27, 2007 | SAN FRANCISCO After almost a year of closure from a fire sparked by a faulty electric car, the ~WARMING HUT~ at Crissy Field will
be reopening on December 3! Walkers and picnickers rejoice. They
will continue serving food made with local and organic ingredients
and luscious,” as they like to call it), and keeping their
emphasis on sustainability and packing up everything with recyclable
items. The menu got freshened up, and ditto on the kitchen equipment
(but they fortunately retained their chef, Matt Wolf). Did you
know that all the profits from the café and bookstore
go to the Crissy
which is designed to support environmental use leadership? Cool.
Open 9am–5pm daily. Building 983, at the West Bluff Picnic
news on a reopening after a fire: ~BENDER’S~ in
the Mission is open again. And there is a mighty cool project inside
the full kitchen: Weird
Fish has launched ~SATELLITE~ as
of last Friday. Look for some Weird Fish favorites, like fish
and chips and tacos, along with the buffalo cat wings (deep-fried
and spicy catfish) or buffalo girls (seitan)—both
come with blue cheese and celery, like they should. There are also
cheese steaks, burgers, and all kinds of fries, onion rings, and
yes, the fried pickles. Vittles will be served Wed–Sat, starting
around 6pm–7pm, and going to 1am, if not later, which should
keep you at least upright at the bar. The space is supposed to
look amazing, with new lighting and a raised ceiling. There’s
a sleek new bar; the multi-levels are gone—it’s now
one convenient floor—and Yelpers seem to be pleased with
all the room around the pool tables. The
backyard will be coming back later, but the smoking room is still
in effect. Cash only, babies. 806 S Van Ness Ave. at 19th St.,
Ruggieri, the former chef de cuisine at ~EMPORIO
RULLI GRAN CAFFÈ~ on Chestnut Street
is the new chef at Kitchen at
in Novato. No word yet about his replacement.
I was bummed to read on Chowhound that ~FLYING
PAN BISTRO~, the
offshoot of ~JAI YUN~, has closed. I had an awesome catfish noodle
soup there just a month ago for lunch and was craving more. Dang.
In a weird twist, the reservations-only Jai Yun is reportedly leaving
their tiny space on Pacific Avenue, and is moving into this slightly
larger and more modern space instead. No lunch service (for now),
but I know fellow noodle lovers can dream, and hint, and request.
680 Clay St. at Kearny,
switcheroos in wino world: since ~JEFF ANDERSON~ left Ame in
mid-September to work with Jason Alexander at Gary Danko, Ame’s
sommelier/wine director position has now been filled by ~AARON
ELLIOTT~, who was most recently at Aqua, and prior to that, TRU
in Chicago and The Peninsula Chicago. Taking over for Elliott at
Aqua is ~KEN WAGSTAFF~, a senior dinner server who I am told rocks
~STEVE IZZO~, who was at One
Market, is reportedly
moving over to Kuleto’s WaterBar as the sommelier and buyer.
Taking his place overseeing One Market’s all-American wine
program of more than 400 labels is 29-year-old ~MELANIE
ALIOTO~, who just started
yesterday—she was formerly the GM and wine buyer of the Wine
Bar & Shop at Embarcadero
Two Center. Alioto’s grandfather (Joe Alioto)
was a cousin to the other Joe Alioto, who was the former mayor
of San Francisco.
in the final move, taking Alioto’s place is ~BRAD
GUSTAVSON~ from Santa Barbara and local ~MICHAEL
OYEN~, who are the new owners
and buyers for the Wine Bar as of three weeks ago. I spoke with
Gustavson, who said to look for more West Coast wines on the list,
and new furniture will be coming in at some point that looks more “wine
bar and less like Starbucks.” Cheers to that.
You follow all that? Time for a glass of wine. Take your pick
There are lots of openings to report!
It’s soooo totally soup season, and I’m excited that
~POT DE PHO~ is less than a week from opening (the soft opening
is next Monday, December 3rd)! The project is from chef Khai Duong
of Ana Mandara, who has transformed the former Spanish Fly space
into a total pho headquarters, with room for 60. It will offer
the magic combo of organic (whenever possible) produce, meats,
poultry, and seafood, and affordable, traditional Vietnamese dishes,
with entrées averaging $9–$10, topping out at $15.
The pho will feature house-made noodles in rich broths made from
Kobe beef and free-range chicken bones. There are six variations,
with some featuring organic chicken or seafood imported from Vietnam,
and natural grass-fed Black Angus beef. The house-made noodles
will be made in the traditional Vietnamese manner, with bean sprouts
in the noodles. Dishes will be served with traditional sides, like
cilantro, scallions, basil, lime, pickled onion, and hoisin and
chile sauces. The pho soups will start at $6; there will be a small
and large size available.
are other dishes like pork and shrimp imperial rolls; soft shell
crab rolls in cold rice paper with avocado; braised organic pork
belly with pickled bean sprouts; and rice chicken Hainam, a Chinese
dish that is popular in Vietnam. The beer and wine license should
be in effect any day now, but they might not have it in time
for the opening next week, so you may be choosing from their
selection of organic fruit drinks, smoothies, and coffees and teas
in the meantime. Hours will be 11am–10pm, and until 11pm
Fri–Sat, closed Mon. 3300 Geary Blvd. at Parker, 415-668-0826.
evening, the third location of ~O'NEILL'S~ will
be opening in Ghirardelli Square. Now you know where to get your
Irish breakfast (which you can even have al fresco) and a proper
Guinness. Yes, at the same time. 900 North Point St.—H
104 (near Beach Street), 415-771-8560.
the Thai place I mentioned that was moving into the Fogon space
in North Beach? Wow, these folks work quickly. Open as of last night
is ~TUK TUK THAI CAFÉ~, whose owners
are also behind Tuk Tuk Thai Café and Asian Market in
Berkeley. Hours are 11am–1am nightly, convenient
for when you want to Thai one on, har. 659 Union St. at Stockton,
little reminder that tonight is the opening of ~BAR JULES~ in
Hayes Valley, Tue–Sat for
dinner, and Sun for brunch. 609 Hayes St. at Laguna, 415-621-5482.
forward to attending a test dinner this week at ~LOCAL
KITCHEN AND WINE MERCHANT~, the Cal-Italian restaurant
from executive chef and partner Ola Fendert, with Mark Bright
overseeing the wine bar and retail wine shop. The opening is
slated for next Wednesday, December 5. While the kitchen will
be highlighting local and organic ingredients on the rustic menu
(hand-made pizza from the massive wood-fired oven, or whole-roasted
fish, anyone?), the wine program will be more global, with a
lot of organic choices, and few surprises from some lesser-known
regions, like India and China. The retail wine shop will also
sell some gourmet food items from local artisans. Open Mon–Fri for breakfast, lunch and
dinner; Sat–Sun for brunch and dinner. More on Local after
I check it out! 330 First St. at Folsom, 415-777-3200.
press time, the word is that ~YOSHI’S~ is slated to be opening the jazz club this Wednesday, and the restaurant
is opening on Saturday. 1330 Fillmore St. at Eddy.
everything maps out according to plan, I might be returning to
New York in January for another week of tablehopping, and I fully
plan to visit ~ABRAÇO~, Jamie McCormick’s
(of Blue Bottle barista fame) awesome new venture that I mentioned
a couple months back. I was so stoked to see this great write-up
he just got in New
and can’t wait to try some of the pastry from Ms. Elizabeth
Quijada from Babycakes and Suspicious Suppers! Go Jamie go! 86
E. 7th St. at First Ave., New York, 212-388-9731.
the local coffee front, things are getting close for ~COFFEE
BAR~, the venture from
Jason Paul and Luigi DiRuocco that is moving into the former
Arc Café space. As of now they are targeting December
let you know next week what’s up, and if that happened! 1890
Bryant St. at Mariposa.
loved this generous holiday coat drive that ~JOVINO~ in Cow Hollow
is putting on: ~COATS FOR CAPPUCCINOS/JACKETS FOR JAVA~ (not
to be confused with a Java Jacket). Now through December 31,
Jovino will be collecting clean, reusable coats and jackets to
assist the One Warm Coat community service effort. Coats of all
shapes and sizes are welcome, and children’s sizes are the
most needed. One Warm Coat is dedicated to distributing reusable
coats, free of charge, directly to local children and adults. The
program is a great way for you and your family to pass along coats
and jackets that you no longer need. Just bring your clean, reusable
coats to Jovino anytime between 7:30am–9:30pm, and Jovino
will take care of the rest. All donated coats will be given to
One Warm Coat for distribution to the community.
Anyone who provides a coat or jacket will receive a gift card,
good for FIVE FREE coffee drinks. (One per customer, please.) Not
a black coffee drinker? How about a latte or cappuccino, or a nice
cup of tea? Whatever your drink is, they will provide it for FREE,
just for donating to this wonderful cause. 2184 Union St. at Fillmore,
didn’t think I’d let a week go without a boozy
event, did you? Heck, here are two. First, ~CANTINA~ is
hosting a book release party for Wings of Cherubs by Guillermo
Toro-Lira, which documents the history and secrets of San Francisco’s
pisco punch! Did you know pisco was the drink of choice in San
Francisco at the end of the 1800s and beginning of the 1900s? You’ll
learn this, and more, so come on down for some free pisco punch,
complimentary apps, and a Q&A with the author on Monday, December
3, at 7pm. Personally signed copies will be available for purchase
at $19.95 plus tax. 580 Sutter St. at Mason, 415-398-0195.
over at ~SEASONS
STEAK & SEAFOOD~,
there’s an Opus One Winery dinner next Tuesday, December
4th: a five-course dinner paired with a special selection of various
Opus One vintages, for $150 including tax and gratuity. Reception
at 6:30pm, dinner at 7pm. 757 Market St. at Grant, 415-633-3838.
reader passed this interesting site on to me: ~FOODIEBYTES.COM~.
Just type your favorite food into the search box and you’ll
get a list of restaurants that serve that dish. I was surprised
with how many results I got from oxtails! Pregnant and have a craving
for salade Lyonnaise? This is all about you.
a hot tip? You know I'd love it (and you). Just reply to