February 2021

February 23, 2021

I decided to celebrate tablehopper’s fifteenth on Sunday with some omakase from Sasa in Japantown, one of my favorite SF sushi deals. (There were bubbles, of course.) Photo: © tablehopper.com.

Howdy, gang! Happy sunny day to you—it’s a perfect evening to go eat and drink outdoors (Z&Y has their Shared Space open again, here’s what to order), or grab some delicious takeout (like ma po pizza from Sunset Squares, Latin American-Caribbean goodness from Chao Pescao, and if you’re near the South Bay, check out Aurum!). I know there are thousands of local businesses who would love to feed you.

This past month has been a whirlwind, whooooosh! As many of you know, February is tablehopper’s fifteenth anniversary (I sent my first newsletter out on February 21st, 2006)! I was completely blown away by this thoughtful and extensive piece by SFGATE about tablehopper—thanks to all of you who texted, emailed, and DM’ed about it, and shared it! So grateful to Dianne de Guzman for taking the time to write this profile—it’s a powerful thing to feel seen by a fellow journalist, especially someone on the same beat. Mwah!

I am also so grateful to all of you who purchased the latest tablehopper thank you x 15 gift bag—you helped support fifteen local businesses, and we’re making another donation to SF New Deal! You rock! It ends up I printed some extra tablehopper 15 tote bags, stand by for those to go live in my tablehopper shop this week. They’re perfect for schlepping your takeout home, LOL. Thanks again to studio1500 for the fun design!

I can’t believe I was hired for a last-minute gig working on a cannabis and culinary show in the desert (can it be any more custom-made for me?) the exact same week my gift bag was going to be assembled and distributed, but thanks to my posse of angels (you know who you are!), it all got done. Whew. When it rains, it pours. Mille grazie to all of you, especially to China Live for being such a great pick-up point. I was so happy I took a few days for myself to decompress and float in the warm saltwater pool at the charming Del Marcos Hotel in Palm Springs when it was all done. I could have stayed there for weeks! Caftan life.

Since you’re such a big part of my anniversary, you deserve a treat, too! Check out today’s awesome giveaway from Mark ‘n Mike’s at One Market Restaurant! Calling all big fressers!

And one more item of note: March is Women’s History Month, and on International Women’s Day (Monday March 8th), there is going to be a Dine Together & Let’s Talk event from Let’s Talk Womxn (this is happening across twelve cities and 350 womxn restaurateurs to lift each other up amidst this crisis). Enjoy a four-course tasting menu and candid conversation with May German of alaMar Kitchen, Jen Biesty of Shakewell, Heena Patel of Besharam, and Romney Steele of The Cook and Her Farmer.

I have been invited as a moderator, so I hope you can join us! The Zoom conversation is from 7pm-8pm, and you can pre-order the two-person menu for $100 (fees, taxes, and cocktails are available for an additional charge). Diners will have a choice between a vegetarian or omnivore menu. Pick-up is at alaMar, 100 Grand Ave., Oakland. (Maybe SF folks can band together for a pick-up—we can hire my awesome bag delivery driver. Hit me up if you’re interested—just hit reply—and I will try to work something out.) Deadline to order is March 4th, Zoom link will be sent by March 6th. Thanks for joining us and spreading the word!

Lastly, if you work in the restaurant industry, you should know Walgreens is now accepting vaccine appointments in SF for Tier 1B! Make that appointment, sweeties!

Enjoy the sun, thanks for being here.


February 7, 2021

THANK YOU! Custom graphic by studio1500 for the commemorative tablehopper tote bag!

High, everyone. Happy Sunday! I know some of you are deep into your adult beverages and piles of wings for the Super Bowl. Get it! Others are out enjoying the sunny day. I’m currently in Palm Springs for a last-minute gig, working on a cannabis and culinary show. I know, how perfect for me, right? It’s so great to be back in the desert. And yes, I am in a caftan right now.

I wanted to check in and give a last call for the tablehopper thank you x 15 gift bag! Sales end Monday (tomorrow) at 3pm, so you have 24 hours left to order the bag o’ mega goodies!

Are you still wondering what to get your sweetie for Valentine’s Day? Skip the roses, here’s your answer! It’s also great to share with your Galentine. Or your bestie who loves to cook and feast with you. Or maybe you want to have one delivered to a friend who could use a little pick-me-up? Or an employee who is just rocking it right now?

I’ll be frank: sales for this gift bag haven’t hit the numbers I hoped for, which means our food makers and restaurants featured in the bag aren’t getting the level of financial support I originally projected for them. (Thanks to all of you who bought one already!) I’m not here to guilt you into buying one, and trust, I know how tight finances are right now for many of us. But, if you were on the fence about getting one, let this be a gentle nudge from me, whispering “Go for it!” in your ear. Or maybe you can forward this to a friend who would love it? Any posts on social media are so appreciated! Many thanks!

You can read all about the fifteen awesome items in the bag here, from the exclusive truffle XO sauce from Lily to a lovely etched water glass from Chez Panisse to Lunar New Year chocolates from Socola Chocolatier to Porcini Peperoncino A’Cruncha from Side Hustle Condiments. It’s a bounty of fabulous treats! And each gift bag purchase includes a $10 donation to SF New Deal, a remarkable organization that has been helping restaurants feed our communities in need during the pandemic.

Big xie-xie once again to China Live for being our bag pick-up point Fri-Sun (or you can get the bag delivered in SF!), and if you order $50 or more in food and cocktails online from China Live to pick up at the same time (or for delivery!), you’ll receive a free chili bean sauce with code tablehopper (this offer is available to anyone purchasing a tablehopper gift bag, for pick up or delivery, Feb 12th-14th!). That magic sauce was in the previous hopper holiday gift bag, and has become a favorite of many who have tried it. (People keep sending me pictures and dish updates, I love it!)

Just FYI: the next tablehopper issue will be Tuesday February 23rd.

Big thanks for all your support for my quinceañera and gift bag! Cheers and XO to you!

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