When local favorite Bucci’s closed in September, chef Ema Kye was in need of a new job, which she has since found at Lake Merritt’s Kitchen 388. Previously the daytime restaurant fed Oakland residents Mexican/Latin-inspired fare; now it has switched gears to Kye’s more California-focused menu. "It [the Latin/Mexican menu] just wasn't hitting our mark on our demographics," said owner Phillip Thoman. "Brian Brother, the previous chef had decided to move on, and I really liked Ema’s take on cuisine, her cooking style, and her methodology on lighter fare and using the freshest and the best ingredients that California has to offer."
With that in mind, Kye created an all-day breakfast/lunch menu of eggs, toasts, sandwiches, salads and more. Kye also made a dinner menu, but Thoman decided to pause dinner for the winter months. "With the time change and colder weather, we have a lot less foot traffic around that area," he explained. "The Thai restaurant two doors down is feeling the same thing and said historically in the winter, business does drop and then picks back up in spring and summer." Thoman said the restaurant will restart dinner come spring.