Chef News: Hoss Zaré Returning to Iran, Sean Thomas Back at City Counter

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Our dear Hoss Zaré! We’ll miss you. Photo via Facebook.

Well folks, it’s the end of an era of Hosspitality and Hossy Hugs: our dear Hoss Zaré is heading back to his native Iran and starting a new chapter in his life back home. He has been such a big part of our local culinary scene for years. He started as a dishwasher at The Fly Trap back in 1988, which he later bought and took over. Read this heartfelt piece about him from a couple of years ago by Tamara Palmer, and here is my review of Zaré at Fly Trap from back in 2009. He’s had some really rough times (his parents were tragically and horrifically murdered in Iran, and he suffered a heart attack back in 2010, scaring us all!), but he has always kept his big heart open and full of love.

He included this in a farewell piece he sent to me: “I spent three decades of my life waking up to dazzling sunshines, soothing breezes, and calming sea waves of San Francisco filled with love of the sun, delight of the beach, and generosity of the ocean overpowered by warmheartedness and thoughtfulness of its people. You supported me during my days of gloom and glory, success and failure, and health and hurt. In return to all your kindness and hospitality, I brought you the sweetness of Baklava, colorfulness of Koofteh, and richness of the bone marrow, and my genuine Hosspitality!” Indeed.

You have a chance to visit Hoss at his final appearance this Saturday February 10th at a demo at the CUESA Ferry Plaza Farmers Market (at 12pm). It’s the day before he leaves town, so don’t miss one last Hossy Hug. Best wishes and much happiness to you, Hoss. Thank you for all the kindness and warmth and heartfelt meals all these years.

Another one of my favorite longtime chefs, Sean Thomas, who held it down at Blue Plate for seven-plus years and then consulted on the opening menu at City Counter in the Financial District, is now the executive chef at ~CITY COUNTER~. He has added a County Line chicory Caesar salad (with pomegranate, bacon, and his famous pecorino dressing), and he’s working on a new happy hour menu—come by Mon-Fri 4pm-7pm for it (they have also added Lo-Fi Cocktails to the menu). Open Mon-Fri 11am-7pm. 115 Sansome St. at Bush, 415-844-0633.