Oakland Tribune Outtakes

Notes from Oakland, Berkeley and in between

Downtown isn’t just for Pink Ladies

By asoglin
Tuesday, May 20th, 2008 at 11:37 am in Uncategorized.

The women from Code Pink http://www.codepink4peace.org/ still get more attention than almost anything going on in downtown Berkeley these days. But the protesters at the U.S. Marine Center are far from the only thing happening in the city’s core.

boona cheema, no that’s not a typo, cheema uses all owner case letters in her name to keep her humble, was recently honored as the executive director of Building Opportunities for Self Sufficiency (BOSS) http://www.self-sufficiency.org/ during the organization’s 35th anniversary celebration. More than 250 politicians, business and faith leaders, staff, supporters, and participants of BOSS gathered for the event at Hs. Lordships earlier this month and reports are that the party was a success.

Speaking of parties, seems there’s one at the “new” Brazil Cafe at 1983 Shattuck Ave. every Wednesday afternoon. That’s when Pedro Robbins and Lynn Ferreira offer free shots of Mona Vie _ a delicious fruit drink that includes Acai _ the high vitamin berry from Brazil. The drink is a mix of 19 of the highest powered vitamins on the planet, says Deborah Badhia with the Downtown Berkeley Association. The new cafe is not to be confused with the Brazil Fresh Squeeze Cafe, the little hut at 2161 University in the parking lot of Mike’s Bikes that almost always has a line out the door. Seems that parking lots, little kitchens are a good place to gather, chat, eat and drink.

Berkeley, with the gourmet ghetto and world-renowned Chez Panisse, is a foodie’s paradise. But restaurant owners also want to make sure that places that sell booze are following the law.

Natalie Kniess of Bistro Liaison recently launched the Berkeley Restaurant Action Committee to work on Berkeley’s new responsible beverage ordinance, which mandates more training for restaurant employees who serve alcohol as well as other guidelines around the sales of alcohol. Already 51 Berkeley restaurants have joined the group.

- Kristin Bender

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