This week's tablehopper: party crashed.


Boy, do I love this city. Hard. Sunday night was one for the books, and the book: I was so fortunate to be able to throw my book launch party at the dramatic ~ORSON~, a dream venue for this event. I was originally hesitant to write about the party in my column, because while I wish I could have invited every single one of you, the ever-restricting factors of available space, food, and drink had to be considered—so I had to limit it to the friends, family, and colleagues I am in close contact with (basically, anyone in my iPhone). My sincere apologies to anyone who felt left out—I am certain I forgot a few important people (let me tell you, this guest list was not an easy thing to compile), and I know some people never received their invite who should have (damned spam folders—it’s the problem with using email instead of real mail).

Anywhoo, it was truly a memorable night, with a remarkable lineup of guest chefs who so kindly donated their time and cooking talent: Alex Ong and Mike Siegel, Betelnut; Katharine Zacher and Ryan Ostler, Bruno’s; Laurence Jossel, nopa; Mike Selvera, Bar Crudo; Ravi Kapur, Boulevard and Prospect (coming soon); Rob Lam, Butterfly; Senthil Kumar, DOSA; and Staffan Terje, Perbacco and Barbacco (blood ‘nduja, anyone?). Thanks to all of you for sharing your mind-blowingly good food… I heard so many complimenti from all the guests!

Elizabeth Falkner and the entire Orson crew were amazing—thank you all a million times over for hosting us in your spectacular space. Elizabeth (pictured here) even made special “Lady Gaglia” macarons for the event (violet-cassis and rose-raspberry), which tasted as pretty as they looked. And no, we didn’t plan to have them coordinate with my dress.

The bars were shakin’ with the music of cocktails from bartenders Aaron Gregory Smith, 15 Romolo; Brian MacGregor, Jardinière; Dominic Venegas, Smuggler’s Cove, 83 Proof; Greg Lindgren, Rye and Rye on the Road, Jeff Hollinger, Absinthe and Comstock Saloon (coming soon); and Victoria D’Amato-Moran, Cent’Anni Cocktails, who even did a special cocktail, “La Hopper,” with Campari and SKYY Ginger. Thank you all for your fantastic drinks, such pros!

There is no way I could have dreamed of hosting this party without the staggering generosity of the following wine and spirits folks: American Wines, Beverage Artistry, Blythe Beaubien (Bagrationi and Bluecoat), Cadre Noir Imports, Craig Roby & Winesellers Ltd., Crimson Wine Group, Dalla Terra Winery Direct, Domaine Select Wine Estates, Folio Fine Wine Partners, Heaven Hill Distilleries, The Henry Wine Group, Iron Horse, Preiss Imports, Robert Kacher Selections, Siena Wine Group, Southern Wine and Spirits, Terlato Wines Intl., Trumer Pils, Vias Imports, William Grant & Sons, and Young’s Market Company. My sincere thanks. I also want to thank Debbie Rizzo with Drink PR for her help in securing sponsors, Alex Fox and Patricia Gums for their massive party organizational skills, Amy Sherman for her wine donation, and Massimiliano and Lorella at La Ciccia, who sent a case of vermentino in their stead. The lineup of wines and spirits was so quality—I apologize for the many hangovers that ensued.

Big disco thanks to Jeffrey Paradise for the on-point party soundtrack (and Sean Evans for the soundsystem), to Daniel Detorie for being the most charming doorman ever, to Barbara Haimes and the volunteer servers from the Culinary Arts & Hospitality Studies program at City College of San Francisco, to Abbey Rents for their assistance with all the glassware, to Square and Beau Smith for letting me be a beta tester for their fantastic product (so cool—and it’s coming soon!), and to my editorial assistant, Daisy Chow, who was the best wingwoman ever.

Here are the official party pictures from the ever-engaging Ricky Camargo, along with some fun party portraits from the lovely Ava Berlin, and coverage from my fellow “hoppers,” the Bunrabs! Thanks for documenting, darlings!

I am overwhelmed and humbled by the outpouring of support, generosity, and kindness everyone has shown for this party, my e-column, and now, my book. Thanks to everyone who came—it was so lovely to par-tay with you. Most of all, it was a great honor to have my family at the party so they could finally meet a lot of the people they hear me talk about.

Guess what? I’m freaking exhausted. So excuse the brevity of this week’s column, but I feel like I just had a wedding or something. Alas, there’s no rest for the wicked or the tired, because this week has me out every night of the week (like that is something new, ha): a book signing at Omnivore tomorrow, a culinary conversation with Michael Chiarello at the Marin JCC on Thursday (you can read about both events here), the Air concert on Friday, and then Whiskies of the World on Saturday. Where’s that auxiliary fuel tank?

Until next week,

Marcia Gagliardi

View tablehopper Newsletter from Tuesday, Mar 23 2010