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Guidebook for Oakland

Catherine
Catherine
Liittyi 2017
Catherine

Guidebook for Oakland

Food Scene
Hidden in the middle our local residential neighborhood, this place is a great place to go to if you're super hungry and just want to quickly walk over and eat REAL GOOD food. Slowly over the years, this place has become a very popular dining hotspot in the evenings and weekends. Reasonably priced for about$15/entree.
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Champa Garden
2102 8th Avenue
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Hidden in the middle our local residential neighborhood, this place is a great place to go to if you're super hungry and just want to quickly walk over and eat REAL GOOD food. Slowly over the years, this place has become a very popular dining hotspot in the evenings and weekends. Reasonably priced for about$15/entree.
Favorite cafe that's hidden amongst our fellow residents. This is my go to quiet spot for studying. The staff are sweet. This place is very comfortable to study for long hours and not overly crowded (yet). Wifi is available. Also conveniently adjacent to the laundromat. They offer tea, coffee and typical mornings pastries/snacks.
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Haddon Hill Cafe
504 Wesley Ave
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Favorite cafe that's hidden amongst our fellow residents. This is my go to quiet spot for studying. The staff are sweet. This place is very comfortable to study for long hours and not overly crowded (yet). Wifi is available. Also conveniently adjacent to the laundromat. They offer tea, coffee and typical mornings pastries/snacks.
Perfect place for brunch. Generally everything on the menu is well made. There's a really nice biergarten out back that's filled with plants. For one second, you might forget that you're in an urban area. They also offer a variety of drinks (beer, ciders, etc) For brunch days (Saturday and Sundays) get there early, otherwise its a long wait (up to an hour).
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Portal
1611 2nd Avenue
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Perfect place for brunch. Generally everything on the menu is well made. There's a really nice biergarten out back that's filled with plants. For one second, you might forget that you're in an urban area. They also offer a variety of drinks (beer, ciders, etc) For brunch days (Saturday and Sundays) get there early, otherwise its a long wait (up to an hour).
Know that iconic scene at the end of Pixar's movie Up? This place is the inspiration. If you're not into famous spot, do come here for the ice-cream and food. Its pretty good!!!
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Fentons Creamery
4226 Piedmont Avenue
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Know that iconic scene at the end of Pixar's movie Up? This place is the inspiration. If you're not into famous spot, do come here for the ice-cream and food. Its pretty good!!!
In my opinion this is the best boba stop in the East Bay. They have the best popcorn chicken that I've had. This is the original location before the expansion of this brand to other cities around the Bay Area. Boba, is this thick jelly thing that gets added to an assortment of flavored tea/drinks. It originates from Taiwan and is a super popular drink amongst all cultures in the Bay Area.
Mr. Green Bubble
4299 Piedmont Avenue
In my opinion this is the best boba stop in the East Bay. They have the best popcorn chicken that I've had. This is the original location before the expansion of this brand to other cities around the Bay Area. Boba, is this thick jelly thing that gets added to an assortment of flavored tea/drinks. It originates from Taiwan and is a super popular drink amongst all cultures in the Bay Area.
Looking for the BEST burger? Surprisingly, this place has the BEST burger in the whole Bay Area in my opinion. No other place compares to it. Strangely, this place is not known for burgers. But you gotta try it!!! If not, try any of the other dishes and I'm sure you would be satisfied. This place serves casual French food. http://www.chezmamansf.com/
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Chez maman east
1401 18th Street
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Looking for the BEST burger? Surprisingly, this place has the BEST burger in the whole Bay Area in my opinion. No other place compares to it. Strangely, this place is not known for burgers. But you gotta try it!!! If not, try any of the other dishes and I'm sure you would be satisfied. This place serves casual French food. http://www.chezmamansf.com/
Great for brunches along with an amazing view of the Pacific Ocean!! Also, they have the best complimentary (free + unlimited) popovers to accompany your breakfast. Only offered in the weekend.
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Cliff House
1090 Point Lobos Ave
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Great for brunches along with an amazing view of the Pacific Ocean!! Also, they have the best complimentary (free + unlimited) popovers to accompany your breakfast. Only offered in the weekend.
If you're looking for a delicious, quick and easy bite on a budget, check this place out. Well known for its Vietnamese sandwiches. This is best of its kind in Oakland. Sandwiches are about $3.50 each.
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Cam Huong Restaurant
702 International Boulevard
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If you're looking for a delicious, quick and easy bite on a budget, check this place out. Well known for its Vietnamese sandwiches. This is best of its kind in Oakland. Sandwiches are about $3.50 each.
Want to buy fresh seafood from where all the top + expensive restaurants get their catch? Then you gotta go here. Depending on the season and fishermen, they may have flash-frozen salmon from Alaska, fresh Dungeness crabs, and fresh Abalone, etc
Pillar Point Harbor
Want to buy fresh seafood from where all the top + expensive restaurants get their catch? Then you gotta go here. Depending on the season and fishermen, they may have flash-frozen salmon from Alaska, fresh Dungeness crabs, and fresh Abalone, etc
If you're looking for southern food, especially, fried chicken and waffle, STOP BY THIS RESTAURANT!! The food here is very well made and tasty. What I mean by well made is that the chef had put in a lot of thought in how the food is made. The food is simple yet each component in the dish has a distinct flavor that harmonizes with the other. The restaurant outweighs many other restaurants in the Bay Area specializing in southern food. Hidden in the middle of a residential neighborhood, this place is easy to miss.
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900 Grayson
900 Grayson Street
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If you're looking for southern food, especially, fried chicken and waffle, STOP BY THIS RESTAURANT!! The food here is very well made and tasty. What I mean by well made is that the chef had put in a lot of thought in how the food is made. The food is simple yet each component in the dish has a distinct flavor that harmonizes with the other. The restaurant outweighs many other restaurants in the Bay Area specializing in southern food. Hidden in the middle of a residential neighborhood, this place is easy to miss.
One of my favorite bakeries in the whole Bay Area and GREATER Bay Area. This place makes the one of the best bread. Everytime I stop by in the Napa Valley, I always make sure I stop by this bakery to pick up some bread. Here are some must-tries: - English Muffins - Pain au Levain If you get there early in the day (before 8am), you can pick up a bag of day old bread/pastry for $3. Its a great deal, when the bag contains six $4 croissants!!! This place doesn't get much tourist traffic. Its usually bustling with locals.
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The Model Bakery
1357 Main Street
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One of my favorite bakeries in the whole Bay Area and GREATER Bay Area. This place makes the one of the best bread. Everytime I stop by in the Napa Valley, I always make sure I stop by this bakery to pick up some bread. Here are some must-tries: - English Muffins - Pain au Levain If you get there early in the day (before 8am), you can pick up a bag of day old bread/pastry for $3. Its a great deal, when the bag contains six $4 croissants!!! This place doesn't get much tourist traffic. Its usually bustling with locals.
My favorite bakery in the Bay Area. If you're looking for really well-made pastries, go here!! This place is secluded in the Berkeley Hills adjacent to the Claremont Hotel. The baker was educated in France and so all the concoctions here is French-like. For example, the croissant here is completely folded in butter and well baked such that the interior is soft, springy yet tasty and the outside is crisp. Get here before noon otherwise they tend to run out of goodies!! Croissants here goes for about $4.
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Fournée Bakery
2912 Domingo Avenue
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My favorite bakery in the Bay Area. If you're looking for really well-made pastries, go here!! This place is secluded in the Berkeley Hills adjacent to the Claremont Hotel. The baker was educated in France and so all the concoctions here is French-like. For example, the croissant here is completely folded in butter and well baked such that the interior is soft, springy yet tasty and the outside is crisp. Get here before noon otherwise they tend to run out of goodies!! Croissants here goes for about $4.
A little Japanese restaurant along Piedmont Ave is my go-to when it comes to good quality yet not overly priced sushi!!! Mind you the table and space inside is very small. If you'd like to dine there, expect a long wait unless you're there early like 10:30/11am
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Geta Japanese Restaurant
165 41st Street
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A little Japanese restaurant along Piedmont Ave is my go-to when it comes to good quality yet not overly priced sushi!!! Mind you the table and space inside is very small. If you'd like to dine there, expect a long wait unless you're there early like 10:30/11am
I'm so glad to have found my new go-to ramen house!! The menu here is simple which is best for me because I loath the idea of too many choices especially when they all look good. Here the ramen selection is between chicken or pork, then you choose your size. The broth here is really good and the portion is just right. The ration of meat: broth: noodles: other ingredients is also really good (unlike many other ramen places). Sadly, this is not a secret amongst locals, so expect a line especially during dinner time
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Marufuku Ramen
4828 Telegraph Ave
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I'm so glad to have found my new go-to ramen house!! The menu here is simple which is best for me because I loath the idea of too many choices especially when they all look good. Here the ramen selection is between chicken or pork, then you choose your size. The broth here is really good and the portion is just right. The ration of meat: broth: noodles: other ingredients is also really good (unlike many other ramen places). Sadly, this is not a secret amongst locals, so expect a line especially during dinner time
Love seafood?? You gotta visit this place!! But make sure that you're ready to get your hands dirty. Everything is ordered by the bag here, boiled in spices, garlic and butter. No utensils are provided. Although you do get a bib to prevent any spillage on your clothes!
The Boiling Crab
71 Curtner Ave
Love seafood?? You gotta visit this place!! But make sure that you're ready to get your hands dirty. Everything is ordered by the bag here, boiled in spices, garlic and butter. No utensils are provided. Although you do get a bib to prevent any spillage on your clothes!
Essentials
This is my favorite grocery store in the whole Bay Area. Why? It offers just about any produce you can think of, perhaps one of the 20 apple varieties, or exotic fruit from Asia like durian? Not only that, this place has long been serving organic goods before it became popular. Also if you're craving for something in your country, perhaps this place has it like Vegemite (Australia), Wanner biscuits (Austria), etc.
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Berkeley Bowl
2020 Oregon Street
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This is my favorite grocery store in the whole Bay Area. Why? It offers just about any produce you can think of, perhaps one of the 20 apple varieties, or exotic fruit from Asia like durian? Not only that, this place has long been serving organic goods before it became popular. Also if you're craving for something in your country, perhaps this place has it like Vegemite (Australia), Wanner biscuits (Austria), etc.
An outdoor marketplace opens every Saturday from 8am to about 2pm. Come here to buy fresh produce from local farmers. Art, florals and quick bites can also be found her. This is the hub of local activities, not to be missed! This place is situated in one of the most beautiful spots of Oakland. Located next to the Lake Merritt, Grand Lake Theatre, and shopping district.
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Oakland-Grand Lake Farmers Market
Lake Park Avenue
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An outdoor marketplace opens every Saturday from 8am to about 2pm. Come here to buy fresh produce from local farmers. Art, florals and quick bites can also be found her. This is the hub of local activities, not to be missed! This place is situated in one of the most beautiful spots of Oakland. Located next to the Lake Merritt, Grand Lake Theatre, and shopping district.
I love this supermarket!! This place is my 2nd go to after Berkeley Bowl because they have a wide variety of produce, not too mention that the quality is really good. Also, this place is my #1 go to for fresh seafood. I love it how they have small portions of everything, makes it easy to pick up something to try.
Koreana Plaza
2354 Telegraph Ave
I love this supermarket!! This place is my 2nd go to after Berkeley Bowl because they have a wide variety of produce, not too mention that the quality is really good. Also, this place is my #1 go to for fresh seafood. I love it how they have small portions of everything, makes it easy to pick up something to try.
Parks & Nature
One of the most iconic scenes of the Bay Area. This place host music shows, marathons, boat races, leisurely boat rides and also the simple day to day spot for local runners/walkers.
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Lake Merritt
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One of the most iconic scenes of the Bay Area. This place host music shows, marathons, boat races, leisurely boat rides and also the simple day to day spot for local runners/walkers.
One of the fun things to do at Tilden Park is the Steam Train. This is built by hobbyists who built a tiny version of the real steam train over miniaturized tracks. Super fun for kids, adults, and seniors. There are 2 rides: - Miniature steam train is $3/pp; family of 5 is $12 and tiny tots are FREE (http://www.ebparks.org/activities/kids/fun_rides) - MINI MINI miniature steam train is FREE
Tilden Stream Train Overflow Parking
One of the fun things to do at Tilden Park is the Steam Train. This is built by hobbyists who built a tiny version of the real steam train over miniaturized tracks. Super fun for kids, adults, and seniors. There are 2 rides: - Miniature steam train is $3/pp; family of 5 is $12 and tiny tots are FREE (http://www.ebparks.org/activities/kids/fun_rides) - MINI MINI miniature steam train is FREE
Above the museum is a 3 level public park, hidden from public view. At the garden you will be able to see sweeping views of all the areas of the Oakland landscape around Lake Merritt. Its really beautiful and FREE, so check it out!
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Oakland Museum of California
1000 Oak St
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Above the museum is a 3 level public park, hidden from public view. At the garden you will be able to see sweeping views of all the areas of the Oakland landscape around Lake Merritt. Its really beautiful and FREE, so check it out!
This is a short and quick hike in the urban city of San Francisco. It offers great view of the Pacific Ocean, monuments, and the Golden Gate Bridge
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Lands End Trail
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This is a short and quick hike in the urban city of San Francisco. It offers great view of the Pacific Ocean, monuments, and the Golden Gate Bridge
Hidden in the Berkeley Hills, this place is a wonderful to take a dip in on a hot summer day. Its free to swim in on the non-beach side and $5/pp to enter on the beach side to swim. Toilets and food is available on site during the summer.
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Lake Anza
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Hidden in the Berkeley Hills, this place is a wonderful to take a dip in on a hot summer day. Its free to swim in on the non-beach side and $5/pp to enter on the beach side to swim. Toilets and food is available on site during the summer.
Getting Around
Need to go to San Francisco or other parts of the Bay Area? Mark this spot as your favorite go-to-spot. Here the Bart runs to most of main cities in the Bay and takes about: 12 min to San Francisco Embarcadero 5 min to Oakland downtown 15 min to Downtown Berkeley
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Lake Merritt Station
800 Madison St
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Need to go to San Francisco or other parts of the Bay Area? Mark this spot as your favorite go-to-spot. Here the Bart runs to most of main cities in the Bay and takes about: 12 min to San Francisco Embarcadero 5 min to Oakland downtown 15 min to Downtown Berkeley
Sightseeing
If you're a photographer or a tourist, swing by this island in the daytime or at night. You will have an amazing view of the SF skyline here. Feel free to ask me for tips on where to go or where to take photos.
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Treasure Island
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If you're a photographer or a tourist, swing by this island in the daytime or at night. You will have an amazing view of the SF skyline here. Feel free to ask me for tips on where to go or where to take photos.
If you're feeling like an adventurous day trip, it is possible to do one day trip to the Yosemite National Parks!! Each one way is about 4hrs non-stop. Otherwise you can camp here or choose one of the glamping options that the park has to offer. Each vehicle is charged $35 for one entry or $85 for all national park visit. If you do go here, make sure your first stop is the visitor's office, the rangers here are well versed in all the hikes here and can best cater your experience to your needs. On top of that, they're the most well-informed people you'd find here regarding park and road conditions. Yosemite is well known for the: - Half Dome - Hetchy Hetchy reservoir - Tuolumme Meadows
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Yosemite National Park Road
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If you're feeling like an adventurous day trip, it is possible to do one day trip to the Yosemite National Parks!! Each one way is about 4hrs non-stop. Otherwise you can camp here or choose one of the glamping options that the park has to offer. Each vehicle is charged $35 for one entry or $85 for all national park visit. If you do go here, make sure your first stop is the visitor's office, the rangers here are well versed in all the hikes here and can best cater your experience to your needs. On top of that, they're the most well-informed people you'd find here regarding park and road conditions. Yosemite is well known for the: - Half Dome - Hetchy Hetchy reservoir - Tuolumme Meadows
Entertainment & Activities
Go here on a Tuesday, its matinee price ($6) all day! If you're going to see a popular movie, buy your ticket online before it runs out. Friday is also a good day to watch movies, because in the main theatre, they have an organ live performance prior to the movie. Btw, this place was used to be the place for Vaudeville and Silent movies back in those days. Most the aesthetics have been preserved.
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Grand Lake Theatre
3200 Grand Ave
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Go here on a Tuesday, its matinee price ($6) all day! If you're going to see a popular movie, buy your ticket online before it runs out. Friday is also a good day to watch movies, because in the main theatre, they have an organ live performance prior to the movie. Btw, this place was used to be the place for Vaudeville and Silent movies back in those days. Most the aesthetics have been preserved.
Drinks & Nightlife
A more upscale winery to visit, their wines can be found at most luxury hotels and restaurants. They're one of the wineries that have bright the Napa Valley much attention in the wine world due to their well-known wine selection especially cabernet sauvignon. Also, they're one of the few to offer complimentary wine tasting! Mind you, the price tag is pretty hight too. Expect to pay at least a few hundred for the cab. Otherwise the other wine selection is reasonably priced.
Heitz Cellar
436 St Helena Hwy
A more upscale winery to visit, their wines can be found at most luxury hotels and restaurants. They're one of the wineries that have bright the Napa Valley much attention in the wine world due to their well-known wine selection especially cabernet sauvignon. Also, they're one of the few to offer complimentary wine tasting! Mind you, the price tag is pretty hight too. Expect to pay at least a few hundred for the cab. Otherwise the other wine selection is reasonably priced.
I'm not the biggest fan of their wines, but if you're up in the Napa Valley, check out their vineyard. The architecture is beautiful and photo-worthy!! The building is completely encased by a hill along with a green roof. The fountains and bridge from parking to building is quite spectacular as well.
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Artesa Vineyards & Winery
1345 Henry Road
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I'm not the biggest fan of their wines, but if you're up in the Napa Valley, check out their vineyard. The architecture is beautiful and photo-worthy!! The building is completely encased by a hill along with a green roof. The fountains and bridge from parking to building is quite spectacular as well.
Beautiful architecture - French inspired charteau and beautifully landscaped garden. Put on your sunnies, hat and sundress/pants and make sure you're ready for some photo ops!! ;)
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Domaine Carneros
1240 Duhig Road
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Beautiful architecture - French inspired charteau and beautifully landscaped garden. Put on your sunnies, hat and sundress/pants and make sure you're ready for some photo ops!! ;)
Not the most well-known for its wines, but come check it out anyways. I love how they've turn the whole wine-tasting experience into a fun one!! For about $25 you go up the cable car and make your rounds around the building while wine tasting. When you're done with the whole wine tasting, you'll find yourself in a beautiful terrace overlooking the napa valley hills filled with vineyard AND you get to keep your glass as a souvenir.
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Sterling Vineyards
1111 Dunaweal Ln
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Not the most well-known for its wines, but come check it out anyways. I love how they've turn the whole wine-tasting experience into a fun one!! For about $25 you go up the cable car and make your rounds around the building while wine tasting. When you're done with the whole wine tasting, you'll find yourself in a beautiful terrace overlooking the napa valley hills filled with vineyard AND you get to keep your glass as a souvenir.
Interesting architecture inspired by the old castles found across Europe. It even has its own farm, moat, draw bridge and towers. Castello is known for their award winning roses and dessert wines. My favorite is the Fantasia and GEWÜRZTRAMINER!! Enjoy!!
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Castello di Amorosa
4045 Helena Highway
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Interesting architecture inspired by the old castles found across Europe. It even has its own farm, moat, draw bridge and towers. Castello is known for their award winning roses and dessert wines. My favorite is the Fantasia and GEWÜRZTRAMINER!! Enjoy!!
I have yet to try this place, but I have heard from my wine connoisseur friend that this is the place to go to for some high caliber wine in the Valley!! :]
Rutherford Hill Winery
200 Rutherford Hill Rd
I have yet to try this place, but I have heard from my wine connoisseur friend that this is the place to go to for some high caliber wine in the Valley!! :]