Welcome to a.m. Intel, your bite-sized roundup of Bay Area food and restaurant news. Tips are always welcome, drop them here.
- The closure of the Riddler last summer stunned fans of boozy brunches accompanied by fine dining-level cuisine. But the Champagne is flowing once again in Hayes Valley: Linden & Laguna wine bar officially opens Wednesday, August 11, at 528 Laguna Street. From wine industry veteran Chris Nickolopoulos and featuring food from Pesha Perlsweig, Linden & Laguna serves 16 wines by the glass plus small plates of oysters, goat cheese-stuffed apricots, and caviar-clad clam dip and chips. As of Aug. 11, the design-heavy, Parisian-style space with seats for 24 inside and 20 outside throughout the sidewalk and parklet is open Wednesday through Sunday evenings.
- The Bay Area chef behind pop-up and catering business JusLa Eats Lala Harrison, also former sous chef at Flora, is bringing her talent for Cajun and Southern cuisine to Temescal this fall. Harrison will open Roux40, a restaurant celebrating Black heritage cuisine, Berkeleyside reports. It’s taking over the former location of Hog’s Apothecary at 375 40th Street, where Harrison will serve modern takes on classics like red beans and rice — Harrison’s version is a farro risotto with red beans, sweet potato gremolata, and charred scallion vinaigrette — in a space staffed entirely by Black women and women of color, Harrison says. Harrison is shooting for an October opening. [Berkeleyside]
- Opentable is now mapping restaurants requiring proof of vaccination for indoor dining, though the function appears to still be in the rollout phase — as of this writing, it only has 48 restaurants on the map nationwide. Theoretically, users will soon be able to view a full list of restaurants in their area with a vaccination policy in place.
- Following the recent opening of garlic noodle–centric restaurant Noodle Belly in Oakland’s Fruitvale District, KQED helpfully digs into the story of how the dish became one of the Bay Area’s most iconic, a la the Mission burrito and Dutch Crunch sandwiches. KQED traces its origins to Outer Sunset Vietnamese restaurant Thanh Long in 1973, to its spread “across culinary borders,” by local purveyors of Burmese, Creole, and Filipino cuisines, to the many current iterations of the comfort food dish proliferating at Bay Area restaurants, pop-ups, and food halls. [KQED]