Although the University of California dominates Berkeley's heritage and cultural life, the two are not synonymous:


The city of 100,000 facing San Francisco has a myriad of other interesting attributes. Named for George Berkeley, the Irish philosopher and clergyman who crossed the Atlantic to convert Native Americans to Christianity, Berkeley is a fascinating place to spend a day, a cultural and intellectual center framed by green hills on one side and the San Francisco Bay on the other.


Restaurants
The Walk Shop is located smack in the middle of what is known locally as the Gourmet Ghetto, a three block stretch of gourmet shops and restaurants. Listed below are just a few of the eateries you'll find here:

Chez Panisse: Just around the corner from us is Chez Panisse, the internationally renowned french restaurant. The famed Alice Waters, who personally invented "California Cuisine", remains the mastermind behind this legendary eatery. In the downstairs restaurant, where redwood paneling, a fireplace and lavish floral arrangements create the feeling of a private club, dinners are fixed price. Upstairs in the cafe the prices are lower, the crowd livelier, and the menu simpler. (Call 510-548-5525 for reservations, which are essential at the restaurant. Closed on Sundays.)

Cha-Am: If you're in the mood for something more exotic, a short walk down the street will bring you to Cha-Am, felt by many to be the best Thai restaurant in the Bay Area. The prices are moderate, and the food comes fast. Try and get a table in the glass enclosed room overlooking Shattuck Ave.

Saul's New York Deli: Feeling a little home sick? Saul's has piping hot chicken soup (served with matzo balls or noodles), extra thick pastrami and corned beef sandwiches, and fresh egg fizzes that are to die for. Such a bargain.

The Cheeseboard Collective: Just need a quick snack? The Cheeseboard features a mind-boggling array of cheeses from around the world, and as if that wasn't enough, they bake their own fresh baguettes, scones, and muffins several times a day. My mom drives 45 minutes every Sunday for a hot baguette and a slice of Stilton.

Peet's Coffee:Every shopping trip requires a pick-me-up at some point during the day. You'll find none better than the dark brown mix served up at Peet's. This is the original location where Alfred Peet first open his store more than 30 years ago. Known to some in the neighborhood as rocket fuel, it is the stuff that has kept many of our own salespeople going during a busy Saturday at the store.


Beer

Well, what did you expect from a university town? And because U.C. Berkeley is the number one public university in the country, we have some of the finest brew pubs in the states.

Pyramid Ale Brewery: Home of Pyramid Ale. Located on Gilman St., this palatial brew pub and restaurant lets you sip a pint while you look out over the 30 or so giant stainless steel brew tanks. If you like beer, you must stop by. It's amazing. And on Saturday nights they show really bad movies in the parking lot.

The Triple Rock: A smaller brew pub with more of a neighborhood feel. Get some nachos and have a pint up in the beer garden.

Jupiter's: The cosmopolitan brother of The Triple Rock, with a larger selection of home-brewed beer as well as some european brands.


The University

Of course, the University is the center of the community. The first of nine campuses to be built for the University of California (which is why we get to call ourselves "Cal"), it's not unusual to see the guy who just discovered the world's oldest human remains (he calls her "Lucy") just five minutes after seeing a naked man singing Frank Sinatra ballads in Sproul Plaza. An experience.

The Berkeley Art Museum: This museum houses a collection of work spanning five centuries, although the emphasis is on contemporary art. Don't miss the series of vibrant paintings by the abstract impressionist Hans Hofmann. On the ground floor is the Pacific Film Archive, with programs of historic and contemporary films.

The U.C. Botanical Gardens: More than 13,500 species of plants from all over the world flourish in the 34 acre gardens. Tours are given weekends at 1:30. This is the best place in Berkeley to have a picnic.

The Phoebe Hearst Museum of Anthropology: Changing exhibits may cover the archeology of ancient America or the crafts of the Pacific Islanders.The Museum also houses the collection of artifacts made by Ishi, the lone survivor of the Yahi Indian tribe. Located in Kroeber Hall.

Sather Tower: Popularly known as the Campanile, this is the campus landmark, and it can be seen for miles. The 307-ft structure was modeled on St. Marks Tower in Venice and completed in 1914. Take the elevator up to the observation deck for an unrivaled view of the campus and of the Bay Area.

The Lawrence Hall of Science: A dazzling science education center with hand's on displays for children. Interactive exhibits let kids look at insects under microscopes, solve crimes using chemical forensics, and explore the physics of baseball. On clear Saturday nights from 8 to 11 the museum sets up telescopes for it's popular Saturday Night Stargazing.





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The Walk Shop® | 2120 Vine Street | Berkeley, CA 94709 | (510) 849-3628 
Mondays through Saturdays, 10am to 6 pm | Sundays, 11am to 5pm 

 

"Footwear For People Who Walk." 

* The Walk Shop is a federally registered service mark.