Duende

4.7
1252 Reviews
$31 to $50
Spanish
Duende is a Spanish Inspired neighborhood restaurant in Oakland's Uptown district
A modern and casual dining experience, a cutting-edge cocktail program, and an inviting Spanish-based wine program!
Parties of 7 or more will be served a prix fixe chef's menu, please email reservations@duendeoakland.com to make a large group reservation.

For private events please email events@duendeoakland.com

Duende reserves seats for walk-ins! If you don't see your desired reservation time, come on down and we will find you a seat!

Duende requires proof of vaccination for all diners over the age of 12. Those who are immunocompromised and can not yet receive the vaccine, can provide a negative COVID test within the last 48 hours. Thank you for helping us keep each other safe!

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
  • Proof of vaccination required to dine indoors
What 1252 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.7
service
4.7
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
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IS
IsabelS
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great atmosphere and experience! Amazing vegetarian paella!

NT
vipNeilT
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service

JR
JohnR
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Duende was one of our favorite restaurants when we lived in the Bay Area 10 years ago. It still lives up to the same excellent standard so many years later.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was all delicious and the service was outstanding. Can’t wait for our next visit to Duende!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Birthday, fun dinner! Loved the paella! Very happy you require vaccinations! Our waiter was so nice! Thank you!

s
stacyr
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Every paella is next level delish as is the cabbage salad (ENSALADA de COL)

j
juliej
Central Coast
3 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious food, discreet and efficient service. Will definitely come back!

m
michaelg
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Have been here once before, a few years ago, and liked it. Decided to return since we were in the area and wanted to grab a bite with an old friend. Love the ambience. Lucy, our server, was great - friendly, helpful, efficient. Food selections are fun, interesting and tasty. We'll be back!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 2, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Superb food, good service, and a very cute spot for a date, a special occasion, or just a night out. Highly recommend.

V
Vivek
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Tapas were great, drinks were incredible! Def a great date night spot.

JS
JacobS
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great spot , chic, hip, artsy, delicious food and drinks

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2021
Overall2food2service2ambience3

Celebrating our 20 year anniversary. Wanted to try something new. Unfortunately we did not enjoy our food and the service started out good, but towards the end we felt ignored. To make things worse my husband felt ill all night, after getting home. Maybe it was a bad clam in the pállela…We for sure will not be going back.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food4service4ambience4

Good food, fun atmosphere. Sat upstairs which was nice since it wasn’t as loud. Got the giant steak dish which was great! Swordfish was meh to me. Sangria was good.

k
kenp
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Duende is festive and fun, and the tapas are varied and flavorful. Service was a tad perfunctory at times, but efficient and effective.

M
vipMike
San Francisco
38 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

First time here, and we will return. WE took BART to the 19th Street station and had a short, safe walk to the restaurant. We arrived early before a show at the Fox Theater. Our server was VJ. He was excellent and helped guide us through the different dining options. Everything was excellent!

PS
PSRC
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Perfect place for date night! We have been to Duede a few times now and every time we crave tapas they are top of our list. Always great food and great service. I personally really appreciate that they verify vaccination status as it really allowed me to relax and enjoy my night indoors. Also, the seating is spaced out very well which gave our date night some privacy. Food-wise you cannot go wrong here. This time we ordered papayas bravos--crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, sauce is amazing, cabbage salad--such a wonderful surprise and a definitely a do-over, sheep and goat cheese plate--so yummy!, and the squid ink paella--perfection! not fishy at all. For drinks we started off with some dry sherry, followed by wonderful wine. Our server and all the staff were so helpful and really made our night enjoyable. The only thing we would do different is Lyft there next time as parking is difficult. We will definitely be back!

F
Fabrice
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

We had a wonderful time! Our waitress was great, the food was very tasty and, because it was not packed, it felt intimate. And the wine was very good as well!

HH
vipHoldenH
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Nice meal in a stylish atmosphere.

SF
SusanF
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great meal. Lots of different flavors!

l
lindaliver
New York Area
26 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

We had 3 appetizers, drinks, and 2 paellas for 4. Plenty of food but we totally cleaned our plates including scraping to the bottom of the paella pans.

EO
vipEatoutinOakland
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on September 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Simply the best restaurant in the San Francisco Bay Area. The food, service and ambiance are all exceptional. We have been going to Duende since they opened and it always feels like one of the most special evenings out.

c
vipcookbook
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on September 16, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Beautiful decor; tasty food; wonderful service (on a weekday); definitely will return.

G
vipGreat
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience5

The food is really superb, but the paella we got was just alright - we got the fideua which was a little soft and we wanted more of the crunchy bottom, but it was all stuck the pan but everything else was spectacular. The patatas bravas and the calabazas asados y romesco were outstanding. The cocktails were great and service was also wonderful.

BT
BigTipper
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Having booked tickets to the 7pm Early Show for Michael Che at the Fox theater…I only had a 5:30pm reservation for a party of 4 to dine. The restaurant hostess was great at letting me know they would work with this timeframe.

Our waiter didn’t miss a beat with respect to drink /tapas recommendations. Definitely recommend the Papas and the summer squash!!! Talk about fantastic flavor. Their specialized sauces for these items really made it all worth it. We ordered the veggie and meat paella and it came out in perfect timing.

The blackberry smash was favorite drink choice! We got to the show in time and would recommend this place to anyone.

TR
vipTerryR
San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Wonderful ambience, great service and delicious, interesting Spanish food.

KF
KaliF
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 10, 2021
Overall3food4service1ambience3

I've been to Duende before and had a good experience. The service was really bad when I went this time and they were out of quite a few dishes.

C
vipCough2
New York Area
68 reviews
Dined on September 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was a big hit with the entire crowd. We got the chef’s tasting menu and it was excellent. The paella(s) were fabulous. The assortment of pinchon and tapas was amazing. We would go back in a heartbeat. The service was superlative and most gracious. All in all an excellent choice in Oakland.

A
Annette
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We arrived early for dinner before the show at the Fox. Everything was perfect.

TM
TonyM
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

We arrived with an extra person which pushed us into the prix fix (7) and were totally blown away at the quality of the choices that arrived in perfect order. It was a much better experience than when we've been there and chosen from the menu.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

The food was wonderful! We loved the tapas

m
maryc
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall5food4service4ambience4

First of all I appreciate request of vaccination, seating spaced out we felt very comfortable. Server very knowledgeable and helpful. Food absolutely delicious. Paella 🥘 amazing.Will be returning soon.

RL
RogerL
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on September 3, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience3

Food prep and delivery was fast and good. The ink squid paella was skimpy on protein but tasty. The wooden seats are pretty uncomfortable.

MZ
MikeZ
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on September 2, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience4

The staff is very friendly - highly responsive and the food is creative and wonderful. The appetizer choices are great and the hamburger was the best ever

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great meal . Great dishes to share. Beautiful presentation of requested birthday dessert.

JT
JanelleT
Hawaii
1 review
Dined on August 28, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Hawai'i-based DMC professional on a leisure visit to the Bay and this is my first time at Duende. My party ordered the potatoes, the cabbage salad, the roasted summer veggies, the Arroz Negro, and the crostata for dessert. Everything was really tasty. I especially liked the sauce that came with the summer veggies, lots of good deep flavor. I was really looking forward to trying the Arroz Negro and it waa delcious. The rockfish and squid were perfectly cooked and the pickled salad really balanced out the dish. Overall great plating as well, most dish was interesting and had some great colors. Loves all the textures too. The roasted pistachios on some of the dishes were a really great texture contrast if you're into that sort of thing like I am :)

I really loved that the drinks were all summer inspired. Lots of fun clear drinks with alternative citrus flavors that paired well with the food menu. I had a couple Summer on Spains, a G & T (with extra cucumbers), a Tropidia, and a Blackberry Smash (which I asked to replace the bourbon with a Russian vodka just because I was just feeling the clears last night).

Service was really great. Very attentive but not too much. Always refreshed our tap water via a wine bottle and served sparkling water in a decanter. Checked on us enough and our server had a few tables on their section.

Really great vibe. We ended up staying for almost 4 hours and our server was super kind about not rushing us to leave. I ended up ordering a couple more drinks because we were there so long, so hopefully that made up for it!!

I noticed that this is one of the older restaurants in the area so wanted to support local business that's at least 5 years old or more.

Glad I went and would definitely recommend.

ST
vipShaulT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Authentic Spanish food. Attentive service & good drinks.

r
viprisermon
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Well prepared and somewhat unique entrees, if a bit pricy. Portions of some items were adequate while others were skimpy.

Positives: the cabbage salad was tasty, substantial and somewhat different than any I've had in Spain or elsewhere; The mixed charcuterie and cheese platter was very tasty, and the salami tasted homemade, but the portion was not a good value for $18.
The large dish Arroz Negra with the squid ink was unique in its combination of ingredients, very flavorful and quite substantial, though more expensive than comparable platters from other local Tapas bars like Cesar's in Berkeley. We both really liked it. Reasonably good selection of Spanish wines

Negatives: The Sangria at $13/glass was way overpriced, considering that it lacked the sweetness and fruitiness I'm used to with Sangria. The amount of seafood and rockfish in the $44 Arroz Negra dish should have been more substantial. The fruit crostata at $13 was average at best, sort of small, with a hard and not flaky shell. Fruit filling was tasty. Coffee was decent but not exceptional.
If they were to make some of the improvements I'm suggesting, they'd probably be the best in the East Bay

GN
GirlsNightOut
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Excellent service, fun atmosphere. A little stuffy and warm, better ventilation would've been nice.

MC
vipMartaC
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on August 26, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great fun last night! Amazing food and Flamenco music & dancing!

F
vipFavorites
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Soooooo delicious!!

FAQs

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

Duende is rated 4.7 stars by 1252 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.