tablehopper
table of contents This week's tablehopper: better late than never.

the chatterbox
the word on the street
the lush

put it on my tab
the socialite
shindigs/feasts/festivals

the bookworm
another place for your nose
the starlet
no photos please

the sponsor
this round is on me

Cheese School of San Francisco

hosting provided by

Zojo Media

AUGUST 18, 2009 | SAN FRANCISCO Hello people. Were you wondering where your hopper was? Remember, it was gonna be a little late today? Anyway, your Tuesday afternoon time-waster is here! It's just as well that my fab designer and I had to start late today, because it gave me time to go to the podiatrist this morning to survey the weekend's dancefloor damage to my big toe. Let's just say electrician in big boots: 1, food writer in high heels: 0. Damn, there goes my new running regimen for the next few weeks—looks like riding my bike (in flip-flops) is gonna be my only option. Pfffft!

So I totally thought I was going to be a lady of leisure last week (ha, when does that happen?), but I didn't get as much of a break as I thought I would—I had to get crackin' on my book edits! Zippy turnaround. Eep. I was lashed back to my laptop.

imageI did, however, savor a 24-hour break in sunny Santa Cruz—and I can't wait to tell you all about my meal at the Cellar Door Café at Bonny Doon (soon!), which is mercifully close to downtown Santa Cruz, so it has been spared by that hideous fire. If you happen to be anywhere near Santa Cruz, head on over and park yourself at the (so talented) kitchen's counter; thank me later for turning you on to this gem cranking out farm-fresh food that was pure pleasure. Smoked chevre, bring it on. (Photo: whole fried rock cod over summer ratatouille.)

I am turning my book edits in this Thursday, and then I'm off leash again and heading up to Healdsburg for dinner and an overnighter at the Madrona Manor (can't wait), back in SF for a quick re-packing, and then off to Lake Tahoe for my annual getaway, returning in early September in time for my book's photo shoot! Exciting. No Burning Man for me this year—it was just going to be too much. And besides, I have way too many magazines and episodes of Mad Men and daydreaming to catch up on.

Also excited to hustle up to Tahoe in time to attend one of the second annual barn dinners with Moody's Bistro & Lounge, one of my favorite spots to eat at in the Sierras (chef-owner Mark Estee rocks—and he hooks me up with the best damned tomatoes). A four-course meal will be prepared and served this Friday through Sunday at the certified-organic Sierra Valley Farms, featuring just-picked produce in a historic 1936 barn. (If you're interested, the farm tour starts at 4pm, dinner is at 5pm, and it's $100—call Moody's at 530-587-8688 for more.) It's gonna be fantastic.

Thanks to everyone who entered the ticket giveaway for the passes to Papillon VIII! I loved all your answers (especially the one that suggested that Alvin's tattoo says: "I like General Tso's chicken."). Hilarious. The correct answer was: demon chef! The lucky winner is Stuart Zimmerman, who will be enjoying an evening of exquisite bites from the Demon Chef himself, Alvin Leung, plus music and more at Robert Mondavi Winery on September 8th. (Remember, tablehopper readers still have access to purchase VIP and Grand Tasting Passes to this otherwise invite-only and exclusive event; just be sure to mention tablehopper when ordering.)

This week we have a bookworm from Pete Mulvihill. And since I've got way too much on my plate, I'm bowing out of a review; but there's lots going on in this week's column, including some cool news in the lush, check it out.

Work hard, play hard, have fun doing both.

Vroom.

~Marcia

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the chatterbox

Cheese School of San FranciscoAUGUST 18, 2009 | SAN FRANCISCO This just in: the Bacchus Management Group (Spruce, Village Pub, Mayfield Bakery & Cafe, Pizza Antica) has strapped on their Superman cape, and will be working to help sort out the financial mess that is ~AQUA~. From the release: "Bacchus Management Group, in request of the court, has been appointed by the administrator for the estate of Charles Condy, to work together with Aqua restaurant's existing team to review their current financial and operational state and to assist in the rejuvenation and the management of the restaurant. Together the teams will work to revitalize one of San Francisco's most iconic restaurants. 'It is a great opportunity to become involved with Aqua, a restaurant that has inspired the restaurant and hospitality industry so greatly,' says Tim Stannard, founding partner of Bacchus Management Group." Looks like I might be able to keep AQUA in my book after all. 252 California St. at Battery, 415-956-9662.

Let's dive into some openings. The mysterious ~FANG~ is finally opening in SoMa. No, it's not about a steakhouse or vampires—it's actually an offshoot from Peter Fang's House of Nanking. I spoke with one of the Fang family members, who told me to expect a similar menu, but since the place is larger (76 seats), expect some new dishes on the menu. It will be open for lunch and dinner daily, and is due to open this Friday August 21st. 660 Howard St. at Hawthorne, 415-777-8568.

FYI, the reopening of ~LIMON~ in the Mission after that pesky fire is getting close, possibly even next week. Will keep you apprised. 524 Valencia St. at 16th St., 415-252-0918.

As I mentioned last week, the 99-seat ~PARKSIDE TAVERN~ is up and running. I got some details for you, so let's tuck in: it has a pressed tin ceiling, lots of mahogany and brass, and a warm and cozy feel that was intended to continue the space's legacy as a welcoming neighborhood joint. Larry Doyle (who was the chef at Johnny Foley's Irish House in Union Square) has put together a menu of "San Francisco pub food," as he's calling it, with items made from scratch and sustainably sourced. You can eat apps like a trio of mini Tavern hot dogs: herb chicken, spicy lamb, and British banger ($8) or smoked salmon and boxty pancake with dill cream and scallions ($8); a soup of the day and a couple salads; a variety of pies, like Niman Ranch beef with a mashed potato crust ($12) or traditional chicken pot pie, and there's even a vegetarian version with quinoa and a cheddar-mashed potato crust ($10). The seafood in the fish and chips is sustainable, and there are some steaks from hormone- and antibiotic-free beef. There's also a happy hour from 3pm–6pm, with $5 appetizers, like chili-crusted calamari, Irish cheddar mac 'n' cheese, Anchor steamed mussels, and Buffalo chicken wings, plus $3 domestic draft beers. Weekend brunch is 11am–4pm, and dinner starts at 4pm nightly. Open Mon–Thu 3pm–12am, Fri 3pm–1:30am, Sat 11am–1:30am, and Sun 11am–12am. 1940 Taraval St. at 29th Ave., 415-731-8900.

Also in the neighborhood, according to permits, Marisole's is now ~NINKI SUSHI BAR AND RESTAURANT~. 1439 Taraval St. at 24th Ave.

The Potrero Hill location of ~SUNFLOWER~ has opened in the former Baraka space. It has a similar Vietnamese menu to the Valencia Street location, and is serving lunch and dinner. 288 Connecticut St. at 18th St., 415-861-2336.

Yup, ~STARBELLY~ is open today. Reports from the test dinners were good—it's going to be nice to have chef Adam Timney back on the local cookin' circuit! Open daily Mon–Fri 11am–12am, and brunch Sat–Sun starts at 10am. 3583 16th St. at Market, 415-252-7500.

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Over in North Beach, Ian Begg and Ryan Maxey's sandwich stand, ~NAKED LUNCH~, officially opened yesterday in the annex next to Enrico's. The menu will rotate (you can track updates on their website and Twitter), but yesterday's vittles included a spendy sandwich (foie gras and duck prosciutto with heirloom tomato, butter lettuce, white truffle oil; $15), a decadent one (fried Berkshire pork belly with plum mostarda and roasted scallions; $9), and thank heavens, a kinda-healthy one (wood oven–roasted eggplant and gypsy pepper sandwich with Humboldt Fog and black mission figs; $8). There will also be a soup of the day, and lychee limeonade for $2. Open Mon–Fri 11:30am–2pm. 504 Broadway at Kearny, 415-577-4951.

I caught up with Joe Dabit, the owner of what is going to be the 24-seat ~ACME BURGERHAUS~. He told me about his unique concept that should be opening in a month or so across the street from nopa. Instead of doing burger patties with items like cheese just placed on top, he's actually going to be offering custom mixed patties to order (kind of like Cold Stone Creamery meets meat!). For example, you could get your Gorgonzola mixed in with your beef. Or a Mediterranean burger will be half lamb and half beef, with pine nuts, mint, feta, and sumac mixed in and then grilled. The regular burgers will be $6.75, and the custom ones will run around $8.75, with all meats sourced from Niman Ranch. There will also be a salad bar with 28 ingredients, many of them organic. Plus wine, and six beers on tap ($1.95 a pint), and free Wi-Fi at lunchtime. Hours will be Mon–Thu 11am–12am, and Fri–Sat 11am–3pm. 559 Divisadero St. at Hayes.

Eater reported that ~HIME~ has closed. Here's wishing Eichii Mochizuki all the best, he's such a nice (and delightfully animated) fella. 2353 Lombard St. at Pierce.

imageThe latest ~SPQR~ news: the new executive chef is Matthew Accarrino—he starts this September. He was most recently chef of Craft Los Angeles and an alum of New York's Per Se and Italy's Antonello Colonna. The restaurant is due to close on September 14th for renovations (including the addition of banquettes), and when it reopens in late-September, Accarrino's new SPQR menu will debut. I'll have more on the direction of his menu in coming weeks. 1911 Fillmore St. at Bush, 415-771-7779.

Wow, for the first time in 18 years, ~SLOW CLUB~ is going to start taking reservations. 2501 Mariposa St. at Hampshire, 415-241-9390.

As for outdoor eats, I heard ~NETTIE'S CRAB SHACK~ is doing an outdoor barbecue during summer weekends on the patio, serving barbecued oysters, fish tacos, corn on the cob, prawn skewers, and grilled peaches with vanilla soft serve. 2032 Union St. at Buchanan, 415-409-0300.

This Thursday evening, ~ACME CHOPHOUSE~ is hosting Haute Dog, offering a slew of quality dogs (from Fatted Calf to 4505 to Marlow & Daughters in NY!) for $5, plus beers from Magnolia Brew Pub and 21st Amendment for $3, wine for $4, and $5 appetizers, including sliders, flatbread, and mac and cheese. It runs from 4pm–8pm. Click the PDF for the line-up of all the killer dawgs, and more details! 24 Willie Mays Plaza at King, 415-644-0240.

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I can't believe I'm not around for the ~STREET FOOD FESTIVAL~ this Saturday August 22nd (argh). A lot of work has gone into putting that thing on, that's for damned sure. Be sure to check out the awesome silent online auction, with one-of-a-kind food and beverage experiences available for bidding, like "Chef for a Day at Chez Panisse," Delfina's chef-owner Craig Stoll cooking dinner for up to 10 in your home (oh my god, he would die laughing if he had to cook on my Holly Hobbie stove), a private dinner for 10 at 18 Reasons with Bi-Rite's Sam Mogannam, and more. The auction runs until Thursday August 27th at 8pm. All proceeds from the auction go directly back to La Cocina. To see the full list of auction items and to place bids, click here.

And just a little reminder, the ~SAN FRANCISCO STREET FOOD FESTIVAL~ will be held this Saturday August 22nd from 11am–7pm. Admission is free and open to the public. Each participating vendor will sell food and drinks, with nothing costing more than $10. For a complete list of vendors and more info about the event, click here. Folsom Street between 25th and 26th Streets.

And then this coming Sunday August 23rd, ~COFFEE BAR~ is hosting another Vietnamese outdoor market-themed barbecue, featuring chef Dan Nguyen from Alameda's Dragon Rouge Vietnamese Bistro, Hanoi Premium Beer, plus local vendors offering more eats, arts and crafts, and music. The menu includes classic papaya salad, traditional prawn roll, Vietnamese pulled pork sandwiches, grilled lemongrass glazed spare ribs, and roasted catfish with spicy, sweet, and sour pineapple sauce. $25 ticket includes access pass to hors d'oeuvres and buffet table, two Hanoi Premium Beers, and raffle tickets. Buy tickets here. 3pm–8pm. 1890 Bryant St., on the corner of Florida and Mariposa.

It's time for the piggy report!

imageTrying to figure out how to decorate your kitchen? Got a devoted swine lover in your life? Dating a chef and don't know what to do for his or her birthday? Be sure to check out Ryan Farr of ~4505 MEATS'~ new trio of piggy posters made by the 125-year-old Hatch Show Print in Nashville. Serious letterpress glory: Frisco pig was a friend of mine. (Indeed.) $26 each, and $9.95 to get it shipped in a poster tube to your front door.

And even more pig: ~MAVERICK~ is kicking off a new monthly dinner called the Coast to Coast Roast, when they will pick some large piece of meat or several medium cuts and do a family-style dinner for a special price of $30 for three courses. This Thursday August 20th will feature an heirloom tomato salad, a bourbon-glazed Range Brothers Ham with roasted summer potatoes and okra, and old-fashioned peach pie. Jus' $30! When making a reservation, mention the "Coast to Coast Roast." Call for reservations. 3316 17th St. at Mission, 415-863-3061.

More roasts: ~SOUTH~ is doing a special Monday night roast for $25 per person, served family style for two. Yesterday's menu included tomato and coconut soup and a rocket salad, rosemary-brined slow-roasted leg of New Zealand lamb with mint sauce and apricot chutney with two sides (green beans and bacon, and minted pea mash), plus seasonal house-made ice cream. You can add a bottle of New Zealand sav blanc or an Aussie shiraz for just $25. 330 Townsend St. No. 101 at 4th St., 415-974-5599.

Would you like a free plant with your coffee? (And you thought it was going to be a mug.) From now until August 31st, you will get a free Tillandisa plant (also known as an "air plant") when you buy a 12 oz. bag of coffee at ~RITUAL COFFEE ROASTERS BAYVIEW LOCATION~ at Flora Grubb Gardens! Like it said in their note, "The sun is shining, flowers are blooming and it is the perfect time to enjoy an espresso under the palm trees!" Totes. 1634 Jerrold Ave. at 3rd St., 415-694-6448.

~PERRY'S ON UNION STREET~ is turning 40 this Thursday August 20th. Both Thursday and Friday evening will feature a line-up of celebrity bartenders mixing drinks behind the bar from 7pm–10pm, including Willie Brown, Dwight Clark, and more. Sunday August 23rd is a block party from 11am–5pm, with live music, sausages, burgers, and chicken Caesar salads from the outdoor BBQ menu, and signature Perry's Bloody Marys or cold beers from the outdoor bar. The block party will take place on Union Street between Buchanan and Laguna Streets, and is open to the public with no admission fee. Check the website (a PDF) for menu deals, like half-off on bottles of wine through the end of August. 1944 Union St. at Buchanan, 415-922-9022.

Are you up in the North Bay? This Thursday August 20th, ~JOYCE GOLDSTEIN~ will be at The Tyler Florence Shop in Mill Valley from 6pm–8pm signing her new book, Tapas: Sensational Small Plates from Spain. 59 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley, 415-380-9200.

imageAnd mark your calendar for this one: the irrepressible and mightily impressive ~POPPY TOOKER~, a New Orleans food authority, market supporter, and author of the new Crescent City Farmers Market Cookbook is coming to town. Tooker will commemorate the fourth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina by bringing a taste of New Orleans to the Bay Area. The Crescent City Farmers Market Cookbook tells the story of the New Orleans food community with profiles, anecdotes, and more than 125 seasonal recipes from New Orleans chefs and family favorites from farmers and market shoppers.

You'll find Poppy stirring the pots and signing books on Wednesday August 26th at Relish Culinary Center (14 Matheson Street, Healdsburg, 2pm–4pm book signing, and a four-course New Orleans cooking class including Poppy's Seafood Gumbo, is from 6pm–9pm, reservations required); Friday August 28th from 6pm–8pm at The Tyler Florence Shop (59 Throckmorton Avenue, Mill Valley); Saturday August 29th at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market (12pm: Market to Table Diaspora Gumbo demonstration in the CUESA Teaching Kitchen, in front of Ferry Building, under North Arcade, and signing books at Book Passage from 1pm–3pm at the Ferry Marketplace Shop #42); and Sunday August 30th at Williams-Sonoma Flagship Store (Union Square, 340 Post St., San Francisco, 2pm–4pm). Her motto is "Eat it to save it," so I say please help her in this quest and buy her book. Get a preview of the book here.

Got a hot tip? You know I'd love it (and you). Just reply to this email.

 
the sponsor

Cheese School of San Francisco

The Cheese School of San Francisco is on a mission to help San Francisco Bay Area restaurants and retail shops raise their cheese IQ. Send us your chefs, servers, sommeliers, cheesemongers, and other serious foodies for three delicious days of tasting, demonstration, discussion, and lecture—we'll deliver back to you enthusiastic cheese aficionados who are at the head of the class when it comes to sourcing, caring for, selling, and serving premium cheeses at a professional level.

Our Three-Day Intensive Cheese Education Program is back again by popular demand, following rave reviews of our program last spring. The fall program, to be held October 11-13, is led again by Daphne Zepos, a veteran instructor who helped create the 'Master Class' program at Artisanal Premium Cheese Center in New York. A program overview and registration form, including payment and cancellation policy details is available here (a PDF). Higher learning never tasted so good!

 
the lush

Cheese School of San FranciscoAUGUST 18, 2009 | SAN FRANCISCO 15 Romolo has been more than enough to pull me into North Beach for drinks (let's not forget Tony Nik's and Mr. Bing's), but coming to what is actually considered Chinatown is going to be one of the most exciting openings in a while: the ~COMSTOCK SALOON~. If all the final details go according to plan, GM Jeff Hollinger and bar manager Jonny Raglin of Absinthe will be taking over the San Francisco Brewing Company, reopening it in the beginning of 2010 as a Barbary Coast-style saloon. (Raglin and Hollinger will be the operating partners, with Absinthe's Bill Russell-Shapiro as the parent company backing it and offering input.) The saloon has great history—it opened in 1907 as the Andromeda Saloon, and is the only bar in the city that still has a spittoon/pissoir-trough under the bar (how handy, you wouldn't have to ever leave your barstool). (You can read more of the saloon's history here.)

The bar concept is about being inviting, open, and comfortable—you can come in for a serious cocktail, but the vibe will definitely be more saloon than speakeasy. Hollinger mentioned they're excited to be a bit more playful with cocktails and the house-made ingredients here as well. There will be a small menu of cocktail-friendly food, which is TBD, but will most likely feature some SF dishes like Hangtown fry, plus some potted meats, a crab Louie, and other century-old classics. In case you're wondering, the brewing equipment will be pulled, so it's going to be quite the renovation and facelift. As for the bar at Absinthe, Hollinger and Raglin are going to continue to work closely with the bar and front of house, insuring the direction and philosophy remain consistent with what they've so carefully built there. The gents have been looking for a historic bar space for a while, so we can all look forward to raising a glass next year to them finally finding it. 155 Columbus Ave. at Pacific.

Cool tidbit: found out that Scott Baird and Josh Harris of 15 Romolo have been consulting on the drink program for ~EVE~ in SoMa, designing all the cocktails, in addition to selecting the beers, wines, doing the training, and more. (It's part of their new venture, Bon Vivants Consulting.) 575 Howard St. at 2nd St.

More on ~15 ROMOLO~: next Tuesday August 25th from 5pm–8pm, they will be hosting a happy hour with The Back Scratchers Society, with handcrafted $4 Guava Gimlets in addition to the regular happy hour offerings of $6 Pimm's Cups and seasonal carnival-inspired fare ($3–$8). One dollar from every Guava Gimlet sold will benefit Project Open Hand. (The Back Scratchers Society is a collective of employed, unemployed, and freelance professionals who gather monthly to share creative ideas over cocktails. There are no team-building games or "icebreakers," just clever people and good drinks. To "join," simply follow on Twitter or check the blog.)

In honor of ~FIFTH FLOOR'S~ ten-year anniversary, they are making room in their cellar for the next decade of great wines. For the month of August, you have the opportunity to drink any of the great wines they have been collecting at 50% off. 12 Fourth St. at Market, 415-348-1555.

imageThis Wednesday August 19th, ~A16~ will team up with Scarpetta wines, the wine project from Master Sommelier Bobby Stuckey and chef Lachlan Mackinnon Patterson of Boulder, Colorado's Frasca Food and Wine. Executive chef Liza Shaw will collaborate with Lachlan Mackinnon Patterson on a few dishes inspired by the Northern Italian region of Friuli, where Frasca takes its culinary cues. Bobby Stuckey and A16's Shelley Lindgren will be pouring Scarpetta's Tocai Friulano and Pinot Grigio selections. A16's regular menu will also be available. 2355 Chestnut St. at Divisadero, 415-771-2216.

Next Wednesday August 26th, ~SPRUCE~ will be hosting a four-course Partida Distiller Dinner, their first distiller dinner. Guests will be able to taste the blanco, reposado, añejo, and elegante extra añejo tequilas, along with original cocktails by Jacques Bezuidenhout and Brandon Clements. Yeah, take a cab. $105, exclusive of tax and gratuity. 3640 Sacramento St. at Spruce, 415-931-5100.

Danger: bottomless Bellinis are now available during brunch every Saturday and Sunday from 11am–3pm at ~HARRY'S BAR~ starting this Saturday August 22nd. 2020 Fillmore St. at California, 415-921-1000.

~DIRTY MARTINI~ in the Cannery has closed, and will be getting a big makeover (a $400,000 one), reopening in October. Owner Mick Suverkrubbe (also of Cosmopolitan Cafe and Circa) says, "The building was built in 1906 as the first Del Monte Cannery. There will be two rooms with full bars. The main lounge will be upscale with an extensive mixology program with fresh handcrafted cocktails. There will be a large event space in the back for corporate events and live music. We plan on catering our events from CIRCA." I also heard Jim Maxwell of Architects II is behind the remodel, which will involve a rustic design style referencing the early 1900s. The new name will be released soon. 2801 Leavenworth St. at Beach.

On a heavy note… the bar industry was very sad to lose one of their own last week: ~DAHI DONNELLY~, the kind and talented co-owner of Bourbon & Branch, Swig, and Anu passed away after a long battle with cancer. He was only 34. (I understand the memorial was already held last week.) Best wishes to his family, friends, and colleagues who are mourning their great loss. I know many are raising a glass.

 
the socialite

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Keeping It Real Dinners
Sun. Aug. 23rd–30th, 2009

Various locations

website

AUGUST 18, 2009 | SAN FRANCISCO Oakland's Eat Real Festival is hosting a series of special fundraising dinners called ~KEEPING IT REAL~, pairing restaurants that emphasize local and fresh ingredients with Bay Area nonprofits working on food accessibility and economic development issues. The dinners listed below are taking place in Oakland and San Francisco. Please note that the per-person price for each dinner does not include tax or gratuity.

Sunday August 23rd: Brown Sugar Kitchen and City Slicker Farms

A five-course tasting of the seasonal flavors of the South and the Caribbean featuring fresh herbs and produce from City Slicker Farms' West Oakland farms. Seatings at 5:30pm and 7:30pm. The $45 per person ticket can be purchased online.

Monday August 24th: Camino and Civil Eats

A four-course family-style feast featuring paella made in the Camino fireplace, local and organic summer produce, and cheeses from Andante Dairy and Harley Farms. The meal is $75 per person and includes organic/biodynamic wine. Reservations can be made at 510-547-5035.

Tuesday August 25th: Miss Pearl's Jam House and People's Grocery

A four-course Caribbean-street-food inspired menu featuring organic produce from People's Grocery's Sunol farm. Tickets are $50 per person and reservations can be made directly through the restaurant at 510-444-7171 or online through OpenTable.

Tuesday August 25th: Pizzaiolo and Community Alliance with Family Farms

Starting at 6pm, join CAFF for a reception with wine (Donkey and Goat, Porter Creek, Alhambra Valley, Clif Bar Family Winery), cheese (Harley Farms Goat Dairy, Redwood Hill), Pizzaiolo pizzas, oysters from (Drakes Bay) and live music in the back courtyard of Pizzaiolo. Play bocce ball with farmers. At 7:30pm, sit down for a three-course meal prepared by chef/owner Charlie Hallowell paired with wines by Donkey and Goat. Tickets are $25–$75 and are available online.

Wednesday August 26th: Radio Africa and Kitchen with forageSF and La Cocina

Coffee Bar is the location for a five-course street food-inspired menu featuring wild foraged ingredients donated by Forage SF. Tickets are $50 per person, and are available online.

Wednesday August 26th: Doña Tomas and TransFair USA

A percentage of the evening's dinner sales will go to TransFair USA. Reservations can be made at 510-450-0522.

Thursday August 27th: Flora and Meals for Change

Happy Hour from 3pm–6pm features free street-food-inspired snacks, including house-made French fries, corn dog bites, caramel popcorn, mixed olives, and roasted nuts. A portion of the night's dinner sales will benefit Meals for Change. Reservations can be made at 510-286-0100.

Saturday August 29th: Bocanova and California Food and Justice Coalition

A three-course Pan-American dinner, including a talk by chef and author Laura Stec, beginning at 6pm. Tickets are $55 per person and are available online.

Sunday, August 30th: Bocanova and Marin Organic

A four-course brasserie-style Pan-American dinner incorporating and featuring Marin producers, Allstar Organics, La Tercera, Clark Summit, and Mt. Barnabe. This local and organic meal starts at 6pm and is $65 per person. To reserve your space at the table please email info [at] bocanova [dot] com or call 510-444-1233.

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13th Annual Art for AIDS
Fri., Aug. 28th, 2009

Bonhams & Butterfields Auction House
220 San Bruno Ave.
Cross: 15th St.
San Francisco, CA

website

Silent auction
5:30pm–9pm
Live auction
Starts at 6:45pm

$75 per person

AUGUST 18, 2009 | SAN FRANCISCO The ~13TH ANNUAL ART FOR AIDS 2009~ will take place at San Francisco's auction house, Bonhams & Butterfields. There will be 135 modern and contemporary art pieces for sale during an evening of silent and live auctions, numerous food and beverage sponsors, and Ketel One serving free cosmos all evening.

Food will be provided by Aidells Sausage Co., Asia de Cuba, Andalu, Cowgirl Creamery, First Crush, Home, Marinitas, Maya, chef Marc Passetti of The Tonga Room, Ristorante Umbria, chef Ryan Scott, Tommy Toy's Cuisine Chinoise, and Town Hall. Beverage purveyors include Bartenders Unlimited, Folio Fine Wine Partners, Ketel One Vodka, and Seltzer Sisters

Art for AIDS originated 13 years ago when a handful of local artists got together in a neighborhood kitchen and decided to sell their art to help friends living with HIV/AIDS. Since then, Art for AIDS has consistently attracted renowned artists, along with works from prominent galleries. The auction is closely vetted and carefully selected.

 
the bookworm

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AUGUST 18, 2009 | SAN FRANCISCO Pete Mulvihill of Green Apple Recommends

Don't forget: the books mentioned below are available at 20% off for tablehopper readers for two weeks following this mention at Green Apple Books—simply use the code "tablehopper" at checkout (either at the store or online) for your discount.

I'm not a vegan. I'm not even a vegetarian. I read the pork report in tablehopper with relish. But I really respect and admire vegetarians and vegans, and wish I had the time/fortitude/creativity/resolve to cook and eat that way. But I lean towards the lazy American who loves bacon and burgers and cheese and eggs.

Still, like the tablehopper herself, I go on occasional health benders. And in trying to raise three-year-old twins (one of whom is a voluntary vegetarian), I do my best to provide them with healthy and sustainable food (i.e. vegetarian) as best I can. They, of course, do not always cooperate, and I do think they'd die without dairy products.

Which is a long way of saying, here are three new cookbooks for vegans. And for non-vegans that want to mix it up a little. Let's go from north to south.

Devra Gartenstein owns and runs the Patty Pan Grill, a vegetarian-vegan restaurant and take-out counter in Seattle. Her new book, The Accidental Vegan, focuses on recipes with basic ingredients, quick instructions, and maximum flavor. Think Spanakopita (with tofu instead of cheese) or Yam and Chard Curry. 180 recipes from apps to desserts.

Isa Chandra Mokowitz is the author of Veganomicon, the best-selling vegan book at Green Apple for a few years now. She lives in Portland, OR. Her newest book, Vegan Brunch, is obviously a little more specific. I admit that I'm skeptical of the pancakes and waffles, but the homemade vegan sausages sound promising, as do zucchini spelt muffins.

Vegan Soul Kitchen is by Oakland "eco-chef" Bryant Terry. The subtitle says it all: "fresh, healthy, and creative African-American Cuisine." Like Black-Eyed Pea Fritters or BBQ Tempeh Sandwiches with Carrot-Cayenne Coleslaw. A pretty straightforward recipe book for vegans with a soul twist, including a "soundtrack" suggestion for each dish.

Don't want to take my word for it? How about Alice Waters's word: "Bryant Terry knows that good food should be an everyday right and not a privilege. This book is full of easy, tasty, seasonal recipes that also happen to be vegan and affordable!"

So try something vegan. And enjoy the cooking and eating in good conscience. Any of these books will inspire you.

 
the starlet

AUGUST 18, 2009 | SAN FRANCISCO Kate Hudson and A-Rod (Alex Rodriguez) have been on the town. They had a late dinner at EPIC Roasthouse Sunday night, and my spy says she was extremely talkative and outgoing, really sweet and kind to everyone, while Alex was quieter. You could tell they were having a good time, and were quite flirtatious with one another—they held hands several times throughout the meal, and Kate kept calling him baby. They reportedly know how to EAT: they had oysters, caviar, a charcuterie plate, two salads, a filet, whole fish, and some sides. They were also spotted at Scala's Bistro on Monday.

According to this post on Mission Mission, the one and only John Waters was at Zeitgeist on Sunday.

Some Oakland Raiders players and coaches had dinner in the private cellar at Brix in Napa. The lineup included JaMarcus Russell, Darren McFadden, Justin Fargas (FYI/random trivia for you: this is the son of actor Antonio Fargas who played Huggy Bear on Starsky and Hutch), and Kelly Skipper (the running back coach).

 

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