This week's tablehopper: start your engines.


At the Champagne Grand Tasting. Photo by Dakota Fine.

I can imagine many of you are chomping at the bit to get the hell out of work and get started on your three-day weekend. Someone had to remind me it was Memorial Day this weekend (this is what happens when you’re self-employed—I don’t even have a conception of what a weekend is anymore).

Besides, I feel like my weekend started with my first sip of Bollinger La Grande Année 2002 at the inaugural Champagne Grand Tasting on Wednesday. Yeah, my toes curled. By the time I made it over to the Saint-Chamant and Stéphane Coquillette tables, I decided it was time to start rating my favorite Champagnes in meows. Was great to see some of the people I met on my Champagne trip last fall, including Bruno Paillard and his lovely daughter Alice, and to taste the delicious wines of Mailly once again. That tasting was just ridiculous, and totally my idea of heaven. Based on all the somms there who were loath to return to work, I know I’m not alone in hoping this tasting returns to San Francisco next year.

This week I’m back atcha with more Italian food—although this time I’m hopping over to the East Bay to visit Oliveto and their new chef.

I want to take this moment to thank and remember all the men and women who have served in the military and lost their precious lives in service to their country. I’m lucky that my father and uncle—who both served in Vietnam—returned home safely, because things would be very different in my life. Yeah, I wouldn’t be here.

See you next week,

Marcia Gagliardi

View tablehopper Newsletter from Friday, May 27 2011