Eat + Drink
I sometimes joke about the habit of some serious modern bartenders to signify their profession by sporting moustaches, vests, cuffs and other physical accoutrements of a bygone age. You can see this on display here in town at places like Rickhouse, Bourbon and Branch and on various other "serious" bartenders in town. But, on the other hand, I also admire it. It's nice to see people with such professional pride, and I like the fact that their garb address the historical/conservational side of what they do, since many of them are celebrated more for their brands of innovative mixology.
After enjoying it regularly during the spell of great sunny weather we've been having (at least over here in the Dogpatch), I'm ready to come out and say it--the just-realeased Square One Botanical is bold, original, wonderfully delicious, and absolutely deserving of your attention.
Each week, former sf.myopenbar.com editor Allie Pape brings you her picks for the best places to booze on the cheap in SF. This week: Wine (and more wine), business promotion (and more business promotion), and hitting the red carpet with your dog (not likely to be repeated). Have an event coming up? Want to share a tip? E-mail her.
The Dinner Of Champions
On August 13th, the 18 Reasons crew has convinced some of the latest additions to the burgeoning SF street food scene to stop by the gallery. Go on, make a dinner of cookies from Cookie Wag, bacon potato chips from Who’s Your Daddy and gobs from Gobba Gobba Hey—without having to track their whereabouts on Twitter. We won’t tell.
A Feast For the Senses
Welcome to the 2009 Burger Bonanza wherein two girls eat 20 of the city's best burgers, on the path to burger enlightenment. The 10 best will then be chosen to be featured—in ranking order—in 7x7's September magazine issue. Burgers must fit our "fancy burger" parameter: made with beef and available as part of the regular dinner menu at upscale restaurants in SF. Beyond that, we're open to suggestions, which we hope you will leave in the comment box below!
In-N-Out takes the title as "Best Fast Food in America." This according to Esquire's superstar chef survey. You'll notice a few familiar names on the judges' panel: Mill Valley's Tyler Florence, former A16 duderino Nate Appleman, and Charlie Palmer are a few (watch our knife skills video with Palmer below). Appleman calls In-N-Out a "rite of passage for all visitors to California," and Florence says "I dare anyone to tell me their burgers aren't as good as any you'll fine anywhere, from fast food to fine dining." Checkout some of the surprise noms here: Fast Food.
A recent article in the Atlantic trumpets "The rise of BYOB." Lately in SF that phrase has taken on the meaning of Bring Your Own Bag, since farmers' markets have stopped offering plastic bags for shoppers. But more significantly the phrase means "Bring Your Own Bottle" and applies to restaurants that allow you to bring in the wine you want to drink. Often it's restaurants that don't have wine lists or liquor licenses of their own. As a practice, BYOB usually saves the diner money and allows him/her to drink bottles from their own collection.
As readers of our July issue may have noted, we took a different approach to making a magazine (and we think we may well be the first city magazine in the country to have done so). We solicited essays and photographs from our readers—you—and the resulting magazine is a cool (well, we think) keepsake, a beautiful collector's edition. But we're not the only ones who are taking this user-generated approach. New York Times food writer and cookbook author Amanda Hesser, together with Merrill Stubbs, have just launched the beta version of their website, Food52, with the full version coming September 15. The premise?
Just trying to sweat off the hangover from a long weekend of eating, drinking and talking. It seems SF Chefs.Food.Wine was largely a success. Despite a few glitches, I heard great things about lots of the sessions. But life goes on, and here's a few stories I culled from the world of drink which might be interesting/amusing to you.