Fruitvale is the hidden gem of Oakland. This BART stop boasts great food, awesome sights, and a deep-rooted community that has been there for ages. Fruitvale is nestled right between Lake Merritt and the Oakland Coliseum. Head on over the next time you’re feeling adventurous, and check out a few of these fan favorites.
The Half Orange
The Half Orange is located on 12th street, right behind the Fruitvale Plaza. This cool new eatery features some of the best burgers and local beer you’ll find on this side of the Bay. But don’t feel too bad about indulging here – there’s plenty of bike riding ahead to ease your mind (and your belt).
And forget Happy Hour, The Half Orange totally changed the game by introducing Happy Day! If you roll in on a Monday, you can have a $3.65 local draft to pair with your delicious burger. Although there’s no bike rack, the staff is pretty cool about bringing your e-bike onto the patio, but we recommend using Fruitvale’s bike valet at The Bike Station to make navigating the patio easier for the staff. This is definitely the perfect start to your Fruitvale adventure.
Ride up Fruitvale Ave, and you will quickly be in the Dimond District. A hidden gem in the Dimond District is the art gallery, Dimond Mine. Dimond Mine was opened by Bruk Dunbar and Soshana Zambryski-Stachel this June. As soon as you enter the door, you’re greeted by exciting local art and a friendly staff to answer any questions you may have. Dimond Mine features art classes, art supplies and even galleries that rotate every two months. Our visit featured a Light Bright series with blacklights and glowing installations, but if you head there in October, you’ll be just in time for their new Tire Exhibit—quite the coincidence, huh?
Dimond Mine also has weekly classes that include clay on Thursdays and kids’ classes on Saturdays. Classes are open format, which means you won’t be told what to sculpt – just have fun! And if you find yourself in North Berkeley, don’t forget to check out Train Hole Studios, Bruk and Soshana’s second gallery. You know these ladies love their art by observing the detail they put into their work. Take a trip to see for yourself!
Hive, The Place To Bee
If you’re following this BARTable step-by-step, you’re going to want to recharge before the next ride, and Hive is a great place to do it. It’s located just two-minutes from Dimond Mine, and once you enter, you can tell that this is the place to bee
Hive takes their theme to a whole new level with honeycomb designs on the walls and glasses. Creator Calanit Kamala sources all of Hive’s coffee and eats from local roasters and bakeries to continue this idea of community. Local vendors include:
- Highwire Coffee
- Starter Bakery
- “No” Cookie
- Mariposa Bakery (Gluten Free)
- Tart! Bakery
In addition to using local foods, Hive also opts for adorning the walls with local art, too. We were lucky enough to catch some amazing paintings of Oakland landmarks by artist Shane Donahue during our visit. You’ll want to grab a seat along the benches to the right of the café to charge your e-bike battery and admire these fun pieces before heading out.
Now that you’re all charged up, you’re ready for the uphill ride to the Oakland Temple (made exponentially easier on an e-bike). Built in 1964, the temple sits high in the Oakland hills, and overlooks the entire Bay area. It boasts beautiful fountains and gardens, and even offers a public terrace for visitors to enjoy the views. We recommend timing this part of your Fruitvale adventure with the sunset – you’ll have the best view in the whole Bay.
The GenZe e-bike opens up parts of the Bay Area that you never even knew existed. It’s clear that Oakland has a few hidden secrets after cruising around, and we look forward to exploring what’s next!
Enjoy the ride!