Extra, Extra! Read all about it!
The Atmosphere: Gorgeous details like steam-punky chandeliers, sliding Scramsburg winery doors, pressed tin ceiling and wavy glass behind the bar made the space a fun one to look around and admire. The bar area was a bell ringer for loudness but once ensconced in the booths things quieted to a level where we could converse happily.
The Dranks: There are cocktails, plenty of beers, and non-boozy offerings- such as a refreshing lemongrass cooler: perfect a hot opening evening!
The trotter and cheek fritters were nothing short of amazing, crispy on the outside and filled with piggy goodness. The favas didn’t seem to add or subtract to them, they were just sorta there, sprinkled about and the puree just didn’t seem to marry to the fritters.
The welsh rarebit was bowl moppingly good- beery and cheesy, crusty and crunchy.
The guilty fries were *not* your standard soggy sloppy carb load. The fries beneath the cheesy beer and pulled pork were crisp,crunchy and soft in the middle. The crown of pork was a soft tuft – light pulled pork? How does it happen?
The chicken was well fried and extremely lightly battered, accompanied by soft, vinegar spiked mustard greens. These greens were so good, I have thought about them at least two times since consuming them. How were they cooked so perfectly?? Inquiring minds want to know!
For a flavor punch in your face: the short ribs. Served in a smallish looking bowl, these fake out the eater into thinking, “Hey, what is this?? I ordered a main course!” They must have been slow cooked a long time, as the jus/demiglace/meat concentrated flavors had intensified to a fever pitch. The grits beneath and horseradish cream flowed together, forming another savory hit.
The lamb sausage, spinach and chick peas was infused with yummy Zatar-ish spices, adding a North African bent to the table.
With stuffed bellies we looked at the desserts and had to decline. We chatted with the owner Chris who came around to say hi and welcome everyone. Planning to return, we wished him luck with the latest in the family of food venues he is parenting and planning. There are a few more in the works, too. With this guy and his amazing team of 200+ around, Oakland is showing no signs of stopping the presses!!
The Price: $35 a head for a full belly and a drink!! Yes!
Next: I’ll be back with friends to do a potted meats only meal, and with more friends to hit the patio on a Saturday afternoon for the sausage platter and a pitcher or four!