table of contents   This week's tablehopper: writer in absentia.

the chatterbox
the word on the street
the bookworm
another place for your nose
the socialite
the matchmaker
let's get it on

the starlet
no photos please


AUGUST 28, 2007 | SAN FRANCISCO Hello friends. So as you may recall, I’m not even in SF right now, but out rocking it hard on the playa at Burning Man. Woot woot! Since Burning Man is inspiring a giving mood in me, here’s a little something I scheduled to be sent to you while I’m gone. (In case you’re wondering, I’m not back until Tuesday, September 4.)

Yay! Let’s do a giveaway! My pal Bibby over at Parties That Cook! has generously donated five decks of her Sumptuous Small Plates deck of recipe cards for me to give out to five lucky winners! The deck has 30 recipes that are perfecto for when you’re throwing a soiree, and make a groovy gift for the hosts/hostesses in your life. Here’s how to enter: just forward the tablehopper e-column to three friends, and be sure to cc (I won’t use the email addresses for anything but to verify that you forwarded it to three pals!) The deadline to enter is Monday, September 3, at 11:59pm, and you must be a tablehopper subscriber to enter. I’ll notify the five winners later that week! Have fun, and good luck!

A few of you have wondered how I manage to eat out something like six times a week (and drink almost as much), and not be totally be sporting a Jabba the Hutt physique. I have my bicycle (“Peach 1”) and all these San Francisco hills to thank, and that thing called “portion control” is helpful, although it sometimes completely slips my mind. (Oops.) Even so, the weight has been creeping on, and it’s time to get it under control and say sayonara, love handles! So when I return from Burning Man, I am starting a six-week fitness camp with Titan Fitness, and will be recording my (hopeful) progress in a new section called “the health nut”  in each week’s ‘hopper. I hope you enjoy the tale of the tablehopper getting in shape!

If you want to know more about the program and maybe want to run stairs with me, it’s designed and instructed by Jeremy B. Manning, a US Army Veteran and Advanced Specialist with the National Academy of Sports Medicine, and Patrick Barresi, a professor at City College with a Masters in Public Health and a Certified Personal Trainer from the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Each session is one hour, meeting between two and four times a week at Kezar Stadium, depending on what level you enroll in. And yay, no 6am call times! How civilized.

The first session begins on Tuesday, September 4, at 6pm, and runs through October 13. If you are interested in checking it out, and possibly enrolling, email Jeremy for rates and more info. All are welcome, but they want to especially welcome the GLBTT community. Who knows, maybe I’ll be the token straight girl! (In this town, trust, I’m quite used to it.)  Also, there is a discount/sliding scale for those who are HIV+, low income (hello poor freelancers!), disabled, or disadvantaged. Cool.

Okay, here are a couple more tidbits below… and thanks to Pete at Green Apple Books, we have a bookworm for you this week!

Dustily yours,

~Marcia subscribe

the chatterbox
AUGUST 28, 2007 | SAN FRANCISCO Moving into the former Malacca space on Market Street will be ~FRISÉE~, a first-time effort from brothers Brett and Nathan Niebergall. The menu will be inventive and feature healthy dishes made with organic ingredients that will incorporate balanced amounts of lean protein, whole grains, vegetables and healthy fats. (Example: pistachio-dusted salmon fillet on a spinach salad tossed with candied pecans, sliced jicama, pear and dried cherries.) And for you eating-on-the-go types, there will be some pre-boxed dinners available for $15 or so. The sleek design of the space and local DJs will keep the scene from becoming granola. There will also be a wine list of biodynamic and organic wines from California, Argentina, Northern Italy, Australia and France—guests will be able to swing by and hang out for wine in the upstairs mezzanine. Plans are to open mid-September. 2367 Market Street at 17th, 415-558-1616.

Good news: ~LAÏOLA~ is now serving cocktails! And now you have yet another reason to had on over there, or return! 2031 Chestnut St. at Fillmore, 415-346-5641.

Okay you crazy home and professional mixologists: the inaugural ~SQUARE OFF COCKTAIL COMPETITION~, co-hosted by and Om Organics, is coming up. Both amateur and professionals can submit their recipes (it needs to be a pitcher cocktail) on using Square One and at least 75% organic ingredients. A panel of judges from the spirits world will single out the most mouthwatering concoctions, and then the two contenders (one avid amateur mixologist and one top professional bartender) will come to San Francisco for a showdown on September 25 before a public audience and five-person judging panel, which will include Jacques Bezuindenhout of Harry Denton's Starlight Room, Jane Goldman of Chow, Natalie Bovis-Nelsen of The Liquid Muse blog, and one lucky consumer who will be chosen locally.

For the actual Square Off, two additional cocktails will be created onsite: 1) a cocktail using ingredients culled from the Farmers’ Market at the Ferry Building that day; and 2) a cocktail based on a mystery seasonal, organic ingredient—to be picked by the judges on that day from the Farmers’ Market. The judges’ verdicts on these three drinks will determine the winner. Tickets to the Square Off will be $10 (you can buy tickets here) and will include some food from Bacar. Ticket proceeds from the final event will benefit the non-profit groups Om Organics and CUESA and their mission to promote organic and local foods.

Now you chefs can have a chance at competing, at the upcoming ~BOSS OF THE SAUCE~ event. 50 San Francisco Bay Area restaurants will compete for the distinction of having the best tomato-based sauce (the sauce needs to already be a permanent part of your restaurant’s menu). The tasting will take place on October 14 at Fort Mason Center. If you want to participate, you can register online—the deadline to enter is Sep. 28. FIERI, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting, preserving and celebrating Italian culture, is hosting the competition.

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

the bookworm



By Pete Mulvihill of Green Apple Books

Don’t forget: these books below are available at 20% off for tablehopper readers for two weeks following this review—simply use the code “tablehopper” at checkout (either at the store or online) for your discount.

While the produce markets are still bursting with summer abundance, our new release shelves are awaiting September, when publishers release their best hopes for the holiday shopping season. So instead of focusing on the latest releases today, I offer a fun read and a healthy cookbook that rates four drops of drool on a five-drop scale.

First, the fun one: The Scavenger’s Guide to Haute Cuisine (just out in paperback). Outdoorsman Steve Rinella stumbled upon a copy of Escoffier’s 1903 Le Guide Culinaire and came up with an unusual quest: to procure all the necessary ingredients for a forty-five course meal born entirely of Escoffier’s esoteric wild game recipes. So there’s hunting and fishing, vegetarian girlfriend issues, wacky characters, travel stories, and, of course, food. Good concept, great easy-to-read magazine-style writing.

Now to make your body and mouth feel good. Local blogger Heidi Swanson has recently made the transition to the print world with her book Super Natural Cooking.  You could probably find many of these easy, healthy recipes on one of her fine sites ( and/or, but you’d be missing the beauty of this vibrantly designed cookbook. And if you sloppily cook from recipes like I do, you’d risk getting cotija on your laptop instead of on the book. Representative recipes that passed muster in one Green Appler’s test kitchen: Sweet Potato Spoon Bread, Risotto-style Barley, and Spring Minestrone. Put your mouth where your politics are and eat fresh, whole, healthy food.  Swanson makes it easy.

Thanks for reading.

the socialite


Celebrity Chef Cook-Off at Jack Falstaff
Sun., Sep. 2, 2007

Jack Falstaff
598 Second St.
Cross: Brannan St.
San Francisco, CA 94107


$100 general admission
$250 power couple
$500 afterschool friend
$1,000 afterschool benefactor
$5,000 afterschool superstar

AUGUST 28, 2007 | SAN FRANCISCO Tyler Florence and Joey Altman will be hosting a ~CELEBRITY CHEF COOK-OFF AT JACK FALSTAFF~ to benefit the Afterschool Alliance, a nonprofit organization working to ensure that all children have access to quality after-school programs. The event will pit four teams against one another in two separate thirty-minute challenges. Two identical kitchen set-ups will be on the Jack Falstaff patio, where all the action will take place.

The first challenge, ”Men vs. Women” features Elizabeth Faulkner (Citizen Cake & Orson) and Christine Mullen (CAV) up against Joseph Manzare (Tres Agaves & Zuppa) and Hiro Sone (Terra & Ame). The second match-up, “TV Chefs vs. Restaurant Chefs,” will showcase Tyler Florence (Food Network) and Joey Altman (Bay Café) pairing off against Nate Appleman (A16) and Craig Stoll (Delfina). The Chef Challenges will be followed by a Master Mixologist competition, where five bartenders will compete to make the next classic cocktail.

The event will be emceed by host of KQED’s “Check Please,” Leslie Sbrocco. The judges’ panel includes Jack Falstaff Executive Chef Jonnatan Leiva, a California after-school student, and several celebrity chefs. Guests at the event will enjoy Chef Leiva’s international tapas, specialty cocktails, and fine wines. All proceeds to benefit the Afterschool Alliance.


Sustainable Seafood Benefit Dinner
Thu., Sep. 6, 2007

Scott Howard
500 Jackson St.
Cross: Montgomery St.
San Francisco, CA 94133


Cocktails 6:30pm–7:30pm
Dinner to follow

Individual tickets $300
Corporate tables $5,000 (five guests)

Contact Beth Fritz 301-231-8254 or email

AUGUST 28, 2007 | SAN FRANCISCO Join the Fisheries Conservation Foundation and the American Fisheries Society for the ~SUSTAINABLE SEAFOOD BENEFIT DINNER~, an evening of fine wines and an array of sustainable seafood gastronomic creations by some of San Francisco’s talented top chefs. The six-course menu will be prepared by Scott Howard, Ron Siegel of the Ritz-Carlton San Francisco, Jason Fox of Bar Tartine, Mike Selvera of Bar Crudo, and Mark Denham of Laïola, and will be made with sustainable seafood and fresh, local ingredients.

Mingle with experts in the field and learn about current sustainable seafood programs, fisheries, and studies aimed at conserving marine and freshwater habitats worldwide.

Proceeds from the benefit will help sustain our fisheries by providing support for the missions of the Fisheries Conservation Foundation and American Fisheries Society, both 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations. All contributions are tax deductible.

the matchmaker

Wagstaff Worldwide, Inc. - a hospitality-focused media relations firm with offices in Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco currently seeks an Account Supervisor and an Account Coordinator for its San Francisco office.

Qualified applicants have media relations experience at the national level and excellent presentation skills, both written and oral. Account Supervisor candidates must possess the ability to manage 3-5 of their own accounts and oversee account team efforts with junior associates. Relevant experience in the hospitality industry - travel, restaurant and wine - is a must.

Please e-mail a cover letter, resume and salary requirements to No phone calls please.

the starlet

AUGUST 21, 2007 | SAN FRANCISCO There were multiple celebrity sightings at W San Francisco over the past weekend after the “Rock The Bells” Concert. Method Man was hanging out with Redman in the W’s “Living Room” and buying shots of Patron Silver for Redman and his crew. Jerry Rice, looking very sharp in an all-black suit, cruised by to chat with the crew after a two-plus hour dinner of Caesar salad, scallops and a half bottle of Bordeaux at XYZ. Ghost Face Killa and RZA were also hanging out with friends in the “Living Room.”