Fried chicken mochi waffles are headed to Berkeley

Plus: Berkeley’s first ever vegan food fest; a “compost” shake; more Quick Bites.

For one day only, Third Culture Bakery’s waffles will be topped by Taiwan Bento’s marinated popcorn chicken. Credit: Third Culture Bakery
  • Folks who like their sweet with their savory are in luck on Saturday. Third Culture Bakery, the Berkeley spot known for its super-popular mochi muffins, is hosting a one-day-only collaboration with Oakland street food destination Taiwan Bento. From noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, July 31, the bakery will serve up a special mochi waffle packed with English cheddar and green onions, topped with Taiwanese marinated popcorn chicken and sausage, tea eggs, kewpie mayo, and basil. The whole thing, Third Culture’s Wenter Shyu tells Nosh, is gluten free, delightful news for those who eschew that type of protein. Preorders are sold out, but Third Culture’s owners promise that a limited number of waffles will also be available for customers who walk into the bakery’s 2701 Eighth St. storefront that day.
  • Berkeley’s first ever vegan food festival is starting to come together, organizer Erika Hazel (aka @bizerkeleyvegan) tells Nosh. The event is planned for Sunday, Sept. 5 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Sports Basement Berkeley (2727 Milvia St.), and tickets will range from $5-$10. The vendor list is still coming together, so keep an eye on its website or Instagram to see how it shapes up.
  • As first reported by The Daily Californian, Oakland sandwich pop-up Pyro’s Pastrami is planning to open a permanent location in Berkeley…but nowhere in the article did the restaurant say where in Berkeley its new shop would be. That’s not the fault of the Daily Cal’s reporter, though: when Nosh contacted Pyro’s, a spokesperson said that the restaurant isn’t “releasing the location at this time,” but that it will “have a big reveal soon.” For now, the mysterious pastrami place is plotting an October opening, wherever that might be.
  • As long as we’re talking about expected openings, here are two more: The East Bay Times reports that a couple new spots are expected to open in downtown Pleasant Hill. Local restaurant vet Bradley Zeller (Va de Vi and Walnut Creek Yacht Club) is opening Crescent Bistro, which promises “upscale California cuisine.” Castro Valley’s Southern Comfort Kitchen is also planning a Pleasant Hill outpost, with “authentic Cajun dishes” and 10 different po’ boy sandwiches. Both are expected to start serving diners sometime this summer.
  • You might have seen the headlines touting a San Francisco “pop-up” for Milk Bar, the East Coast dessert chain famously founded by pastry chef Christina Tosi well over a decade ago. East Bay folks seeking a bit of the Bar can also head to Walnut Creek, a spokesperson for burgers-and-shakes chain Gott’s Roadside tells Nosh. Starting on Saturday, July 31 and running through Sept. 15, the restaurant at 1275 S. Main St. will serve Tosi’s “Compost Cookie Shake,” a 16 oz. treat with organic milk and chocolate ice cream, Milk Bar’s “compost cookie” (here’s the cookie’s recipe, in case you’re worried it’s filled with discarded eggshells and banana peels) and malt powder.
Eve Batey is the Editor of East Bay Nosh Email: eve@eastbaynosh.org. Twitter: eveb.