Oakland's exuberant, deeply-rooted food culture means something different to everyone. For me, it was the first city that my parents immigrated to from Vietnam, amongst the many other immigrants who makes up the Oakland community. Thus resulting in a vibrant Oakland food culture that defines our city. And here in Oakland, we celebrate it. 

For Chef Tu David Phu, these are the must-eats places if you “hella” want to experience the essence of Oakland.

On the edge of Chinatown with secret affordable parking nearby. Bowls of egg noodle soups are always affordable and hot! Must order the Fish Cake.

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2. Beauty's Bagel Shop

I’ve been all over the country for bagels, but I love this Oakland style best, wood burning oven. Call me biased. #townbizz

You haven’t experience Oakland at all unless you’ve experienced our Taco Truck Culture. Find out why and join El Gordo’s cult following of taco lovers.

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4. Nyum Bai

Khmer Cuisine at its finest. Voted one of the Top 20 Restaurants by Eater Magazine. I think it’s the best.

5. Reem's California

I’ve never been to Palestine, but I swear Reem takes me there every time when I take a bite of her Pali-Cali. Her amazing food not only nourishes but it heals… Food & Wine Restaurant of the Year 2018!

6. Cosecha

Monday Mole is “where it’s at” made by Dominica Rice-Cisneros, a former Chez Panisse alumni. She has a relentless commitment to cooking her native Mexican dishes with heirloom ingredients which she sources from Mexico. AND the Horchata-Latte is INSANELY good.

$70 Eight Course OMAKASE! An amazing deal and consistently good.

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Formerly known as “The Porno Shop” based on its awkward history. However, it serves amazing late-night Korean Pancakes. Solidly crispy.

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Oakland’s very own James Syhabout serves up 2 Michelin star tasting menu at Oakland prices. I am convinced he is the cheapest 2 Michelin star restaurant in the nation. I appreciate James's commitment to keeping it accessible.

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Do you even Banh Mi? Come get the real stuff here. NO CULTURAL APPROPRIATION HERE! Not sorry.

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Oakland natives are deep-rooted in their local history. Attitudes and personalities are personified by influences of the historical community aesthetics of Black Panthers in West Oakland and New Age movement in neighboring Berkeley. In the decades to come, it would result in momentous support for food rights and policies. I am proud to say that "Oakland is leading in food. And yes, I'm biased."