Your hard work should not go unrewarded! Instead of heading home immediately when the whistle blows, here are six solid reasons to stick around downtown Oakland after the day is done. (Make sure to also check out part 1 of our list.)
The Ruby Room, 132 14th St.
Before it became The Ruby Room, The Courthouse Lounge served a clientele of lawyers and judges during the 50’s and 60’s.
Today, the venue has changed quite a bit: walls are painted over in black and the interior is fitted with red lights, possibly making it the “darkest bar ever.” Aside from cheap drinks and a pool table, this dive is home to a smoker’s lounge and a small dance floor.
The Double Standard, 2424 Telegraph Ave.
Don't wait until the weekend to sit outside and relax under a tree; Yelpers report that the back patio at The Double Standard has fairy lights and a "big ass redwood," along with plenty of outdoor seating.
Inside, the bar has a lounge feel and several flat-screen TVs; in addition to a team of mixologists who prepare seasonal cocktails, Oakland chefs occasionally stage food pop-ups here, as well.
The bar's menu features a wide range of beers on tap, as well as specialty and barrel cocktails like Pimm's Cup, Moscow Mule and El Diablo, all made with a diverse lineup of fresh ingredients.
Cafe Van Kleef, 1621 Telegraph Ave.
It can be difficult to accommodate a large group at Cafe Van Kleef, but that’s only a testament to its popularity. It’s dark, divey and a little tight, but the funky bar is a local favorite thanks to the Greyhound, a vodka beverage made with freshly squeezed grapefruit juice. The walls are also decorated with eclectic oddities and artifacts from around the world, which provide a backdrop for live music events that frequently take place on a small stage in the back.
Abura-Ya, which translates to “Oil Shop” in Japanese, is a permanent pop-up that specializes in Japanese-style fried chicken, known as karaage.
At lunch, it operates out of The Hatch (402 15th St.), before switching over for dinner at Garden House (380 15th St.), a casual salad spot located across the street. In line with its punk rock-inspired theme, Abura-Ya’s logo is a tribute to the Ramones’ band emblem.
The New Parish, 1743 San Pablo Ave.
The New Parish is fitted with exposed brick walls, an upstairs balcony that overlooks the stage and an enclosed outdoor courtyard for smoking. With a 400-person capacity, this venue generally books national and local bands. Over the years, however, it has welcomed a wide range of performers including Mos Def, Ra Ra Riot, Bonnie “Prince” Billy and comedians like Dave Chappelle.
The Night Light, 311 Broadway
The Night Light is a two-story “cocktail sanctuary” comprised of a lower-level bar and a upper-level live music venue. Drawing inspiration from the waterfront's historic past, the interior is largely based on maritime culture.
A wide range of performers, including national DJs, locals acts, and comedians draws Live music also plays every day of the year.
Did we miss any of your favorite places to destress after work? Let us know in the comments.
Never miss a story.
Subscribe today to get Hoodline delivered straight to your inbox.