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Food and Drink

When You’re in Rockridge…It’s Market Hall and Oliveto!

Chris Gulker and I did our morning constitutional walk with Lily today.

It had been a bad exercise week for us walking-wise. I was teaching one of our Payments Boot Camps on Tuesday and had to miss that day and then Thursday turned out to be all wet and drippy. Today the weather was whipping around from southerly rain to northwesterly clearing (and much cooler breezes) – quite a quick change. It felt good to log the 1.5 miles again – my body (and Lily’s too I’m sure) very much enjoyed the exercise after almost a week of cooling our heels.

Along the way, Chris and I got to talking about a couple of my favorite places in Oakland – right across from the Rockridge BART station on College Avenue. Turns out that both of us have family and friends in that area and get over to Oakland frequently as a result.

Located at the corner of College and Shafter Avenues (specifically, 5655 College Avenue) in the Rockridge district of Oakland, you’ll find Market Hall – a collection of eight individual food and flower shops including The Pasta Shop with its wonderful prepared salads and deli items along with my favorite – the Cheese Counter – one of the all-time great places to sample and buy cheese! They always seem to have my favorite cheese – Époisses – in stock at the best price around!

The Paul Marcus Wine Shop is another great shop in the Market Hall mix. If you’re looking to pick up something to take along, Market Hall is the place to go!

On the corner of the two-story building that includes Market Hall is the Oliveto Cafe & Restaurant – definitely my FAVORITE East Bay restaurant!. We had my 50th birthday party in a private room there a few (!) years ago – what a delight that was.

Chef Paul Canales knows how to delight with the special dinners he does throughout the year. (I envy Paul – he was an exec at Pacific Bell who decided the corporate life wasn’t for him and became a chef! He interned at Oliveto and has been there ever since.) We were very fortunate to be invited by friends to attend a private dinner that Paul cooked a couple of years ago – it really was an amazing experience!

Again, if you’re in the East Bay, I can’t recommend these places highly enough. They’re superb at what they do – and a delight to visit and enjoy!

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