Finishing a whole bottle in one sitting is sometimes not as easy as it sounds, especially when you've got a soiled diaper and're mad-busy shuffling stocks on your smart phone. Diversify your resto portfolio with a new foodery intent on solving your next bottle-finishing dilemma, at Kiraku, now open.
From a French-trained Japanese dude touting a Kikizake-shi license (the sake version of a sommelier), Kiraku is a brand-spanking-new Japanese tapas-slinger-cum-sake bar in Berkeley with a simple clean-lined interior and a generously sized cabinet that's filled with booze, and no doubt run by Ulysses S. Grant. Their massive list of shareables (which sports 21 $5-and-under menu items) is categorized into starters (sake pickles), salads (spinach/mushroom/bacon-topped Popeye), appetizers (sauteed pork and kimchi w/ poached egg), grilled (spareribs w/ orange marmalade), "After Sake" (plum n' lettuce fried rice), and the all-important "fried", which includes tempura'd corn with green tea salt, and, off-menu, Half Baked in Blu-ray. Drink highlights include Asahi beer poured from a Japanese serving machine that produces a creamier foam than American tap systems, plus they're also running a "bottle keep system" that lets you buy 750ml's of sake and soju and, assuming you don't finish them completely, store your bottles for up to three months, meaning T.I.'s leftover soju is now officially up for grabs!
And because people in Berkeley tend to be dirtier, you'll get a warm oshibori towel when you sit down to "refresh your spirits and set the tone for your meal", though you can always try and E-Trade up for something even better.