The Cook and Her Farmer

Today marked another brilliant day in Old Oakland: the soft opening of the long awaited 'The Cook and Her Farmer' oyster bar in Swan's Market.  Swan's is a historic marketplace, sometimes called the Housewive's Market-- and used to serve all of Oakland and neighboring towns with the best local produce, meats, poultry, fish, and housewares.  For many years after it's peak, the area sat dormant and asleep.

Three years ago, neighbor Cosecha opened in the market with intensely beautiful tacos and simple Mexican fare (I eat there at least 4 times a week, they are directly across from me and the shop, and I seriously can never get enough).  Soon after, Ms. Ollie's, Periscope Cellars and Rosamunde joined Cosecha and the historic Sincere Seafood and Taylor Sausage counters, rounding out the space with more fresh places to eat or pick up ingredients for a home-cooked meal.

But now I have another amazing reason to cross the street, as so do you.  Romney Steele (of Nepenthe fame) and her oyster aficionado partner Steve opened an incredible counter to gulp down the freshest oysters, all while sitting al fresco in a bustling marketplace.  

I was chomping at the bit all day to get over there, the minute the clock struck six I met up with my Dad, his wife, Marion and Rose's Workshop owner Kerri, and Tamarindo owner Alfonso.  We all chatted, drank beer and prosecco, and wolfed down oyster after oyster.  Then I had an incredible peach, kumquat and avocado salad from Cosecha while I tasted a little nibble of a super crispy grilled cheese from The Cook.  

As if you needed another reason to relax all day in Old Oakland, later this summer B-DAMA, notable Japanese restaurant, will be opening a noodle bar within the same marketplace.  

Oakland is about to have it's heyday, where you at?

The noisy and bustling view from my studio bench