September 8, 2009

So, I am back from the mountains, and if I didn't have my photoshoot for my book scheduled last week, I would have been making as many excuses as possible to stay up in Tahoe—it's beyond gorg up there in August. But about the photoshoot: whoa. Talk about tablehopping: I think we managed to hit something like 25 locations around town in two days. Yes, it was insane and grueling, but also thrilling—we got so many amazing shots (oh San Francisco, you make it look easy!). Thanks to all the restaurant, bar, café, deli, and taco truck folks who helped us pull this off!

The photographer, the talented Ed Anderson, was a total champ (he did the photographs for the A16 cookbook). And luckily we got to eat, drink, and taste the majority of what we shot, so you know I chose well, heh. Like the Guinness float pictured here from St. Francis Fountain. (Looks good on a warm day like today, right? You should try that thing at 11am, let me tell you.) Anyway, it's very cool to see how nicely this book is coming together.

So here's the part of my column when you're going to want to tell me to go to hell. I almost don't want to tell you. I don't even understand the convergence of amazing sh*t happening in my life this week. (Pinch pinch.) Okay, I'm going to come clean with you.

As soon as today's column is posted, I'm scooting up to wine country to catch the second half of the Papillon VIII event at Opus One/Robert Mondavi Winery (can't wait to meet the Demon Chef, Alvin Leung), and am staying up there one more day so I can eat at, er, um, The French Laundry. I'm pretty darn excited, because guess what? This will be my first time dining there! Like many folks, I've been waiting to dine at the Laundry for a long time; I wanted to be sure I went with equally food-and-wine obsessed friends, and I'll be damned, that's exactly what's happening. So glad I held out.

Once I waddle my way back to the City, I'll be home for 48 hours, and then here's where things get really ridiculous: I am then packing my bags and catching a flight this weekend to Spain. Jerez, to be exact (can you hear me lisp it?). I'll be there for a week, touring the bodegas during harvest and learning a ton about sherry. And hunting down some jamón ibérico de bellota, oh you know it. Can't believe I haven't been to Spain since I was 20, so I'm giddy like a teenage girl over this trip.

See why I almost didn't want to tell you about my upcoming week? I know, it's gross. I feel like I just won some crazy culinary jackpot or something. Anyway, I will be Tweeting when I can, and will have a full report on my shenanigans in my column in two weeks—but next Tuesday afternoon you'll only hear the sound of crickets.

I hope you had a swell Labor Day—I was actually home writing this thing all day and night because I know I owed you a beefy column this week. I hope you're hungry.

Hasta luego, amigos.
~ la Marcia