Restaurants & Bars

Dinner at Luka's Taproom & Lounge (Oakland)

Cecelia | Apr 27, 200609:22 AM     9

There have been a couple of mentions about this place here and I have been itching to head over, so packed up the child, husband and friend and off we went last night. Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. and this place was positively hopping! Located on 22nd and Broadway, I didn't expect so many people.

Luka's is not about perfect service, although the waitstaff are perfectly friendly and pretty knowledgeable about the food and spirits. This place is about the scene and the food.

We sat down and were promptly presented with a plate full of torpedos of crusty sour dough rolls served with sweet butter and, oddly, radish slices. I don't know where this bread comes from but it was delicious. We powered through three (maybe four, yikes) plates of this stuff during the course of the dinner.

THEY HAVE HANGAR ONE VODKA!!! So, that's what I ordered to drink--mandarin. Daughter and husband went with a soda. Friend ordered Beefeaters and soda. Luka's is too highbrow for that gin, so Kristan settled for another brand.

For appetizers we ordered the Oyster Granite (9.00)and the Charcuterie Platter (10.00).

Three steamboat oysters and served underneath HANGAR ONE Kaffir Lime (I think) vodka ice shavings. This is the reason that I wanted to try Lukas. What a great way to start a meal. Ice cold not too huge oysters AND HANGAR ONE.

The charcuterie platter was also wonderful. It comes with pork rillettes dotted with pickled onions on toasted bread (silken), duck pastrami on rye (not too salty and very nicely spiced) and chicken liver pate with walnuts and balsamic figs(texture and flavor to die for).

My daughter ordered the burger and fries medium (9.00). A bit disappointed because the burger was rare, no getting around that. The fries were thick and crispy and piping hot. They came with a garlicky aioli. Needless to say, Claire's french fries became a family affair.

Steph had the gratineed macaroni and cheese which came with green beans (12.00) Right out of the oven and yummy with mushrooms and leeks and maybe even bits of carrots.

Kristan went with the duck confit (10.00) that came with a small arugula salad and chevre. I didn't taste, but there wasn't a smidgeon left on her plate.

I ordered the boudin blanc sausage and wasn't disappointed. The beautifully seared (and embarrasingly large) link came with sauteed red cabbage and baked spaetzle (18.00). I had to fend off Steph and Kristan and this dish may have been the favorite.

We didn't order dessert but Luka's also has a great looking cheese menu--choices come from northern spain, france, alsace and tasmania.

The capper (at least for my family) is Luka's game room. Housed in the back of the restaurant, Luka's has a Ms. Pac Man, a Centipede and a Fun House pinball machine. You can even play pool. What a great way to end an evening.


BTW, on the way home I noticed Los Canteros Restaurant and Taqueria on Grand Lake. Has anyone been there. Recommended? Looked like a fun place to try.

Link: http://www.bunrab.com/yummychow/Revie...

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