnders
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                                      sundeck sue RE: BAnders Sep 7, 2012 11:40 AM

                                      I don't think you have to stand in the sandwich line to get baked goods.

                          2. c
                            chocolatetartguy RE: jsteingarten Sep 6, 2012 04:38 PM

                            What kind of pies is Betty making these days? I was liking the unusual fruit combination pies at The Bread Workshop. They have a new baker who has put off making fruit pies and now they close at 5 instead of 8 so can't go there after work.

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