Last week, my hand of cards was most definitely a full house, starting with Wednesday’s Tour de Champagne at the Bubble Lounge, which was fantastique (particularly enjoyed the brut from grower-producer Dosnon & Lepage). My Thursday evening mingle at 18 Reasons was a blast (thank you Onigilly for the delicious rice treats! Best party treats ever—no fuss, no muss.). There was definitely a lively discussion that occurred at the end of the evening: the 18 Reasons staff posted a piece of butcher paper on the wall, asking “What San Francisco Restaurant Do You Think Is Overrated and Underrated?” (Here’s a photo of everyone’s submissions. Discuss.)
Friday night I headed over to Cavallo Point for dinner with Peter Greenberg and his crew, and had a good time recording a segment for the Peter Greenberg Worldwide show on Saturday morning about “off the brochure” and late-night places to visit in San Francisco. (Of course booze figured prominently in my suggestions.)
After hanging with my 510 readers and grazing on coppa at my signing at The Pasta Shop at Market Hall (thanks for coming by!), my buddy and I hopped into my Alfa and scooted down to Pebble Beach Food and Wine, just in time for our Top Chef Masters Dinner that evening. Rather than go through a big recap, let’s have the pictures do the talking: here are the photos from my whirlwind 24-hour tour down there. I attended the Top Chef Masters Dinner (our table, table 9, was outta-hand fun) Saturday night, the after party, a tasting of vintage Veuve Clicquot on Sunday morning, and then the Grand Tasting event. The festival is total culinary ADD: everywhere you turn, there’s someone you want to talk to, something you want to eat, something you want to drink. Kudos to the organizers for pulling off another spectacular year. And thank god I was wearing my boots on Sunday, because the run in the rain back to my car was like four-wheeling.
Whew, it looks like the great deluge of 2010 is fortunately over because this Wednesday is the Hop Dog Happy Hour with CUESA at the Ferry Building—sorry to report all the tickets are sold out, and the waiting list is long. However, how would you like to attend something sweet (and free) this Friday April 16th? I’m going to be signing books at Fog City News from 12pm-2pm, featuring free samples from the amazing Xocolatl de Davíd. We’ll be tasting the following chocolates: Almond Pimentón, Salted Caramel, and my favorite, the Bacon Raleigh bar (nougat, pecans, fleur de sel, 72% dark chocolate, and bacon-infused caramel—yeah, it’s insane). See you there.
And then this Saturday April 17th, I’ll be doing a book reading and signing at Read Booksellers in Blackhawk Plaza in Danville—a lot of my relatives will be there, so if you want to hang out with the Gagliardis and DeGrazias, come on by—it starts at 2pm. And Thursday April 29th is my two-martini lunch at Bix with the Commonwealth Club—we are totally going to feast. You comin’? The price is right!
Lastly, it looks like I might be heading to NYC for the Beard Awards and general running around the Big Apple the first week of May. Woot. Anyone know of any rooms/sublets/swaps/unoccupied apartments they’d recommend in Manhattan or Brooklyn? I’m trying to avoid the expense of a hotel for the entire week (will be singing the post-taxes blues, no fun), or couch surfing (and I have been turned on to Airbnb.com, thanks!). Appreciate any leads!
See you on the town,