Beginner’s guide to Oakland compares all your favorite spots in SF to their East Bay equivalents

Our pal Sarah recently “retired” to Oakland but realized that the only way she could get her SF friends to visit would be to educate them about all the rad things the East Bay shares with the city, so she constructed this comprehensive compendium of comparisons between the various bars, restaurants, and other fun that each side has to offer.  Even your groceries are covered:

Rainbow Grocery (The Mission) / Berkeley Bowl (Berkeley)

Can you imagine Rainbow but twice as large, half as expensive, and with a fantastic meat and seafood selection? If not, go visit Berkeley Bowl, or its newer location, Berkeley Bowl West. The Bowl is an East Bay staple, and can satisfy every hippie, health nut, hipster, and politically conscious bone in your body.

She’s got an Oakland answer for everything from Bender’s and Bi-Rite to Toronado and Tartine, so if you’ve ever been the slightest bit reluctant to venture to the other side, please do read on.

36 Responses to “Beginner’s guide to Oakland compares all your favorite spots in SF to their East Bay equivalents”

  1. Hater says:

    What a pile of horseshit!

  2. J-Lub says:

    All you need is a car and the East Bay is just like the Mission!

  3. Nathan says:

    Is it time to buy a place in Oakland?

  4. Bold Local sez says:

    They misspelled ‘white people’s’ as ‘beginners’, strange.

  5. PARAMUTER says:

    PARAMUTER will stay in the Mission for now.

  6. SFKix says:

    Love Berk.Bowl West!!!

  7. Wolf Tickets says:

    Does NOT compare. People who live in East Bay continue to try to tell themselves “it’s better”! Just moved back to SF after a year stint in Oakland, and I am SOOOOO happy to have returned. Could not have happened soon enough!

  8. scum says:

    S.F. population just over 800,000 people and 64 homicides, Oakland just under 400,000 people and 131 homicides.

  9. The only places in the East Bay that I have ever had even the slightest desire to visit, other than the homes of a few friends, in the last 42 years that I have lived in the Bay Area, are Rather Ripped Records, which used to be in Berkeley, and the UC Berkeley Art Museum.

    • Hmm says:

      Sucks for you.

      • No, actually, it’s good for me — since I don’t have to pay for transportation to places that I have no need to visit. My sympathy to you if you are going there out of some need to appease the demands of someone else. But if you just like to go there, then I can’t imagine why you’re commenting on my comment, instead of commenting a paean to the East Bay of your own. Dude.

    • Oh says:

      Thanks for sharing that!!!

    • almost done says:

      what a fucking stupid thing to comment. you must be horrible to be around or try to talk to. “in the last 42 years”… barf. you can distinctly remember never thinking about crossing the bridge for almost half a century, except to go to a little punker record shop or the university museum? come on. if you’re trolling i guess you got me. but thats fucking stupid too.

      • Yeah, that’s what I wrote — and I can write English, at least — so what’s your problem with it? It’s a true record of my experience, and if you don’t like it, you can eat it. Or you can write something which proves I’m wrong, which you have not done. Dive in or die.

  10. staythefuckout says:

    Stay in SF you neighborhood destroying hipster fucks.

  11. Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable says:

    We already know all about Oakland, we just prefer to live in The City, not the suburbs.

    • Little Missioner says:

      Ya man, I’m with you. Like f&*k Oakland and their Applebees… man! Let’s keeping all this realness between 16th and 24th… right?

      • Heather says:

        I didn’t realize San Francisco ended just outside of the Mission. If that’s the case, I most definitely like Oakland better ;)

        • Bold Local sez says:

          You fell into the sarchasm.

        • scum says:

          Whats your damage Heather?

          • Heather says:

            To be fair, I like visiting the Mission. Tasty food, Dolores Park, lots to like. But I also appreciate SF as a whole, and I think there are great neighborhoods in SF that don’t get enough attention. It’s surprising how many city dwellers won’t venture west of Divisadero. I live in Oakland, but I’ll trek out to Sunset for a good bowl of ramen or to Lands End for a hike. That’s my damage :)

  12. Ryan says:

    I love Oakland, but man, MEH on this article. I like visiting there cause it’s *NOT* SF. It’s so refreshing to not be surrounded by talk of the latest app/startup/thing to wait in line for, and not be surrounded by people who think they’re the center of the universe…

  13. Ginny says:

    I grew up in Oakland and have no desire to ever move back. But here’s a hot tip: Farmer Joe’s on Fruitvale > Berkeley Bowl.

  14. fingerbinger says:

    I don’t know why everyone gets their knickers in a twist about this. I’ve lived in SF for 16 years, but have friends on both sides of the Bay (and – gasp! – in San Jose and Lafayette and Orinda and San Rafael and L.A. and Portland and Cleveland, etc.).

    I love San Francisco (hence living here 16 years), but sometimes it’s fun to go somewhere else and experience that for an hour, a day, a week.

    I never think of the East Bay as in competition with San Francisco. I just think of the whole thing as the Bay Area and enjoy whatever treasures exist in whatever cities or neighborhoods they do.

    Oakland has a lot to offer and it’s fun to hop the BART and cross the Bay for a day hike in the hills, a meal at Sidebar, and a show at The Fox.

    Relax, people.

    • rickbynight says:

      When I moved to the bay area, I had no idea there was such a competition between SF and the east bay. Coming from a non-urban midwestern town, I had no desire to live in San Francisco, and instead chose Berkeley. I liked Berkeley fine for what it is, but it ultimately wasn’t for me. I moved to Oakland, felt more “down to earth,” patted myself on the back for that feeling. Got a little pretentious, made fun of San Francisco for not keeping it real. Then I got a job in San Francisco, started commuting across the bay, but pretty much only knew a few downtown spots, the touristy places, and the museums. Still sort of made fun of it, but less often. I made some friends in SF, started hanging out in SF more often, ultimately ended up falling in love with the city and moving to San Francisco, where I’ve been for the last 12 years.

      Everyone in the East Bay told me SF was full of pretentious full of themselves hipster assholes, and I didn’t know better, and believed it. Turns out, there are pretentious full of themselves hipster assholes everywhere: I met plenty in my time in Oakland and Berkeley. SF fit me right: ditched the car, no longer shop at the big box stores, know everyone in the neighborhood. I love it, but I’m sure people love their hoods in Oakland too, it just ultimately didn’t fit what I wanted.

      I guess after years of living in Oakland and feeling like I was supposed to hate San Francisco, I don’t understand why some people seem to think there’s not room for both. Why does everyone gotta hate?

  15. SF MiMi says:

    The Toranado is better compared to Beer Revolution in every way.

  16. Tina says:

    After 4 years in the east bay – I am returning to SF! Yeay!! Never again .. am I moving to the east bay.