Temescal’s Telegraph Avenue in Oakland is becoming quite the coffee-lovers’ hot spot. There’s a Peet’s Coffee, Remedy, Good Bellies, Aunt Mary’s Cafe and The Mixing Bowl. And now there’s a new cafe on the block, Arbor, which has taken over the former kid-friendly spot SadieDey‘s as of October.
Arbor is owned by DNA Lounge manager Christopher Marquez. When my husband and I stopped in for brunch on a chilly Sunday morning, we were looking forward to a good hot cup of coffee and a warm breakfast.
The decor reflects the retro-vintage chic that’s all the rage right now, with wood floors and mismatched tables and chairs filling up the space. But there’s very little artwork up on the walls, so the space doesn’t quite have the same warm, lived-in look as its furniture. It would be a great venue for a rotating gallery featuring local artists, so hopefully they’ll utilize Arbor’s spacious room for small art openings.
The indoor bicycle rack was filled to capacity — a nice touch to help attract cycling-friendly clientele — and Arbor brews java from the local Bay Area company Bicycle Coffee as well.
Their daily menu is written up on a chalkboard perched on an easel: granola with yogurt and fruit ($5); egg and cheddar sandwich with salad ($6); poached eggs with toast and salad ($7); prosciutto, poached eggs and toast ($7) and strawberry and Nutella (we’re presuming on toast) ($6). There were also an assortment of pastries for sale. They were out of the egg and cheddar sandwich when we arrived just before noon, so my husband ordered coffee while I decided to try their prosciutto special. There were only two friendly staffers behind the counter, so service was a little slow as they prepared the drip coffee and meal. But they were cheerful and attentive, and we didn’t mind the wait as they apologized for the fact they’re still smoothing out the kinks.
The prosciutto plate was rather plain; two slim slices of buttered baguette were topped with poached eggs and meat, and the accompanying mixed green salad was simply dressed. While the breakfast was a bit on the underwhelming side, I’m hoping Arbor will continue to evolve and expand their offerings. Judging from the number of tables occupied that morning, it’s building a loyal community following and is another welcome addition to the neighborhood.
Yelp: Arbor Cafe
4210 Telegraph Ave
(between 42nd St & 43rd St)