What can you get for $150 these days? At Lakeshore's new hotspot -- Shakewell Bar & Kitchen -- it bought early investors the opportunity to have a cocktail named in their honor. It was just one of the special experiences that Shakewell chef/partners Tim Nugent and Jen Biesty offered in 2013 on the crowdfunding site Kickstarter. Shakewell reached its goal one year ago, with 443 backers and almost $103,000 pledged.
That's when the work really started. The pair hired the design/build team of The Bon Vivants to bring light and energy into their new acquisition with a bigger bar, new floor, tables, chairs and facade. Since opening in early July, Shakewell (3407 Lakeshore) has been packed almost nightly.
The food has a Spanish Mediterranean flair with a "living" menu of seasonal offerings. But Tim and Jen bring even more to the table. They're both celebrated, award-winning chefs who worked together at Scala's in San Francisco.
Jen says they're like two peas in a pod -- a cute foodie simile. It's a good thing they get along so well. With Shakewell open for dinner six nights a week and soon for weekend lunch and brunch, they'll be together a lot.
Bottoms up: If you brew your own beer, this could be your shot at fame. The Mad Zymurgists homebrewing club is looking for entries for this fall's Oaktoberfest Homebrewing Competition. The Best in Show winner will have his or her beer brewed for local distribution by 21st Amendmen Brewing Company. Looking for support? There are thousands of homebrewers in California and several Bay Area clubs to tap into. Deadline is Sept. 14, and the winner will be announced Oct. 4 at the Oaktoberfest in the Dimond. Details at http://www.madzymurgists.com.
Around town: Folks fought the concept when Ken Betts wanted a convenience store in its Montclair gas station, but now one has sprung up just outside Montclair Village. Mash Petroleum is the new owner of the service station at Mountain Boulevard and Highway 13. This is the Mashhoon family's 11th East Bay service station (they also own Montclair Gas on Thornhill). The family's holdings also include some local El Señor Burrito shops.
Trail talk: Reader Carol Copperud says someone lost a little metal box on the Montclair Railroad Trail recently. Volunteers found it on their third Saturday cleanup and think it might belong to a child. Inside were "treasures" -- some money and personal items that I'm betting the owner would like returned. If that person is you, or someone you know, email Carol at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On the subject of trails, it's been a year since the Rim Fire destroyed most of the Berkeley Tuolumne Camp. Friends and camp families will have a campfire sing-a-long with s'mores from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Friday at Codornices Park in Berkeley. There'll be a candlelight vigil from 7 to 8 p.m. Monday at Berkeley's Martin Luther King Jr. Park.
Animal Tales: What kind of a name is Wyatt for a river otter? It probably suits him, considering the playful little guy is from Abilene, Texas. Wyatt moved to the Oakland Zoo this summer to pair up with Ginger and Rose in the zoo's highly successful breeding program. If all goes well, we "otter" see pups in the spring of 2016.