Way OT: Popular Food Near Campus When You were a Student

okaydo
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bearister;842854303 said:

Do any of the old timers remember a bar called Oleg's off University Avenue where you sat on couches and the like or BELLINI'S RESTAURANT & BEPPO'S COCKTAIL LOUNGE OAKLAND CALIF. on Telegraph. An old mom and pop owned a bar down by the Smokehouse called The Fern and it had shuffle board. I think mom and pop drank a bit because you would slide them a $5 bill for a beer and they would give you change for a $20. I always brought that error to their attention.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/41606952@N07/5057560419


YES!!!
http://bearinsider.com/forums/showthread.php?104981-OT-JFK-on-Telegraph-Avenue
okaydo
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ncbears;842854089 said:

Blondie's was started by the guy who owned Rasputin Records. I think the space had been Odyssey Records - where they sold classics. The first few weeks of Blondie's were an exploration. The sizes, recipes and prices varied nearly every day. I would chat with the main person making the pizzas and, at first, he felt like he had freedom to craft the pizzas, but that freedom gradually disappeared. I think Blondie's did start in 1979.


[video=youtube;fblG4erqwlU][/video]
MarylandBear
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KoreAmBear;842854170 said:

LOL I can relate to this. Food was a function of a very limited budget.


Totally agree. I still love Bongo Burger. :bravo Whenever I visit Berkeley (not often these days) I try to stop by.

While this thread brought back a lot of memories, I didn't really have the funds to enjoy the eateries around Berkeley. I always had a part-time job and lived in a rent controlled apartment, but finances were a constant worry... most of the time I hoofed it back to my apartment (lucky I found a place close to campus) to fix myself ramen/sandwich/mac&cheese in between classes and work. Even eating "fast" food was a luxury.

Btw my splurge order would be a Persian Burger, half a falafel sandwich, fries and a soda.:bravo
bearister
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Just looked at Google Street and figured out the Hanoi Dining Room was just across the gated driveway from Bongo Burger. It looks like the space has been converted to an apartment. The Hanoi Dining Room was back in the days when Willard Park was known as Ho Chi Minh Park.
Larno
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Si's on Durant (or was it Sy's?) Either way, a hamburger, fries, salad and drink for $1.25. And unlimited free popcorn. This was in the late 60's early 70's. We joked that it was so greasy that you got an itch that was best treated by Preparation H. Giant Burger was great, with burgers similar to Nations today. And the gravel cones, as we termed the soft ice cream. Bertola's for the food, as I don't drink, which seems to be the fond memory for some here. Always dark so you couldn't see the health code violations. Is that what closed them? They were still open when we moved away in the early 80's, I think. Great and cheap food..........probably more leaning to the cheap attraction.
Oski87
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Cheap beer at Manny's was key and the burrito was filling if not good. I got kicked out of there after the 1986 big game after Oski and I were dancing on the table and I poured a pitcher of beer down Oski's pants. Always a winner. Also Heildelburg with the dozen potstickers for 1.50 and cheap beer as well was good. And Kingpin as the night wore on...

Mario's La Fiesta when you were really looking to splurge on greasy food and a lot of it - but the triple was 3.95, so that was a big meal - maybe once per week.

Spengers for the cheap well drinks and lots of bread when ordering your bowl of soup ($.75 for well drinks, 2.95 for soup).

Fondue Freds when you were feeling like you needed to eat way too much garlic cheese food and wanted to feel bad the whole next day.
tabear82
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Mexicali Rose in downtown Oakland, especially for the crab enchiladas on Fridays.
Brennans down by 4th street - good irish coffees (as I recall)
OskiDeLaHoya
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For me in the early 90s it was:
- Bongo Burger
- IB Hoagies
- Burrito place that kept changing name/owners (Zona rosa?)
- Eat a pita
- Another Middle-Eastern place in Durant food court. Don't remember the real name but we called it Habibi's because that's what the Iraqi owner called everyone (Habibi: "my dear", "my love/my darling")
- Cafe Strada
SFCityBear
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KoreAmBear;842853431 said:

Besides the traditional stuff that will be posted in this thread, I remember this Musashi cart that was at Bancroft and Telegraph at the entrance to the campus. I used to get a $3 chicken donburi for lunch like every other day. Anyone remember that one?


As a senior, I had a classmate from Korea who was one of my lab partners. He had not been in the US very long and he had trouble adapting to the food. Just looking at a hamburger used to make him feel ill. Out of sympathy, we would bring him down at least once a week to the Chinese place on the corner of Dwight and San Pablo, so he did not have to eat a big slab of meat.

At the time, 1964, there was only one Korean restaurant in the entire Bay Area, Korea House, in San Francisco. So once a month, my friend would invite me out to dinner, and we would drive to San Francisco to eat Korean food. What I remember was it was all tiny little pieces of vegetables and meat, mixed together and was very spicy. It used to make my stomach queasy just looking at it. So we suffered through adapting to our cultures' foods and both of us survived. I eat plenty of Korean food now, and enjoy it.

My friend told me his older brother was coming to Berkeley to get his PhD, so he moved in with his brother, who had a lovely Korean wife, and she did all their cooking. Boy, was my friend in heaven then.
SFCityBear
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auberge;842853556 said:

Oscar's at College and Bancroft, long gone, and the Kingfish for beer once a week. Brennan's on Fourth street off University on Sunday nights, when the sorority I hashed at didn't serve dinner.


Oscar's was a one-man show, a cook in a tiny concrete block building with a fridge, a stove and a cash register. It was open until late, at least 12 midnight, as I remember. The food was all take-out. I lived as a pledge in a fraternity next door, and most of the baseball team were members, and they used to send me down for cheese dogs at night. Best cheese dogs I ever ate.
SFCityBear
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My faves were Si's for burgers, and I continued going there after they moved to Ashby and Telegraph, behind the gas station, Oscar's for cheese dogs, Larry Blake's for late night Cinemascope sandwich eating contests (I always won), LaVal's on Northside for pizza (except the year I had a girlfriend who liked their pizza, but usually made me drive to SF for pizza at Johnny Romano's, which she liked better). I remember Wilkinson's for breakfast, not with fondness, when my Japanese lab partner failed to get up early and make fried rice for us after one of our weekly all-nighters writing lab reports. He always fell asleep by 10PM, so we finished the reports without him, but in exchange for that, he was supposed to get up at 6 and make breakfast for us. When he didn't, it was Wilkinson's. Years later, when I was on the UC staff doing research at the Richmond Field Station, a fellow worker and I used to take off for lunch, driving to Telegraph to look at the nubiles there, and have lunch at Tijuana Taco, three tacos and large Coke for a buck. One day we got stuck in there during the riots at People's Park. When the tear gas started flying, the employees locked the doors, and filled the cracks with towels, but some of the gas still got in. It was a 3 hour lunch, during which we had a few more tacos and Cokes, and we really got chewed out by the bosses when we got back to work in Richmond. They thought we had been protesting, but we were just eating, but with tears.

All of these fine eateries are perhaps one reason that ten years later, in my first blood test ever, my cholesterol was 450. Now I eat like a rabbit, and I ain't happy.
SFCityBear
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okaydo;842853694 said:

Man, Pepe's Pizza was the bomb. We'd meet there to plan our protests against President Johnson.




Man, Jules Ice Cream was the bomb. We used to go there to discuss protesting President Eisenhower.





Man, the restaurants next to Sather Gate were the bomb. We used to gather there to discuss protesting President Roosevelt.










Great photos. Thanks.
77Bear
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I shared a Southside apartment with a classmate. We often had a big decision to make at 5 PM each day. Together we had perhaps a $5 daily meal budget. For dinner we often had to decide if we wanted to walk to the Telegraph Ave. Co-Op to buy and cook one chicken, or to go to Bertola's and have two triples each, and maybe splurge for one order of spaghetti for take-out that we would share later.
bearister
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77Bear;842854531 said:

I shared a Southside apartment with a classmate. We often had a big decision to make at 5 PM each day. Together we had perhaps a $5 daily meal budget. For dinner we often had to decide if we wanted to walk to the Telegraph Ave. Co-Op to buy and cook one chicken, or to go to Bertola's and have two triples each, and maybe splurge for one order of spaghetti for take-out that we would share later.

Please tell us you erred on the side of the two triples at Bertola's so that we don't have a tragic tale of misspent youth on our hands.
BearDevil
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Larno;842854401 said:

Bertola's for the food, as I don't drink, which seems to be the fond memory for some here. Always dark so you couldn't see the health code violations. Is that what closed them? They were still open when we moved away in the early 80's, I think. Great and cheap food..........probably more leaning to the cheap attraction.


Cheap food, cheaper drinks, large portions, and nobody ever got carded-classic collegiate combo. Family style dining was also a highly entertaining sideshow. Some of my fellow scholars would get stoned before hitting up Bertola's so they could pound more food. Wasn't a fan of the Cheech & Chong strategery since the trade off with the munchies was slowed reaction times which was a liability during family style dinners with a bunch of aholes. First night in prison was a much better way to go: promptly pound a triple when seated and immediately drink directly from the big ass Minestrone tureen when served. Always freaked the weepy stoners out...
77Bear
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bearister;842854537 said:

Please tell us you erred on the side of the two triples at Bertola's so that we don't have a tragic take of misspent youth on our hands.

Yeah, Bertola's won out more often than not but I really hated the cigarette smoke there. Also, we had to drive to Bertola's so gas money also factored in.
Big C
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BearDevil;842854539 said:

Cheap food, cheaper drinks, large portions, and nobody ever got carded-classic collegiate combo. Family style dining was also a highly entertaining sideshow. Some of my fellow scholars would get stoned before hitting up Bertola's so they could pound more food. Wasn't a fan of the Cheech & Chong strategery since the trade off with the munchies was slowed reaction times which was a liability during family style dinners with a bunch of aholes. First night in prison was a much better way to go: promptly pound a triple when seated and immediately drink directly from the big ass Minestrone tureen when served. Always freaked the weepy stoners out...


LMAO, good post.

Yeah, I used to love Bertola's. I found the food to be quite edible. The drinks... sometimes, just to freak people out, I would order a double. Maybe it was the first one the bartender mixed that day? Coming-of-age moment: I order a triple rum n coke... 75 cents. My buddy orders a triple "7 and 7"... $2.50. WTF?!? He got an education for only $1.75.

Bertola's was a good place to go on a second or third date: She didn't have to love the place, or even like it, really, but if she absolutely hated it, things weren't going to work out. Better to put your cards on the table kinda early.
BearDevil
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Big C_Cal;842854563 said:

Bertola's was a good place to go on a second or third date: She didn't have to love the place, or even like it, really, but if she absolutely hated it, things weren't going to work out. Better to put your cards on the table kinda early.


Sam Wo's was my preferred proving ground. Really greasy chow fun, but reaction to entering through the kitchen, the Edsel show, and drinking Bud talls from tea cups was a pretty good prediction of the future.

We always sat next to the dumbwaiter and oddly enough there was a direct correlation between how much crap Edsel gave us and how frequently the dumbwaiter call buzzer got pushed.
joe amos yaks
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There was more than just the booze to experience at Bertola's ([U]both[/U] shops), and the prices were fair. However, the trinity of their family dinner was the big terrine of vegetable pastina soup (w/ garlic bread), the side platter of ravioli, and the roast chicken. Add the wine/alcohol of choice, and followed that up with a dish of Spumoni ice cream.
RhetoriCal Bear
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A co-worker of mine just reminded me that College Avenue Liquors had an excellent deli. He also informed me that Giovanni's on Shattuck had a great happy hour with tons of great, free food.
gobears725
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MarylandBear;842854332 said:

Totally agree. I still love Bongo Burger. :bravo Whenever I visit Berkeley (not often these days) I try to stop by.

While this thread brought back a lot of memories, I didn't really have the funds to enjoy the eateries around Berkeley. I always had a part-time job and lived in a rent controlled apartment, but finances were a constant worry... most of the time I hoofed it back to my apartment (lucky I found a place close to campus) to fix myself ramen/sandwich/mac&cheese in between classes and work. Even eating "fast" food was a luxury.

Btw my splurge order would be a Persian Burger, half a falafel sandwich, fries and a soda.:bravo


Persion Burger was great. Used to be my go to place whenever I had classes northside. That Bongo Burger was never crowded
Big C
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joe yaks;842854581 said:

There was more than just the booze to experience at Bertola's ([U]both[/U] shops), and the prices were fair. However, the trinity of their family dinner was the big terrine of vegetable pastina soup (w/ garlic bread), the side platter of ravioli, and the roast chicken. Add the wine/alcohol of choice, and followed that up with a dish of Spumoni ice cream.


Anybody got some time on their hands (or money in their pockets) and wanna start a "New Bertola's"? What would the drinks be now? $2-for-a-single, $3-for-a-double, $4-for-a-triple?

I don't know much about the restaurant business, but I figure even if we lost a little on each customer, we could make up for it on volume!


(Lest anybody think I'm as dumb as I look, that last part was an homage to a question on Prof. Sutch's Econ 1 final.)
BearDevil
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77Bear;842853412 said:

During mid-day coffee breaks, the Espresso joint at Bancroft and College (which we referred to as "Espresso Expensive" -- I think the actual name was "Espresso Roma") was an occasional stop.


That's now Caffe Strada, but believe it was called Cafe Roma in the '80s. Was usually populated with clove cigarette smoking Euros from I-House during that time.

Was referenced in Walter Isaason's bio on Steve Jobs. His biological sister, Mona Simpson, went to Cal in the '70s and is an author. She met their birth father sometime in the mid-'80s and recounted the meeting to Steve at that cafe. Pretty sure Isaacson butchered the name in his book too.
okaydo
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BearDevil;842854657 said:

That's now Caffe Strada, but believe it was called Cafe Roma in the '80s. Was usually populated with clove cigarette smoking Euros from I-House during that time.

Was referenced in Walter Isaason's bio on Steve Jobs. His biological sister, Mona Simpson, went to Cal in the '70s and is an author. She met their birth father sometime in the mid-'80s and recounted the meeting to Steve at that cafe. Pretty sure Isaacson butchered the name in his book too.


How Kip's helped pave the way for the iPhone (while Steve Wozniak was living in Unit 3 Norton Hall).

















Unit2Sucks
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OskiDeLaHoya;842854422 said:


- Another Middle-Eastern place in Durant food court. Don't remember the real name but we called it Habibi's because that's what the Iraqi owner called everyone (Habibi: "my dear", "my love/my darling")



Yes! Loved Habibis. At some point he added a burrito-ish item to the menu in order to compete against Manny's.

We also frequented Yokohama Station across the way but mostly just for it $1 rice and soy sauce for cheap late night sustenance.

Between those places, Steve's BBQ and Golden Bear Burger, I probably spent half of my dining out meals at that food court.
joe amos yaks
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BearDevil;842854657 said:

That's now Caffe Strada, but believe it was called Cafe Roma in the '80s. Was usually populated with clove cigarette smoking Euros from I-House during that time.

Was referenced in Walter Isaason's bio on Steve Jobs. His biological sister, Mona Simpson, went to Cal in the '70s and is an author. She met their birth father sometime in the mid-'80s and recounted the meeting to Steve at that cafe. Pretty sure Isaacson butchered the name in his book too.


Before that strange building (stand back and take a look at the faux mansard roof) still in use was Cafe Roma it was a New Orleans Roast Beef (Arby's or similar) franchise. It was built new on the "redeveloped" site of an old Signal Gas Station across the street from the "Reagan Memorial Fountain" built at the College Avenue gateway to campus post-Wurster Hall circa 1968 prox. The roast beef sandwich business didn't last long; however, the espresso business with the outdoor tables has a popular European flavor that makes it worth the long wait in line...maybe it's the clove cigs.
okaydo
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joe yaks;842854662 said:

Before that strange building (stand back and take a look at the faux mansard roof) still in use was Cafe Roma it was a New Orleans Roast Beef (Arby's or similar) franchise. It was built new on the "redeveloped" site of an old Signal Gas Station across the street from the "Reagan Memorial Fountain" built at the College Avenue gateway to campus post-Wurster Hall circa 1968 prox. The roast beef sandwich business didn't last long; however, the espresso business with the outdoor tables has a popular European flavor that makes it worth the long wait in line...maybe it's the clove cigs.


barabbas
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77Bear;842854541 said:

Yeah, Bertola's won out more often than not but I really hated the cigarette smoke there. Also, we had to drive to Bertola's so gas money also factored in.


Did your car get 5 miles per gallon?
SFCityBear
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Does anyone remember an upscale dinner house maybe called "The Black Sheep" on Bancroft, a few doors east of Telegraph? White tablecloths, a wine list, and a parking lot. I went there twice as a freshman. Once when my parents came to Berkeley for a visit, and the second time when I wanted to impress a rich sorority girl. I dinged up her car in the parking lot, and went to her father to offer to pay for the small damage. He said, "Come on, you don't have any money. Forget about it." The girl transferred to Stanford.
joe amos yaks
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SFCityBear;842854707 said:

Does anyone remember an upscale dinner house maybe called "The Black Sheep" on Bancroft, a few doors east of Telegraph? White tablecloths, a wine list, and a parking lot. I went there twice as a freshman. Once when my parents came to Berkeley for a visit, and the second time when I wanted to impress a rich sorority girl. I dinged up her car in the parking lot, and went to her father to offer to pay for the small damage. He said, "Come on, you don't have any money. Forget about it." The girl transferred to Stanford.


Tzschit happens.
joe amos yaks
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joe yaks;842854662 said:

Before that strange building (stand back and take a look at the faux mansard roof) still in use was [U]Caffe Strada[/U] (pka Cafe Roma) it was a New Orleans Roast Beef (Arby's or similar) franchise. It was built new on the "redeveloped" site of an old Signal Gas Station across the street from the "Reagan Memorial Fountain" built at the College Avenue gateway to campus post-Wurster Hall circa 1968 prox. The roast beef sandwich business didn't last long; however, the espresso business with the outdoor tables has a popular European flavor that makes it worth the long wait in line...maybe it's the clove cigs.


*Edited to reflect the name Caffe Strada. Thank you again, Al Gore. First you gave us the internets and now Caffe Strada. You're a real pip.
LibbBear
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Has anyone mentioned Robbie's? My first encounter with California Chinese food after coming to Cal from Chicago as a freshman. Really awful steam table stuff, but extremely cheap.
bearister
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Norman's on the corner of College and Alcatraz was nice--if your parents were paying.
joe amos yaks
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LibbBear;842854714 said:

Has anyone mentioned Robbie's? My first encounter with California Chinese food after coming to Cal from Chicago as a freshman. Really awful steam table stuff, but extremely cheap.


There seems to be a theme here.
The food may not be good, but it's cheap and there's plenty of it.
Eating from the trough.
SFCityBear
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joe yaks;842854711 said:

Tzschit happens.


It worked out real well. Turns out the father was impressed, and years later, I became his patient. Very famous ophthalmologist who rescued my eyesight. As for the girl, I am better off, believe me.
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