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Hi Felicia owner announces new venture in same Oakland spot

The interior of Hi Felicia in Oakland | Lance Yamamoto | Source: Lance Yamamoto for The Standard

Less than two months after the once-high-flying Oakland restaurant Hi Felicia closed in a rather spectacular fashion, owner Imana has announced that a natural wine bar will take its place, opening July 13.

Hi Felicia morphed from a provocative pandemic-era pop-up with a cult following to an ambitious brick-and-mortar in early 2022. All but annihilating any boundaries between staff and patrons, it served a pricey tasting menu that seemed to please as many people as it puzzled. 

Less than a year in, a burglary left the “vulgar fine dining” restaurant’s interior in ruins, and revelations of substandard working conditions and accusations about bounced paychecks and store-bought ingredients added further drama to its sudden closure. Because Imana, who works under one name, is a queer Black woman, there were further recriminations that she was held to a higher standard than the straight white chefs and restaurant owners who often win acclaim in spite of any abusive or exploitative behaviors.

On Friday, an Instagram post revealed the opening date of Hi Felicia’s promised successor project, a natural wine bar called Jellybean that Imana had teased shortly after her restaurant’s final days. The account, @jellybeanthewinebar, took over Hi Felicia’s, with its 13,000 followers. All prior posts were deleted, and the only other current photo is of a scantily clad woman’s body with the caption “I turned 27.”

The Standard has reached out to Jellybean for further details.

Sluts is Imana's other wine bar in San Francisco's South of Market. | Astrid Kane/The Standard

In February, Imana opened the equally polarizing wine bar Sluts in the former Terroir space in South of Market. Serving wine alongside Flamin’ Hot Cheetos and Chips Ahoy, its sexy interior has been one of the year’s most storied openings in a neighborhood otherwise marked by closures. 

Jellybean’s innocent-sounding name is considerably less in-your-face than Sluts’. Still, it’s unclear at present what—if anything—will differentiate the two menus on either side of the bay, or if they’re intended to be sister bars.


📍 326 23rd St., Oakland
🗓️ Opening July 17