I went to Luka's Taproom and Lounge for the first time yesterday.
It's a new upscale establishment in downtown Oakland on Grand and Broadway taking the place of the old Hof Brau.
Anything new in the area that is upscale is a welcome site. I found the
beer and wine selection to be good and the waitstaff to be friendly. The place was full though not completely busy and the service was a little slow. Now onto the food. We started with Belgian Fries with a mesquite ketchup and two different aolis. The fries were good though the two aolis did not have much flavor beside one being a little spicy and the other being plain. The crab fritters were a little soft in the inside though the outside was cooked right. I would have preferred it to be more solid than mushy.
I had the lamb sausage with duck confit on a bed of sauerkraut. The sausage was great but small, the duck was juicy and tender, but the sauerkraut was too salty and overpowered the whole plate. A friend had the lamb which he did not like at all, though I didn't try it. Two other people had the hamburgers which they both enjoyed.
The only other negative was the strange layout of the bar in front, a lounge to the left, the dining area to the right then a pool/rec room behind the dining around so that if people want to get drinks from the bar and play pool they have to walk through the dining area. My friend also said the atmosphere was very loud, though I didn't mind the volume.
I'll wait a few more months till the kitchen finds its groove and refines their menu, otherwise I'll go back for drinks and a burger if needed. I did enjoy the look of the place.
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