Modeled after traditional dim sum service, State Bird Provisions lets patrons use the sense of smell and sight to choose their dishes, with cuisine brought in on a trolly for viewing. Each item is creative and innovative, with dishes like sweet corn and chive pancakes, kimchi pork belly with tofu and duck liver mousse with almond biscuit. The space is rather small, yet cozy with an open concept kitchen, and friendly staff.
Got a craving for some authentic deep dish pizza? This hip, fresh joint has food of tantalizing tastes to satisfy even the most jaded pizza enthusiast. Try the Mediterranean chicken pizza, or try the vegetarian pizza, which will have you converted in no time. Little Star also offers thin crusts, which are, honestly, just as good as the incredibly taste-infused deep dishes for which they are famous. With minimalist decor and a blaring jukebox to boot, Little Star will have you hooked.
While the mythical and much-hyped liqueur after which this establishment is named is not served here, many equally potent concoctions are. Specialty drinks, such as the Perfect Pear and the Ginger Rogers, seem to contain pure alcohol, and even a standard margarita packs an unbelievable wallop. If you're looking for something to help mitigate the effects of a strong drink, then ditch the regular bar peanuts for Absinthe's bar snacks. This bar offers bread with a smooth fig spread, croque monsieur and more. The menu changes daily, but any antipasto platter of cured meats is sure to please, as will the particularly rich duck confit. You can enjoy your meal in the main room or at a cafe-style table on the sidewalk, but if you're looking for a quieter spot, book a table in the private dining room.
Located in the heart of the chic Rockridge area, Wood Tavern is arguably one of Oakland's favorite restaurants. Saying that they have pretty good dishes is a vast understatement. The menu changes frequently but might include dishes like seared duck breast, steaks and freshly made pastas. While the restaurant tends to crowd up, especially during peak hours, an airy breeze (when weather permits) and a friendly staff help to cultivate a casual atmosphere. Equipped with a full cocktail menu and over 70 wines, you can even stop in just for an after-work drink and leave satisfied.
Blue Bottle Coffee takes its name from the first coffee house ever opened in Central Europe: The Blue Bottle. Like its name, the company practices old world coffee-making; you won't find any grande soy pumpkin spice lattes at this establishment, which prides itself on brewing coffee for people who actually want to taste their freshly roasted coffee. The establishment has now been operating for over ten years and has several cafes on the west coast. This Oakland shop on Webster Street was opened in 2009 in a beautiful brick warehouse that was build in 1923. Coffee-lovers can stop into the bright and cheerful space to indulge in some freshly pulled espressi or brewed coffee and snack on the gourmet pastries also on offer.
Yoshi's is not just a place where you can catch mind-blowing jazz, but also a sushi bar with an excellent food. Eager music lovers pack the restaurant and the Jazz House on performance nights. It showcases the best talent and boasts of high tech acoustics in the Bay area. A full cocktail menu is available with items like sushi, appetizers, salads and desserts. The attire is causal and the atmosphere jazzed up. It has a top-notch restaurant that serves Japanese food, and is open for lunch and dinner.
The Grove Heyes is brimming with character and soul. This lovely neighborhood coffee shop is a great place to relax and unwind in comfortable, easy-going atmosphere. The cafe is self-service style, and you can select your item from the blackboard of specials or pick from their menu. With comfort food favorites like Chicken Pot Pie, Cheese steak and Grilled Sandwiches; it's a nice hang-out spot, especially pleasant if you get a seat at one of their huge windows overlooking the street. Don't miss out on their specially roasted coffee selection.
This up-scale coffee shops serves up their special blends to office goers looking for their morning dose of coffee or a pick-me up. A good place to chill or get some work done, as they offer free Wifi as well. Serving up freshly roasted coffee blends since 1993, the cafe has it's loyal customers. Try their nice selection from the Mocha Java to the Dark Sumatra for a distinctive cup that'll wake you right up. They also serve light snacks and pastries if you want to grab a bite to eat.
The Blue Bottle Coffee Company at Linden Street is less cafe and more kiosk, but that shouldn't in any way deter anyone craving a steaming hot cuppa from visiting. The tiny ten-by-ten stand offers customers authentic, organic blends that are sure to send true connoisseurs to true caffeine heaven—be sure to try Freeman's Three African's Blend, or then the Yemen Sana'ani espresso. Sip on a piping hot coffee and watch the world go by at this friendly place.
Peach ginger, spicy mango, vanilla rose and banana chocolate chunk; these are just a few among the plethora of delectable flavors which you can sample at Smitten Ice Cream. This small little parlor hidden in a corner satisfies San Franciscans everyday with their unique concoctions. Fresh ingredients, natural flavors and seasonal fruits are their specialty. If you have your creation in mind, let them know and they will create it for you; and what's more you can sample the first scoop! Do visit them for an experience of a lifetime.
Located inside the Inn at the Opera, Pläj Scandinavian Restaurant & Bar touts itself as the only restaurant of its kind in the city. The cuisine is a fusion of Californian and Scandinavian fare created by renowned chef and owner, Roberth Sundell. The atmosphere is sophisticated and trendy with plush lounge seating, industrial style lighting, dark wood paneling and crisp white table linens. Notable menu items include their braised ox cheek, poached lobster and cured salmon. Be sure to make reservation as this establishment is quite popular.