Here is your list of true beer essentials in San Francisco, Oakland, and Berkeley: the bars, restaurants, and breweries that curate the most epic beer menus, employ staff who bleed amber, and take the extra step with great food pairings or an ambience that makes you feel like you just warped to Brussels.
'oakland' on Serious Eats
Downtown Oakland gets quiet on the weekends. The work week crowd, dispersed to Lake Merritt, Temescal, and Berkeley, leaves the streets more or less empty, and many of the restaurants closed. But tucked under the towering Oakland Tribune building lies a new cocktail destination, harkening back to the hard drinking, three-martini lunch days of newspaper glory.
Duende's head bartender Troy Bayless walked us through each of the cocktails—the list takes advantage of the new Oakland restaurant's extensive sherry selection, though not every drink is a sherry drink. He's eager to feature distinctive spirits and mixers—local Sutton Cellars vermouth and nocino, bacanora and artisanal mezcal from Mexico, as well as a range of sherries.
So, you want to open a café? Sounds great—but where do you start? From writing a business plan to scraping up the dough, from deciding which espresso machine is best to learning how to use the darned thing, there's so much that goes into building a successful coffee business that it can seem nearly impossible to think of everything. But Oakland, California's Food Craft Institute is offering an upcoming program designed to help new coffee businesspeople start up without burning out.
Why the focus on lagers? Though owner Adam Lamoreaux happily drinks California IPAs, "it's been done," he says. "We wanted to do something not everyone else is doing, not just bring more sand to the beach." We stopped by on a brewday to chat with Lamoreaux and watch a bit of the action.