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Restaurants & Bars 10

Berkeley & El Cerrito - FATAPPLE'S - kirschkuchen, Dutch babies, olallieberry shakes & pie

rworange | Jul 10, 200501:02 AM

Fatapple’s is all about the bakery, but it also has some good breakfast, lunch and dinner dishes.

It is diner food had the diner evolved correctly. There’s a link below to an East Bay Express articles about their shakes which are served in stainless-steel canisters. Besides the olallieberry, they have mocha, vanilla, chocolate and strawberry.

IMMHO (and you don’t get that often, the humble part), the olallieberry pie is better than Duarte’s. The buttery thin crust bursts open with tangy plump berries. The pies in general look fabulous and the banana cream is noted in the SF Guide to the Bay Area.

While everything was good, the cole slaw exceeds excellent. It has a soy-ginger dressing that was served on the side. The red and green cabbage, carrots, and red onions were super thinly shredded and mixed with pecans and raisins. By keeping the dressing separate, the crunch of the veggies was fabulous.

This place is known for long lines, and while I didn’t have to wait in line at 8 am, the place was full. When Roberto and I stopped in for dinner at 8, the place was still full.

Roberto liked his burger which he had with Monterrey Jack cheese and green chilis. My chicken pot pie was one of the better versions I’ve had in the Bay Area. Served piping hot in a white crock with the crisp crust draped over the top, it was full of chicken, peas, pearl onions, carrots, and celery. The tarragon-sherry cream sauce was very good.

It came with soup which was clam chowder and, gets points for lots of clams and bacon. There were probably more clams than any chowder I’ve had recently, with a 50/50 ration of potato to clam. It was a little too salty but that had to do with the generous pieces of bacon studding the chowder.

Dinners come with house baked honey wheat rolls which were healthy tasting.

The fresh lemonade was very good and had a wedge of lemon on the rim of the glass.

Roberto had the rice pudding which he let me taste. Very creamy and good and topped with a blueberry sauce with plump blueberries.

For breakfast, the corned beef hash was ok but not exceptional. It is house made and the ground up type with a 50/50 mix of potatoes and some onions. Had it had been more crusty, it would have been better.

All breakfast come with a choice of toast or breakfast pastries which include:
Cheese puff
Cheddar Swiss biscuit
Cinnamon roll (pecan, apple)
Coffee cake (pecan, apple)
Croissant (plain or chocolate)
Danish (almond, cherry, blueberry, cheese)
Bran muffin (old Chowhound post says they are great)
Scone (current, oatmeal cranberry, blueberry, olallieberry-cornmeal)
Turnover (cherry, apple)

The apple turnover looked like something you’d get from Safeway. However, it is fabulously flakey, with a rich butter taste, dusted with just the right amount of powdered sugar and filled with a delicious apple filling that was fresh and was not like the gluey supermarket version. This really compared very favorably with a fruit fold I raved about recently at Gregoire.

The coffee is Peet’s which can be purchased by the bag. There is the special Fatapple’s blend which I liked very much.

The house made olallieberry-raspberry jam is very good. They have homemade apricot sauce or maple syrup for their waffles and pancakes. Unusual pancakes are pumpkin, apple and banana. From the description, the apple sound like Dutch babies with sautéed apples, cinnamon and sugar. The banana pancakes are baked and have crème fraiche.

The fresh fruit cup looked great. Very nice looking quiche which can be bought whole in the bakery.

Sandwiches include burgers, hot dogs, chicken breast, house roasted turkey, Reubens, tuna melts, grilled ham and cheese and a BLT.

It is also very veggie friendly. They have a house made chickpea patty that has tahini, eggs, bread crumbs, sautéed veggies, green onion and herbs.

Soup and chili are house made. There are a few salads including a Nicoise with Portuguese tuna and anchovies.

After 4pm there are dinner platters. They include hamburger steak, chicken breast, meatloaf, mushroom spinach lasagna, spaghetti with meat sauce, vegetarian spaghetti, macaroni and cheese and chicken pot pie.

Specials included pulled pork, stuffed peppers, pork chops, salmon, and roast turkey with all the trimmings.

Cupcakes? I’ll tell you who has the best classic cupcake in the Bay Area – Fatapple’s. Better than Just a Bite. Better than La Farine.

Just two types – white and Chocolate. It’s that butter cream. I honestly have not had butter cream that good in a few decades. At first I thought it was whipped cream. However it is that wonderful light butter cream. The cake was moist and very good

Kirschkuchen – a shortbread like crust, with a cherry pie like filling and a streusel topping. I mention this because this is Chowhound and someday someone is going to post “I am craving kirschkuchen. Where can I get it in the Bay Area”? It was good, but the cherries were just OK.

The seasonal fresh pie is fresh peach. There is also a peach-huckleberry cobbler that is served hot in a white crock. The table next to us ordered it with a huge scoop of vanilla ice cream.

This is truly an open kitchen with the whole bakery operation visible in the huge warehouse like space. It is very nice with a cozy lunch counter. It is very comfortable and well laid out. There are two locations. We ate in El Cerrito, just up the street from the El Cerrito Plaza.

Fatapple's Restaurant and Bakery

7525 Fairmount Ave
El Cerrito, CA 94530-3745
(510) 528-3433

1346 MLK Jr. Way,

Hours (El Cerrito)

7am - 9pm every day


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