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Benchmark Oakland to Host Author Dinner with Allison Arevalo

Benchmark Oakland to Host Author Dinner with Allison Arevalo


Benchmark Oakland to Host Author Dinner with Allison Arevalo

Benchmark Oakland will host an author dinner with Allison Arevalo on Thursday, September 26 with seatings at 5:30 p.m. (ending 7:30 p.m.) and 8:00 p.m. (ending 10:00 p.m.) priced at $100.00 per person all-inclusive. Guests will be able to enjoy a three-course meal, flowing house wine and receive a signed copy of Allison's book. Tickets are available via

The evening’s menu will be Grandma's Tomato Salad and Buttery Crostini, a classic Italian chopped salad with mixed olives; Strozzapreti with Pesto, Potatoes and Green Beans with baked cavatelli, sausage and herbs, and greenest garlic bread; and Olive Oil Cake with citrus and whipped cream.

Allison Arevalo, former owner of Oakland's Homeroom, has written a new book, Pasta Friday, a delicious collection of pasta recipes and salads. The Benchmark Oakland dinner affords the opportunity to taste recipes from the book and drink Italian wines selected for the event.

Unchanged is Executive Chef and co-owner Peter Swanson’s Italian-Californian lunch, brunch and dinner menus prepared with seasonal, often locally sourced, organic ingredients. Working with Peter is Operations Manager and co-owner Melissa Swanson. The beverage selection includes an international wine list, assorted beers and craft cocktails.

Chef Swanson, 45 years old, set the stage for coming to Oakland by opening Benchmark Pizzeria in Kensington, California, in 2012. Previous professional experience includes working as lead line cook at Oliveto Cafe & Restaurant and helping open Dopo where he remained as sous chef for six years.

Working to ensure that the entirety of the Benchmark Oakland dining experience is a good one is co-owner Melissa Swanson who was at Oliveto for ten years, at Chez Panisse as a server in the cafe upstairs and also helped with her family’s organic baby food company.

The building housing Benchmark Oakland is an historic structure erected in 1876 and a portion of the restaurant’s mosaic and tile flooring has been in place for the better part of a century. Highlights of the comfortable, engaging 50-seat dining room designed by Said Jon Eghbal, in collaboration with the Swansons, include a burnt orange and black color scheme, wood-topped tables, a high ceiling, abundant natural light from over-sized windows and an exhibition kitchen. On display are framed photographs of namesake round metal benchmark markers. The zinc-topped bar has room for 10 people and there is outdoor sidewalk patio seating for up to 16, weather permitting.

Benchmark Oakland is located at 499 9th Street, on the corner of Washington Street. The restaurant is open weekdays for lunch and nightly for dinner, Monday through Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Friday 11:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., Saturday 5:30 to 10:00 p.m., and on Sunday 5:30 to 9:00 p.m. Brunch is served on Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. An adjacent pay lot and neighborhood streets ensure accessible parking options. The web address is Additional information and reservations, also available through Resy, can be obtained by calling (510) 488-6677.

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