February 15, 2011

February 15, 2011
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Photo from Otis/Facebook.

Beer. Salumi. What more do you need? This Friday February 18th, BridgePort Brewing Company, Oregon’s oldest craft brewery, will be introducing two new brews, CAFÉ NEGRO and KINGPIN, at ~OTIS LOUNGE~. Bi-Rite butcher and charcutier, Morgan Maki, will be pairing a number of small bites with the two new beers. Entry to this event is free with beer samples at a minimal cost to guests. 6pm-9pm. 25 Maiden Ln. at Kearny.

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Photo from Joie de Vivre Hospitality.

The East Bay Vintner’s Alliance (EBVA) has kicked off a new weekly “Meet the Winemaker” tasting series at ~MISS PEARL’S JAM HOUSE~, inside Jack London Square’s Waterfront Hotel. Every Friday evening, the EBVA will pour complimentary wine tastings of their finest wines, served with complimentary light bites provided by the restaurant. Upcoming wineries include: February18th: Cerruti Cellars/Tudal Family Winery, February 25th: Andrew Lane Wines, March 4th: Stage Left Cellars, March 11th: Irish Monkey Cellars, and March 18th: Ehrenberg Cellars. You can get your weekend started early every Friday from 5pm-6pm. 1 Broadway at Water St., Oakland, 510-444-7171.

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Photo of H. Joseph Ehrmann by The Lush Life.

~THE BOOTHBY CENTER FOR THE BEVERAGE ARTS~ has a variety of upcoming education events, like 1 Bourbon, 1 Scotch and 1 Beer (make that 15 beers and 15 whiskies) on Saturday February 19th; a Mixology 101 Class on Wednesday February 23rd and another on Wednesday March 23rd, when you’ll learn all about making martinis, Manhattans, mojitos, and margaritas, taught by H. Joseph Ehrmann. Times and cost vary. 1161 Mission St. Suite 120 at Julia (between 7th and 8th St.).

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Randall Grahm; photo from his website.

You have two chances next week to hang out and taste wine with the illustrious Randall Grahm of Bonny Doon Vineyards. He will be in town on Tuesday February 22nd for a book signing/tasting at Spuntino at 1957 Union Street ($10) from 5:30pm-6:30pm, and then over at ~OTTIMISTA ENOTECA-CAFÉ~ for a wine pairing dinner from 6:30pm on.  

The dinner event has a reception at 6:30pm, and dinner starts at 7pm. Six courses of food and wine pairings will be punctuated with Randall’s musings on wine, the deliberate shrinking of the Bonny Doon brand, and his new book, Been Doon So Long: A Randall Grahm Vinthology. Signed copies of the book will be available for purchase. $100, plus tax and gratuity. To RSVP, call 415-674-8400. Read more about both events here.

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Bartender Kyle Ford. Photo: © tablehopper.com.

The Center for Urban Education About Sustainable Agriculture (CUESA) and the Northern California Chapter of the United States Bartenders Guild (USBG) are kicking off the ~2011 FARMERS MARKET HAPPY HOUR SERIES~ at the Ferry Building on Wednesday February 23rd from 5:30pm-7:30pm. I’m a fan of these events, which highlight talented local bartenders doing their thing with fresh Ferry Plaza Farmers Market produce and ingredients. The February event’s theme is all about winter citrus, so expect to taste kumquats, pomelos, Meyer lemons, mandarins, and blood oranges.

Participating bartenders include: Brian McGregor from the soon-to-open Locanda (which means you are getting a sneak peek of the cocktails that will be there!), Kyle Ford from Rye, Stuart Green from Beretta, Kevin Deitrich from Burritt Room, Josh Perez from 15 Romolo, Michael Callaghan from Azul, Kristin Almy from Charanga, Patrick Brennan from Prospect, Brian Means from Chow in Danville, and Tiffany Kramer from Blackbird.

For $35, guests will get two full-sized signature cocktails made with Campari, one a twist on the classic Negroni, the other an original creation. (Both drinks will be made by the bartending team behind Locanda.) You also get to taste 10 sample-sized drinks made with winter produce in combination with 42 Below Vodka, Don Julio Tequila, FAIR Vodka, Hendrick’s Gin, King’s Ginger, Michael Collins Irish Whiskey, Siete Leguas Tequila, St. George Whiskey, Templeton Rye Whiskey, and VeeV Açaí Spirit.

And to keep you from keeling over, Locanda executive chef Anthony Strong will create two appetizers to accompany the full-sized drinks, giving guests a sneak-preview of the upcoming food as well. Other hors d’oeuvres will be provided by Fifth Floor, 15 Romolo, Beretta, and Il Cane Rosso. Buy your $35 ticket here. All proceeds benefit CUESA and the USBG equally.

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Photo from Eater.

R Bar owners Tod Alsman and Chris Fogarty have finished the long haul of transforming the Nob Hill Tavern Sports Bar into the newly opened ~WRECK ROOM~. Eater reports the bar will be open for its regular business hours of 4pm-2am as of tomorrow (Wednesday). Also mentioned: “the bar now boasts a pool table, the aforementioned pop-a-shot and shuffleboard, 10 new TVs, a jukebox and the jet black exterior paint job you see above. There’s also a surprisingly plush women’s bathroom.” You can read the reason for the ABC-related delays and more here. 1390 California St. at Hyde.