November 16, 2011

November 16, 2011
plum-backlounge.jpg

The back lounge area. Photo by Cindy Chew.

plumbar.jpg

The front bar area. Photo by Cindy Chew.

Last week—after a delicious Haven preview dinner by chef Kim Alter—I had a chance to take a peek at ~PLUM BAR~, the new bar flanking owner Daniel Patterson’s ~PLUM~ in Oakland’s Uptown District. Scott Beattie is the man behind the cocktail magic, serving “classically inspired and progressive, culinary-driven cocktails.” You’ll also be able to graze on bar bites from chef Ron Boyd, like charcuterie and sandwiches (grilled cheese, chicken sausage), and a double burger. There is also wine on tap, local beers, and fans of single malts will be stoked with the selection.

The design is gorg—it’s another notable space by Scott Kester (COI, Plum, and the upcoming Haven), with wood floors, custom leather furniture, and—my favorite touch—walls covered with pages of poetry. The bar glows from underneath, and I dug the mirrored panels above the bar. There’s also a large table and lounge area in the back with room for 12—it felt a bit 1970s conversation pit. Another fun element: the greenhouse cabinet with live plants and herbs for use in the cocktails. Want a piece of the action? Plum Bar has created an opportunity for guests who invest to become “Seatholders”—read more on the website. Hours are daily 5pm-close. 2216 Broadway at Grand, Oakland, 510-444-7586.

azucar-seating.jpeg

Seating at Azúcar Lounge. Photo from Alcademics.

~AZÚCAR LOUNGE~ has softly opened in SoMa, and Alcademics has a copy of the menu (hello margarita with chile peppers), pics, and more. This “corner cantina” is from Jon Ojinaga, formerly the beverage and food and beverage manager of the Redwood Room at the Clift. 299 9th St. at Folsom, 415-255-2982.

bottlecap-exterior.jpg

Exterior; photo from Bottle Cap’s Facebook page.

~BOTTLE CAP~ in North Beach has a couple boozy items for your agenda. Tonight, Wednesday November 16th, is Whiskey Wednesday’s “Barrel Night,” and Bottle Cap is introducing their first barrel-aged cocktail and Widmer’s barrel-aged beer. The Vieux Carré (rye, brandy, sweet vermouth, Benedictine, bitters) was aged two months in a former bourbon barrel, while the Widmer’s Founder’s Reserve beers (2010 in bottles, 2011 on draft) spent three months in former bourbon barrels. Small plates will be paired with the beer and will be available à la carte, with special pricing all night. 5pm-10pm.

On Tuesday November 22nd, Bottle Cap is hosting an Herb Caen Martini Competition to benefit Project Open Hand. Bartenders from Bottle Cap, Park Tavern, Tony Nik’s, and Campanula will compete to make the best Herb Caen-inspired martini with Chopin Vodka—and you get to be a judge by casting your bottle cap for the best drink. Guests will get to sample the competing cocktails and light apps, and there will be happy hour specials until 7pm. Live jazz by Gaucho; guests are encouraged to dress the part (think fedoras and trench coats). 5:30pm-7pm. Tickets are $5 online; $10 at the door.

Douro_film.jpg

Image from Life on the Douro’s Facebook page.

Tomorrow, Thursday November 17th, join filmmaker Zev Robinson for a screening of his documentary film Life on the Douro and learn about 300 years of the history, culture, and terroir of the Douro region of Portugal, and explore and taste its fine wines. Doors to the screening room at the Delancey Street Foundation open at 6pm, film starts at 6:30pm, followed by a Q&A.

The wine tasting portion will be presented by Oscar Quevedo and Roy Hersh, who were both involved in the making of the film. Port and still wines from Graham’s, Dow’s, Niepoort, Crasto, Taylor Fladgate, Quevedo, Mourão, Sandeman, Ferreira, and Quinta do Vale Meão will be available for tasting. Tickets ($32) online. Delancey Street Foundation, 600 Embarcadero at Brannan.

hiptastes-2011.jpg

On Saturday November 19th, Hip Tastes returns with a special daytime event called ~MIX IT UP! BLENDING IN THREE ACTS FEATURING EARTH, WINE & SCENT~ at Sutton Cellars in Dogpatch. There will be a botanical perfume bar dishing unisex scents (Scent), an organic accessories station with cool bespoke boutonnières and hair accessories (Earth), and Carl’s wines will (obviously) fulfill the “Wine” portion of the evening. There will be a custom Hip Tastes blend just for the event (with blend components available for sampling along with the final blend), a vermouth tasting bar, and more, plus there will be a photo booth from the fantastic Burning Man photographer John Curley, and a scavenger hunt in the neighborhood with clues hidden at local businesses (like Kitchenette, Yield Wine Bar, and Rickshaw Bagworks) and prizes. Check out the ticket page for more details. Tickets: $45, 2pm-5pm. 601 22nd St. at Illinois.