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Eat + Drink

Rare Burgundies Dinner at the St. Francis

WELCOME TO SF, LA PAULEE!



I have to write a brief report on the craziness that was La Paulée, the big Burgundy party in which everyone brings a great bottle (or ten) to share. There was so much great wine at this year's dinner, held on March 1, that had it not been so delicious, it would have been sickening. It was all collected in a back room at the Westin St. Francis, where the army of sommeliers (somewhere around 60 of them, from all over the country) would fetch it and pour it for the guests who brought it.

St. Patrick's Day: What (Not) To Do


courtesy of United Irish Societies of San Francisco

Yup, it’s that time of year again, where normal people don leprechaun outfits, drink ridiculous amounts of green beer and claim to be at least 1/18th Irish. If you’re so inclined, feel free to cram yourself into a local pub where, come midnight, some jerk will start belting out “Danny Boy.” But should you be looking for a slightly more, uh, refined way to celebrate the Emerald Isle, check out the following.

Dumplings: All Hail the King

Mortgage interest rates might be down, but you’ve got to keep your priorities straight. A couple days ago, I found myself out on Noriega and 22nd, signing my life away—the final stage in the San Francisco re-fi shuffle. I realize that this was serious business involving money. A grown-up activity of the highest sort, one that should require one’s full attention and a pair of bi-focals. And I swear I tried to read (some) of the blur words in front of me. But if I’m to be honest, as my hand ached from signature after signature, all I could think about were dumplings. And how if Ann, the sweet senior escrow officer, didn’t hurry things up, the shop where I wanted to get them from was going to close.

The Eat + Drink List: This Week's Top 7



1. Who's on Top?
The season premiere of Top Chef airs tonight at 10 p.m. on Bravo, and this season has four local contenders. So pull up a chair, order some take-out and get ready to play favorites. Wonder who we think won? Click here for our completely uninformed spoiler.


courtesy of Stefanie Michejda

Cocktail ABCs: How Not to Make a Daiquiri

Thanks to friend and cocktail fiend Alex for this gem.

Watch this video, and then tell me that you would ever would ever put that drink in your mouth. There's so much that's wrong with the way he makes this drink, it's scary, but we'll just mention some of the highlights:
Try not to pick your nose while chilling your cocktail glass.
Try not to use only one ounce of rum in a cocktail--at least give 'em an ounce and a half.
Try not to completely botch the measuring of your ingredients.
Try not to pick your nose again.
Try not to use prefab sweet-and-sour mix.

Americano: Spring Awakening

You don’t just have to look up at the Ferry Building clock tower to know that the city has officially sprung forward: Flashes of bare leg and pink petals are everywhere. While foodies roaming the Marketplace can almost taste the apricots and artichokes on their tongue, across the street at Americano, a literal crush of single professionals huddled around space heaters are fixated on some good ole’ sexual tension paired with a Melograno Cosmo, which is acquired after waiting diligently in line—a very, very long one.


Friday at Americano brings the boys to the yard.

Banquettes: The Horseshoe Issue

In the back of my mind I keep a “hater” list that I add to more frequently than I’d care to admit. On it are things that aggravate me more than they should, things I’m not able to get all Gandhi about at this less-than-fully evolved stage of my young life. This list includes my hatred for people who clip.their.nails. on public transportation (!?), people who stop short in the middle of the sidewalk, lost or confused, so you run straight into them,  and restaurants that have glaring lights, so bright that you cast a shadow on your plate. Add to this list my latest aggravation: horseshoe-shaped banquettes.

"Simply Organic" Cooking

We got a copy of Simply Organic (Chronicle Books) here in the 7x7 office this week. Written by Jesse Ziff Cool, a longtime local-and-sustainable advocate who owns three organic restaurants down in Palo Alto, it’s a hefty cookbook loaded with semi-glossy pages and gorgeous photographs by SF’s own France Ruffenach.

CSA Boxes: Eatwell Farm

OK—I’m about to get a little bit preachy. We just wrapped our annual green issue, which will be on newsstands at the end of March, and it prompted a lot of conversations around the office about what we could do…me, and you, and even you, and what habits we might change to make a positive impact on our city and world at large. Since I’m the assistant eat + drink editor, my thoughts always turn to food—how we communicate with food, how with celebrate with food, and how we get political with our food.


Green garlic
Photo by Joan Vicent Canto

Damn...

...that's a lot of glasses.



This was a dinner I attended during the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers up in Napa. It was a good three days, and I gleaned some valuable information about publishing. More than that, however, I made some excellent new friends. Not a bad use of time, particularly for people who are just starting their career.
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