Part three of BART adventures is here. We’re leaving San Francisco and heading back to the East Bay to explore the Rockridge BART stop. Although Rockridge is fairly close to the UC Berkeley campus, it feels like an entire world away. And in some respects, it is. Rockridge lacks the college-town feel that we’ve all come to know and love within the vicinity of campus, instead, providing us with a more relaxed, small-town atmosphere. Rockridge BART offers a nice reprieve from the loud and crazy stores near campus and is a wonderful place to spend a leisurely weekend day.
Rockridge Market Hall
Rockridge Market Hall is one of the first things you see when you exit the Rockridge BART station. The ambiance of this indoor market reminds us of Europe. At Market Hall you can buy a wide variety of food products from the eight individual shops located inside the building. The Pasta Shop sells fresh pasta, made right there in the store. There’s also an amazing bakery and coffee shop that will surely satisfy your morning caffeine fix. The fish and butcher shops will transport you right into the heart of Europe.
Address: 5655 College Ave., Suite 201, Oakland, Calif. 94618
Diesel, A Bookstore
Diesel is the small independent bookstore you long for. There’s a comfy chair or two to sit and read the book you’ve picked from the staff-recommended novels. The staff is very knowledgeable and will help find the right book for you. Plus, you get the added Good Samaritan points for helping support an independent bookstore.
Address: 5433 College Ave. at Kales (near Manila), Oakland, Calif. 94618
Are you ready to get your fruity, tropical drink game on? The Kona Club is the tiki bar for you. From pina coladas to drinks that are served on fire, anything goes. Inside the Kona Club you will be surrounded by bamboo and everything tiki. Play some pool while dancing along to the tunes you pick from their jukebox. Advertised as “a little bit tiki, a little bit rock n roll,” this tiki bar will offer you all the pleasures of an island paradise without the long, boring plane ride (or expensive ticket!).
Address: 4401 Piedmont Ave., Oakland, Calif. 94611 (need to take the 51A bus from Rockridge BART)
We have truly saved the best for last. Homeroom is arguably the happiest place on this planet because it is a restaurant dedicated to mac ‘n cheese. Seriously. At Homeroom you can choose from every mac ‘n cheese combination your mind can possibly think of (within the constraints of reality and the menu, of course). Choose from a wide range of possibilities, which includes their Classic mac ‘n cheese and our personal favorite, the Jalapeño Popper Mac. Going to Homeroom will cure any midterm or finals blues you may be suffering from. Go on and drown your sorrows in the most delicious mac ‘n cheese — just don’t tell our mothers.
Address: 400 40th St., Oakland, Calif. 94609