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Diablo Dish: Jack's is Back

Pleasant Hill hotspot gets a facelift; burgers and wings in Concord; Livermore restaurant shuffles; Day of the Dead dinner in Oakland; and more Dish.



After a Brief Refresh, Jack’s Will Be Back in Pleasant Hill

It took roughly ten days, but when Jack’s Restaurant and Bar (near the movie theater) reopens Friday, October 25, the nine-year-old Pleasant Hill staple will have a new look as well some new menu items—including the popular breakfast burritos.

And FYI, there are three other Bay Area Jack’s, with the closest one in Newark and the two others on the Peninsula—just in case you get a sudden hankering far from Central County.



Courtesy of Sajj Mediterranean

Sajj Mediterranean in San Ramon

A promising new lunch spot is landing in San Ramon as Sajj Mediterranean launches the first East Bay outpost of its fast-casual concept. Located in the Shops at Bishop Ranch retail center, Sajj’s grand opening is Friday, November 1, and it should be popular: The first 50 people in line get a free entrée, and it’s 50 percent off orders all day long—plus free samples of chocolate hummus and cinnamon chips.




Change is Constant at Todos Santos Plaza

With the addition of two more chains to Concord’s central plaza—BurgerIM and Fire Wings—the flavor of Todos Santos continues to shift from independent restaurants to corporate operations.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing, as chain restaurants are, in general, more consistent than mom-and-pop shops, but we’re losing some of what made Todos Santos Plaza special. Of course, it’s still a great place to enjoy a warm fall evening, and there are plenty of independent places to eat and drink (Lima and the Hop Grenade top the list), so the invasion of corporate logos shouldn’t keep anyone away.


One Proof Eludes Noodle Theory, But Two Others Pass the Test

Noodle Theory Provisions on San Pablo Avenue in Oakland has closed, but those who have come to love Moraga resident Louis Kao’s ramen and savory broth in Moraga and Rockridge need not fret—those two locations are still open for business.

Noodle Theory Provisions was the largest of the three locations, but after three-and-a-half years, there just wasn’t enough steady business to keep it going.


One Door Closes, and Another One Opens in Livermore

Rock House Sports Pub and Grill has been serving up its sport bar food and drink since 2013—it was the Rock House Deli before that—has served its last burger and beer.

On the other side of the coin, Bar Quiote will be starting its run next to Story Coffee on First Street in the near future. And since “quiote” refers to the stalk of the maguey plant, it’s a safe bet that Bar Quiote will have mezcal on the menu.

In Aztec times, the maguey—which blooms just once in its 30-year lifespan (and then promptly dies)—was the source of pulque, the favorite drink of Aztec warriors and kings who believed it was both a health drink and an aphrodisiac. No word on whether pulque will be on the menu, however.



Berkeley City Club / Trevor Johnson

Chocolate and Coffee Will Help Preserve Julia Morgan’s Legacy

Famed architect Julia Morgan—the first woman to graduate from Cal with a civil engineering degree—designed and built the Berkeley City Club, which became an official Berkeley landmark in 1975.

Morgan, of course, also designed Hearst Castle in San Simeon and countless other notable buildings in California and elsewhere, and the Berkeley City Club Conservancy’s goal is to honor her legacy.

The Chocolate and Coffee Faire at the City Club (from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.) on Sunday, October 27, will raise money for the Conservancy through the tastings, silent auction, and raffle, and visitors can also enjoy live music, demonstrations, and lectures at a cost of $35 ($25 for children under 12).



Calavera / Stephanie Amberg

Day of the Dead? At Oakland’s Calavera, it’s a Week-Long Celebration

It all starts Wednesday, October 23, with the special Calavera Día De Los Muertos menu on offer, plus an elaborately decorated restaurant and special cocktails. Note, please, that no pumpkins will be harmed in this celebration, as the Day of the Dead is a markedly different holiday than Halloween and is designed to honor those who have passed on—not frighten the ones who are still here.

If you can’t make it on the 23rd, not to worry. The Día De Los Muertos menu will reappear Sunday, and be available through Sunday, November 3, along with the decorations and other surprises. And if you want to get the full experience, make a reservation for Friday, November 1, when all the stops will be pulled out.




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