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People have been noticing that Downtown Alameda is a bit more hip these days. Funny how that thought has crept up on us. When did this happen? Well, it might appear that Alameda wasn’t hip enough for today’s generation until American Oak opened its doors.
Charles Carlise and Melanie Hartman started BarCeluna at 2319 Santa Clara Ave in July 2008. After a few years in business they decided they wanted to re-brand their restaurant. This led to the birth of the Alameda gastropub and whiskey bar called American Oak which they opened in its place in January 2012.
Things were going great and the whiskey bar concept was really taking off when a devastating fire forced them to shut down in December 2013. But this didn’t keep them down. Fortunately, as a result of the tremendous support of the community and a lot of hard work, they were able to re-open American Oak (aka AO) in May 2013.
In October 2013, Charles and Melanie hired executive chef Harte Singer. Since then, the food at AO has been taken to a new level!
Located in Downtown Alameda right off Park Street, American Oak has become the East Bay’s premier whiskey bar with one of the biggest selections of whiskeys and bourbons. In addition, AO’s dinner menu has made it a destination restaurant with its staple of comfort food favorites and a super seasonal menu with daily specials.
On the AO menu you will usually find a nice array of starters ranging from fried oysters to raw kale salad and roasted squash soup. The wood oven offerings include roasted Brussels Sprouts, a smoked Mac & Cheese, and Pork Ribs served with cannelloni beans and collard greens. Even more is offered on the regular entrée menu in the form of P.E.I. Mussels & Fries, grilled Hanger Steak with creamy grits, and a local cheese plate.
American Oak is especially known for their Kobe Beef Burger and their roasted free-range chicken. These dishes will not disappoint.
In the mood for some good ole fashioned comfort food on the weekend? Looking for the best Sunday brunch in town? AO’s new Sunday Brunch menu will surely satisfy your breakfast cravings! Choose from AO Eggs Benedict, bourbon-infused French Toast, house-made Biscuits & Chorizo, or Breakfast Grits served with fried egg and bacon.
Did we mention whiskey? American Oak houses over 250 selections of various types of whiskey, ranging from bourbon to single malt, and everything in between. From an award-winning “Whiskey Sour” recipe to a “Vieux Carré,” American Oak features a definitive selection of whiskey cocktails. AO, in its modernistic approach, also offers whiskey flights and new takes on the classic cocktails. It’s a great way to learn about the finer distinctions of this traditional American adult beverage or enjoy a twist on an old-time favorite.
Don’t like whisky? Then try one of their other concoctions or simply have a glass of wine from their extensive selection of local and unique wines.
For a special evening on the town, AO’s mezzanine is open on Friday and Saturday nights for cocktail service. Live music with The Charles Wheal Band can be heard on the first Sunday of every month from 4:00 to 7:00pm.
2319 Santa Clara Ave.
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The Park Street Business District offers great food & drink establishments, charming shops, friendly services, and fun things to do! To learn more about the businesses and events in Downtown Alameda, visit our website: www.ShopParkStreet.com/news. You can also find the “Park Street Business Association” on Facebook and Twitter.