| By Tim Kingston and Pat Mazzera
Many of us know Nancy Nadel as the city councilmember for Oakland’s District Three, but
she has another identity, driven by taste buds and a deeply rooted sense of justice. Nadel makes chocolate: artisan confections
from beans originating in Jamaica, with flavor from her garden’s lavender, orange trees, and other flora. She launched
the sweet sideline—known as Oakland Chocolate Company—almost two decades ago when she fell in love with Jamaica,
and vowed to help the country’s beleaguered cacao farmers strengthen their sales.
I just love it there. My husband [Chappell Hayes] and daughter and
I had our last vacation there before he passed away. It is one of the few places that I can relax. I love the smell of the
air and the breeze, and the warmth of the people. And the food is very healthful.
Best place to score chocolate supplies
I make chocolate from the beans I get from
Jamaica. Supplies I get from Jetro Cash and Carry. White chocolate, vanilla beans, and cocoa butter I get from Pacific Gourmet.
Favorite place to reflect on Chappell Hayes
Middle Harbor Park. There is an observation tower dedicated to him, and the broad views of the Bay are extraordinary.
Chappell was an organizer and computer genius, a woodcraftsman/teacher who taught young people to make things out of wood
at an after-school program. He worked to eliminate toxic waste in West Oakland such as lead in the soil. He worked on making
sure that, after the 880 freeway collapsed during the Loma Prieta earthquake, it did not go up in the same place, so the
two halves of West Oakland were reunited.
Hibiscus in Oakland, which has Caribbean food and a wonderful chef from Barbados who makes ackee, rice,
and salt fish, which is hard to find on most menus. I also like Yardie Jerk for jerked chicken and salmon.
I like to take them to
Joaquin Miller Park. Lake Merritt is a bird sanctuary; it is just the right length to walk around. It is just such a blessing
to have a lake in the middle of the city.
I just found it. University Press Books in Berkeley. [It] has science books, books on physiology, psychiatry,
and mental health that are all issues important to me as policymaker.
East Bay gem
The Cleveland Cascade staircase that has an incredible view of the lake. I love to
walk along Hillegass Street in Berkeley and Oakland; every house has a gorgeous garden. Then there is Underground Treasures
on 17th Street, one-of-a-kind clothes that are just beautiful.
My house is falling apart; I can’t say that I am focused in that direction.
I am focusing on keeping the four walls and roof up.
Organic oats from Mandela Foods Cooperative. I start every day with organic oats and blueberries.
A great gift
A massage, and a hydraulic
press to make cocoa butter.
Ideal day in Oakland ? Not working.
Relaxing and spending the day without having a schedule.
I ride a tricycle, because I never learned how to ride a bicycle. I used to think my daughter
would think I was dorky, but now so many kids like it because I can put a boom box in the back.
(runs north of Brooklyn Avenue, from Lakeshore Avenue to Merritt Avenue, overlooking Lake Merritt in Oakland), Friends of
the Cleveland Cascade, Oakland, (510) 903-9216; clevelandcascade.org.
San Pablo Ave., Oakland, (510) 444-2626; hibiscusoakland.com.
Jetro Cash & Carry,
105 Embarcadero, Oakland, (510) 628-0600; jetro.com.
Joaquin Miller Park, Joaquin Miller
Community Center, 3594 Sanborn Drive, Oakland, (510) 867-0669; oaklandnet.com/joaquinmillerpark.
Mandela Foods Cooperative, 1430 Seventh
St., Oakland, (510) 452-1133; mandelafoods.com.
Middle Harbor Shoreline Park, Middle Harbor
Road, Oakland, (510) 272-4810; ebparks.org/parks/middle_harbor.
Pacific Gourmet, 1060
Marin St., San Francisco, (415) 641-8309; pacgourmet.com.
Underground Treasures, 385 17th
St., Oakland, (510) 251-1996.
University Press Books, 2430 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, (510)
Yardie Jerk, 3301 San Pablo Ave., Oakland, (510) 547-4900;