As the anticipated opening of Salsipuedes draws closer in North Oakland, the restaurant team Jay Porter and Luis Abundis and Bradford Taylor have brought on Chef Marcus Krauss (Restaurant at Meadowood) to drive the menu of the 20-seat, "California rustic" concept. With Krauss in the kitchen, the restaurant will draw heavily on influences from California seafood and ranch life, as well as flavors from the greater Pacific Rim and new Baja cuisine.
The name is taken from a bay in Baja California just outside of Ensenada and loosely translates to "get out if you can" — a play on both the winds that trapped ships sailing North along the coast, and the area's naturally arresting atmosphere that can make it hard to leave town. Krauss, Porter and company are going for a similarly casual vibe with family-style plates and beer-and-a-grill food that evokes everything from backyard barbecues to Japanese izakayas.
After a successful run with San Diego's farm-to-table pioneer The Linkery, Porter and wife Katie Mayfield launched The Half Orange, a casual spot for burgers and sausages in Fruitvale last year. For the new endeavor, Porter will handle the beer and hospitality while Taylor, also of Oakland's Ordinaire wine bar, will cover the wine list. Abundis, owner of the Half Orange's Fruitvale neighbor/beloved ice cream shop Nieves Cinco de Mayo, will be handling the desserts and ice cream.
As for an opening date, Salsipuedes is still tracking for June, depending on those always-pesky permits and final inspections.