The City

Michael Jackson's Personal Chef Plans "King of Pop" Birthday Celebration at Oakland Bakery

Have a thrilling meal on August 29




    Mani Niall was Michael Jackson's personal chef for two years at the peak of his fame, traveling the world with the star after the release of his seminal album Thriller.

    Niall is now an accomplished cookbook author and owner of Oakland's Sweet Bar Bakery (2355 Broadway). He remembers Jackson with fondness and plans to celebrate his birthday on August 29 by cooking up the King of Pop's favorite dishes from their time together.

    Stop in at Sweet Bar to try Jackson's beloved smoky New Mexican red chile enchilada sauce over chilaquiles with black beans, jicama slaw, and pork or vegetarian adobo; Jackson would have eaten the meat-free option. For dessert, Niall is serving ice cream and maple pecan "'ookies," which are made with healthy ingredients.

    The grand opening of Sweet Bar Bakery was ushered in by a flash mob performing the zombie dance from the "Thriller" video. It's rumored that the funky ghouls will return for this birthday party. 

    "This is extra special for me because when I was his chef he did not celebrate his birthday — no cakes, cards or nothin'," says Niall of Jackson. "So now I can make up for it."