Eat + Drink
The first crackle of a leaf underfoot, and I’m overcome with a mix of excitement (the holidays are coming! the holidays are coming!) and trepidation (the holidays are coming! the holidays are coming!). The excited part of me wants to throw dinner parties, have open houses, bake pies and actually buy wine-glass charms (yes, there's a whole industry around these things). The anxious part of me wants to just stick my head in the sand until January.
My take: Sounds good. Now, if they can only develop lower calorie brew that doesn't taste like Lite beer.
1. Apple of our eye
If you haven’t made your way over to Cavallo Point cooking school (and the wonderful on-premise restaurant, Murray Circle) yet, here’s your chance: This Friday, precede your night of tricking with a treat from the kitchen—caramel apples! Heirloom apples will be dunked in homemade caramel for a gooey holiday treat. The free event begins at 3:30 p.m. and continues until 5 p.m.; afterwards, you can take your kids to the fancy Marin neighborhoods for their annual candy run.
The other day I read a great article in the Washington Post by food writer Jane Black (free registration may be required), all about how anything Thomas Keller touches turns to gold. Producers clamor to be considered, sending samples of their best butter, cheese, chocolate and pork in hopes that it’ll become part of the pedigreed French Laundry pantry.
I’ve heard that in places where the days are very short in the winter—Alaska, Finland, Iceland—that people drink a lot more. This makes perfect sense to me—I mean, what else are you going to do? Drinking is a good way to defend against cold and darkness, particularly if the beverages in question are hi-test and hot. We’re here to report on a happy little phenomenon sweeping our freezing, fogged-in city: the resurgence of the boozy, hot drink.
Clearly this whole economy thing is confusing us. On one hand, big-name restaurants are going gonzo and offering up packages like I've never heard of before. As Eater reported, "Big Restos Can, And Will, Ignore the Economy." Witness "Dining with the Stars:" For $1900 per couple, you can experience what you might call the ultimate progressive dinner, including Michael Mina, Cyrus and Meadowood.
Then, in the New York Times yesterday, an article in the Dining & Wine section entitled—"Across the Country, Restaurants Feel the Pinch"—reported of NYC: "Many restaurants say more customers are sharing appetizers, buying cheaper wine, ordering less wine and fewer courses, or just not showing up as much." It's a sentiment I've heard echoed by many restaurant owners in SF.
If you're feeling the autumnal doldrums (it was downright brisk outside yesterday) or already weary of of grapes and apples, I have the tropical antidote: Mexico-grown Kent mangoes.
Last September, I wrote here about these mangoes. Tart, creamy and sweet, they represent absolute balance and perfection. The kind of mango that a knife slices through like butter. If a chef could create something so perfect, he would be God, is what I'm saying.