Exterior photo from Locanda da Eva.
Berkeley’s ~LOCANDA DA EVA~ is scheduled to open on Tuesday July 20th, in the former Casa de Eva space (it also housed Zax Tavern and Maritime East). To recap, the project is from Robert Lauriston (yes, the frequent Chowhound poster), and partner-chef Huw Thornton (most recently an executive sous at SPQR under Nate Appleman, and two-and-a-half years at A16). Rounding out the team is GM Matt Derrick and consulting bartender Jacqueline Patterson.
There will be a daily-changing menu, which is mostly Italian with some additional Mediterranean flair, and featuring choice local and sustainable ingredients. There will be a variety of pizzas cooked in the wood-burning oven, like a bianca with robiola and onions; along with dishes like pork trotter crépinettes with Padrón pepper and corn salsa; pastas like rigatoni alla pastora with spicy lamb sausage, basil, sheep’s milk ricotta, and pecorino; and mains like chicken scaloppine with green pepper peperonata or pork loin saltimbocca with apricot mostarda. Desserts will include housemade gelati and sorbetti, as well as fruit-based desserts. There will be 20 to 25 wines by the glass (mostly ranging from $5-$10), plus a reserve list that will eventually grow to around 100 bottles, which will include both local and domestic producers. You can peek at some photos of the project on their Facebook page. Hours will be Tue-Sat 5pm-12am, Sun 5pm-10pm, with a bar menu after 10pm.
If you’d like a sneak peek of the space before it opens next week, and a taste of Patterson’s cocktails, come by the pre-opening party this Friday July 16th for local artist Laura Hoffman, whose work is featured in the space. The party is from 6pm-8pm, and is free and open to the public (but it’s a no-host bar). A couple of cocktails on the menu include the Tilden Park Swizzle (Rhum J.M. Blanc, lime, honey, passionfruit syrup, Luxardo Maraschino, $9) and the Boothby Manhattan (Wild Turkey Rye 101, Carpano Antica, Angostura and orange bitters, sparkling wine, $9). You can also purchase wines from Locanda da Eva’s new wine list, and Oakland’s new Urban Legends Cellars will be pouring free tastes of its wines.