Monday, October 22, 2012

MLB Postseason and Happy Hour

Lucky you: the SF Giants pushed it to Game 7 and it falls within happy hour. Here are some sports in town to catch the game and get discounted libations.

Ben ‘n Nicks
$3 off pitchers, $1 off cocktails
5612 College Ave., Oakland
(510) 923-0327

 Beta Lounge
$3.5 pints, $5 cocktails
2129 Durant Ave, Berkeley
(510) 845-3200

Pyramid Brewery
$3.5 pints, $10.50 pitchers and $3-$6 appetizers
901 Gilman St, Berkeley
(510) 528-9880

Solano Cellars
½ off wine by the glass
1580 Solano Ave., Albany
(510) 525-WINE

$1 off draft beers, $5 well cocktails, $2 off wine by the glass, food specials
1300 10th St., Berkeley
(510) 527-0099

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Weekend Eats & Drinks, 5/30/12

Jack London Square looks to capitalize on First Fridays traffic by hosting Jack's Night Market. Featuring Oakland crafts, artisans, designers, performers, musicians and food vendors, the night market runs from 6 to 10 P.M. Friday. Get a free ride from First Fridays in Uptown to Jack London on the B shuttle. Saturday, North Berkeley holds its annual Chocolate and Art festival from 10 to 5 P.M. in the Gourmet Ghetto. Admission is free though chocolate tasting tickets are $1 each. Try specialties like chocolate goat cheese truffles, chicken mole, picante habanero chocolate chunk gelato and more. The family-friendly event includes a chalk art contest where guests are invited to create their own sidewalk masterpieces for judging at 4 PM. Sunday from 11 to 1, Three Squares hosts a fundraiser brunch at Pauley Ballroom, UC Berkeley. Tickets start at $22 and include admission to hear Bi-Rite Market owner Sam Mogannam deliver the key note and a farm-fresh meal with live jazz. Bring some extra cash for the silent auction and raffle drawings that include a day with a Napa Valley winemaker, a private cooking party, a catered lunch for your office, restaurant gift certificates and more. Three Squares teaches cooking and nutrition to at-risk families. Jack's Night Market Jack London Square, Oakland Chocolate and Art festival Shattuck and Vine, Berkeley Pauley Ballroom, UC Berkeley 2475 Bancroft Way, Berkeley

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Weekend Eats & Drinks 4/5/12

Before your Easter brunch, spend Saturday drinking for a cause.

Pyramid Alehouse in Berkeley hosts Ales for Autism from 1 to 4 p.m. Tickets are $20 and get you unlimited tastings of Pyramid's beers and food pairings, with 100% of proceeds for Ales for Autism.

Across town starting at 11:30 AM, Triple Rock Brewery in downtown Berkeley hosts its 10th annual Firkin Festival benefitting the Alisa ann Ruch Burn Foundation. Tickets are $20 and get you a commemorative glass and 4 pours. Additional pours are $4. The event celebrates cask (firkin)-conditioned ales from local breweries like Marin Brewing, Moylan's, Oakland Brewing, etc.

Lastly, Rock Wall Wine in Alameda will host a release party for its 2011 Grenache Rose on Wednesday. Tickets are free with an RSVP here, and $5 at the door. Tastings of rose are free, with wines by the glass for sale and food from Le Truc for purchase.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Reviewed: Marc 49 Wine Bar

Like the cities of the East Bay, local wine bars are an eclectic mix of the expensive, chic spots and the run-down neighborhood joint. A few, like Temescal's Marc 49, hit a nice balance, offering a good selection of reasonably priced wine in a happening part of town.

Located in the heart of Temescal, Marc 49 fits into the neighborhood with its art deco and shabby chic decor. Space is plentiful with comfy lounge chairs up front good for couples and small groups, and an outside patio with heaters in the back for larger parties.

The menu consists of roughly 30 wines by the glass, with about 3 or 4 choices of each varietal. The menu balances local and global wineries, which I appreciate as it lets me sample wines from other regions. The producers aren't that famous either, as I only recognized a couple local wineries (Rock Wall and Urban Legend).

Unlike other wine bars, Marc 49 offers flights where you can pick and choose what you want to taste. For $11, you can taste any 3 wines, or splurge $14 to taste 4. Most wines are available by flight, glass and bottle, so you can taste almost the entire menu. Nothing disappoints me more at wine bars than a lack of flights, or that the wine I want to try is only available by the bottle. To help guide your decision, each wine has descriptive tasting notes in the menu or you can ask the servers what they like.

Marc 49 also offers small plates and appetizers like ceviche ($8), cheese and meats ($12) and paninis ($7) to complement the wine. The food is light, so don't think of this as dinner. Rather, Marc 49 is perfect for pre- or post-dinner drinks, then grab dinner at any of the nearby restaurants like Burma Superstar or Pizzaiolo.

Marc 49
4915 Telegraph Ave., Oakland

Friday, February 17, 2012

Weekend Eats & Drinks 2/17/12

The Bay Bridge is closed this holiday weekend, but you can still find some Beer Week events in the East Bay.

Pyramid Alehouse in Berkeley hosts Beer Judging 101 Sunday at noon and 2:30 P.M. Much like wine has sommeliers, beer has grand masters. At the tasting and judging, learn how to evaluate, perceive and describe different types of beer. Tickets are $30 and include all beers and materials.

Down the road, Celebrator hosts its anniversary party and Beer Week closing event at Trumer Brauerei from 4 to 8 P.M. Over 35 Bay Area-heavy breweries will pour including 21st Amendment Magnolia and Stone Brewing Co. Tickets are $50 in advance and $70 at the door (if available), and includes tastings and catering by Jack's Prime BBQ.

Pyramid Alehouse
901 Gilman St., Berkeley
(510) 528-9880

Trumer Brauerei
1404 4th St., Berkeley
(510) 526-1160

Friday, February 3, 2012

Weekend Eats & Drinks 2/3/12

It's Super Bowl weekend, if you needed a reason to drink. Urbano Cellars celebrates its new tasting room (the old Donkey and Goat space) with a party from 1 to 5 P.M. Enjoy free wine flights and $5 glasses of wine. Free tickets avaiable via RSVP here.

Stage Left Cellars opens the first Saturdays of the month with a special bonus tasting tomorrow. Tastings are $5 and usually include latest releases from 11 A.M. to 5 P.M.

Also Saturday, Beer Revolution celebrates two years in Oakland with a one-of-a-kind revolutionary ales made just for the occasion. The party starts at noon.

Sunday, Oakland's Yoshi's is holding happy hour from 3 to 4:30 PM with $3 drafts, select $5 rolls, $1 oysters and more.

Urban Cellars
2323 B Fourth St., Berkeley

Stage Left Cellars
2102 Dennison St., Oakland

Beer Revolution
464 3rd St., Oakland
510) 452-BEER

Yoshi's Oakland
510 Embarcadero West, Oakland

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Weekend Eats & Drinks 12/21/11

Whatever you're celebrating, it's a good weekend for eating and drinking.

Friday, Local123 holds a Hannukah popup from 1 to 5 P.M. Menu includes a plate of freshly fried latkes, brisket with roasted carrots and onions, Happy Boy Farms salad and flourless coconut macaroons for $18. Mulled wine, hot apple cider and beer or wine by the glass are priced per drink. Vegetarian options are also available.

Afterward, head to Triple Rock Brewery in Berkeley for its annual Festivus. The challenge is to drink four beers of ABV above 8% and other tests of strength. The four beers include a wheat wine, scotch ale, imperial red and a wood-aged imperial stout. The seasonal beers will be available throughout the holidays.

On Christmas Eve, Oakland's Bocanova holds a 4-course crab dinner for $50 per person. The menu's not posted, but you can ask when calling for reservations, (510) 444-1233.

2049 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley
(510) 647-5270

Triple Rock Brewery
1920 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley
(510) 843-2739

55 Webster St., Oakland
(510) 444-1233