tablehopper
table of contents This week's tablehopper: eat. drink. repeat.

the chatterbox
the word on the street
fresh meat
new restaurant reviews

the socialite
shindigs/feasts/festivals
the starlet
no photos please

the sponsor
this round is on me

Savory Cities

MARCH 25, 2008 | SAN FRANCISCO For those of you who celebrate it, did you have a hoppin' Easter? My dad got the thumbs up from the family for cooking the tastiest baby goat ever this year. Braising magic. Plus some pasta al forno, and cannoli for dessert, what's not to love?

I'm fired up to check out a few events this Saturday at the inaugural Pebble Beach Food & Wine shindig, running March 27–30. There are still tickets left for a few of the events, so check it out if you'd like to rub elbows with some celeb chef and winemaker types—a bunch will be there, from Keller to Trotter to Alain Passard and Philippe Legendre making the trip across the pond, plus wine-related events too (Harlan Estate retrospective tasting, anyone?).

As if I don't have enough to do each week, I'm also going to be writing a new weekly column, Foodie 411, for the San Francisco Convention and Visitor's Bureau on their new "Taste" portion of the site. It's launching today, so feel free to check it out!

A couple weeks ago I announced a few Hip Tastes events, and now the talented wino behind them, Courtney Cochran, offered to give away three copies of her fab new book, appropriately named Hip Tastes: The Fresh Guide to Wine.

So, how do you enter to win? Just forward this newsletter to one person (or more, thanks!) and cc luckyme@tablehopper.com when you send it to your peeps—it's best if you explain why you're emailing it to them, and what tablehopper is. I promise I won't be collecting your friends' emails, those will stay private—I just need to keep track that you forwarded it to some folks. The deadline to enter is by midnight, Sunday, March 30. I will be randomly drawing the winners and will email you to let you know you've won. Good luck! And if you don't win a book, you have two weeks to get Hip Tastes for 20% off from our buddies at Green Apple Books.

Rawk,

~Marcia subscribe
the chatterbox
Savory CitiesMARCH 25, 2008 | SAN FRANCISCO Big congrats to all the local nominees for the ~2008 JAMES BEARD AWARDS~! Here are a few highlights of the local chef nominees:

Boulevard and the Slanted Door for Outstanding Restaurant

Nate Appleman (A16/SPQR) for Rising Star Chef

Elisabeth Prueitt and Chad Robertson (Tartine Bakery) and Nicole Plue (Redd) for Outstanding Pastry Chef

Terra (St. Helena) for Outstanding Service

Douglas Keane, Cyrus (Healdsburg); David Kinch, Manresa (Los Gatos); Craig Stoll, Delfina (San Francisco); and Michael Tusk, Quince (San Francisco) for Best Chef: Pacific region.

And big congrats to Fritz Maytag of Anchor Steam Brewery, Anchor Distilling Company, and that delicious Maytag Blue cheese, for his 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award.

The awards are Sunday, June 8, 2008, in New York.

I recently wrote a piece for San Francisco magazine on secret menu items at local restaurants (you can check out the story here) and while I was doing my research, it really made me want to return to ~POLENG LOUNGE~. Since I'm writing up both O and Monk's Kettle this week as places to equally get your drink and your dinner on, I also wanted to mention how delicious chef Tim Luym's food at Poleng Lounge continues to be. The crispy adobo wings really are some of the city's best; did you know you can get them during happy hour for .50 each? It's a six-wing minimum, which isn't difficult to rack up. Happy hour is Tue–Fri 4pm–5:30pm, with well drinks and beers for $3.

Ok, back on Luym's food: the sizzling sisig, a medley of pork with onion, pepper, coconut vinegar, and citrus served on a sizzling plate is ridiculously good, but the off-the-menu version to order for you total carnivores is the pig's face variation, with a fried egg that you mix in. Oh yeah—porkalicious—don't be afraid. The poached marrow bones are interestingly served sliced lengthwise, you'll scarf the kalbi short ribs, and the butterfish ceviche has a tantalizing balance of flavor (coconut!). With relative newcomers like Namu and Poleng Lounge on the scene, I'd say we have some hip places to get some excellent modern Asian/eats. It's pretty much the kind of food I like to get when I'm in New York. The service can be a little unprofessional/young (uh, for the record, never comment to a guest "whoa, you guys really ate a lot of food!")—but a meal here is such a great deal (most dishes are $7–$10) so I can overlook the rough edges a little bit. Pull a seat up at the bar, enjoy some sake, and graze your way through the utterly delicious menu that reads fresh and interesting. 1751 Fulton St. at Masonic, 415-441-1751.

~PLUMPJACK CAFE~ has found a new executive chef: Rick Edge. The official bio isn't out yet, but this is what I found online: he has worked under chef Ken Oringer while at Silks and Clio in Boston, with chef Laurent Gras as a sous at Peacock Alley in the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, and with Michael Mina as a sous at Aqua. He was also the chef de cuisine of the Pacific's Edge restaurant at the Highlands Inn, Park Hyatt Carmel, and chef de cuisine of Club XIX at the Lodge at Pebble Beach. Most recently, he was at the Culinary Center of Monterey as executive chef instructor of the junior and senior class, and was executive chef of Lattitudes Restaurant in Pacific Grove. If I missed anything, I'll mention it next week! He's reportedly starting in mid-April. 3127 Fillmore St. at Filbert St., 415-563-4755.

Things at ~SENS~ continue to rattle—first there was pastry chef Shuna Fish Lydon's departure, and now chef Michael Dotson and Moira Beveridge have left. The official statement from Dotson and Beveridge goes like this: "The ownership's vision for Sens Restaurant was no longer compatible with that of executive chef, Michael Dotson, and event manager, Moira Beveridge. The parties decided to go their separate ways, and the split was amicable. Dotson and Beveridge are currently looking for a space to open a restaurant on the Peninsula." Taking Dotson's place is Dane Boryta, who was the opening sous chef and worked with Dotson the first four months. A new springtime menu will be coming out shortly, but the concept is remaining the same. 4 Embarcadero Center at Drumm, 415-362-0645.

As I was riding my bike past the former Gustofino space on Church Street last week and saw the sign for ~THOROUGH BREAD AND PASTRY~. This bakery is an extension of the San Francisco Bread Institute, and will have students, graduates, and interns employed there, all under supervision in order to maintain consistency. There is a big variety of breakfast pastry, cookies, cakes, and the breads include sourdough, baguette, ciabatta, multigrain, semolina, and a rotating special variation. Some of the items are baked on-site, and others come from the institute—eventually 100% of the selection will be baked on-site. There are also some simple sandwiches, and coffee, too, so swing by for a bite and enjoy the cute back patio in this delicious springtime weather we're having. There are plans to add dessert in the evening later on. Hours are Tue–Sat 7am–7pm, and Sun 7am–3pm, closed Monday. 248 Church St. at 15th, 415-558-0690.

If you're cruising in the North Mission/Hub area and feel a hankering for some primo coffee coming on, you can now swing by the new ~FOUR BARREL COFFEE~ location for an espresso—the actual café isn't up and running, but co-owner Jeremy Tooker has a kiosk set up, with the La Mistral machine in effect. Just enter the alley (Caledonia) off 15th Street—it's east of Valencia. See, just like a crack deal! Open Mon–Fri 8am–4pm, and 9am–5pm Sat–Sun.

Update on some projects around town: ~DOMO~ in Hayes Valley opens today. 5:30pm. Release the sushi. 511 Laguna St. at Hayes, 415-861-8887.

The first San Francisco location of ~UDUPI PALACE~, the South Indian restaurant moving into the Firecracker space, won't be opening until late April. 1007 1/2 Valencia St. at 22nd.

~ON THE CORNER~, the jazz café coming to the Western Addition/Nopa neighborhood, is now looking at a hopeful mid-April opening. 359 Divisadero St. at Oak.

Another project bites the dust in North Beach: the proposed retail wine shop, ~VINO DIVINO~, will not be moving into the space a couple of doors away from the former Gold Spike—the Telegraph Hill Dwellers don't want any more businesses that include alcohol. Yup, it's beginning to feel like Prohibition again over there.

Ever wonder about the legendary ~BALBOA CAFÉ~ burger? Now's your chance: they will be dishing out a free Balboa Burger to anyone who donates a pint of blood aboard Blood Center of the Pacific's (BCP) bloodmobile parked outside on Thursday, April 3, 1pm–6pm. To donate blood, one must be healthy, at least 17 years old and weigh 110 pounds or more (you hear that, tiny Marina girls?). To schedule an appointment time, please contact Emily Thrasher, e_thrasher@plumpjack.com or 415-346-5712. Walk-in donors will also be accepted. To make an appointment online, visit www.bloodheroes.com and enter the password PlumpJack. 3199 Fillmore St. at Greenwich.

Are you aware of the ~WORLD WILDLIFE FUND'S EARTH HOUR~ taking place this Saturday, March 29, from 8pm–9pm? It's a worldwide movement to encourage everyone to turn off their non-essential lights for one hour on March 29 to raise awareness about climate change and what we can do to help. San Francisco is one of four major US cities participating in the worldwide event. Aside from the large number of businesses that will be shutting off all unnecessary power, the following restaurants have agreed to participate in Earth Hour through a variety of individual activities ranging from sustainable menus, to shutting off all unnecessary lights and turning off their exterior lights for the evening:

  • B Restaurant and Bar in Oakland
  • Westfield San Francisco Center Restaurant Collection (Zazil Coastal Mexican Cuisine, LarkCreekSteak, Straits, 'wichcraft)
  • PlumpJack Restaurants (Jack Falstaff, MATRIXFILLMORE, PlumpJack Café, Balboa Café)
  • Edible Love – Un Amour a Croquer
  • Modern Tea, Tea Lounge
  • Market Bar
  • Chaya
  • Bistro Boudin
  • Ghirardelli Square

Winos: this Thursday, March 27, Raphael Knapp and Rue St. Jacques's chef Eric Lanvert have teamed up to let you tour the wines of France without the airplane ticket. They are appropriately calling the event ~LE TOUR DE FRANCE~. Here's the lineup: les huitres Point Reyes en gelée saffranée (Point Reyes oysters in a saffron gelée) with a glass of Pouilly Fumé Claude Michot; la daube de boeuf á la Provençale (Provençale style short rib), with a glass of Gigondas; la salade frisée et sont Brillat Savarin (frisée Salad with Brillat Savarin cheese) with a glass of Listrac Médoc; le soufflé au chocolat (chocolate soufflé) with a glass of Banyuls. You will also have the opportunity to purchase the featured wines at very reduced prices. $65. 1098 Jackson St. at Taylor, 415-776-2002.

A few updates in the Tenderloin dive bar-gentrification scene: first, the sketchy OSB (O'Farrell Street Bar) is now ~800 LARKIN~. Thrillist reported that there's a "30ft mahogany bar, plush leather armchairs and couches, and a new, gray-felt pool table." And a cocktail menu. Well. 800 Larkin St. at O'Farrell, 415-567-9326.

I also heard some bartenders from the Tunnel Top have taken over the previously skeevy ~KOKO'S~ in the TenderNob. I tried to swing by last Sunday night but it was closed, so no report on the décor, but it's supposed to have some flair. If you like, let some Yelpers fill ya in. 1060 Geary St. at Polk, 415-885-4788.

More booze news: ~SAN FRANCISCO COCKTAIL WEEK~ is returning, running from May 13–19. You can read an initial line-up of very cool events on the site, which will include some cocktail dinners at bacar, The Alembic, and Conduit in San Francisco, and Flora in Oakland; a discussion on Literature and Drinking Culture in San Francisco with David Wondrich; a Save the Sazerac event at Elixir, and I might, might, be co-hosting a bar crawl of some sort—stand by!

In the meantime, H of Elixir (and his new biz, Cocktail Ambassadors) is hosting his first ~MIXOLOGY 101 CLASS~ at the Bay Club tonight from 7:30pm–9pm. In this 20-person class, you'll learn some entry-level techniques, and do some shaking and stirring (Manhattans and martinis), plus muddling of mojitos, and juicing for a proper margarita. The class is open to the public, but costs $120 for club members, and $135 for non-members—tablehopper readers get the non-member fee waived, so it's only $120—just click to order here and read more on the Elixir site. I know it's last minute, so if you can't swing it, he will be doing these classes quarterly with a seasonal spin (plus some thematic changes) at all of the Western Athletic Clubs in Northern California (San Rafael, San Francisco, Redwood City, Santa Clara and Los Gatos).

Then on Thursday at Elixir, there's the ~GREAT WHISKEY DEBATE~, an event as part of H's Cocktail Club series. Join Simon Brooking, Master Ambassador for Laphroaig and Ardmore single malt scotches, as he goes head to head with Jim Beam Whiskey Professor David Mays about which is the greatest whisk(e)y on earth: bourbon or scotch. Scandal! It is $20 per person for four whiskeys (two scotches, two bourbons) and you'll get some entertainment, history, education, slideshow, Q&A, and cocktail specials. Wow, all that in one night. Things kick off after the last basketball game (should be 9:30pm-ish). Buy your ticket here. Capacity is limited to 50. And lastly, next Thursday, April 3 at Elixir, there will be a Maker's Mark tasting with Master Distiller Dave Pickerel. 3200 16th St. at Guerrero, 415-552-1633.

East Bay folks, you are lucky ducks, because ~OLIVETO'S~ first spring favas have just come in from Bolinas. Spring fava season is brief, and there's nothing like the first wave of tender beans—chef Paul Canales and many other fava lovers know only the first few pickings yield beans tender enough to serve raw, with the delicate skins still on. So swing by tonight through Thursday for fresh favas with Il Frantoio olive oil and sea salt, finished with a fresh shaving of pecorino and cracked black pepper. This first wave of favas comes from Star Route Farm on the Marin coast. (The first crops of local asparagus and English peas are also on the menu now.) Oliveto, 5655 College Ave., 510-547-5356.

I also was reading about a cool ~BUTCHER'S DINNER~ at Café Rouge this Thursday—looks delicious. $80 per person, with a menu of red meat provided by the following growers: Heritage Farms, Magruder Ranch, McCormack Ranch and Niman Ranch. 1782 4th St., Berkeley, 510-525-1440.

You'll be able to read up on ~O IZAKAYA LOUNGE~ in this week's fresh meat, but I wanted to make sure you sports freaks knew you can swing by tonight, March 25, for the Oakland A's and Boston Red Sox's season opener in Japan. O will broadcast the game in high definition on their seven flat-screen TVs at 6pm, and you can enjoy chef Nicolaus Balla's signature happy hour menu items and drinks from 6pm–8pm. (Stay late to watch the second game live from Tokyo.) Hotel Kabuki, 1625 Post St. at Laguna, 415-614-5431.

 


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fresh meat

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Monk's Kettle
3141 16th St.
Cross: Albion St.
(near Valencia St.)
San Francisco, CA 94103

415-865-9523
website

Mon–Fri 12pm–2am
Sat–Sun 11:30am–2am
Kitchen until 1am

Apps $5–9.50
Entrées $9.50–$18
Desserts $6.50

MARCH 25, 2008 | SAN FRANCISCO Suds are HOT. People are embracing beer right now like it's vodka circa 2001. But no, we're in 2008, and the West Coast has caught Belgian fever, or at least a gastropub gastrointestinal bug. Beer and bites joints are popping up all over the place, but I almost can't believe how the ~MONK'S KETTLE~ in the Mission has completely blown the hell up. Talk about a runaway hit. Hopefully when the outdoor seating gets approved, there will be a little more room for people to enjoy what's on tap at this charming tavern.

What makes this place so pop-star popular? Well, the location is primo Mission real estate; the list of beers is outstanding (I could read it and taste from it for days); the décor strikes a good balance between cool and cozy; the food is approachable, made with quality ingredients, and served until late (the main menu ends at 10pm, but there's an extensive late-night menu until 1am!); the eclectic music is spot-on good; and the staff is notably friendly, pretension-free, and knowledgeable.

Adding to the list of attractive qualities, I spotted some cute guys, plus some cute chicks too—but the crowd gets a little young as the evening wears on. Am I getting old? No, I'm 36, so while I'm certainly not in cougar or Mrs. Robinson territory just yet, I was feeling a bit of an age gap around 11pm on a Thursday night. Oh wait, most people my age should be home at that time on a school night, right. I didn't get that fax.

I've been by twice midweek, and both times the place is just packed. Sardines city. And loud. I can't even imagine the scene on a weekend, and I feel bad for the servers navigating the floor. After a little while people will eventually vacate a seat at the intimate bar, or you can put your name down on the list for a table (waits average 45 minutes to an hour). But I say if you score a seat at the bar, order up and cancel your table (a beer in the hand is worth two at the table). It's crazy busy like the SPQR of the 94103. And I'm not sure when it's a good time to come by. Maybe late lunch. Good luck.

Chef Kevin Kroger uses good ingredients, with Niman products and all kinds of local and organic purveyors, like Knoll Farms and County Line produce, and Marshall's Farm honey. The pub-style menu is huge considering how small the kitchen is—not quite sure how they're doing it, but I'm tempted to suggest trimming it down a little for tighter quality control.

Vegans can tuck into a bowl of Jude's chili ($6.50), and vegetarians reportedly dig the black bean cakes ($8.75) resting on roasted corn salsa (I thought it needed a hit of acid—the lime kind, not the Timothy Leary kind). Carnivores really should make a move for the pork chop ($18), a cider-brined number with a dollop of stone ground mustard cream sauce, Brussels sprouts, and a crispy cheddar scallion potato cake (once too salty, once just right)—it's a beast of a dish for $18, a total man pleaser. I've tried the chop twice, and both times it was juicy and savory.

Depending on your appetite, you can just nosh on a buttery giant pretzel ($6.50) with a cheddar ale sauce (a little bland) and stone-ground mustard (better), and sporting a springy, juicy dough, or perhaps you'll be happy grazing a charcuterie plate ($14.50). I tried the bruschetta ($9.50)—two big slices of bread with cannellini bean puree, sautéed wild mushrooms, and white cheddar—a bit unwieldy to eat, but tasty, and beer friendly.

There's also an array of salads in the "ruffage" section (which makes me laugh), like four. The salads all read really well and interesting, but the vinaigrettes and dressings never quite hit the mark, even the simple side salad—they need to be dialed in a bit more.

The Niman burger ($10.50) is house ground, dense, and good—cooked just as we ordered it, and yay, it's served on a grilled bun! All I wanted was a pickle. Fries were okay, but on a second visit were hotter and crispy. Another time I tried the pulled pork sandwich ($11.25), with a mess factor that was on par with a sloppy Joe, so I needed to fork and knife it. I only could eat half of it… I got full, but my palate also got a little bored. The side of jicama slaw was fine, but too mild to counteract the strong BBQ sauce flavor. I wanted more chunks of good porky pork, less sauce.

This is where a refreshing beer comes in. The menu has all kinds of suggested pairings, but the capable hands of the bartenders are where you want to be. They'll give you tastes in little leprechaun-sized mini steins, absolutely precious. There are Belgians, local brews, Lambics, Saisons, Sonoma beers, German beers… it's a melee (24 draughts, and over 100 in the bottle). There's even Hitachino White Ale from Japan. Check out a PDF of the list yourself. Everything comes in proper glassware too. But don't fret, it's not like it's ALL serious—there are even some "Grampa's Beers," including Oly in a can.

The style is clever, with a number of reclaimed and repurposed items—including the dramatic back bar which I think was originally from a fireplace (I was drinking, sorry, can't remember for sure) and a fun use of formerly vintage overhead lighting. The lighting here is flattering and comfortable, I love all the wood, I say thanks for the hooks under the bar, and it's fun watching people draw and play hangman on the blackboard in the back while waiting for a table, or just kickin' it over a beer—actually, what is probably a mighty delicious beer. Cheers to owners Christian Albertson and Nat Cutler for doing such a commendable job on their first effort.

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O Izakaya Lounge
Hotel Kabuki
1625 Post St.
Cross: Laguna St.
San Francisco, CA 94115

415-614-5431
website

Dinner
Daily 5pm–10pm
Bar
5pm–12am

Apps $3–$12
Larger plates $12–$19
Desserts $7

MARCH 25, 2008 | SAN FRANCISCO I am thrilled that izakaya is becoming a household word. Well, it's not quite "mac 'n' cheese" or "taqueria" yet, but based on all the recent openings in the City, it's well on its way. ~O IZAKAYA LOUNGE~ opened in the Hotel Kabuki, taking over the former Dot Bar and Lounge space. I must admit I never quite made it to the previous business, "Lord of Balls"—I wasn't very clear on the concept, and wasn't quite sure I wanted to be (I will refrain from making any vulgar comments). Anyway, since I've been happily catching more flicks lately at the awesome Sundance Kabuki, I've been exploring Japantown and the dining options around there a bit more than usual.

Normally, I wouldn't even consider dining at a "sports lounge," and as far as I'm concerned, the seven flat screen TVs playing live sports might as well be Kryptonite, an East Coast snowstorm, and the scary banjo player from Deliverance all rolled into one. (Read: not appealing.) In the future, I'm going to have to make sure there isn't a game being broadcast that night if I'm going to want some of chef Nicolaus Balla's vittles—fellow non-sports fans, you might want to follow suit. Sports fans, however, you'll be one happy camper.

The space is comfortable and not very big, with folks hanging around the round bar, and diners either parked in the spacious booths, or the smaller tables flanking the room. It's not rowdy like my fave, Oyaji but it's partly because there are more couples dining here, or solo diners/drinkers at the bar, and not as many of the larger groups like what you'll see at other izakayas around town. The wallpaper made of a print of vintage Japanese baseball cards is super clever, but the bizarre iPod mix of pop music and other random tracks needs a little reining in.

Since it's a bar, you can order a cocktail (I don't recommend the Joie de Veev—I love açai, but in this drink's case, you might as well just drink the Veev straight), or a Sapporo (on tap, hello!), or shochu or sake—there are some good ones to choose from, but I'd like to see a couple more junmai ginjo and dai ginjos offered by the glass.

To the munchables! The hamachi sunomono ($12) is still on my mind, a delicious tangy combo with pickled fennel, black radish (it looks like it's a shaving of a mysterious truffle), enoki mushrooms marinated in ponzu, and feisty kaiware (daikon sprouts). Balla is way into pickling: he also does his own kimchee, which is the star-crossed lover/partner for the pork belly ($14) that comes sliced over the top. It's a good "crossover" kimchee for those who typically fear it: his fantastic version is made with leeks, Napa cabbage, Serrano and Thai chiles, anchovy, and garlic—don't pass this dish up.

It wouldn't be an izakaya without some agemono (fried) love. The tempura crimini mushrooms ($7) come from fabled shroomer Connie Green, and have a dark batter made with Black Butte porter. They were a touch under-salted, but I liked the side dipping dish of spicy hatcho miso. Wasn't as big a fan of the butternut squash tempura ($10), which looked like a bull's-eye, with the squash and cream cheese wrapped up in nori and deep fried, then sliced up like some maki, and served with a ponzu dip and a green tea (matcha) salt. Clever, and close, but not my preferred type of cigar.

How about some grilled meat on a stick? Can't go wrong with juicy chicken thigh yakimono ($4), the warhorse of meat, but the true star is the hamachi belly ($4), delectable with a squeeze of lemon and a sprinkle of shichimi, that addictive Japanese pepper I like to sprinkle on too many things. Oh, and be sure to try the omochi ($3), fried rice balls with a light sweetness and toothsome texture. A veiled homage to Lord of Balls? Naw.

I'd like to come back for the lauded burger ($12) that is gaining its own fan club, or one of the yaki soba ($8) choices on a foggy night. There are also some dishes like tai snapper ($14) and iwashi (broiled sardines) ($12) that caught my eye. The duck breast ($15) was tender and nicely seasoned, and came with some diiiiivine eggplant that was pressed (there was some duck fat involved too) with a flourish of red miso. There are a fair amount of vegetarian choices too.

Additional bonuses: they validate parking for diners for three hours in the Kabuki garage (!), and the happy hour is a killer deal, and a great way to come check the place out (Sun–Thu 5pm–7pm) and enjoy some specials, like yakimono for $1.50. I wish the kitchen was open a bit later—it would be a dream late-night spot (the food is built for it), but alas, they say "oyasumi nasai" (good night) a bit early here.

 
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the socialite

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SF International Chocolate Salon
Sun., April 13, 2008

Fort Mason Conference Center

San Francisco, CA

website

10am–6pm

tickets at the door: $20
advance tickets: $17.50


MARCH 25, 2008 | SAN FRANCISCO ~THE SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL CHOCOLATE SALON~ returns for its second year! Salon highlights include chocolate tasting, demonstrations, chef and author talks, wine pairings, a chocolate spa, ongoing interviews by TasteTV's Chocolate Television program, and book signings of the newest International Chocolate Salon publication, The Chocolate Guide (2008 Western Edition). The Salon will also include a silent auction charity fundraiser for Holy Family Day Home, providing care and education for homeless children.

New chocolatiers to the event will include Guittard Chocolate, The Chocolate Traveler, San Francisco Toffee Company, Chuao Chocolatier, Marti Chocolatt, Christopher Elbow Artisanal Chocolate, Chocoholics Divine Desserts, Jade Chocolates, Patchi Le Chocolat, Ghirardelli Chocolate, Gateau et Ganache, Moonstruck Chocolate Cafe, and Schoggi. Some of these, such as Schoggi, are new to SF.

Ones returning from last year include NEWTREE Gourmet Belgian Chocolate, The TeaRoom, Coco-luxe Confections, Saratoga Chocolates, Sacred Chocolate, Cosmic Chocolate, Poco Dolce, The Xocolate Bar, Charles Chocolates, Amano Artisan Chocolate, Trader Joes, and Rushburn Toffee Company.

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Passover at Perbacco
Tue., April 22, 2008

Perbacco
230 California St.
San Francisco, CA 94111

415-955-0663

$49
does not include tax, tip, or wine


MARCH 25, 2008 | SAN FRANCISCO Famed author and chef, and three-time James Beard award recipient Joyce Goldstein, along with Perbacco chef Staffan Terje, will prepare a night of ~PASSOVER-INSPIRED DISHES~ from her book, Cucina Ebraica: Flavors of the Italian Jewish Kitchen.

On this evening, Perbacco will serve a full kosher menu to honor the holiday, along with a selection of kosher wines selected by wine director, Mauro Cirilli, a regular contributor to The Wino. (Please note: items on Perbacco's regular menu will not be available on this night.)

Here's the evening's delicious menu:

Haroset
**
Antipasti
(served family style, choose three for the table)
Fegato di Anatra alle Uova Sode – Chopped Duck Liver, Italian Style
Spuma di Tonno al Peperoni – Tuna Paté in Roasted Peppers
Sarde in Saor – Sardines Marinated with Onion, Raisins and Pinenuts
Baccala al Pomodoro – Salt Cod poached in Tomato Sauce
Melanzane in Insalata – Grilled Eggplant
Concia – Roasted Zucchini with Mint and Vinegar
**
Primi
Brodo con Polpette Uova per Pesach – Passover Soup with Chicken Dumplings and Eggs
or
Crema di Carciofi – Artichoke Soup
***
Secondi
(choose one per person)
Spigola al Sugo di Carciofi – Seabass with a Sauce of Artichokes
Tonno Fresco con Piselli – Fresh Tuna with Spring Peas

Pollo Ezechiele – Ezekiel's Chicken with Tomatoes, Herbs and Black Olives

Rotolo di Vitello coi Colori – Veal Breast Stuffed with Peppers and an Omelet
Spalla di Montone con le Olive – Lamb Shoulder Braised with Olives

Carciofata di Trieste – Spring Vegetable Stew from Trieste (vegetarian)

Contorni for the Table
Purea di Patate e Olio – Olive Oil Potato Purée
Finocchio alla Giudia – Braised Fennel, Jewish Style
Stufato di Fave, Carciofi e Lattuga – Spring Stew of Fava Beans, Artichokes and Lettuce
***
Dolce
(served family style)
Frutta Caramellata con Zabaglione – Caramelized Fresh Fruit with Zabaglione
Pan di Spagna alle Nocciole – Passover Hazelnut Sponge Cake
Scodelline – Almond Pudding

 
the starlet

MARCH 25, 2008 | SAN FRANCISCO Comedian, actress, and writer Judy Gold, who was in town for her show 25 Questions for a Jewish Mother, was on quite the foodie tour as well: in the past week, she had dinner at Globe, Postrio, Limon, and breakfast at Chloe's (twice) and Dottie's.

 

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