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This Hit Oakland Restaurant Just Closed. It’s About to Reopen as a Testament to Its Owner’s Dominican Roots.

Chef Nelson German says alaMar Dominican Kitchen is the restaurant he’s wanted to open for a long time

Chef Nelson German plating a dish of plantains at an event at his bar Sobre Mesa Visit Oakland/Alex Jauregui
Paolo Bicchieri is a reporter at Eater SF writing about Bay Area restaurant and bar trends, coffee and cafes, and pop-ups.

The East Bay is about to get a big serving of the food fare that made In The Heights sing. AlaMar Kitchen & Bar, the nine-year-old Oakland destination for seafood boils and powerful drinks from chef Nelson German, closed on June 19, but there’s good news on the horizon for the space: According to an Instagram post, German will open alaMar Dominican Kitchen in the same location, on June 30. The new name brings a menu of Dominican fare, including braised oxtail and cocktails, including mamajuana and morir soñando, an orange juice and milk drink originating in the Dominican Republic.

The restaurateur grew up in New York’s Washington Heights, well before his stint on season 18 of Top Chef, and wrote in the post that this remodel will let guests feel like they’re “stepping into my kitchen in the Heights.” The menu is years in the making as German wanted to open a Dominican restaurant in the “right venue” for a long time; he writes the dishes are all items his mom, grandma, and Aunt Maritza cooked while he grew up in New York. “Welcome home!” German wrote in the post.

Quit stealing Sriracha from Señor Sisig

The Huy Fong Foods Sriracha shortage is in no way news at this point, leading many to seek alternatives. Yet, in the ever-expensive Bay Area, some fans are nabbing the $29.99 bottles from beloved local mini-chain Señor Sisig. “They literally disappear,” Senor Sisig’s operations manager Mariel Edwards told SFGATE. The condiment usually sits out for customer use, but at locations in San Francisco, the rooster sauce keeps going missing — a spicy iteration on the tragedy of the commons.

Two Bay Area Starbucks take down Pride decorations

In the wake of boycotting at Target and Anheuser-Busch InBev over LQBTQ-focused products, it looks like some Starbucks locations are avoiding the issue altogether. The San Francisco Standard reports locations in Sunnyvale and Pleasanton have taken down Pride decorations. Starbucks spokesperson Andrew Trull denied the allegations, calling it a “misleading and false assertion.” Still, at both recently-unionized shops, employees told the outlet their managers cited either no-decoration policies broadly or a need to adhere to brand guidelines as reasons why they weren’t allowing for pro-queer decor.

Inner Sunset cafe celebrates five years in style

Hugo Street’s go-to for gleaned wine and lavender lattes Yo Tambien Cantina is celebrating its fifth birthday on June 24. From noon to 8 p.m. the Tacos Oscar team will work the plancha and dish up mushroom mole tacos alongside Yo Tambien’s micheladas and jammy egg bowls.