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“can we replicate this place and move it to Los Angeles?”

Oliveto Cafe and Restaurant
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Ranked #29 of 1,297 Restaurants in Oakland
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $41 - $80
Cuisines: Italian, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Shafter
Transit: Rockridge BART stop is across the street
A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
Reviewed December 9, 2007

can we replicate this place and move it to Los Angeles?

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This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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203 - 207 of 212 reviews

A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
Reviewed December 6, 2007

good but overpriced

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This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
Reviewed November 12, 2007

Overpriced, overrated...

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This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 6, 2007

I really don't know how this restaurant gets such good reviews. We had a complete disaster there. We waited for almost two hours to be served. The food was O.K. but there are so many other good restaurants in Oakland - don't waste your money. The environment is also terrible. Who wants to look at Bart tracks while eatting dinner.

Thank momadark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 30, 2007

A delightful find in Oakland’s Rockridge district! Us homebodies don’t venture far outside of San Francisco, especially for dinner. But since our house guests from Hawaii have a relative who lives on a few blocks away from the Rockridge Bart station, we decided to try Oliveto.

First thing in their favor: they had room for our group of 5-1/2 (we had a toddler with us) even though we only called a couple of hours in advance. Second thing in their favor: they made room for us when we added a sixth person to our group at the last minute. We arrived a bit early but were able to squeeze into the busy bar area for some liquid appetizers. Our table was ready on time, and although we were right next to the bathroom area, it wasn’t too bad. There are tables downstairs near the bar, which are more intimate, but the upstairs has a nice ambiance as well.

The menu wasn’t as extensive as I thought, but it changes daily. I was amazed and impressed at the variety of rather exotic items Oliveto dishes up. Not that my unsophisticated palette (or stomach) could take it, but you’ve got to admit that you don’t see scorpion fish, Jones Farm rabbit, beef tongue, belly of pork, or Paine Farm pigeon on the menu at most places.

I stuck to the more mundane choices and was not disappointed with anything. For starters, we went with the Antipasta misti ($14.50), which had mozzarella cheese made with buffalo milk, with several varities of thinly sliced salame and castelvetrano olives. I’ll admit to being a salame fiend, and all of these were delicious! My husband and I then split the “little gem lettuce” salad with atlantic cod, roasted beets and radishes. At $14, it was pricey for a salad. But it was delicious! I never would’ve though that cold fish would be any good, much less on a salad, but it was very good, as were the roasted beets. The fresh bread was fine – nothing unusually good or bad.

For my entree, I chose the risotto alla piota with Tromboncino squash, toscano salame ( told you I love salame) and parmesan. The squash and salame were very finely diced, and probably added to the risotto at the last minute so as not to become overcooked. It was an amazing blend of flavors, although a little on the oily side. I think that was because of the salame. But it was delicious nonetheless. And at $14.50, the same price as our antipasta misti, it was more than worth it. My hubby ordered the Porchetta ($27), which was described as spit-roasted loin and belly of Willis Farm pork al diavolo with young leeks. It was perfectly done, very juicy and tender. One of our guests ordered the Conchiglie with ragu of Jones Farm Rabbit ($14.50). Now, I’m not a very adventurous eater when it comes to things like rabbit, lamb or veal, but I had to accept a taste. It was just like I thought: tasted like chicken. I liked my pasta a lot better!

The others at our table ordered: the potato gnocchi with Toma Dela Sena Cheese and Walnuts ($16) and the charcoal-grilled watson farm lamb chops ($28). Both said they were good. The sixth adult ordered some kind of pasta with anchovies (I couldn’t find it on the menu later) and said it was horribly salty. He originally planned to order the salmon, but I don’t remember why he changed his mind. I just know he regretted it!

As for wine, a few of us shared a bottle of 2005 Olivet Lane chardonnay from the Russian River Valley. I think it was the label made specifically for Oliveto. At $48, it was a good choice but a bit expensive, in my opinion. It was listed under the heading for “rich, full boadied with wood” white wines, and it certainly fit that description to a tee. It complimented the pastas and pork very well.

As usual, we were so filled up with appetizers, drinks and our food that we couldn’t eat any dessert. You’d think I’d learn by now that a good restaurant review should include dessert, but I keep forgetting to leave room!

1  Thank ttheuriet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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