Fist of Flour Doughjo: Ain’t No Martial Arts Studio

Fist of Flour Pizza Company launched in 2010 as a food truck. At the time, it rented a kitchen in Berkeley to conduct all their food prep. In January 2014, they opened what they call a “Doughjo” on the corner of MacArthur and Maybelle Street in the Laurel District of Oakland. Fist of Flour Doughjo is not a martial arts studio, but a pizzeria and the location where they do all the prep work for their two traveling food trucks.
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At Fist of Flour Doughjo, you can order pizza by the slice or order whole pies that are 14″ or 18″. They have a number of specialty pies or you can build your own pizza.
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They also have a lunch special from 12-4pm daily where you can get two slices of pizza and a soda or one slice of pizza, a salad, and a soda for $7.

I ordered a 14″ Classico, one of their specialty pizzas which has pepperoni, cremini mushrooms, chopped garlic, tomato sauce, fresh and aged mozzarella, and basil. I waited about ten minutes for my pizza to be made. The pizza was thin with a crispy crust and the blend of toppings were complimentary in flavor.
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I’m happy to have the “Doughjo” in the neighborhood and to see this pizza business thrive.

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Phnom Penh: Capital of Cambodia and Great Oakland Eatery

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Cambodian food rarely comes to mind, but on the occasions where I can’t decide what to eat, Phnom Penh always seems to satisfy my palette. The original Phnom Penh opened in the mid-1980’s by the Do Family and is located in an old brick building in Oakland Chinatown. About twenty years later they opened their second restaurant in the Laurel District. It wasn’t until I read their website did I learn that their family survived the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia.

Since the second Phnom Penh opened, it became my preference as it appeared nicer and location and parking was friendlier. On a recent visit to Phnom Penh with my sister and friend, we discovered that it was closed for renovations. Still wanting Cambodian food, we drove over to the original restaurant.

I am the type of person that doesn’t like to be disappointed so when I know what I like, I tend to go back to what I know.

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The appetizer of choice is always “noum om beng” which is a Cambodian crepe stuffed with pork, shrimp, coconut, bean sprout, served with their special sauce. On the side is fresh lettuce and cucumbers. It is a great starter.

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The soup that I love is “samlaw mach hour,” a brothy soup cooked with prawns, fish, pineapple, tomatoes, lemon and sauces. This provides such an interesting combination of flavors that work very well together.

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The entree that is my must have is “traop ann neun sach chhrouk,” eggplant grilled and stuffed with shrimp and pork. The texture and flavors are unique and delicious. This dish just melts in my mouth.

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The sweet basil fried rice with shrimp is only a recent discovery for me. It’s hard to go back to white rice when you have something so good. I would consider just eating this dish alone. It’s that good.

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This recent visit brought us thinking completely outside the box as we tried another new item, the crunchy string beans which are sautéed with braised tofu, mint and a touch of chili sauce. This was also a very tasty dish, good for the vegetarian.

It’s difficult to write about Phnom Penh and not think about the tasty food they serve. Guess I shouldn’t wait too long before my next visit.