Some ABC license activity pointed to the opening of CAFE VALPARAISO in a new location (1403 Solano Ave. in Albany), serving their variety of empanadas, and Chilean sandwiches and entrées. Meanwhile CAFÉ LA PEÑA has opened in Valparaiso’s previous location in the La Peña Cultural Center. 3105 Shattuck Ave. at Berkeley.
Another switcheroo: BRASA in Berkeley (the rotisserie chicken place from Veronica and Christopher Laramie) is closing at the end of the month, and BRAZIL CAFÉ will be moving in (via Scoop). 1960 University Ave. at Milvia, Berkeley.
A reader wrote in to tell me LOCAL CAFÉ next door to Adesso had closed, and moving in will be SLICER PIZZERIA, a venture from Colin Etezadi (Boot & Shoe, Pizzaiolo, Camino) that will serve affordable but quality pizza (via Scoop). 4395 Piedmont Ave. at Pleasant Valley.
Vegetarian wine-and-tapas joint ENCUENTRO CAFE AND WINE BAR is moving into a larger location in Jack London Square and plans to open this November, according to Eater. Both locations will remain open—the original (200 2nd St.) will be more of a wine-and-beer bar working with a smaller menu. 550 2nd St. at Clay, Oakland.
And in the bummer news department, a tablehopper reader writes in to let me know RICO’S DINER, a neighborhood favorite, has closed and been sold. You can view the goodbye note in a picture on Yelp. As my reader said, “This place has always been a solid choice for lunch and will be missed.” 400 15th St. at Franklin.
One of Cafe Valparaiso’s empanadas. Yelp photo by Ashley M.