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The Governor Just Signed a Historic Fast Food Worker Protection Bill Into Law

Plus the San Francisco Giants hired a sommelier and more food news

AB 257 supporters for fast-food workers caravan through Orange County. Getty Images
Paolo Bicchieri is a reporter at Eater SF writing about Bay Area restaurant and bar trends, coffee and cafes, and pop-ups.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 257 into law on September 5 to ensure better protections for fast food workers throughout the state. The bill gained approval from the California State Assembly at the beginning of 2022 and the California Senate also passed the bill at the beginning of September. Numerous outlets have covered the comprehensive legislation, but the Mercury News points out that the bill “promises to give more than a half-million fast food workers more power and protections.”

The bill, which was opposed by restaurant owners who alleged it could result in price hikes for themselves and customers, creates a Fast Food Council composed of fast food workers; employers’ representatives; and state officials. The council will set “minimum standards for wages, hours and working conditions” and could increase the minimum wage, though no higher than $22 an hour. The bill was approved 21-12 in Sacramento, and hours later the bill passed to the governor. Newsom says the bill will shore up California’s economic health. “Today’s action gives hardworking fast-food workers a stronger voice and seat at the table to set fair wages and critical health and safety standards across the industry,” Newsom said in a statement Monday.

The Giants just hired a master sommelier

Evan Goldstein, a master sommelier who, at 26 years old, was the youngest to pass the test at the time, is a lifelong San Francisco Giants fan. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Goldstein will lead a massive expansion of the wine at Oracle Park — for both players and customers. The Giants also claim to be the first baseball team to serve wine at a ballpark, namely Candlestick Park in 1977.

Coffee pop-up returns to 24th Street

Sunset Roasters’ owners Philip and Sara Roliz opened La Ventana in the actual window of Donaji for just a few weeks at the beginning of August. Now they’ve announced on Instagram they’ll be back for good as of September 14, Wednesdays through Saturdays.

90-year-old Redding Chinese restaurant closes out of the blue

Jeannie Lim, who co-owned her family’s restaurant, Lim’s Cafe, alongside her brother and two sisters, told SFGATE the last day of service will be September 6. She said selling the restaurant to local restaurateurs Jeff Garrett and Lon Tatom, who own Jeff’s California Cattle Company and Lumberjacks, was not an easy choice. The new owners have not confirmed plans for the location.

Berkeley’s Raising Cane outpost canceled

A spokesperson for super popular chicken finger chain Raising Cane confirmed to SFGATE that the 2580 Bancroft Way in Berkeley location is no longer being built. The company says the location wasn’t the right fit, but the plan remains to open in Berkeley as soon as possible — just in a different location.


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