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The Hottest New Restaurants in the East Bay All Have One Thing in Common

They’re helmed by people of color. Here are five open (and forthcoming) spots we’re lining up for. 

 

Editor’s Note: This is one of many stories San Francisco is publishing over the next month as part of the June 2018 East Bay Issue. To read stories as they become available online, click here.

READ MORE: Why the restaurant scene of tomorrow will look a lot like Oakland today

Dyafa
Reem Assil’s new waterfront restaurant focuses on a wide swath of pan-Arab cuisine, including many specialties of the Levantine region. Look for fish served over caramelized onions and rice, the sweet cheese pastry known as kanafeh, and, at lunch, the shish tawook: a chicken-kebab wrap so delicious that it feels like an injustice to put it in a category as prosaic as “chicken wrap.” 44 Webster St. (Near Embarcadero W.), 510-250-9491

Reem Assil.

Photo: Luke Beard Photography

Utzutzu
Opened in April, the newest jewel in Chikara Ono’s collection of consistently excellent Japanese restaurants is a seven-seat sushi bar across the border in Alameda, in the hidden-away upstairs spot previously occupied by cult favorite Yume. The $100 prix fixe is about as good a deal as you’re likely to find in the world of high-end sushi. 1428 Park St. (Near Santa Clara Ave.), Alameda, 510-263-8122

Brown Sugar Kitchen
For anyone who has sat down for a plate of chicken and waffles at Tanya Holland’s West Oakland breakfast-and-lunch spot, the chef’s southern-inspired comfort cooking needs no introduction—except to say that the Uptown location will be bigger and, potentially, even better. When it opens this fall, it will feature dinner service and a full bar. 2295 Broadway (Near W. Grand Ave.)

Bombera
Named after the Spanish word for a female firefighter, Dominica Rice-Cisneros’s long-awaited Cosecha spinoff is slated to open in the old Dimond Firehouse in early 2019. Fire will play a central role on the menu, too, in the form of a wood oven and a mesquite grill, which Rice-Cisneros will use to infuse a healthy dose of smokiness—the “secret ingredient” in Mexican cooking, she says. The prospect of a better-than-ever version of Cosecha’s achiote chicken has prompted friends to say to Rice-Cisneros, “Oh my God, you’re going to be the Mexican Zuni.” She plans to try her best. 3455 Champion St. (Near Lincoln Ave.)

FOB Kitchen
This wife-and-wife pop-up finally has a brick-and-mortar location, in the old Juhu Beach Club spot in Temescal, due to open this summer. Established favorites among chef Janice Dulce’s riffs on classic Filipino dishes include pork-adobo fried rice, longanisa hash, housemade Spam, and at least a couple of different kinds of lumpia. 5179 Telegraph Ave. (At 51st St.)

 

Originally published in the June issue of San Francisco 

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