This week, Curbside Creamery is popping a wheelie and jumping from a tricycle-based business to a full-fledged ice cream parlor, grand opening in Temescal Alley during First Friday (5-9 p.m.) on August 1. It’s just the latest in a string of success stories as mobile food vendors settle into permanent digs in Oakland.
After five years riding around in a bright green truck, Gail Lillian debuted her first Liba Falafel shop in Uptown just last week. In the recent past, Cholita Linda moved from a Temescal farmers' market stand to a storefront on Telegraph Street in February, and the wood-fired pizza truck Fist of Flour has been holding strong as a permanent parlor in East Oakland since the top of the year. More big ones are on the way, too. Rotisserie chicken giant Roli Roti, for example, opened a new facility in Oakland, and owner Thomas Odermatt told Inside Scoop SF that a restaurant is in the future.
“Oakland has a really vibrant food scene that is also more affordable for opening a restaurant,” says Off The Grid founder Matt Cohen. “As a result, tons of quality chefs are doing the logical thing and looking to the East Bay — and Oakland in particular — to make their mark.”
The East Bay at large continues to be a land of food opportunity for these wandering soldiers. Among the most notable of recent debuts are South American caterer Guisell Osorio, who opened the Sabores Del Sur cafe in Walnut Creek this past spring, and Fivetenburger owner Roland Robles, who is a partner at Berkeley’s new Handlebar (984 University), a watering hole that serves his craveworthy burgers.
Just because these places have opened doesn’t mean the wheels are all the way up. In fact, you can still find most of them on the road!
Photo by Curbside Creamery