yeah, not totally single/fixed related, but a lot of you here are bay area people, and this is really the only place I ever post.
I'm dying to find a local bike shop (LBS) in the east bay to give my business in exchange for solid service and respect. I enjoy utilitarian cycling. I rarely ride for the sake of riding. I ride because I go places, it makes me feel good to get there under my own power, and riding is the most fun. THat's not to say I never take a recreational ride, but when I do, I do it for the sights and the air rather than the speed or distance.
Here's where I've been:
Alameda BIkes? The main place on park. Nice staff, but not the best selection. Also, not really into what I'm into.
Bent Spoke. I seem to be totally ignored when I there and that I'm bothering them if I ask anything. Once chastised for lookign through the parts bins, which were on the floor, and was encouraged to dig through last time I was there.
Hank and Frank. Great wrenches, expecially the guy I can best describe as a Slayer fan. The owner left me a little cold. It just seems a little impersonal.
Jitensha. I'm in awe when I go in there. THe bikes are gorgeous and the air is oen of passion and craftsmanship. It's like a church of finely built Japanese bicycles. I'm not rich and they just don't cater to what I do, but I respect them immensely.
Missing Link. Nice people all around, and the free bench and tool usage is great. However, I just didn't really connect with the people... Maybe too Berkeley?
Montano Velo. No first hand experience. My pal has gotten both great service and so-so service. Another friend had a set of wheels built there, and he said they were great to him. One again, I dig the wrenches, but it seems kind of uptight when the owner is there.
Maybe I'm missing something...
In SF, I really like Pedal Revolution and the Freewheel north of the panhandle. I guess I want something like that within a short ride from my house!