Italian Homemade Company opens third location
North Beach fave The Italian Homemade Company, which expanded in 2015 to serve carbs to the Soul Cycle/Crunch Fitness crowd in the Marina, is at it again, opening a Berkeley location at 2905 College Avenue. The grocery and restaurant is known for its fresh pasta, sauces, and flat bread sandwiches that diners order to eat in or take out.
Oeste Bar & Kitchen now open in Old Oakland
Sandra Davis, Lea Redmond, and Anna Villalobos tell the East Bay Express that as women of color with deep local roots opening a bar and restaurant, they’re “a rare find.” Their project, a cafe by day and bar by night called Oeste Bar & Kitchen, opened its doors at 730 Clay Street late last month. Their menu (below) from chef Peter Jackson includes Southern and Latin American influences, with dishes like chicken and sausage gumbo and beef pastele with taro, plantain, and yucca masa. Bar manager Che Freeman, Villalobos’ son, is serving a wine, beer, and reasonably-priced cocktails. A rooftop deck with a green wall is on the way, pending permit approval.
Cambodian street food pop-up Nyum Bai crowdfunds restaurant space
Nyum Bai, a three-year-old pop-up that opened its first permanent location in Emeryville’s Public market last year, has signed a lease at its own Fruitvale brick-and-mortar space (the former home of The Half Orange), and it’s now crowdfunding its expansion on Kickstarter. Chef Nite Yun envisions a space to cook traditional street food and listen to Cambodian ‘60s rock and roll, and is well on her way to a $35,000 goal.
Khao Mun Gai craze continues
The Thai poached chicken and rice dish known as khao mun gai is gaining momentum in the Bay Area with the third San Francisco location of Rooster & Rice. The counter-service chain already serves khao mun gai variations at its Marina and SoMa locations, and it’s now open for business in the former Urban Picnic space at 125 Kearny (between Sutter and Post). Khao mun gai (AKA Hainanese chicken, a similar preparation that’s the national dish of Singapore) gained traction on the West Coast with the hit Portland food cart Nong's Khao Man Gai. Locally, it’s the centerpiece of new restaurants like Chick’n Rice in Berkeley, started last summer by the founders of food delivery service Caviar, and Hawking Bird, which chef James Syhabout (Hawker Fare) opened last month in Temescal.