What’s up, Nomsters! There’s absolutely nothing wrong with something like a Costco pizza – in fact they’re pretty darn good – but sometimes you just want something unbelievable and elevated that makes your eyes open wide and taste buds do cartwheels around your mouth. Well, lucky for all of us there’s a wonderful spot called Benchmark Oakland in Oakland, CA (duh) that serves delicious Italian food in a casual sit down setting. Their large windows fill the entire restaurant with tons of natural light during the day, which makes it feel open and welcoming. I got to try some of their weekend brunch menu and definitely have some highlights to share, so let’s jump into it!
Fried Sage Pizza
I’m going to start with our favorite dish from the brunch menu at Benchmark Oakland. The Fried Sage Pizza looks so simple, but it was cooked to perfection. There’s no sauce, so this leaves ample room for fresh mozzarella, and they liberally spread it on there along with some brown butter, lemon, shaved garlic, and that legendary lightly crispy fried sage. Everything about this was tasty and you NEED to order one of these the next time you go!
Asparagus and Chopped Greens
Here’s a seasonal menu item from Benchmark Oakland that’s another must-try! It’s prepared with a poached egg, bacon, and grana, so it, unfortunately, wouldn’t work for a vegetarian or vegan, but if your diet allows for this, definitely try it. There are so many different flavors and textures happening on this plate from the gooey yolk to the slightly crunchy lettuce and the crispy, salty bacon, so this gets two thumbs way up.
Scrambled Egg and Taleggio Sandwich
This isn’t your sloppy, falling-apart egg McMuffin. This is a legit sandwich stuffed completely full of scrambled eggs, red onion, aioli, arugala, and house cured bacon. It literally can’t fit between the buttery Brioche bun. It’s kind of like an omelette, but the brioche bun takes it to the next level because, well, carbs.
Bacon and Fresh Arugula Pizza
The other pizza I ordered was the Bacon and Fresh Arugula Pizza. It can be a little tough to keep the arugula on each slice, but it adds a freshness that you don’t often find in pizzas. There are also some thin slices of jalapeno hidden under the pile of arugula, which brings a nice kick. None of the other dishes really had that spice element, so if that’s your thing, this is the one for you!
So those are some of our favorites from Benchmark Oakland and you seriously can’t go wrong with any of them, but DEFINITELY get the Fried Sage Pizza! It’s a convenient spot to drive to, and we didn’t have too much trouble finding street parking around 11am on a Saturday. Try things out and let us know what you think in the comments!