Wines and bites: Building on their success at the San Pedro Square Market, the team behind Little Chef Counter has expanded outside downtown San Jose with a Campbell wine bar. For the Little Wine Counter in the Pruneyard, executive chef Robert Dasalla and co-owners Steven Le and Dante Perrucci hired sommelier Corey Reis and created an upscale experience that's a far cry from the bustling marketplace.

The menu is markedly different too (sorry, Poutine fans) with small plates designed to pair with the 30-plus global wines and 20 craft beers. Look for Dasalla's takes on salmon crudo, sardine escabeche, duck liver pâté and rillette, plus cheese plates and salads. After a soft opening, Little Wine Counter will serve lunch, brunch and afternoon house-made desserts with Verve coffee. Details: 1875 S. Bascom Ave., Campbell. www.littlewinecounter.com.

The Little Wine Counter -- a wine bar with chef-created small plates -- has opened in the Pruneyard in Campbell. This new venture is by the Little Chef
The Little Wine Counter -- a wine bar with chef-created small plates -- has opened in the Pruneyard in Campbell. This new venture is by the Little Chef Counter team from the San Pedro Square Market in San Jose. (Courtesy of Little Wine Counter) ( little wine counter )

New New American: Townie, a New American restaurant, has moved into the former Caffe Venezia in Berkeley, serving small plates prepared by executive chef and Boston native Dana Ryan (State Bird Provisions, Gather) using seasonal ingredients and high quality meats and seafood.

Debut items ($5 to $15) include potato croquettes with Serrano ham and manchego cheese, Tempura Green Beans and Pork Belly Banh Mi. Lead bartender Diana Krell has curated a cocktail menu showcasing classic and original libations such as the Ginger Thistle (Cynar, Citadelle gin, lemon juice, Bundaberg Ginger Beer and a lemon twist) and Barley Flower (Bols Genever, Lillet Blanc, St-Germain, orange bitters and a cherry). Sixteen domestic craft and imported beers plus an international wine list round out the libations.


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Look for requisite hipster design: multiple community tables, reclaimed wood tabletops and art deco-style chandeliers, a zinc-topped bar and an original-construction exposed brick wall. Open 5 p.m. to midnight Tuesdays-Sundays. Details: 1799 University Ave., Berkeley.

Mmmm, hummus: Silicon Valley tech veteran Oren Dobronsky, whose Oren's Hummus Shop in Palo Alto specializes not just in hummus but also in other Israeli fare, has opened a new location in Mountain View -- albeit with a streamlined menu.

You can get the popular hummus bowls, pita sandwiches and side dishes, and all of the spreads and salads are available to go for party noshes. Here, as at the original shop, the hummus and pita are made fresh throughout the day. How good is the stuff? One Yelper noted: "If I was going to die anyway, I really wouldn't mind drowning in a tub of Oren's hummus." Details: Open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily at 126 Castro St., Mountain View. orenshummus.com.

New happy hour: Bissap Baobab Oakland, the East Bay offshoot of the popular San Francisco Senegalese restaurant, is now also open for happy hour from 3 to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays, serving Senegalese and West African eats.

Grab a beer ($3) or infused rum ($4) with yucca fries ($2.50), aloko ($2.50), fried ripe plantains with tamarind yogurt dipping sauce, or Afro Wraps ($8.50), chicken, beef, or bean cake served with your choice of peanut, coconut curry or lemon-mustard sauce. Details: 381 15th St., Oakland. www.bissapbaobaboakland.com.

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