Mae’s closed down. A Chinese fast food place has opened at the Dutton & Bancroft space.
May 2011 Update
Mae’s has now moved to the corner of Dutton & Bancroft. I hadn’t gone back to eat there because it’s open between 1 – 8 PM, too late for lunch, too early for dinner. But I’ll try it sometime.
Dec. 2007 Review
Mae’s Soul Food is the newest venture to open on Victoria Court in San Leandro – at the space occupied until a couple of months ago by Joplin’s. Indeed, it was to Joplin’s where we were headed today, for a burger, when we noticed that the sign with that name was no longer in front of the business. A new owner and a new menu greeted us inside, and always the adventurers we decided to give it a try. But for the fact that we got stuffed, it was not a bad call.
Mae’s Soul Food specializes in fried food, their menu, indeed, is pretty short and basically includes fried fish, fried shrimp, fried chicken and fried pork, available in various combinations with or without gravy. There are also a plethora of side dishes, from candied yams to red beans and rice. There are also po boy sandwiches, made with, you guessed it, fried meats. Don’t come here if you are watching your weight. Prices go from $7 for a 3 pieces of fried chicken to $17.50 for a seafood combo platter with shrimp.
I had the 3-pieces of chicken platter with french fries. The three chicken drumsticks were large and meaty, they were very nicely breaded and seasoned, and they tasted fresh and crisp. They also managed to not be oily. If I wanted fried chicken, I’d definitely come here. The fries were less successful, they were very thick and long, soft on the inside and crispy on the outside. Not my favorite type.
Mike had the chicken po boy sandwich, which was also enormous, and he liked it though he’d preferred less bones on his chicken. He also liked the crispy romaine lettuce in the accompanying salad. Mae, the proprietor, is proud on not skimping in either quantity or quality, and the results show.
Service, at the hands of her son, was good – but, as we were warned, it takes quite a lot of time to get the food to the table. It’s made to order and it takes time for chicken to fry. Don’t come here if you are in a hurry.
Atmosphere wise, the place is not very different from what it was Joplin’s – there are still some Joplin posters around. They have, however, decorated with a nice array of beautiful wooden African masks.
My final warning is that they still don’t have heat in the restaurant, so if you are coming here bring your jacket.
I should mention this is not the Mae’s first venture as a restauranteur. Her restaurant was previously open in a high-crime section of Oakland, Mae decided to move to make it safer for her customers to eat at her restaurant.
Mae’s Soul Food
585 Victoria Court
San Leandro, CA