Anchor CEO explains why he sold the brewery and kept the distillery
Explaining some of his rationale for selling the historic local brewery Anchor to the large Japanese brewery Sapporo for $85 million, Anchor CEO Keith Greggor reveals he’s betting on craft spirits over craft beer. Anchor distilling wasn’t a part of the deal with Sapporo, but instead reached a trademark licensing agreement and lease agreement to retain its name and independence. Anchor’s distillery has been growing about 30 percent more in terms of revenue than the brewery, Greggor notes, calling the craft beer category fragmented by comparison. The distillery will likely relocate from its current location inside the brewery, he adds.
Thistle Meats now available for pick-up at Hopscotch in Oakland
Thistle Meat’s charcuterie and locally sourced cuts of lamb, beef, pork, and chicken are now available for pick up in the East Bay. The downtown Petaluma-based butcher shop reopened in May under chef/butcher Travis Day, and is now partnering with Oakland’s Hospcotch for a meat pick-up program. In fact, Hopscotch, owned by executive chef Kyle Itani, owns Thistle Meats along with Day, who was previously sous chef at Hopscotch. Customers can call up or email Thistle to place an order and pick it up at Hopscotch.
Project Juice opens first East Bay location
Project Juice, purveyors of smoothies, juices, and other such healthy foods, is opening its latest location at 1911 Fourth Street in Berkeley this Saturday, its first foray into the East Bay. From 11 a.m.to 2 p.m., the shop will give away free 10 oz juice samples while supplies last, free smoothies to the first 20 customers, and from there, they’ll donate all proceeds to the Berkeley Public Schools Fund.
Norcina, a new cafe from Parlor 1255, open in Waterfront Plaza
Norcina is now open at 50 Francisco Street in the Embarcadero-adjacent Waterfront Plaza, and fans of Kaitlynn Bauman’s existing cafe, Parlor 1255 in nearby Levi’s Plaza, will know that’s good news for anyone working in the area. Norcina is now serving breakfast including bombolini, an Italian doughnut stuffed with pastry cream, plus sandwiches and salads at lunch and homemade gelato.
Rockridge Italian favorite Belotti expanding to Piedmont Ave
Rockridge’s well-loved Belotti Ristorante e Bottega, a Northern Italian institution from owners Michele and Joyce Belotti, is expanding to Piedmont Avenue’s recently shuttered Grégoire space. A sign (written in Italian, naturally) announced the arrival, and indicates that fresh pasta will also be for sale to take home.
Japanese-Italian fusion restaurant now open in North Beach
A new North Beach restaurant is bridging the gap between Japanese and Italian cooking: Pesce e Riso at 1224 Grant Ave. Proprietor Joe Lin, who hails from Shanghai, noted similarities between the different cuisines while in Italy, and he gained experience cooking Japanese food at restaurants in Vancouver, where he went to art school, eventually owning his own restaurant there, Capilano Sushi.
Happy Uber Ice Cream Day
Uber is winning customers with the effective method of ice cream bribery: It’s their 6th Uber Ice Cream Day tomorrow, Friday August 11. Riders can open the Uber app (between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.) and select UberICECREAM: “Request” it, and if riders/ice cream enthusiasts are lucky, they’ll be “matched,” and an Uber ice cream truck will head their way with enough free ice cream for five people (grab friends, or don’t, whatever).