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Eat + Drink

My Post-Vacation Vacation


Wine bottles and flowers at Quattro

I lucked out last week. After getting home from Cartagena at 1 a.m. on Monday morning, all I had to do was put in five days of work, then I was off again for a night at the Four Seasons in Palo Alto followed by a Sunday in Healdsburg and a relaxing Columbus Day off.


Sens and Sensibility

The one and only drawback to Sens, the new restaurant that draws on talent from several trustworthy corners of our local food universe—a general manager and sommelier from Kokkari, chef from Plumpjack Café and pastry chef from Citizen Cake and French Laundry—is getting to it, via an elevator and hallway buried within the promenade level of the mall-ish Embarcadero 4 building. But the location pays off once inside, where your view from the dining room or spacious patio is of swaying palms lined like sentries in front of the iconic Ferry Building.

Reluctant Capitalist

Here’s the curse of an open market economy: Too much choice. I don’t think I’m alone in feeling totally paralyzed in most grocery stores now. As I scan the aisles of laundry detergent, or dry pasta, or canned tomatoes, I find myself gripped by a kind of shopper’s paralysis. Organic? Sustainable? No Fragrance? Whole Wheat? I think that’s why I really like finding a favorite brand and sticking with it. I’m a loyal shopper. I’m also a loyal diner. When I find something I like, I have a hard time deviating from it. That’s why I will always order French fries and fruit crisp at Universal Café, and the Vietnamese crepe at Sunflower.

Sprinkles Are Like Sunshine

Last night I was at Bimbo's for 7x7’s very fun party celebrating our Hot 20 issue and let’s just say after a little too much of the Johnny Walker, I’m feeling a bit like I need a ray of sunshine on a cloudy day. And for an instant pick-me-up, you can’t go wrong with cupcakes showered in sprinkles.


Devil's food cupcakes, ready to party.

Fruit or Veggie?


Garden tomato salad

The tomato is a complicated item. Its pronunciation isn’t the only conundrum—toe-may-toe or toe-mah-to? Many also wonder: Is it a fruit or a veggie?

Reality Bites


SF's Traci Des Jardins is the first to go.

WhiskyFest Notice

I’m reprinting the following press release and will be doing so regularly so that all of you whiskyheads out there don’t forget to register for this incredible event: Maltadvocate’s WhiskyFest.

The occasions in this life are all too rare to get to taste so many whiskys back-to-back, side-to-side, up-and-down. Rare bottlings. A chance to talk with distillers. The seminars are wonderful—a way to achieve authoritative knowledge of several of the world’s most important distilleries. In short this is not an event to be missed. I’ll be there as well as just about every significant bartender in town. Do not miss it. Below is all the info you need.


MEET YOUR MAKERS! WHISKYFEST COMES WEST AFTER A DECADE

Under Construction: Waterbar


Rough sketches of the main bar and dining room.

Growing up, I wanted to be an architect, then a doctor, then a lawyer, then an environmental lobbyist (like Annette Bening in the The American President), but luckily I became a writer. Now I get to learn about such a wide array of activities, issues and events. One day, I could be covering an exotic locale, and the next I could be wearing a bright yellow hardhat and touring what’s likely to be a landmark SF restaurant.

V-Day

Today I received the following email:

Dear Jordan,

Wishing you a happy and flavorful National Vodka Day - from the Van Gogh Vodka team.

Cheers!

Doug & Shelley
www.VanGoghVodka.com
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