The EBX Reviews Our Downstairs Rosticceria

Photo by Andria Lo for the East Bay Express

We were pleased when we read Luke Tsai’s review of our downstairs rosticceria in the East Bay Express that came out just last week. We felt it was a straightshooting, honest appraisal of our rosticceria‘s success and its challenges.

Everything he loved, we love too. According to him, we have “what might be the best, ooziest, and most satisfyingly meaty lasagne alla bolognese in town.” The Community Grains whole grain toast and Red Flint corn polenta, our Tuscan sausages and pork shoulder — all of these were complimented, and we hope this means more people will come in and try them! In the future, look for a revamped online ordering system for takeout, and of course, a roast Hoffman Farm chicken to knock your socks off.

Come on in for dinner and a summer cocktail! We’re looking forward to seeing you.

Have a look at the rosticceria menu.

2017-09-12T15:46:35+00:00 June 30th, 2016|Coming up..., Oliveto Cafe, Press|0 Comments

Oliveto named one of America’s 20 Best Italian Restaurants

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With the help of an illustrious panel of judges The Daily Meal has just named Oliveto one of America’s 20 Best Italian Restaurants.  Huzzah! We are so proud to be recognized among such an impressive group of talented chefs and influential establishments.

Dan Meyer writes about Oliveto:

With acclaimed chef Paul Bertolli at the helm, Oliveto was considered by many to be the best Italian restaurant in the United States for many years before he left to start Fra Mani in 2005 and the restaurant began to coast. But all that changed in 2010, when Jonah Rhodehamel took over. The menu he introduced was vibrant and soulful, and since then Oliveto has returned to be a major player in the scene. The menu changes daily, but always features unexpected local fare like pan-roasted Monterey Bay sardines (with fregola) and Santa Barbara sea urchin (with spaghetti in tomato sauce), and purveyors are always listed on the menu. At Oliveto you’ll try dishes and flavor combinations that you’ve never experienced before that are at once familiar and completely unique, and you’ll be very glad that you did. 

A heartfelt congratulations to Chef Rhodehamel, whose vision and integrity have created some of the most creative and innovative food this kitchen has ever turned out, as well as General Manager Shane Walker, Chef de Cuisine Luciano Duco, Sous Chef Vince Sanchez, Pastry Chef Kam Golightly, Assistant Manager Jessica Prince, Wine Buyer Jerad Ruhl, and the whole Oliveto team. You are remarkable.

2017-09-12T15:47:36+00:00 September 4th, 2013|Press|0 Comments

Oliveto Sommelier Esteban Brunello Featured on StarChefs.com

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via StarChefs.com

Oliveto Sommelier Esteban Brunello has recently been featured in a StarChefs article, talking about some of his favorite pairings with with Executive Chef Jonah’s unique dishes. A quote:

enlargeWineSagrantino di Montefalco, Colpetrone, Umbria, 2007DishPotato-wrapped Pigeon-stuffed Quail, Farro, Wild Mushrooms, and Truffle SugoPairing Note“These Paine Farms pigeons and Wolf Ranch quail are the best I’ve ever had,” says Rhodehamel. So why choose between the two, when you could serve one stuffed inside the other! The slow-cooked farro and onion crema anchor the plate, and the earth notes continue with bluefoot and hedgehog mushrooms (stuffed in the quail, alongside the pigeon). Perigord truffles and pigeon sugo intensify and unify the other components, whose execution is a prime example of referencing historical cooking while applying modern technique.
The variety and number of earth notes in the dish set our expectations on a big wine, so Brunello brought two. The first, a Santenay Gravieres from Paul Chapelle (2005), is an “outstanding wine at a good price, with light cherries, raspberries, some floral notes, and a little bit of licorice.” Not the big wine we were anticipating, but Brunello explained that the Santenay has good earth notes with a subtle gamey quality that pulled together the mushroom and game flavor of the pigeon.
To exemplify a more classic pairing, Brunello poured a Sagrantino because, “people expect a denser, heavier wine with gamey flavors.” We liked the matching complexity of the dish and this wine, with less fruit and more earth tones. “This particular Sagrantino is not so tannic as others,” explained our sommelier, “so it’s perfect for someone who wants a heavier wine, because more tannins would overwhelm the dish.”

Wine: Sagrantino di Montefalco, Colpetrone, Umbria, 2007

Dish: Potato-wrapped Pigeon-stuffed Quail, Farro, Wild Mushrooms, and Truffle Sugo

Pairing Note: …The variety and number of earth notes in the dish set our expectations on a big wine, so Brunello brought two. The first, a Santenay Gravieres from Paul Chapelle (2005), is an outstanding wine at a good price, with light cherries, raspberries, some floral notes, and a little bit of licorice.” Not the big wine we were anticipating, but Brunello explained that the Santenay has good earth notes with a subtle gamey quality that pulled together the mushroom and game flavor of the pigeon.

To exemplify a more classic pairing, Brunello poured a Sagrantino because, people expect a denser, heavier wine with gamey flavors. We liked the matching complexity of the dish and this wine, with less fruit and more earth tones.This particular Sagrantino is not so tannic as others, explained our sommelier, so it’s perfect for someone who wants a heavier wine, because more tannins would overwhelm the dish.

Read the rest here.

2017-09-12T15:47:43+00:00 May 13th, 2013|Olivetians, Press, Wine Journal|0 Comments

Chef Jonah Rhodehamel Named One of Gayot’s Top 5 Rising Chefs in the Nation

Chef Jonah with Sophie Gayot of GAYOT.com

Chef Jonah with Sophie Gayot of GAYOT.com

Gayot, the esteemed lifestyle magazine,has released its annual Restaurant Awards Issue for 2013, and we are thrilled they have named Chef Jonah one of the Top 5 Rising Chefs in the US.

From GAYOT.com’s article:

“Deeply involved in the Bay area food scene, Rhodehamel has established relationships with local farmers and purveyors; his ongoing kitchen projects include a special aging cave for house-cured charcuterie, whole-animal dinners, handmade pastas made with specially milled local flours and unique heirloom tomatoes bred specifically for Oliveto’s kitchen.”

Sophie Gayot herself came to visit and had a chat with Chef Jonah about Oliveto’s house-cured meats, handmade whole-grain pastas, and the benefits of cooking with almond wood. Watch Chef Jonah give Sophie a tour of the restaurant here.
Congratulations, Chef!
2017-09-12T15:47:46+00:00 March 25th, 2013|Executive Chef Jonah Rhodehamel, Press|1 Comment

Chef Jonah: Six Months In

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Executive Chef Jonah Rhodehamel has been at the helm of the Oliveto kitchen since November 2010. It is amazing to us how much has changed at Oliveto over these last six months. First off, Chef Rhodehamel (and all of his crew) has been working like crazy. Basically, the level of energy and focus has been turned up to eleven.

But most important, we are extremely proud of the food we are serving. Our salumi has never been better. Same goes for our pizza. The whole-animal program is expanding into new relationships with ranchers raising goat and sheep. We’ve been introduced to farmers Jonah has relationships with, including our new BFF Fred Hempel, who is growing some amazing things on his farm in Sunol, CA.

There is a seriousness, and a precision that Chef Jonah brings to Oliveto but there is also a sly sense of humor, a wry wit, and the skills of a true leader. Anyway, that’s a long way of saying we’re happy to see that all of this was apparent to Michael Bauer on his most recent visit. It was so very nice for our kitchen to be acknowledged for all the hard work that they do.

Greetings from The Future

In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Katy McLaughlin attempts to forecast fine-dining trends of the future, and gives a nod to the Oliveto Community Journal:

THE FUTURE? Mr. Chang predicts that in the future, more fine-dining chefs will replace waiters and serve the food themselves, as they do at his Momofuku Ko in New York. D’Amico Kitchen in Minneapolis splashes a live streamed video of the action inside its kitchen on an outside wall. Several restaurants, from Oliveto in Oakland, Calif., to L20 in Chicago, publish elaborate blogs about their ingredients and cooking.

We come in peace.

2017-09-12T15:48:51+00:00 January 13th, 2010|Press|0 Comments

Playing Darts with Marcella Hazan

From someone we greatly respect, we just received some gratifying praise:

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This was published last week in The Daily Beast, Tina Brown’s entry into the web-news-commentary business. (She is a long-standing rival of Ariana Huffington.)

Marcella Hazan and her husband Victor usually stop by for dinner when they visit the Bay Area, so we are thrilled that she included Oliveto as one of her Fresh Picks.

2017-09-12T15:48:57+00:00 August 6th, 2009|Press|0 Comments