The Pot Luck restaurant in Berkeley served what was arguably the most sophisticated and inventive food in the East Bay in the 1960s and early'70s. Though unfamiliar to many present-day food writers and scholars,in its day the restaurant was well known. In the 1960s and early '70s,laudatory pieces appeared in magazines such as GQ and in Herb Caen's column in the San Francisco Chronicle. The owner of the Pot Luck, Hank Rubin, a man for whom food and cooking have been principal concerns since an early age, is perhaps best known as the former wine columnist for of Bon Apptit. This article reviews Rubin's considerable achievements at the Pot Luck, both culinary (e.g., the development of more than 600 soup recipes) and socio-cultural (e.g., Pot Luck is said to be the first restaurant in the Bay Area to hire African-Americans as waiters).

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