It took six years, but Jack London Square’s Bocanova is back with a major facelift. The restaurant reopened on April 10 at 1111 Broadway in downtown Oakland with its ever-popular chocolate croissant bread pudding and a host of new breakfast and dinner options including mezcal palomas by night and banana bread by morning. Design firm Arcsine joined owners Rick Hackett, Meredith Melville, and Martin Ladera to bring the restaurant back from its extended hiatus. The more than 6,000 square foot space includes two outdoor patios and an espresso bar with pastries to-go for morning commuters.
Inside, there’s a casual bar space for brunch and parties and a cozier dinner section with booths. The color palette, which includes turquoise, coral, and teakwood, and aesthetic are meant to invoke cultures throughout Central and South America. To tie it all together, Cameron “CAMER1sf” Moberg painted a vibrant mural of a winged woman on the wall. Justin Phanksom of Tea Bella Cafe is working on his cheesecakes at the newly reopened restaurant, too. The new Bocanova is open Monday through Saturday 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Here are all the Bay Area James Beard Award media nominees
The NorCal region cleaned up in the James Beard Media Award’s list of nominees. The roster of Bay Area nominees includes Lisa Morehouse for her show California Foodways in audio reporting, Soleil Ho for their work at the San Francisco Chronicle for the Craig Claiborne Distinguished Restaurant Review Award, and the Chronicle itself for its food coverage in a general interest publication. California Soul: An American Epic of Cooking and Survival by Keith Corbin and San Francisco-based Kevin Alexander is also nominated in the literary writing category.
Wolfgang Puck brings massive catering outpost to the Bay
Austrian and Angeleno cooking wizard Wolfgang Puck will open a branch of the aptly named Wolfgang Puck Catering & Events at 1080 San Mateo Avenue in South San Francisco. The San Francisco Business Times reports the 9,240-square-foot space will house the tremendous company’s Bay Area first location after an attempt at opening in 2019. The catering arm of Puck’s empire opened in 1998 and serves nine major urban areas in the country.
Rockrdige Trader Joe’s employees seek to unionize
The first Trader Joe’s location in California voted to unionize on April 20, making the 5727 College Avenue location a historic one. Easy Bay Nosh writes that this vote makes the store the fourth shop to join the Trader Joe’s United union which formed in 2022. Workers claimed the Oakland store is subject to corporate surveillance, issues with rats, and anti-union “grilling” by management.