Paulista was born out of many years of conversations between Alex Yamamoto and Jesse Madway about what their Oakland neighborhood was missing – a simple, casual, welcoming place where friends, neighbors, and colleagues could get together for a bite to eat and a great beer. In 2014, they began in fits and starts to work on their business plan, but it was not until the summer of 2016 that each of them had space in their busy lives to put the plan into action.
Alex was born in São Paulo, Brazil and lived there until he was nineteen before moving to Japan in 1990. In 1995, he opened Yes Brazil, a Brazilian style restaurant, in Hiroshima, Japan. Alex left Japan in 2000 to move to the U.S., and has worked in digital marketing for the last several years. Alex and his wife Kimi have two daughters, and live right up the street from Paulista in the Oakmore neighborhood of Oakland.
Jesse was born and raised in Oakland, and for the last 25 years he has been involved in urban education in the Bay Area – first as a high school teacher for 12 years and then as a senior administrator in Richmond for the past 10 years. A longtime homebrewer and craft beer nerd, Jesse recently decided to take his passion for all things beer and turn it into his profession. Jesse and his wife Britt have a son and a daughter, and live right down the street from Paulista in the Glenview neighborhood of Oakland.