Whatcha doing tonight, Tuesday June 24th? ~CHEF TONY MANTUANO OF THE CHICAGO RESTAURANT SPIAGGIA AND HIS WIFE CATHY~ are hosting an event on the outdoor patio of Americano Restaurant and Bar at the Hotel Vitale to celebrate their new cookbook, Wine Bar Food. The cocktail party kicks off at 6pm, and will feature tasty wine bar food from recipes in the cookbook paired with award-winning Italian wines. Autographed copies of the newly released book will be available to attendees at a special discount. 6pm–7:30pm, $18 per person. Reservations for this event must be made in advance by calling 415-278-3777. 8 Mission St. at Embarcadero.
This Thursday June 26th, ~PLUMPJACK CAFE~ is hosting a four-course winemaker dinner from executive chef Rick Edge and with CADE winery's Anthony Biagi, and will include the first vintage of the CADE Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon. The evening will begin with a reception at 6pm in the PlumpJack Cafe Courtyard, followed by dinner at 7pm in the private dining room. $95 per person. Call 415-440-1133 for reservations. 3127 Fillmore St. at Filbert, 415-563-4755.
This Saturday, June 28th, is the ~ST. GEORGE SPIRITS /HANGAR ONE DISTILLERY~ open house from 1pm–6pm; tickets are still available but moving fast. They will be celebrating this year's release of the Fraser River Raspberry Vodka and the brand-new still (which will hopefully be installed and doing its maiden distillation run). The stills will be running most of the day, allowing a rare opportunity to see the process up close with a live distillation. Entrance will include will include three lil’ cocktails, their spirits (including the new whiskey release), and the iced vodka luges. Music and hors d'oeuvres will be supplied throughout the day to keep everyone upright. They will also have a special "Absinthe Den" area where they will be pouring the Absinthe, Heirloom Apple Brandy, and the DeProfundis 20-year old Pear Brandy in a lounge setting. Access to this area is an additional $10.
There is free shuttle service to and from the distillery on the legendary Mexican Bus starting at 12:30pm at the West Oakland BART station, and continuing at 1:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm, with the last pick-up at 4:30pm. For those of you looking to take advantage of the East Bay Ferry from San Francisco, the Mexican Bus will also be stopping by the Alameda Main Street ferry building at approximately 12:15pm, 1:50pm and 3:50pm. Tickets are $35 at the door. This is a 21 and over event. Please bring your picture I.D.! 2601 Monarch St., Alameda, tasting room: 510-864-0635, main: 510-769-1601.
Good timing on this piece of news considering it’s Pride Week: the bar most Castro visitors and locals have long-known as The Pendulum, which recently had an awning with a (thankfully) short-lived scary color scheme pronouncing it the 18th Street Bar, is now going to be ~TOAD HALL~. Here’s a pic of the new awning and be sure to read all the way to the end of the detailed history of the Castro’s first dance club, which seems to be staging a return. Not sure when the opening is, stand by. 4146 18th St. at Collingwood.