by Jesse Hirsch
Welcome to the Mid-Week Menu, a weekly roundup of restaurant openings, chef arrivals and departures, and other nuggets of gossip from the East Bay dining scene.
1) According to Berkeleyside, a spot called Souvlaki Greek Traditional Food is opening at 2518B Durant Ave, next to Manhattan Pizza. And Tablehopper reports that Simply Greek may be adding a Berkeley location at 2929 Shattuck. Our own Ellen Cushing says Berkeley is becoming "Hella Hellenic."
2) A new pizzeria called Nick's is taking over the vegan Pizza Plaza in North Oakland starting in May. Serving "Oakland-style" pizza, Nick's will not allow you to customize your pies. Instead, each day will feature five topping options like pulled pork, mac and cheese, and kaboucha squash. Surprise: there's a Kickstarter.
3) Also Kickstartin' it is Hopscotch, a 40-seat Uptown spot promising "global bistro fare" with Japanese sensibilities.
4) A Minneapolis red-sauce joint called Loring Pasta Bar is opening an outpost this summer on Grand Ave., near Farley's, according to Diablo Dish.
6) This happened a few weeks ago but we forgot to tell you. The Chocolatier Blue chocolate shop is now an upscale ice cream parlor. That is all.
7) Tablehopper gets word that Marzano is doubling its size by expanding into the hardware store next door. The expansion should be done by next week.
Comments? Tips? Get in touch at Jesse.Hirsch@EastBayExpress.com.