Chinatown of Downtown Oakland


This morning, Sandy (my coworker) and I decided last minute to eat out for breakfast. We used to do this regularly before we got married, but now it’s just left to spontaneous urges. I told her I wanted to try the noodle place she took our other coworker to last time. So, off to Chinatown we went!

We parked at a garage near the Oakland Public Library and walked to the restaurant. She took me to Vien Huong, known for their noodles soups. She said she used to come here all the time as a kid. Most popular item is #21. She ordered for us, but we each got a combination of 21 and 22, which she said is the same soup, just different noodles. One is skinny, egg noodle. The other is flat, rice noodle.

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Half 21 and 22.

I love trying out new hole in the wall restaurants because I feel like that’s where the real food is. Local restaurants are usually the first thing I research when I go on vacation. I’m surprised I’ve lived in the Bay this long and haven’t heard of this place.

After “breakfast,” we headed back towards the garage and stopped by a chinese bakery called Napoleon Super Bakery. I had just learned about 85 Degree Bakery a couple months ago, and this place reminded me of an authentic version of it. They have the same self-serve style with the tray, parchment paper, and tongs. And you go into each cubbie and choose the type of bread you like.

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Baked Goods:

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1. Curry Beef Puffs
2. Taro Bun (had small almond slice on top)
3. Red Bean Bun
4. Cocktail Bun (lines of frosting)
5. Pineapple Cake (frosting resembles cracked texture of pineapple)
6. Ham and Cheese Bun (top looks burnt)
7. Green Tea/Red Bean Buns (has small black sesame seeds on top)
8. Curry Beef Buns
9. Famous Egg Tarts

Honorable Mentions for next time:

Gum Kuo Restaurant – popular for their porridge. Opens early.
New Gold Medal Restaurant – open late night.
Peony Seafood Restaurant – dim sum!
Sobo Ramen – option of Gluten Free noodles


I’ll have to post a better picture next time when we’re not in scrubs after a night shift haha =D

Thanks for the two-hour food tour, Sandy! Can’t wait for our next breakfast escapade!

Many businesses in this area are local, hole-in-the-wall spots? What are you favorite places that you like eating at?


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