A Guide To Alameda, Courtesy Of Two Locals

We’ll go out on a limb here and confess not one, but two things. First, we'll admit that it’s a rarity when we make it all the way out to Alameda. Second, we are kinda-sorta guilty of not always making the healthiest grub choices.
So, when we met Andrew and Sarah Gordon — founders of the cult-followed health-bar company Squarebar — we were fortunate enough to have them school us on both subjects. Double whammy, anyone? The adorable couple and business partners took us around their Alameda neighborhood, where we shopped, ate, and wandered around, exploring their thoughtful choices and digesting useful, nutritional 411. So, if you’re ready to learn more about one the Bay’s cutest health-nut couples — click away!
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Julie’s Coffee & Tea Garden
"We love hanging out in Julie’s Coffee & Tea's back patio, almost as much as we love the gluten-free, vegan eats and drinks! Undoubtedly, the best selection of tea on the island, you can’t help but feel relaxed, nestled behind the building in the garden patio with the recycled furniture and greenery."
Julie's Coffee & Tea, 1223 Park Street (at San Antonio Avenue), Alameda; 510-865-2385.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Blue Danube Coffee House
"A mere block away from the big-coffee options, you’ll find your local coffee shop fix at the Blue Danube. Our go-to for Squarebar meetings, the Blue Danube is a great spot to lounge on a couch with your laptop and caffeine fix!"
Blue Danube Coffee House, 1333 Park Street (between Marti Rae Court and Alameda Avenue), Alameda; 510-523-2116.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Blue Dot Cafe & Coffee Bar
"Due to its off-the-beaten-path location, we only just recently stumbled upon this gem, but it’s fast become one of our favorites. Since Squarebar has us spending more time at coffee bars than bar bars, it’s great to have a creative-juice-flow-conducive atmosphere like Blue Dot. And aside from the good coffee, it has a full cafe-style menu for breakfast and lunch!"
Blue Dot Cafe & Coffee Bar, 1910 Encinal Avenue (between Chestnut and Lafayette streets), Alameda; 510-523-2583.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Dan’s Fresh Produce
"Dan’s open-air, covered farmstand is not the only charm here, as the man himself is there almost every day, greeting shoppers, handling produce, and clueing folks in on what’s good and in-season. We get a weekly local and organic produce box from Dan’s, which is an amazing way to experiment and try fruits and vegetables you might not otherwise have bought."
Dan's Fresh Produce, 2300 Central Avenue (between Park and Oak streets), Alameda; 510-523-1777.
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Photo: Courtesy of Burma Superstar
Burma Superstar
"Our favorite restaurant, hands down! There are so many delicious Burmese options to choose from here. Our favorites are the famous fermented tea-leaf salad and any of the kebat dishes! And don’t be discouraged by its no-reservations policy. It’s a great excuse to pop into the surrounding local, downtown shops and work up an appetite!"
Burma Superstar, 1345 Park Street (between Marti Rae Court and Alameda Avenue), Alameda; 510-522-6200.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
"Great food and really great wine! We love that Pappo opts for local, organic produce and grass-fed meat whenever possible, and it doesn’t hurt that it offers a terrific selection of wines to pair with anything on the menu. Date night approved!"
Pappo, 2320 Central Avenue (between Oak and Park streets), Alameda; 510-337-9100.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Alameda Theatre
"Smack-dab in the center of downtown, it’s hard to miss the fully restored, art deco Alameda Theatre. And, it doesn't stop with the aesthetics, it has live music, magic, talent shows, and costumes on Friday and Saturday nights. The theatre is a big part of why downtown Alameda is often described as quaint."
Alameda Theatre, 2317 Central Avenue (between Oak and Park streets), Alameda; 510-769-3456.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Lincoln Park
"We spend pretty long hours cooped up in an office or on the road, so a walk to the park can be just what the startup-business doctor ordered. Members of the recreation center can take advantage of the bocce-ball courts and the swimming pool, but everyone will enjoy the beautiful rose garden, scenery, and fresh air, while the huge playground occupies the little ones."
Lincoln Park, High And Santa Clara streets, Alameda; No phone.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Alameda Beach
"Yes, Alameda has a beach, which actually provides a gorgeous view of the Bay, cityscape, and even the Golden Gate Bridge on a clear day. And, since the weather is a good 10 degrees warmer with less wind chill than S.F., the beach is a popular place to be on the weekend. Bring a blanket and picnic, or simply enjoy a walk or bike ride along Shoreline Drive."
Alameda Beach, Shoreline Drive, Alameda; No phone.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Books Inc.
"Call us old-fashioned, but we’re more of the tangible, book-in-hand, trophy-on-your-bookshelf types. Plus, we’re happy to shell out a few extra bucks to support one of the few remaining local independent bookstores in the area. Books Inc. is great for exploring books new and old, or for grabbing a magazine on the way to the beach!"
Books Inc., 1344 Park Street (between Alameda Avenue and Marti Rae Court), Alameda; 510-522-2226.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Alameda Marketplace
"This place is a one-stop shop. Our favorite stores in the Marketplace are: Alameda Natural Grocery — not just because they carry Squarebar — but for its great selection of organic and natural foods, Greens & Grains for yummy homemade soups and fresh salads, and Farmstead Cheeses and Wines for an awesome wine selection and on-point recommendations! You’ll also find a local butcher, bakery, and from what we hear from our gluten- and dairy-consuming friends — an awesome pizza parlor."
Alameda Marketplace, 1650 Park Street (between Pacific and Buena Vista avenues), Alameda; No phone.
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Photographed by Ashley Batz
Monkey Bars
"Since we’re eight months pregnant with our first baby, it helps to have an eco-friendly baby and kid’s store right downtown. It doesn’t hurt that the owner shares our taste for all things green and adorable...it’s hard not to want to buy everything in the store!"
Monkey Bars, 1339 Park Street (between Central and Alameda avenues), Alameda; 510-769-6905.