And now it’s for sale
An eight-foot Japanese vase sat in the middle of Spenger’s Fresh Fish Grotto in Berkeley for more than 100 years — it was just one part of the restaurant’s quirky decor. Recently, it’s emerged that the vase was a rare, Meiji-era vase thought to be missing since it was last seen at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Since Spenger’s closed in the fall, the owners are putting a horde of decor up for auction starting next weekend, with the Japanese vase available to the highest bidder on February 17 at Clars Auction Gallery of Oakland.
High-end bubble tea to Palo Alto
Boba Guys continues expanding with its ninth Bay Area location and second Silicon Valley bubble tea shop now open at 855 El Camino Real, Suite 120 in Palo Alto. As with the other spots, this Boba Guys sports a sleek, minimalist look with white walls and pale wood furnishings, plus its usual menu of small-batch milk teas, like the popular strawberry matcha latte. There’s no seating — it’s more of a grab-and-go spot — with a much bigger kitchen in anticipation of serving snacks from Deuki Hong, the same chef behind the Asian Art Museum cafe menu.
California Restaurant Weeks start kicking off tomorrow
Up and down the state, various cities are preparing to host their annual restaurant weeks, times when diners can find special prix-fixe meals and discounts at participating restaurants. The first Bay Area restaurant week starts tomorrow: Oakland Restaurant Week, which runs from January 11-20. Participating restaurants include a few East Bay Eater 38 favorites like Reem’s, Shakewell, Duende, and Hopscotch. San Francisco Restaurant Week, meanwhile, runs January 23-31; Napa Valley Restaurant Week January 20-27; Berkeley Restaurant Week January 17-27; Alameda Restaurant Week January 17-27; and the first-ever Monterey “Get Hooked” Restaurant Week January 14-21.
Friendly debauchery reminder
Popular Polk Street bar Blur is closing for good this Saturday, January 12, which means you have just three more prime drinking nights to revel in Blurry Mojitos, espresso martinis, and obscene happy hour specials.
Health Department shuts down a pizza chain
The Domino’s Pizza at 876 Geary Street has closed due to health code violations, though the notice posted on the door doesn’t lay them out specifically. It’s possible it’ll reopen, but in the meantime, SF Domino’s fans will need to seek out one of the other three locations in the city in the Inner Richmond, Bayview, and Outer Sunset.