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East Bay Favorite Chinese Restaurant Closes After 50 Years

Newark’s Jade Palace is calling it quits on December 21

A storefront.
Jade Palace in Newark will close on December 21.
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Paolo Bicchieri is a reporter at Eater SF writing about Bay Area restaurant and bar trends, coffee and cafes, and pop-ups.

Jade Palace, one of Alameda County’s go-tos for Mongolian beef for more than 50 years, will close on Thursday, December 21. The Mercury News reports the family behind the Newark restaurant lost family patriarch and co-founder Edwin Yee Wing Lee last year at 90 years old. “My dad, he was going to be 90 pretty soon, but he was still the Energizer Bunny,” Phillip Lee told the paper. “He was one of those kinds of guys who lived to work – for 50-odd years, he’d been working here every single day.”

The Old Town Center restaurant was known for more than powerfully good noodles and wontons: It was a community nexus, and every day since the announcement the tables have been full of well-wishers and friends. It was Phillip’s grandfather who immigrated from China to open a restaurant in Oakland, and Edwin opened Jade Palace in the back of what was called Ike’s Bar in 1970. “We will miss all these people,” Phillip said. “They’ve been coming here for so long, they’re like family.”

Entertainment permitting to relax in 2024

Today could be the day Mayor London Breed and the Board of Supervisors make it easier and cheaper for restaurants and bars to host shows and performances. According to the San Francisco Business Times, the “Just Add Music” or JAM permit program that emerged during the pandemic is on its way back, waiving fees for Limited Live Performance Permits ($562) or Fixed Place Outdoor Amplified Sound Permits ($792). City Hall weighs in on streamlining the permitting process on Tuesday, December 12.

Longtime Berkeley restaurant set to close

After 10 years of service, Longbranch at 2512 San Pablo Avenue will close on Saturday, December 16. In an Instagram post, the team wrote that the business never returned to pre-pandemic levels and is now hoping to connect their current staff to new jobs. “It’s been a great ride,” the post reads.

Anarchist potluck pops up in Oakland

The Bay Area Anarchist Coffeehouse, not a coffee shop in the traditional sense but a roving potluck party with an open mic, will take over Oakland’s Abolition Comix on Saturday, December 16 from 1 to 5 p.m. In an Instagram post, the collective let fans know to bring something to eat or drink; proceeds from the event go to the Arab Resource & Organizing Center (AROC).