Brunching in the boiler room.

One beautiful and humid late September day we were invited to a brunch at a relatively new restaurant with bay views in the city of Richmond. The restaurant's name is Assemble. It sits where the old Boiler House restaurant used to be. I didn't even know that the Boiler House had closed and a new restaurant had opened in its site until that day. Assemble is housed at the boiler room adjacent to the now Craneway Pavilion. There is a ton of history for this location.

As copied from their website:

The Ford Company

In August of 1931 the Ford Company opened their new assembly plant in Richmond Ca. Designed by the great industrial architect Albert Kahn, the 525,000 sq ft building utilizes natural light from a vast array of skylights, and has the open space environment typical of Kahn-designed structures. The largest auto assembly plant on the West Coast, the Richmond plant is also one of 60 Albert Kahn-designed buildings, all over the country, now on the National Register of Historic Places.

World War II

During WII, at the direction of Franklin D. Roosevelt the Ford Plant was retooled to process tanks and jeeps. Car production resumed in 1946 and continued through 1955 when manufacturing moved to Milpitas. The building served briefly as a film set and book depository and was largely abandoned and destroyed by the 1989, the Loma Prieta earthquake. Orton Development purchased the building in 2004 and revitalized it with Marcy Wong Donn Logan Architects, resulting in the project’s National Trust for Historic Preservation design award in 2008, among others.

Present Day

The 45,000 sq ft bay front Craneway Pavilion, the southernmost partition of the complex, now offers the largest and finest event space in the Bay Area, with stunning architecture and breathtaking views. The Assemble restaurant sits adjacent to the Craneway Pavilion and offers seasonal American cuisine, set against a backdrop of original equipment from the historic Ford Boiler Room.

Walking up to the restaurant with dramatic skies overhead. The building on the left is the Rosie the Riveter Museum.

Equipment from old days as a boiler room.

Open and spacious, kitchen and bar area. Was able to take shots as soon as we sat down. Good thing I did because it got pretty full midway through the meal.

The menu

Husband's sandwich.

Friend's Cobb salad.

My fish and chips.

When meal was over we walked a bit by the waterfront.

Across the bay to the east I spotted the city of El Cerrito.

And to the southeast, the city of Emeryville.

The Bay Bridge.


Dramatic sky.

Still more dramatic sky.

It drizzled as we were driving away.

SKYWATCH is a weekly gathering of sky watchers and sky lovers. Join us.


  1. The fish and chips were a good choice!

  2. Great photo reportage!
    Love the pictures and the menu looks delicious too.
    Thanks for sharing your wonderful travels.

  3. Oh! Thanks for your report on Assemble. We saw it when we were at the Craneway Pavillion for roller derby but didn't get a chance to eat there. We took a look at the menu and want to go one of these days.

    My husband's grandfather worked at the Ford Plant in the 1940s.

  4. A fine and varied series. Interesting with excellent pictures.

  5. Interesting post and great shots. The food shots are making me hungry. I think I'll make myself some lunch now.

  6. Lovely skies, terrific captures and delicious looking food!! And, yes, I'm going to have to have some lunch now, too!! Have a great weekend!!

  7. Great photos and your food looks really delicious!I hope it was tasty!
    Have a nice weekend.

  8. Beautiful place to walk after ... and its not every day you get to eat in a Boiler Room ;>)

  9. An excellent reportage, Maria! The dishes are inviting and the landscapes are wonderful!

  10. Wonderful shots. I like that first shot.

  11. Sounds, and looks, like a good meal. And those skies are stunning.

  12. Really dramatic, wow! And that salad looks quite yummy :)

  13. Beautiful skies in the bottom shots.


Post a Comment