A Pub for the Commonwealth

This micropub is a big hit in Emeryville.

By Matthew Craggs, Oakland Magazine
Published: June 01, 2015 

Indian-British snacks pair well with the brews at the Commonwealth Micropub in Emeryville.

Indian-British snacks pair well with the brews at the Commonwealth Micropub in Emeryville.


The arrival of Commonwealth Micropub—an expansion of Oakland’s Commonwealth Cafe and Pub—brings Emeryville a step closer to becoming a foodie destination while providing a local late-night option.

While Commonwealth’s interior is cramped even for Bay Area standards, the open patio is always inviting and pairs nicely with the micropub’s rotating taps—often featuring local drafts such as HenHouse Brewing Company, Moonlight Brewing Company, and Altamont Beer Works.

The lunch, dinner, and brunch menus reflect a melding of British and Indian cuisine with a surprising emphasis on vegan dishes. Standards such as Scotch eggs and pea and potato samosas deliver drinkers a deep-fried divinity but don’t overwhelm and weigh down light spirits with fatty meats and cheeses too often found in ubiquitous bar bites such as mozzarella sticks and hot wings. If you want to try something unique, the vegan sausage rolls are far above even the most carnivorous expectations: The mushroom-based “sausages” wrapped in crispy, flaky puff pastry bring a texture and depth of flavor—earthy with warming spices—that all faux-meat should strive to obtain. On their own, the sausage rolls work nicely with ales and reds but splattered with the accompanying piccalilli relish, they hold their own against darker, heavier beers. The sausage rolls are also available with pork sausage, but try pigging out on the vegan option—you won’t be boared.

The micropub won’t single-handedly fix all of Emeryville’s dining deficiencies, but with local beers, friendly staff, and hearty plates including a handful of vegan options, it lives up to its name—contributing to the culinary common good of Emeryville.

Commonwealth Micropub, 3986 Adeline St., Emeryville, 510-858-5122,