Take-out Places

Parent Q&A

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  • Reduce take-out plastic?

    (18 replies)

    We've been getting take-out food a couple of times a week since shut-down, and the amount of plastic waste is appalling.  A lot of it is polystyrene (#5) or other unrecyclable waste.  (Plastics #1 and #2 are somewhat recyclable, but still not great.)  We're usually able to avoid getting plastic flatware, but we've been stuck with the containers.  We'd love it if the good folks in the BPN community can let us know what their favorite low-plastic take-out restaurants are.  Thanks!

    La Mediterranee, Rick and Ann's, Gaumenkitzel, all in Berkeley.

    I agree this is a worrying concern.  Thanks for doing what you can to take action on it!

    I recommend Doña on Piedmont Ave in Oakland.  All their packaging is compostable, including cups and lids and knifes and forks.  The best part is that you can eat there on their patio or their roof deck, and it's almost like eating out at a restaurant in the good old days.  (The only thing you can't compost is the foil that the tacos are wrapped in, but you can wash that and reuse it or recycle it.)

    I also just got tacos from Comal Next Door.  They have a location in Berkeley on Shattuck (next to Comal) and a new location in Oakland on Grand (where Zza's used to be).  Tacos came in a compostable paper container.  Guacamole side came in a compostable paper cup with a plastic lid.  Salsas came in plastic containers.  

    Three stone hearth, zero waste and yum!

    This doesn't answer your question directly, but I have tried taking our tupperware to the restaurant for them to fill.  The restaurants I've tried haven't complained about it.

    I hear you on this. There's the Jybe app (https://www.gojybe.com/), which rates restaurants based on eco-friendly packaging. It's pretty neat - people rate and upload photos of packaging, and you can also browse by restaurants rated for eco-friendly takeout materials. I've only posted to it once, so I'm glad your post reminded me about it.

    Kate, do you mean Parker St. in Berkeley? If so, we rely on Comal's very good Mexican food downtown, which uses compostable and recyclable packaging. I believe Longbranch on San Pablo near Dwight does as well, and Cafenated (Vine near Shattuck), although I'm not sure whether they deliver. There's also Mise en Place Kitchen just west of the main library.

    Just curious where the restaurants you order from are. In Hayward, where I live, restaurants are required to use comparable containers. I am on a personal crusade against polystyrene, so will happily reach out to your city council on the Earth’s behalf ;) My students were able to eliminate it in all Hayward Unified public schools by lobbying the school board because they had health and environmental concerns. That’s how I learned more about it. 

    Gaumenkitzel on San Pablo near University in Berkeley is great! Take out containers are compostable, and they provide several items (especially food to reheat later) in mason jars with a small deposit. We’ve been very happy with them.

    Proposition Chicken on Lakeshore uses compostable containers. Their sandwiches and salads are delicious!

    I love Hawking Bird on Telegraph in Oakland not only for their great food, but for also being environmentally conscious.  They pack everything in compostable containers with a paper bag.  Pre-pandemic, what little trash remained from eating indoors was separated.  I wish more restaurants did this.

    Pizza is generally a good bet.  I also like Flying Falafel in downtown Berkeley. Most containers are not plastic and they use paper bags. 

    Sweetgreen is one of my favorites, and all of their packaging is compostable: https://order.sweetgreen.com/berkeley/menu

    Thank you for caring.  I am so upset over all the plastic being used now as a result of COVID; it's as if the clock has been turned back.  I infrequently order take out now because the food is not as good both because of the delay in serving sitting in plastic until delivered.  I really appreciate it when restaurants do use compostable materials.

    There are a lot of restaurants that are very conscientious about packaging, and were before Covid too.  Most fast food comes in paper wrappers/boxes - burgers, pizza, tacos, burritos - even the chains!  Chinese restaurants use paper containers for the most part.  We like King Yen in Berkeley. Here are some more we've enjoyed: Ramen Shop in Oakland puts everything including the broth into cardboard containers and it is sooo good. Krispy Rice in Oakland has cute cardboard bento boxes.  Greenleaf Provisions puts their heat-and-serve items (Phil's Sliders!!) in aluminum foil pans which can be recycled. They deliver cocktails in [reusable] glass mason jars!  Gregoire's comes in cardboard clamshells. Revival, Belotti, and Rick & Ann's have good packaging. So there are a few ideas. Support our local restaurants and happy eating!

    Original poster here-

    Thanks for all the great suggestions!  I just downloaded the Jybe app.

    We are in Berkeley, and i know that we have laws about packaging, but somehow the plastic still arrives from local restaurants.  We sometimes get takeout from surrounding cities (Emeryville, Oakland, Albany), and at the moment the worst of the plastic providers is in Emeryville --and it's my kid's second-favorite restaurant.

    Compostable plastics are not so far a great solution, though I'll take it over polystyrene.  My husband is a waste-management consultant, and tells me that industrial composting facilities really dislike the compostable plastics.  (Great article at www.eater.com/2020/1/15/21065446/compostable-take-out-containers.)  And since they require heat to break down, bioplastics in the ocean act the same as petroleum plastics.  The very qualities that make plastic so functional (waterproof, unreactive, don't break down) are a big part of what makes it problematic.

    It's really comforting to know this is on other people's minds, too! The thought of how much plastic waste is generated daily with take out makes me nuts. We've been actively avoiding restaurants we used to love because the non-recyclable plastic waste is not justifiable. Our go tos have been Burma Superstar and Cholita Linda, but I appreciate having a few more options to try out!

    If you live in Berkeley and like Japanese food, Sushi California on MLK Jr. Way, just south of University, accepts the cartons I bring them, and fills them with sushi or whatever. It's not great food, but very pleasant, and the staff are charming and courteous:  https://www.sushicalif.com/  (Just remember to tell them you don't need little plastic packets of soy sauce, chop sticks, etc.)

    Bongo Burger (3 locations in Berkeley) is all paper bags and wrapping for burgers/sandwiches and fries ( to go "plates" are unfortunately in plastic clamshell) they have vegetarian food as well as burgers. Really tasty fries, falafel, black bean burger, spicy chicken, steak sandwich. Homemade Cafe on dwight/sacramento uses paper boxes- great breakfast plus many vegetarian options(the home fries, the blintzes, yum). Five Guys uses paper cups and bags, tin foil for burgers -really good vegetarian grilled cheese sandwich too (tons of possible toppings-even green pepper and jalapenos) and delicious fries-cajun or regular, bon a petit!

  • Baba ganoush takeout?

    (10 replies)

    Where's the best baba ganoush takeout near Berkeley, please?

    Berkeley Bowl stopped stocking it (theirs wasn't that good anyway).  Whole Foods sells containers from Marin that taste very good (but it's also extremely expensive).

    Oakland kosher

    Zand on Solano

    They still have it at Berkeley Bowl (the one on Ashby and 6th) in the section across from the wine, around the corner from the yogurt and eggs.  I think there are several brands to choose from.  I buy it every week.

    Zand on Solano or Zaytoon, also on Solano.

    La Mediterranee on College has great baba, hummus, and they have little pita breads (white or wheat) that you can get to go, too. Restaurant is pretty family-friendly, too


    Jerusalem Organic, top of Solano

    You can get takeout baba ganoush at La Med on College Ave in Berkeley and you can order it online ahead of time too on their website. I'm not a baba ganoush connoisseur but I love their tabouleh and their little savory filo things. It's a pleasant place to eat in, too.

    Oasis on Grand Ave in Oakland...

    Sprouts sells it but I guess it's just as expensive as from Whole Foods.

    There are two places on Solano: Zand's Persian deli at 1401 Solano in Albany, and Jerusalem Organic Kitchen, 1897 Solano, Berkeley

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Questions Related Pages

Eateries that deliver to Walnut Creek - NOT PIZZA!

Sept. 2005

What restaurants/eateries other than pizzerias deliver in Walnut Creek? We are in the Heather Farm Park part of Walnut Creek if it matters. I would love to be able to call up someplace and have them bring us dinner once in a while. I'm not interested in all those fancy services where you pay and they bring gourmet meals. I'm just talking about restaurants which deliver like pizzerias deliver. would love to have some food brought to our door

Do you know about Takeout Taxi in Walnut Creek? It's a delivery company that delivers meals from a bunch of different restaurants in WC, Lafayette, etc. There is a delivery fee, so it's not free, as it would be with pizza, however. And if you order from them, do it early. They get busy and then you don't eat for hours! Wendy

BBQ Take-Out

Sept. 2004

Hi! I am planning a cowboy party for my son's 3rd birthday party. I am having a western bbq menu and would like to purchase take out. Any recommendations somewhat near San Leandro? Helena

KC Barbeque in Berkeley on San Pablo they also cater so maybe you won't have to come pick it up but I'm not sure how far out their service is but they're great! KC BBQ 2613 San Pablo Avenue Berkeley, Ca 94702 (510) 548-1140. moniz

BBQ is pretty expensive, but if you're willing to pay for it, the best BBQ in the area is at Everett & Jones in Hayward. If that's too far away, Old South BBQ on East 14th would be my 2nd choice. If you want something more local, Perry's at the Pelton Center is OK. It doesn't have the smokey flavor of the other ones, and the sauces are not as good, but it's acceptable. On the plus side, the owner is/was a caterer and their side orders are wonderful. anon

I *love* the St. Louis ribs and cole slaw from Emil Villa's. It's a chain, I know there's one in Hayward, and one in Oakland- they are both the same. I believ Emile Villas and the Hickory Pit were owned by brothers who had a falling out, and the Hickory Pit has essentially the same menu also. BBQ lover

Everett & Jones, Jack London Square. Yum. Almost as good as Alabama BBQ. Call ahead first - they do a lot of take-out.

Take-Out near Dimond district

May 2004

My husband and I are fairly new residents of the Dimond neighborhood in Oakland and, as parents of a toddler and a very young baby, we end up getting take-out meals much more often than I'd like to admit. So far, we've been relying pretty heavily on a few restaurants in Montclair (Rustica, Ferrari, the taqueria), but these are wearing thin. We'd appreciate recommendations for sources of tasty take-out in Oakland, preferably inexpensive and ideally within a ten or fifteen minute drive of Fruitvale and MacArthur (Grand is close enough; Rockridge is probably too far). I've looked at the website, but there isn't very much on this topic. Thanks for your help! Too Tired to Microwave

Hunan Yuan at Lincoln Square on Redwood Road is great -- nice people, good Chinese food, fast service, plenty of parking. Tel. 531-1415. Enjoy! Morris

We have been going to Ly Luck (Chinese Resturant) like forever. Its on Fruitvale Avenue near Safeway. Everything in there is GREAT and TASTEY!!! They do not deliver, but you can call for pick-up and they are real fast. Try them out. Ly Luck 3537 Fruitvale Avenue (510) 530-3232 Diamond District Neighbor

take out in oakland: on Grand Ave there's Connie's Cantina - Mexican just off Grand near the theater is Siam Cuisine - thai On Webster and about 20th or 21st is a great Indian place - Sabina's, I think Ok back to Grand for good burgers and great butterscotch milkshakes there Ahn's burgers Lakeshore has a Noahs bagels There are several good and cheap vietnamese places in downtown Oakland near grand and broadway drive around down there - not sure which are open for dinner hours. happy hunting! take out fan

Taqueria Los Comales at MacArthur & Fruitvale (across from Blockbuster) is the best Mexican food around (WAY better than the taqueria in Montclair!) and is cheap too! Elaine

Thanks the goddess for take out food. My husband and I would have starved without it when our son was an infant :)!

When we would get sick of the places you mentioned we would go to: The Purple Plum on Park Blvd., Italian Colors in Montclair or Giant Burgers on MacArthur Blvd. All of these places do take out and have great food. Purple Plumb and Italian Colors are on the pricier side, but you can eat creatively by splitting an entree and salad or side dish. And even though it looks a little scarey, Giant Burgers really is good! I've been eating there for the last 20 years and never had any problems. Hope this helps. Enjoy the food! Kristin

Welcome to the neighborhood! We live just a little further out -- in the Laurel district -- so we're very familiar with the ''challenges'' of take out in this area. Montclair IS an option (we use it too), but we do have a few other suggestions.

Before I give you those, I have to tout a few other joys of the neighborhood.

For eating OUT, you MUST try Full House, and yes, they are child friendly. Open for breakfast and lunch every day except Monday, on MacArthur about 1.5 blocks east of 35th ave. We are lucky to have this excellent restaurant in the neighborhood -- better than Mama's Royal (though similar in flavor).

For cafes, across the street from Full House, you should try World Grounds. This is a real community center, good coffee, tea, smoothies, salads, and more. Also very child friendly.

For shopping, have you discovered Farmer Joe's (35th and MacArthur) and the Food Mill? Just try them. They sell themselves.

NOW, on to your requests. Here are some take out suggestions (after 5 years out here):

For Chinese: Ly Luck -- next to the Dimond library. Very inexpensive, pretty traditional (not too westernized) and decent to very good.

Hunan Yuan -- in the Redwood Shopping Center on Redwood Rd (take 13 to Redwood rd and turn LEFT). This is a little pricier (though not expensive) and the clientele is mostly non-Chinese. BUT the food is really really wonderful -- they use superior incredients, and they know how to cook.

There are a number of other corn-starchy Chinese restaurants on MacArthur -- most of them kinda scary. Daniel's is pretty good (or at least not bad) -- AND THEY DELIVER. Corner of MacArthur and High Street.

Mexican: Los Comales -- on MacArthur one block west of Fruitvale. Not bad! Actually, pretty good! (But if you want REAL DELICIOUS Mexican food, go down to International. Los Comales and all others pale in comparison).

Pizza Try Razzo's 2 minute pizza -- VERY DELICIOUS!!!!! Corner of High and MacArthur. Worth the extra several block drive. They also have large salads and homemade Tiramisu -- and a little parking lot out front. This is NOT your standard bad pizza.

Happy eating! Hungry in the Laurel

A couple of more places to try:
Pastino's pizza on Park Blvd-good, basic pizza; they also have pasta which we haven't tried
Arizmendi on Lakeshore-one daily veggie pizza cooked there or take home half-baked
Kasper's hotdogs on Macarthur towards Laurel-plus a little farther along is Loard's ice cream which looks kind of scary but has great mango ice cream
Everett & Jones BBQ on Fruitvale-yum
Also, there are lots of places to get stuff like good papusas (basically a quesadilla, from El Salvador) down Fruitvale

None of these is too healthy but good... glenview eater

Shandong Restaurant in Chinatown (328-10th St. near Webster)is one of the best northern Chinese restaurants I've found in the entire Bay Area, this from someone who lived in Northern China for two years! You can call ahead with an order to pick up or have it delivered, though only within a small radius. Absolute must try: their freshly-made dumplings and handmade noodles! Call 839-2299. They're closed Mondays. keaiwen

Take-out near Montclair?


Any recommendations for those too busy to cook? When we lived in the city we had decent delivery Chinese, Japanese, Italian, Mexican, BBQ, etc. How about in Oakland (Montclair) area? I have tried Home on the Range which was pretty good, but I would like to know about other possibilities. Or if they don't deliver is there good take-out in my area?

When in need of a quick meal I either use: Rustica on LaSalle - take out or delivery of Roti-chicken, pizzas and lots of hot or cold side dishes. Pretty timely delivery. Right across the street is the old Lucca deli which I don't remember the name. Take out for great sandwiches, salads, re-heatable foodsetc. A little further out of the Oakland way is Whole Foods in Berkeley that has great ready to eat foods. Just my 2 cents. Eva

We live in Montclair and get our Chinese delivery from Szechuan (839-8988) and our Japanese food from Ichibon (268-8688). They are owned by the same people and we've been very happy with the food quality and delivery service. Pastino's Pasta and Pizza on Park (482-4701) also used to deliver, although we haven't done that in awhile, so I don't know if they still do. Cathy

Delivery is definitely a challenge in the East Bay. However, in Montclair there is Rustica on La Salle, you can take-out or they deliver. They have many types of Pizza - if you have it delivered I would recommend half baked, then you finish it in your oven - keeps it from becoming soggy. They also deliver roast chicken, potatoes etc. A.G. Ferrari in Montclair also has a good selection of take-out, both prepared food and frozen pasta and soups. A little further away, but good is Market Hall in Rockridge for prepared food - the menu and selection changes weekly, but they always have standards like roast chicken, Shepherds pie, macaroni & cheese etc. Kristi

Try Golden Lotus, an unassuming, almost hole in the wall kind of Chinese vegetarian restaurant, with great food. Our favorites are the Pan Fried Veg Chowfun and the green beans with tofu dish. I also have to mention that their Vegan Mocha Cake is the best I have ever eaten. They also do fake meat, fish etc. and I have heard friends complement their Caramelized Chicken. I do not know if they deliver but we have taken out from there several times. The address is: Golden Lotus 1301 Franklin Street Oakland, CA 94612
The phone number is: 510-893-0383