November 10, 2015

November 10, 2015
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The bar at Barbarossa. Photo by Alex Leber.

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The main room at Barbarossa. Photo by Alex Leber.

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A lounge area. Photo by Alex Leber.

By Dana Eastland. ~BARBAROSSA~, the bar moving into the former Bubble Lounge in North Beach, is opening next Thursday November 19th (although they are doing some soft opening nights with just cocktails right now). It’s from Bubble Lounge owner Eric Benn and Arash Ghanadan of Novela and has an old San Francisco vibe. Barbarossa means “red beard” in Italian and is a nod to the neighborhood’s Barbary Coast roots, as well as the area’s history as a red-light district.

The bar is helmed by Christina Cabrera (The Progress, 15 Romolo), who is looking to the history of cocktails in San Francisco with her beverage menu. There is a special emphasis on grog, the sailor’s beverage of choice in the 19th century, with a seasonally changing option (perhaps the bar answer on 2014’s porridge trend?). Currently, it’s apple, lemon, and ginger with your choice of spirit, topped with soda—in December, it will become cranberry and hibiscus. There is also a selection of 12 beers on tap, as well as several wines by the glass, including 7 sparkling options—the wide selection is a nod to the space’s past as the Bubble Lounge.

Eddie Lau was the consulting chef on the menu, which is designed for sharing and broken into four categories: From the Ocean; Leaves, Fruits, and Roots; Meats and Cheeses; and Desserts. There are plenty of fresh oysters available in the Ocean section, as well as seasonal ceviche and clams. The produce section includes harissa shrimp with Little Gems and avocado, or try the chile-garlic Brussels sprouts with charred scallion crema. In Meats and Cheeses, there are sausages (from Peter Temkin of Foreign Cinema/Show Dogs), a selection of cheeses, and a pastrami dish available either as a sandwich or a salad. Desserts run the gamut from lemon chiffon wedding cake (because sometimes you just want a good piece of cake) and dark chocolate cookies with Humphry Slocombe Secret Breakfast ice cream.

The space—designed by architect Jacek Ostoya of Gold Grenade—is 6,000 square feet and divided into four spaces: the main room and Bubble Room upstairs, as well as the Living Room and Outlaw Room downstairs. Throughout, there are nods to the building’s history as a jailhouse. There are metals touches including shackles and locks, against the exposed brick. There are also black leather banquettes, vintage-style red sofas, and hardwood floors. Hours are Mon-Wed 4pm-12am, Thu-Fri 4pm-2am, Sat 6pm-2am, and Sun 6pm-12am. 714 Montgomery St. at Washington, 415-434-4204.

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Terroir Wine Bar, where the Califermentation event will be held. Photo via Facebook.

By Dana Eastland. Interested in natural wines made in California? It can be hard to find them, but you’ll be able to check out a bunch of them at Califermentation, a natural wine tasting fair on Saturday November 14th. It’s happening at Terroir Natural Wine Bar and Merchant from 2pm-5pm and includes wines from 30 different California winemakers, including La Clarine Farm, Coturri Winery, and Methode Sauvage. Tickets are $40 per person. 1116 Folsom St. at Langton, 415-558-9946.

To celebrate their new retail liquor license, ~BREWCADE~ is hosting a can release party with Fort Point Beer Company. Four of Fort Point’s beers will be available in cans, and you’ll be able to purchase them for $5 each for on-site consumption or $15 for a four-pack. Retail four-packs to go are $12. The party runs from 2pm-6pm, and moving forward, retail sales at Brewcade will be available until 10pm. 2200 B Market St. at 15th St.

This weekend is going to be a big one at ~THE TRAPPIST~, where they are celebrating the incoming cold weather with their Imperial Stout Fest. There will be more than 20 stouts (and some porters) to try, from breweries both local and far-flung, including several European options. The event goes all day (they’re open 12pm-12:30am), and you can check out the beer selection right here.

Then, on Sunday November 15th, they’ll be collaborating on a special Friendsgiving Dinner with Allagash Brewing of Maine. There will be a big, family-style feast at their communal table, and Allagash will offer some rare beer selections, including the 10th Anniversary edition of Interlude, a barrel-aged Belgian-style beer that blends two beers, each fermented with a different yeast strain. Peep the menu and pairings here. Tickets are $75 per person. 460 8th St. at Broadway, Oakland, 510-238-8900.

~FARALLON~ is hosting the 17th Annual PinotFest this month, with tasting menus all month long. You can sample flights until November 30th, catch the special tasting menu until November 21st, and it all culminates in The Great Big Bacchanalia on Saturday November 21st. There will be 60 pinot noir producers in attendance, pouring their wines and discussing them, along with appetizers from Farallon and other local restaurants. Tickets are $125 per person, and the party runs from 3pm-6pm. 450 Post St. at Powell, 4th Floor, 415-956-6969.

On Saturday December 5th, ~DONATO ENOTECA~ in Redwood City will host The Enoteca 100 Grand Italian Wine and Food Tasting Celebration. The tasting features more than 100 wines from Italy, including sparkling wines, Valle d’Aosta, Piemonte, Alto Adige, Friuli, and many, many more. In addition to wine, there will be prosciutto, speck, cheese, sausage, risotto nero, porchetta, and agnolotti dal plin. That’s right, there’s going to be a ton of food and wine to try—don’t miss it! The party runs from 1pm-4pm, with noon entry available for VIP ticket holders. Tickets are $55 per person, $70 for VIP. 1041 Middlefield Rd. at Main, Redwood City, 650-701-1000.

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Uncorked’s Morgan Harris, Dana Gaiser, Josh Nadel, Jack Mason, Jane Lopes, and Yannick Benjamin. Photo courtesy of Esquire Network.

Wine lovers and cork dorks, set your DVR for the launch of the television show Uncorked, which premieres tonight (Tuesday November 10th) on the Esquire Network at 10pm/9pm central. The six-episode series is based on the documentary Somm and follows a group of talented sommeliers (Jack Mason, Yannick Benjamin, Jane Lopes, Dana Gaiser, Josh Nadel, Morgan Harris) as they prepare to take the Master Sommelier exam (keep in mind, only 230 people in the world have passed in 40-plus years). I’m extra-interested in watching it because I had the pleasure of traveling with Yannick Benjamin to Portugal last year, and the man is an inspiration, let me tell you. Tune in!