September 29, 2015

September 29, 2015
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This is serious business. Cocktail seminar at Golden State Cocktails. Photo by Natasha Moustache (via Facebook).

By Dana Eastland: Celebrate California’s cocktail culture and history at the third annual Golden State of Cocktails party. It’s taking San Francisco by storm Sunday October 4th through Tuesday October 6th with parties, tastings, seminars, and more. The event is actually a preview for the big Los Angeles festival in January, but this preview promises to be lots of fun.

The full schedule of events is here, but highlights include Genshu: Mixing with Cask-Strength Sake, at Rickhouse on Monday October 5th from 4:30pm-5:30pm, where you’ll learn all about blending Genshu, a cask-strength sake, with cocktails. There is also the Woodford Reserve Sunday Supper at Wayfare Tavern on Sunday night from 6:30pm-9:30pm, plus plenty of evening parties like the Bottom Shelf, Top Tender party at The Hideout (at Dalva) on Monday night, where bartenders compete to make great drinks out of…less great booze.

For a full look a the schedule and all the special events, head here. Cost and location vary per event, tickets and details here. And here’s a big cheers to California cocktails!

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Upcoming guests at Fine & Rare’s Thursday night dinner series.

Thirsty? Always! Here are a few wine (and cider! and mead!) dinners happening around town. On Thursday October 1st, Tilted Shed Ciderworks out of Sebastopol is going to be hosting a dinner at ~FINE & RARE~: five courses with pairings, tickets are $75. The event starts at 7pm. (Upcoming events in the Thursday night series include Banshee Wines on October 8th and Heidrun Meadery out of Pt. Reyes Station on October 15th.) 555 Golden Gate Ave. at Van Ness, 415-297-3980.

Meanwhile, on Friday October 2nd, ~THE BARREL ROOM SAN FRANCISCO~ is hosting a Marion-Bosser sparkling wine dinner with Elodie Marion. $100, five courses; or come by for a flight for $30. On Monday October 5th, experience Burgundian wines by way of Chile with winemaker Louis-Antoine Luyt; $85, flight for $22. 415 Sansome St. at Sacramento, 415-956-6900.

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The bar at Jardinière. Photo: FrankenyImages.com © 2010.

There’s a new wine director you’ll see on the floor at ~JARDINIÈRE~: Alan Murray, who was most recently at Mourad and was previously well known for his years at Masa’s (of late, Eugenio Jardim has been consulting on the restaurant’s wine list). Murray started four weeks ago and is excited about the large cellar, which has some “real gems.” He’s also happy with the long relationships the restaurant has cultivated over the years. Murray will keep the restaurant grounded in the classics, but he also believes there’s room for some new faces from California, Oregon, Washington, and abroad—but nothing trendy, he says.

After the busy holiday season wraps up, he said we can expect more programming, and involvement with events like La Paulée. Oh, and while you’re at it, check out Jardinière’s spiffy new website.

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The bar at Americano. Photo by Cesar Rubio.

After the incredibly destructive Butte and Valley fires, several local businesses are teaming up to help victims of the Valley Fire get back on their feet and rebuild their lives. Not only can you raise money for this incredibly worthy cause, but all you have to do is show up and drink delicious boozy beverages and eat. Truly, a no-brainer.

This week, until Sunday October 4th, ~AMERICANO~ will be offering special menu items from the Napa Valley to support victims of the Valley Fire in neighboring Lake County. Half of all proceeds from Cultivar Wine and the pizza funghi fontina, which features mushrooms from Wineforest Wild Foods, will be donated to the Lake County Local Assistance Center.

~THIRSTY BEAR~ is featuring their special Wet Hop Harvest Ale this month and donating 50 cents from each pint of the ale to the Lake County Local Assistance Center. The ale is made with hops from Hops-Meister Farm, which is located in Clearlake, very close to the fire’s destruction. The ale is on tap through the end of October. 661 Howard St. at Hawthorne, 415-974-0905.

On Thursday October 1st, ~GOTT’S ROADSIDE~ will be donating 50 percent of all proceeds to the Middletown Unified School District, which will then distribute donations to students and their families who are victims of the Valley Fire. They’ve got four locations throughout the Bay Area, including the Ferry Building, St. Helena, Oxbow Market in Napa, and Palo Alto.