Chef Sarah Kirnon (shown at right in the photo) made a splash with fresh takes on Caribbean flavors at Hibiscus and Front Porch. Her new Oakland restaurant, Miss Ollie's, draws from the same palette of flavors that informed her earlier work. For the Barbados-born chef it's personal: Her first restaurant as both chef and owner is named for her grandmother. Kirnon's influences are the women-run restaurants that fused the national cuisines of the West Indies, mirroring the fluidity and movement of island populations.
At a series of pop-ups in advance of Miss Ollie's opening, local Chowhound escargot3 was wild for the signature fried chicken, salt cod with roasted vegetables, and house-made hot sauce. MagicMarkR was on the scene at two-day-old Miss Ollie's and reports that the place is bustling and the bone-in goat stew with red beans and rice is fantastic. Stewed in a tomato sauce touched with cinnamon, the goat lacked only one thing: a larger portion to sate a happy diner.
For now, the restaurant is lunch only, from 11 a.m. until the food runs out (which they estimate at 3-ish). Starting in January, dinner service begins.
Miss Ollie's [East Bay]
901 Washington Street, Oakland
Photo courtesy of Miss Ollie's