August 2017

August 29, 2017

Pizzeria Delfina’s Baja-meets-Amalfi fish taco with made-to-order hemp tortillas from La Cocina’s Mixiote at Taco Knockdown. Photo: ©

You already have your Labor Day getaway on your mind? Maybe you’re out on the playa, far far away from computers and casual Friday, and reading this next week? (I wish that was me, but anyway. FOMO is real.) Actually, I am going to take a quick final jaunt to Tahoe this week, I just had to jump back into that big blue one more time.

Since everyone is going to be MIA next week, I decided to take Labor Day off as well—tablehopper will be going dark next week, and will be back in your inboxes on Tuesday September 12th. I’ll be able to tell you all about the Serpentine reopening, and Casey’s Pizza, and maybe even Johnny Doughnuts (last I heard, they were opening their Fulton Street location over Labor Day, but that may have slipped). But this week’s issue has plenty of news and breaking stories and events, you ready?

I am so excited to announce a very special tablehopper Indian brunch I am hosting at Rooh with gorg cocktails featuring No. 3 London Dry Gin on Saturday September 23rd. It’s going to be so beautiful, I hope you can make it. Whether you’ve had a chance to check out the stylish Rooh yet or not, you’re going to love this event. Get your tickets soon!

Did you attend Eat Drink SF this year? That was a blast. I had a fun time emceeing the Taco Knockdown on Thursday night (thanks to Foodie Chap for interviewing me about my favorite taco at the event—you can learn all about PIzzeria Delfina’s fun creation here), and the Grand Tasting on Friday was impressive as always. SF really knows how to do a food and drink festival, that’s for damn sure. Thanks to everyone who made it so.

I mostly worked the rest of the weekend, but managed to scoot up to Napa Valley for Heritage Fire Sunday evening—no joke, it was 105 degrees! Fortunately, Charles Krug Winery had all those beautiful trees to shade us, but I felt bad for all the chefs working hard over live fire. Thanks for turning out such delicious food in that crazy heat! It’s a great event, don’t miss it next year!

Okay gang, I gotta boogie, but have a wonderful holiday and hey, do what you can to help poor Houston, every bit counts (there’s a fundraiser mentioned in today’s column, check it out). Those poor people, what a nightmare.

Marcia Gagliardi

August 22, 2017

The winner of our tiki cocktail garnish competition at Forbidden Island. Obviously. Photo: ©

Hey there, hopefully you can read this and your eclipse glasses didn’t turn out to be faulty. Last week, I co-hosted a tiki party with Mount Gay Rum on the back patio at Forbidden Island, check out the fun pics from the talented Blair Heagerty. It ends up everyone got pretty crafty since we hosted a tiki glass decorating and garnish competition. We also had a special guest: Mount Gay Rum’s master blender Allen Smith, who taught our guests all about blending. Good times.

This week, the parties don’t stop! Starting this Thursday evening is the first event for Eat Drink SF—I’ll be emceeing the sold-out Taco Knockdown, see you there? It’s taco time! The Grand Tasting sessions kick off on Friday evening, with more during the day and evening on Saturday, and wrapping up Sunday afternoon (with a performance by the GLIDE Ensemble and a surprise from the Golden State Warriors
)! EDSF has quite the lineup of local talent—from the chefs to bartenders, with 30 restaurants featured per grand tasting—and always draws a crowd that likes to have a good time. Check today’s sponsor listing for a special tablehopper discount code on EDSF tickets, even VIP tickets! Tickets are moving fast… I’d love to see you. Let’s partay.

Bookending the weekend will be the Techmunch conference this Friday (I’ll be on a panel discussing food trends—there are still tickets!) and Sunday afternoon I’m heading up to Napa Valley for Cochon555’s Heritage Fire at Charles Krug Winery (my first time—I’m almost always away in Tahoe). It’s gonna be meaty, smoky, and hot. And fun.

Have a great week—the sun’s out, and it’s Amaro Week! (Like I need an excuse to drink amari.)

Marcia Gagliardi

August 15, 2017

Solange on the Sutro stage Sunday night. It looked like an album cover that came to life. Photo: ©

Whooooosh, well, that was a marathon of a weekend. Outside Lands is not for the weak, that’s for damn sure, which is the thought I had every afternoon as I was pedaling my bike to the festival into the head wind and mist, a bit slower with each passing day. But all that walking and bike riding and dancing is why you can eat amazing festival food like monkey bread chicken Parms and saturated Philly hoagie/muffulettas and your dream chocolate cookies with impunity, that’s rightttttt. SF, you crushed it, no one does it better. And thanks to Wine Lands, I was never too late for bubbles o’clock each day. Whew.

I kind of can’t believe how many amazing artists I got to see, from Little Dragon to the much-needed musical medicine from Solange (!!!), and I loved the discovery of seeing some for my first time, like Future Islands and Sofi Tukker. Great performers. I caught a little bit of The Who, which kicked up some nostalgia, and now I’m ready for a Quadrophenia viewing party—it has been 25 years since I watched it. But really, the festival belonged to Solange. I feel so lucky to have witnessed that performance. Dreamy.

There is so much work that goes into pulling this behemoth of a festival off, so I just want to say thanks to everyone who worked SO HARD to made it a special 10th anniversary. Except you, A Tribe Called Sorry Not Sorry Enough—way to just keep posts hawking merch up on Instagram instead of addressing your disappointed fans who got dissed two days in a row. Weak sauce.

Anyway, moving on… Thanks to everyone who entered the two giveaways I was running this past week for Eat Drink SF VIP tickets and the Mount Gay rum tiki cocktail party. I hope you folks who won have a blast. And for those who didn’t, there will be more!

Real quick: fellow Hatch chile fanatics, did you know the Mollie Stone’s Hatch chile roasting days are back? I’m heading to the Mollie Stone’s in Pac Heights this Sunday for mine… Check out the calendar for chile roasts around the Bay Area! They’re my favorite thing to have at the ready in the freezer. Well, besides some vodka to go with caviar, but that’s another story.

Okay, one last thing, and I could really use your help. As many of you know, I recently visited Thailand to be a part of the 10th anniversary mission of Pencils for Kids, an amazing nonprofit that raises funds to deliver backpacks filled with school supplies and uniforms to children in Myanmar, Indonesia, and Thailand every year. In 2017, PFK will deliver 2,200 backpacks to children in need!

I’m helping Pencils for Kids with their annual fundraiser in San Francisco this winter, with 100 percent of the event proceeds going directly to supply children with backpacks. We are currently looking for a venue to host this year’s fundraiser on the evening of Thursday November 16th (although that date is flexible based on availability—it could also be Nov. 8th or 9th!). It’s going to be a walk-around tasting featuring Asian street food, especially highlighting the three countries PFK visits each year. Attendees will include approximately 200 guests.

I’m having a hard time finding a venue who can donate their space, and thought I’d open up my quest to you, dear readers, for any ideas, connections, offers, and introductions. I know it’s a big ask, but we rely on the generosity of local donors so we can ensure that proceeds go where they are most needed: directly to fund the annual mission trips to help the children. Thanks for considering it, it’s for such a worthwhile cause. Just hit reply! Mwah.

Marcia Gagliardi

August 8, 2017

True blue, Lake Tahoe, I love you. Photo: ©

Greetings from 6,207 feet. It’s been so fun hanging out with blue jays and chipmunks and thankfully no bears this year. I’m getting ready to descend from my Tahoe Tahoma perch and head back to sea level tomorrow (sniff sniff), but I’m so fired up to have Outside Lands ready and waiting this weekend (there are still single-day tickets!). In today’s issue, I included a list of things to eat this year at the festival that caught my eye. I have no idea what your music taste is, so I’m gonna leave that up to you.

Since I went light on news last week to make room for the 10 mighty tasty brunches piece, we have some catching up to do! We also have an awesome giveaway in the sugar mama: a pair of VIP tickets to Eat Drink SF (coming at the end of August). Good luck!

I wanted to pass along this fun photo recap by The Taste SF on the tablehopper vintage Blue Fox dinner at Alfred’s. Great pics! That was such a special night. My wheels are turning on what classic SF restaurant the next tablehopper vintage dinner will focus on…

Okay, it’s time for me to pedal to the lake for my last afternoon beach break. Been making my way through the most incredible book, City on Fire, set in New York in the 1970s, and I am determined to finish this remarkable tome before I leave!

See you in SF!
Marcia Gagliardi

August 1, 2017

Chambers Landing in the evening. Yes, it’s for real. Photo: ©

Greetings from dreamy Lake Tahoe, gang. I’ve been enjoying some family time here at our cabin, and bonus, my parents bring their two cats up with them, so I’ve had plenty of entertainment with all the feline shenanigans. Caturday was ON.

I can’t believe the level of the lake, I haven’t seen it this high in years. It’s totally full! There’s water back up at the piers and lapping at the shore. It’s so gorgeous. (Although I did lose a little too much of my favorite beach at Sugar Pine Point. NOT COMPLAINING.) I’m just so happy to have the sun in my life and zero wind this past weekend. After living in San Francisco for (almost) 23 years, I’ve learned I have to escape the summer fog and BS wind or I go a little crazy. Shout-out to boss of me for creating my mobile job. Have laptop, will travel.

Today, I went super light on the news because I have been wanting to run this SF brunch piece for weeks, and I kept running out of time. I can’t write up places and travel pieces and sift through the onslaught of news all in the same week, so I hope you enjoy today’s piece. Small sidebar: if brunch at Rooh is catching your eye, you might want to wait for an upcoming tablehopper brunch there! Very soon. It’s in the works!

See you next week!
Marcia Gagliardi

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