1807 Fourth St. (near Delaware Street), Berkeley
Open Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Saturday-Sunday 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
After supply chain and permit delays, the day has finally arrived: Oceanview Diner, the Fourth Street restaurant owned and operated by a consortium of former employees of Bette’s Oceanview Diner, is open for business as of Thursday, March 10, serving up a familiar menu of pillowy pancakes and soft-scrambled eggs.
As you likely recall, Bette’s ended its nearly 40-year run in January, when owner Manfred Kroening shuttered its Diner and To-Go operations due to pressures wrought by the pandemic and a longstanding wish to retire. Two weeks later, a group of former Bette’s workers, assisted by landlords Denny Abrams and Richard Millikan, put together a worker/owner partnership and announced plans to reopen a restaurant in the storied 1807 Fourth St. space.
Oceanview Diner, as it’s now known, served just a few locals Wednesday, working out a few kinks before the big opening Thursday. “It was wonderful seeing the familiar faces of our regular customers coming back to support our new venture,” worker/owner Kristen Luna told Nosh.
According to Luna, customers will notice few changes, but behind the scenes, there are some tweaks that will help the business along. The menu is virtually identical the the Bette’s menu — which makes sense, as Darryl Kimble, the chef at Bette’s for the last 37 years, is back in the kitchen.
“We are adjusting to the function of the old-school way we used to do things,” Luna said, “and the modern changes we made to make our method of service flow better.” That means no more handwritten tickets, but a fancy new POS system to send orders back to the kitchen, as well as a couple other 21st century operational innovations.
For now, it’s just the Diner that’s open, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends. Luna says that once they get things humming in the Diner — “within the next two weeks” or so — the To-Go window will reopen, too.
In the end, Luna says the little behind-the-scenes updates like the new POS system will help enhance the familiar experience of a meal at the Diner, not detract from it. Their goal, she said, it to “provide the best service possible while keeping the same atmosphere that customers grew to love.”