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Tribune Tavern

3.9
396 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Perfect For:
  • Good for Groups
  • Vibrant Bar Scene
  • Neighborhood Gem

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About

A century ago, the Oakland Tribune used the tower’s ground floor as its “local room” —where reporters from different departments worked side by side and shared tips on the news of the day. It was a gathering spot for the great minds of Oakland, and a place where headlines were made. The Tribune Tavern will carry on that tradition—as a place for people to mingle over happy hour drinks, lunch meetings, or dinner—with authentic, nourishing comfort food that’s affordable enough for everyone to enjoy, and a bar stocked with the best locally-made beer and wine.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
American, Comfort Food
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Hours of operation


Lunch: M-F 11:30am-3:00pm

Dinner: M-Sun 5:00pm-9:00pm

Brunch: Sat and Sun 10:30am-2:00pm
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Phone number
(510) 452-8742
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Payment options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Huw Thornton
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Franklin St.
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Parking details
Two public parking lots across the street with plenty of street parking.
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Public transit
Bart Downtown 12th Street
Additional
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Wine
What 396 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
3.9based on all time ratings
3.8
food
3.9
service
3.9
ambience
3.7
value
Noise · Moderate
86% of people would recommend it to a friend
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2.0Dined on May 17, 2017

I want to like this place -cool space/location-but the food was not good

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5.0Dined on May 14, 2017

Was not expect to have buffet only choice for lunch on Sunday. I was hoping to try their ala cart menu but because it was Mother's Day. Open table should have let me know when I booked for a table. Prime rib were delicious and the service was excellent.

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5.0Dined on May 11, 2017

Here is a great go to place for Oakland lunch downtown. Consistent tasty fresh. Get the soup of the day.
They counted me as absent on my OpenTable which I had to correct but otherwise flawless service.

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2.0Dined on May 9, 2017

They squeeze parties of 6 into booths made for 4 people. Incredibly uncomfortable. Food was sub-par

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5.0Dined on April 22, 2017

Fun easy place with outstanding service and value for money!

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2.0Dined on April 13, 2017

I adjusted our reservation by phone from 12-16. That did not happen and our group had to be divided up. Very awkward.
Also why is nobody ever tending the front? I always have to wait and wait for anyone to acknowledge my existence. Almost hostile front service. Waitstaff always quite nice though.

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5.0Dined on April 4, 2017

This is the second time that I have had dinner here in the last month. Contrary to some of the reviews, the service was prompt and the food was very good. The burgers are good as is the meat loaf.

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4.0Dined on April 4, 2017

First visit for several in our party of seven and everyone enjoyed it and will return.

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3.0Dined on April 4, 2017

We were seated in back booth and very loud with open kitchen window nearby and they were running a blender for 5 min. Server seemed to forget about us once food dropped. No offer of dessert and had to flag for check after waiting 10 min. It's been better so hopefully just an off night

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2.0Dined on April 2, 2017

Usually love this place. We had a big group this time and apparently a misunderstanding with the waitress. I wouldn't go back with a big group again. The food is good and brunch they have bottomless mimosas but I saw the bottom of my glass several times so that was kinda lame.

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3.0Dined on March 27, 2017

I was pleasantly surprised at how good the food and service was. My only criticism would be that It felt a little grubby, which is why I was so pleasantly surprised at the rest of the experience. I would definitely go back. The restrooms are probably out of the Taverns control and need work.

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5.0Dined on March 24, 2017

I met a friend at the bar for drinks at the bar. Then some friends joined us for dinner. We just decided to eat at the bar because the service was so great. Julian took care of us in superb fashion. Warm, friendly, timely service, and great scotch!

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4.0Dined on March 3, 2017

A Pleasant Surprise - We needed a place in Oakland near the Paramount Theater. It's about three blocks away and located in a historic building, casual, friendly, fun, young crowd. Menu was easy. We all had the chicken and mushrooms which was excellent, but there was certainly lots of other options. We enjoyed an excellent Pinot on tap.
I would definitely return.

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4.0Dined on March 3, 2017

Very nice staff

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5.0Dined on March 3, 2017

We enjoyed our dinner here at the Tribune Tower before attending a show at the Paramount. We told our waiter we needed to get out by a certain time and he let us know what items on the menu would be problematic. They could use more vegetarian items. I had the fish and chips, great and abundant. NOTE: Don't park in the parking lot across the street if you plan on staying past 8:00pm.

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4.0Dined on February 27, 2017

Food was excellent. Location is great. The restaurant noise level was loud due to poor acoustic abatement. I come here for business lunches and a quiet environment would be better.

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5.0Dined on February 19, 2017

Service was quick & reliable, very well managed by just one waiter for a reservation of 15 that swelled to 21. Everyone seemed to enjoy their meal. Many of us were from out of town, but I'm sure the locals discovered a new downtown gem. The noise was difficult to deal with — you may have to shout across the table to be heard. Also it was very dark — prepare to use your cellphone flashlight to read the menu.

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3.0Dined on February 19, 2017

We had a few substitutions to a dish, and the waitress indicated that she could make it happen and charged us extra for the food. The food was okay, nothing to write home about. The mimosas were flowing, that's about all that was good about the brunch. I would not come again.

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4.0Dined on February 19, 2017

Great space in the historic Tribune Building with excellent, friendly service. Went for weekend brunch while working nearby, had very tasty shrimp and grits with spinach and eggs served at the bar. Great space, experience, and people.

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3.0Dined on February 16, 2017

Made reservations, still had to wait 10mins to sit. Was warned about kitchen being slow, but we showed an hour after opening. Food came in big gaps of time. Couldn't get drink refills, server was rarely by.

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5.0Dined on February 14, 2017

I love this venue... The location is downtown and close to bart. The lighting/ambiance is a perfect combo of dim without being dark and our waiter had a great attitude/sense of style.

We had whiskey and Ice Cream.
Can/ would/will go again!

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1.0Dined on February 12, 2017

very bad bartender horrible service spilt 1/4 of my beer and then argued with me about changing it when i paying 20 dollars for each beer bottle and he spillt 1/4 of it !!!!!!!!! NEVER GOING BACK

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2.0Dined on February 10, 2017

Food during lunch was decent, but the service was terrible.

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5.0Dined on February 8, 2017

Taken many out of town guests. Everyone LOVES the place. Service is excellent!

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4.0Dined on February 8, 2017

Tribune restaurant is a great dining resource for downtown Oakland. Good food, good service. Place is sophisticated but not pretentious. Good ambience. Walking distance to Oakland's downtown office scene and to BART and AC bus service. Parking available nearby.

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3.0Dined on February 8, 2017

All was well up until the homeless guy came in off the street and asked for a donation. It's Oakland, keep someone full time at the greeter station. Our waiter was very professional and the salads we very well done.

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4.0Dined on February 5, 2017

We made reservations with a note that the dinner was to be a birthday celebration. We arrived to find that the Tavern had changed to menu out for the night to Super Bowl bar food. As there were no other good choices open in the area that night we decided to stay and try and make the best of it. The management really stepped up by comping our meal, to make up for the failure to communicate the change in plans for the night.

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3.0Dined on February 4, 2017

First time here. The fried chicken sandwhich was VERY dry and not flavorful at all. My husband had to ask for ranch dressing to dip it in. It also had hardly any cole slaw on it. The meatloaf was not good either. Appetizers were just ok. No reason to go back. Very underwhelmed.

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5.0Dined on February 3, 2017

Great burger and service. Close to 12st BART so easy to get to.

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2.0Dined on February 3, 2017

I eat here for business lunches about once a month. Normally the service is great. This time it took a half hour to even get drinks. And they didn't get them right. It took another 20 minutes to order our meals and they didn't know who ordered what. Then it took another 20 to get the waitress's attention to get ketchup. Princess is the only good waitress there.

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3.0Dined on January 28, 2017

While the food was good, though nothing exciting the service was mediocre at best. I guess you could blame restaurant week and the resulting crowds. We waited 10 minutes for water and 15 for a server. We werent offered dessert or coffee or refills on our beverages. Its nice to see small children at a restaurant in downtown Oakland but be prepared for the noise level.

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2.0Dined on January 27, 2017

Very disappointing. Celebrating a birthday and no candles were brought out. We weren't offered a
Dessert menu and when we asked the kitchen was closed. The fries were good.

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3.0Dined on January 27, 2017

Sadly disappointed with our dinner here. The reason my friends and I went to Tribune Tavern again for restaurant week this year, was the amazing experience we had last year. This year I got the braised short ribs, and while they were pretty tasty, they were slightly overdone and were not as good as last year's.
What was the most disappointing was the Minestrone soup. This is one of my favorite soups, but this one was quite disgusting. It had a very strong fishy smell and taste. We were warned by the waitress about this, but I thought "it could not be that bad", but it was even worse! I could not even swallow a spoonful of it. The staff apologized, but it took a long time for the fishy taste to get out of my mouth. We will likely find a different place for restaurant week next year.

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3.0Dined on January 26, 2017

It was aight. Spent way too much money for very subpar food. The only reason we went was for Restaurant Week and I kind of wish we spent that money elsewhere. However, they did offer $10 unlimited wine, which was nice. However, I didn't have the courage to ask what brand of wine it was, as I was dreading that I was drinking a cheap bottom-shelf wine bottle.

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3.0Dined on January 25, 2017

I've been here before and loved the Guilty Fries. However, this time I came for restaurant week and the food was OK. The minestrone soup we got had strange textures in it and was hard to eat out of the bowl they served it in. The main dish was really tasty (Sea Bass) but the mashed potatoes tasted watery to me. Got the creme brulee for dessert and it was very small portion. I appreciated the endless glass of wine that was only $10 and the server was attentive.

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2.0Dined on January 21, 2017

Went for restaurant week. 2 people got auto 18% gratuity charge for not great service. Dessert was sad. Salad not dressed. Meh all around.

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5.0Dined on January 21, 2017

We had a reservation for a large group, 20 of us, the table was ready even before our reservation. Princess our fabulous waitress, was amazing with our large group. They were so busy when we arrived, we were taken to our table right away and our order was taken right away. The food took awhile to arrive but very understandable given how busy the place was. The service well but made up for the waiting, Princess kept updating us as to the status of our order. The food was terrific when it arrived and the cocktails lovely. I appreciate the restaurant accepting reservations for such a large group at such a busy time. I would definitely be back!

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3.0Dined on January 21, 2017

I have been here several times and have always had a good experience. However, this recent time was the unfortunate exception. With friends in town for the Womens' March, I made a reservation at one of my favorite local restaurants, Tribune Tavern. We arrived early and were seated right away. So far so good. The place was almost empty with many open tables throughout the restaurant. We ordered our drinks and food, and waited. And waited. And waited. The restaurant filled up quickly with people finishing the march. Still we waited. It seriously took 45 minutes (I kept track because it was getting truly ridiculous) for 3 drinks to arrive (though we ordered 4). The food came 5 minutes later, which was fast for the food, but why did it take 45 minutes to receive 3 cocktails? We never did receive the 4th, though it appeared on the bill, which we sent back for correction. The problem was understaffing. My partner works in the restaurant business and was appalled at the severe lack of staffing on a day that they should have prepared for large crowds. The up side is that the staff that WERE there were as attentive as they could have been, all things considered. And the food was good, as usual. We will be back, but really recommend increased staffing.

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5.0Dined on January 20, 2017

There for dinner and cocktails and took advantage of restaurant week specials. Excellent food and service in a great atmosphere.

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3.0Dined on January 15, 2017

Food was delicious but the server was not well informed about the food and called fried wonton wrappers tortilla chips. He also told me the soup was a cup portion but it was served in a small tureen, more comparable to a bowl-sized portion.

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