Oakland’s Uptown foodie scene rocketed to new heights of allure with the opening of Duende restaurant last year. This mecca of tapas, art, music, ambiance, and drinks provides locals with an experience to savor…when you can get in. This restaurant became an overnight hot spot! Listed in the best tapas restaurants in the U.S. by Travel & Leisure magazine in 2013, Duende provides an ever-changing menu driven by local ingredients.
The paella, with rabbit and chorizo or an assortment of seasonal vegetables is served sizzling in large pans for sharing. Mouthwatering bites of spreadable chorizo on toast, creamy and tangy Brussels sprouts salad, patatas bravas, and so many more are brought out as finished. It feels like a whirlwind of flavor takes you on journey to somewhere exotic, yet somehow familiar with use of local ingredients.
Servers, staff, and chef are happy to help explain, discuss, and recommend wines, beverages, and dishes for anyone intimidated by the 30 plus menu options in Spanish or the simplistic listing of key ingredients for each dish.
If you are unable to get a reservation, try to get there before 6pm to avoid the wait, or hope that the large community chef’s table has a couple seats left and make friends as you dine!
Duende is a comforting adventure, and is worth the wait!