Duende

4.3
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1130 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Spanish
Duende is a Spanish-inspired, neighborhood restaurant located in Oakland’s Uptown district. Currently offering a to go menu for pick up or delivery through Caviar including Spanish wine, innovative cocktails and beer!

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What 1130 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.3
service
4.4
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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vipblainh
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I had a fabulous meal. Because of the tapas size plates I was able to try a few options. The tartar was amazing!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Great food.

n
nonane
1 review
Dined on March 6, 2020
Overall3food2service5ambience4

Overpriced for the quality and taste of the food. Nice atmosphere. Our table had the worst wobble I have experienced in a full service restaurant, even after our wonderful server attempted to balance it. Potato chips with the burger is just lame; the burger was excellent. The pasta dish was really boring and bland. I could have spent half the money and gotten better food elsewhere. Overall, great service, nice place- perhaps we went on an off night but the food did not deliver.

R
vipReliable
San Francisco
161 reviews
Dined on March 6, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

I like this place. As a pre-show spot it’s perfect. My only caption is that the paella, while good, is terrible value. The one we had included some pasta and about 6 shrimp for $50. Stick to the tapas and other large plates.

P
Phil
San Francisco
33 reviews
Dined on March 6, 2020
Overall2food1service3ambience2

Have been here many times and had great meals...not tonight.
Patats bravas were hard all the way through.
We ordered vodka tonic and got vodka and soda twice!
Paella was uninspired.
The overall experience felt like the restaurant was very tired.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on February 29, 2020
Overall2food1service2ambience3

The place is very nice. Unfortunately the food quality is mediocre. The potatoes in papas bravas were like rocks. The salad super salty. The mix tapa cold with mushrooms from a jar and not good quality chorizo. Sad.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 28, 2020
Overall1food3service1ambience4

Food took over an hour to arrive. We only ordered 3 dishes. We waited way too long.

JS
JanS
San Francisco
26 reviews
Dined on February 22, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

We were going to Oakland Symphony that is nearby. We are fond of Duende as they always have some outstanding food. The cabbage salad and the tartlet for dessert were excellent. The paella was overcooked and a little dry. Great service.

N
Norge
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

It would be hard to say which was better: the food or the service. I have seldom had such good service at a restaurant. Our waiter made good suggestions, explained things that we needed to ask about as first-time diners at this restaurant. My friend and I ordered four small plates to share for our meal. I realized after the first two that the waiter was serving them at the right pace and in the right order for the perfect meal. We did not even have to ask for that. And the food was delicious. The cabbage salad raised cabbage to new heights, and the beef kabobs were tender and tasty, with crispy garbanzos my friend raved about the rest of the evening! Duende was a special occasion treat for me; I don't usually spend over $100 for a glass of wine, one mixed drink, small plates, and a shared dessert, but I would do it again on another special occasion.

d
devushka99
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Service was excellent and the place is lovely - lots of warmth and visual interest in the atmosphere. Nice, varied wine list and interesting cocktails. Much of the food was really excellent - we had mushroom toasts that we both loved, and my husband had the anchovies, which he raved about. I thought the vegetarian main was a little too tart without anything to balance it (even though there was a goat cheese sauce), but overall we really enjoyed it, have already recommended it to several people, and look forward to coming back.

AR
ARiv
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on February 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food!

WW
WonderWoman
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 12, 2020
Overall3food2service1ambience4

I have been here several times. The server never came to check on us, there were no special offerings and the mussel dish really just involved one mealy, dried out mussel in the end of some speared bread thing. I can’t really explain it, but it was pretty awful. Burger was great and the drinks, as always were excellent.

T
Trent
Portland
14 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Very creative menu. The flavors were amazing.

T
vipTracy
London
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing celebration dinner for my husband. Incredible food and funky ambiance.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 5, 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience5

Food was great but kitchen was SO slow. Took an hour + to get food and waiter was slow to come and get us another drink while waiting.

O
Orelhao
Sacramento
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience4

Came here about a year ago but did not have the chance to try the paella, so we did this time. It was good but not a super traditional preparation, could probably have done without the aioli on top. Amazing homemade sausage! Enjoyed the lamb appetizer and patatas bravas. Excellent homemade pepper tonic. While we loved the ambiance, we would have liked to have been seated in the actual dining area as we had made a reservation- we didn't realize we were in the bar area until we were leaving. Service was friendly but felt a bit off-timed and rather rushed (even though we told them we were *not* in a rush- there was a show nearby several customers were attending). Overall good though but may stick to the Raciones next time. :)

S
Susie
1 review
Dined on January 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Duende is a fun and lively restaurant with delicious food and attentive waiters.

k
kimberlym
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lovely dinner on a Monday night before taking BART to SF for the symphony. Not many people there on a Monday eves.

KW
KimW
1 review
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience4

We had a lovely time at Duende. We had the Ensalada de Col and the Paella de Carne. Both were excellent! My cocktail was also delicious. It was busy and loud and we wished our waiter would've come by to offer more wine in a more timely fashion, but overall, we enjoyed Duende very much and will be back for more!

JW
vipJohnW
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall2food2service3ambience2

Just not impressed. It was a Saturday night, so it should have bene their ace crew. Drinks, food, and service were just meh. We left saying, "Good thing we don't have to go back."

V
Victorc
1 review
Dined on January 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Kinda price but very good food and nice place i would recommend to all

A
Ahernandez1
1 review
Dined on January 16, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience2

It was something new to do for restaurant week . Food was ok, nothing too special. We are on a mission to find the best paella. This wasn’t it. Waiter gave off a weird vibe and my daughter who has worked in restaurant industry and believes in tipping well did not tip well this time. It was freezing and I left my jacket on the entire time. We probably won’t be returning.

F
Fast
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

We were reminded of our paella in Barcelona. Great cabbage salad. We loved the young and diverse servers, gentle and helpful. The down side was lack of decent heating system. We had to wear our jackets the whole Time!

TB
TomB510
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Intrigued by Oakland Restaurant Week we paid our first visit to Duende and we're delighted. We ordered the Prix Fixe menu and were very satisfied. We had the black squid ink paella as the main and it was delish. The Savoy lettuce salad was an eye opener and the waiter's wine recommendation was spot on.
We'll be back.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2020
Overall2food2service2ambience4

Slow service: we stay at our table after being seated for almost 10 minutes before anyone came to take an order or see if we had any questions or most importantly explain the menu. There were only 4 other couples when we got there and it was the start if their night. So, why the poor service?

Food: nothing mind blowing Or exciting. One taps we ordered was too salty. The other was a very plain and left we wishing it had been crisps or French fries rather that bland fried potato cubes.

Cocktails: meh.

We skipped dessert.

LS
LindaS
San Diego
1 review
Dined on January 10, 2020
Overall3food3service2ambience4

We made reservations and still had to wait an extra 20-30 minutes without any updates and had to approach the host to inquire. Seen multiple 2tops (table for 2) get seated before us. At least 4 other groups who were not there before us.

Food wise! We had the Restaurant week menu, the starting salad is really good! Something I would order again. The squid ink Paella was good too but not sure if the fish on top was suppose to be extra chewy . Everything else is eh. Potatoes def over cooked.

Overall we spent over $150 for two- I don’t think it was worth it.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 10, 2020
Overall5food5service3ambience5

Restaurant week

C
vipCatcher
San Francisco
23 reviews
Dined on December 28, 2019
Overall3food4service2ambience3

Drinks were very slow and the plates of food were too fast. We had three plates of food before the wine came. The food is really good.

t
viptinac
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on December 28, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was PERFECT!!! Duede never disappoints!

TA
vipTeriA
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on December 27, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience4

The menu is broad, and we shared family style. Everyone found many dishes they enjoyed. We did not feel rushed by the waiter, and had a great reunion of friends and family.

H
Harold
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The new oyster appetizer is amazing! Very nice seasonal addition to the menu.

d
dubberkeley
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience2

Loved our meal and our server was wonderful. BUT we sat upstairs and it was cold! We might have lingered longer & bought dessert if we all hadn't had to put on our jackets due to the chill.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 13, 2019
Overall1food4service1ambience3

This review is mainly about the service. The food is always good here. My husband and I had gotten married earlier in the day at the County Clerk’s office and wanted to have a romantic dinner for two. When the server took our drink order, we told her we had just gotten married and wanted to celebrate with some champagne (we were also dressed up - me in a formal white dress and him a suit and boutonnière, but she didn’t ask if we were celebrating anything so we had to bring it up ourselves). She then asked if we wanted a bottle or glasses, clear that there was going to be no celebratory glass of anything on the house.

She then walked away and returned a minute later, pointed at me, and said “I’m going to need to see YOUR I.D.” I’m 29 years old but am never rude when people card me because I know it’s their job. However, the way she did it, coming back as an afterthought and asking only for mine, did not make me feel great. It felt like either she thought I was a 19 year old bride running off with a much older man, or an underage girl with an elaborate scheme to get dressed up in white, put on a ring and try to get some free booze. I guess I should have been flattered but honestly I don’t look younger than 25.

The rest of the night we received mediocre service - she brought our food and the dessert we ordered and then the check. No complementary slice of cake or even a congratulations at the end. What was supposed to have been a very special evening became underwhelming and even disappointing.

So while I like the food at Duende, I probably won’t be back soon and definitely won’t recommend for any type of special occasion. I’d recommend to the managers that they train their staff on some sort of protocol for recognizing a special event, even if that doesn’t include a complementary glass of sparkling wine. Also might be a good to card the whole table if everyone looks like they could be in their 20’s, that way you don’t single out women in an accusatory way.

AR
ARiv
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on December 13, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We are three foodies who noticed, appreciated, savored every fine detail in the dishes we ordered. Cannot wait to return!

b
vipbluecardinal
San Francisco
31 reviews
Dined on December 11, 2019
Overall2food2service2ambience3

Have enjoyed Duende in the past, but this time disappointed. Menu was seasonal, but to a degree that was all squash all the time. Drinks were ok, but not as good a I remember and service was fairly slow for drinks but fast for food, so we had most of our food finished before getting drinks.

o
viponlythebest
London
8 reviews
Dined on December 11, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Super nice staff. We were soooooo late due to a traffic accident. They found a table for us. Food is amazing. Wait staff very knowledgeable. The kitchen can get backed up approaching showtime at the nearby Fox Theater. So be aware of that. Definitely a favorite.

LB
vipLoreneB
San Francisco
45 reviews
Dined on December 11, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Was pleasantly surprised how delicious all of our dishes were! Service was excellent as well - we'll be back!

RG
ReclaimtheGourmande
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Delicious food & we appreciated the sensitivity to our dietary needs.

MF
vipMF22
San Francisco
337 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

The squid ink paella was excellent

AB
vipAliceBT
San Francisco
100 reviews
Dined on November 25, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Generally good & imaginative food. Both the cabbage slaw and the roasted squash appetizers- visually engaging- were marred by a little too much vinegar (the kitchen is heavy on vinegar). Grilled branzino was good. Wait staff -tho very busy - were mostly attentive.

FAQs

Duende does offer delivery in partnership with Caviar, Chow Now and Postmates. Duende also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (510) 893-0174.

Duende is rated 4.3 stars by 1130 OpenTable diners.

You can book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size.