Happy Wanderer: Berkeley’s Gourmet Ghetto ‘like Disneyland’ to Nico’s chef


This cozy booth is one of the features of Nico’s 1508 (formerly Nico’s Hideaway) in Walnut Square on the corner of Walnut and Vine in Berkeley. (Courtesy of Nico’s 1508)

EAST BAY TIMES: October 13, 2017

When it comes to celebrated food districts, Berkeley’s Gourmet Ghetto takes the cake — and most every other food category. It’s one thing that convinced Chef Munther Massarweh to open Nico’s 1508 (formerly Nico’s Hideaway) in Walnut Square on the corner of Walnut and Vine. Another was the restaurant’s built-in charm. Continue reading


Town Crier: Bernie Sanders sighted at Peet’s in Montclair Village

Bernie Sanders

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., speaks at a rally of health care advocates, grassroots activists, and others outside the Capitol in Washington, on Sept. 19. Sanders was recently spotted at the Peet’s in Montclair Village in Oakland. (Associated Press)

EAST BAY TIMES: October 3, 2017

They say you can tell a lot about a person by their coffee order. So what kind of coffee does Bernie Sanders drink? We learned the answer when he popped into Peet’s on a recent Saturday. The September surprise came just before noon in Montclair and shift leader Dorothy Curry (no relation to Stephen) said he ordered a plain coffee. Yep —- no frills for Bernie — and he even turned down a patron’s generous offer to buy him a cuppa Joe. Continue reading

Town Crier: Park in Oakland hills like life depends on it; it does


Welcome to September — where the days are warm and the fire danger critical.

We’ve seen this before. The sun seems relentless as it bakes the hills into a barren brown landscape of tinder dry scrub. And with fire season upon us, are we any more prepared than we were on that fateful day 26 years ago this Oct. 19? Some would argue no. Continue reading

Now is the time for Lake County getaway — for solitude


The 17-room luxury Tallman Hotel is photographed with the Blue Wing Saloon in the foreground of Main Street in Upper Lake in Lake County. (Ginny Prior/For Bay Area News Group)


When western grebes mate, they literally walk on water in a dancing ritual unlike no other. This is something you see on Clear Lake, the largest natural freshwater lake in California and a birding paradise on the Pacific Flyway. Continue reading

Motorcycle shop owner in Oakland blends passion for sport with job


Tyler Carson, owner of Hayasa Motorbikes, 430 E. 10th St., in Oakland, will celebrate his 20th anniversary next year running the motorcycle repair shop with a refreshing integrity and passion for the sport, Ginny Prior writes. (Ginny Prior/For Bay Area News Group)

MONTCLARION: May 2, 2017

One of our paper’s more popular features was the Good Neighbor column written by Dave Newhouse. Too bad Newhouse has retired … because Tyler Carson would have been perfect for his column. Continue reading