Restaurants in Oakland
The retro diner Hopscotch puts a Japanese spin on hearty American dishes. Take the soba ragù, with buckwheat noodles, braised pork, Manchego, and shiso. BART station: 19th Street/Uptown Oakland
At Duende, chef Paul Canales channels his Basque heritage into pintxos and paellas in a whimsical setting (colorful murals; fence posts as floorboards). BART stop: 19th Street/Uptown Oakland
Set in an 1896 building with original mosaic floors, Desco is known for its Italian standards, including house-made-pasta dishes such as lamb-cheek pappardelle. BART stop: 12th Street/Oakland City Center
Arrive early on Tuesday afternoons for the fried chicken stuffed with herbs at Miss Ollie’s. The day’s special at this airy, Cali-Caribbean spot goes fast. BART stop: 12th Street/Oakland City Center
Proof that Oakland has NoCal’s buzziest restaurant scene? Its new nickname: Brooklyn West. Honoring Alice Waters’s ethos is Ramen Shop, owned by three Chez Panisse alums. Creative noodle soups spotlight homegrown produce such as Meyer lemons and chanterelles. BART stop: Rockridge
San Francisco’s hottest pizza joint has expanded with A16 Rockridge, which turns out chewy pies from a hand-built oven. We love the Montanara Rockridge—lightly fried dough, smoked tomato sauce, burrata, and basil. BART stop: Rockridge
Meat-centric small plates reign at Box and Bells, the latest from chef James Syhabout of Michelin-starred Commis. Try the country pork rillettes and blood pudding poutine. BART stop: Rockridge
Designed to resemble a traditional Italian trattoria, Marzano is housed in a white-stucco building with a terracotta-tile roof. Inside, glass demijohn light fixtures hang from exposed wooden beams, and an ebonized bar runs almost the entire length of the room.
A spare, albeit highly innovative, restaurant on a nondescript block of Piedmont Avenue (“across the street from Blockbuster,” notes the restaurant’s website).
Founded by Russell Moore, a former chef at Chez Panisse, this restaurant has an open kitchen that cooks using a fireplace hearth and a wood-burning oven.
The heritage hardware store sign still hangs beside this 83-seat pizzeria, where the chef is an alumni from the Chez Panisse kitchen. Worn wooden floors and exposed brick match the restaurant’s simple Italian food.
On Oakland’s restaurant row, in the Temescal neighborhood, this tapas bar serves authentic small plates from Catalonia—pa amb tomàquet; patatas bravas—accompanied by an all-Spanish wine list.
A pared-down pizzeria with an endless array of toppings (sausage, potato, and egg, to name a few).