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Eat + Drink

Wings ‘N Things



I’m not a huge connoisseur of the buffalo wing and can’t say much of the phenomenon that catapulted that dish onto every sports bar menu in the country. But I do enjoy a well-prepared piece of chicken every now and again.


Trick or Tipsy



SF’s first annual WhiskyFest was a few weeks ago (you can read all about it in Jordan’s recap, WhiskyFest Report), and while I missed the event, I made up for it on Halloween. I had two stops that night—the latter one involving a costume—so I donned my magenta wig, painted on some makeup and ran to event number one—a whisky-pairing dinner at Absinthe for Suntory Yamazaki.

Health, Meet Pleasure

A few years back in Philadelphia, I remember reviewing a raw food restaurant that nearly made me gag. By the end of the meal, the cold slivers of carrots, cucumber, sprouty things and all manner of mushroom, combined differently (but tasting the same) in nearly every dish, had created a watery, almost grassy feeling in my gut that was the exact opposite of satisfaction or fullness.


Cafe Gratitude's chile relleno with red rice.

Boo Boo Boulange


Yes, it's a chain.

A Two-Million-Dollar Frog



This past weekend, I ventured from our 49-square miles to Freestone for a spa day. My friend and I had this getaway in the works for a long time. The spa (Osmosis) is the only one in the country that offers cedar-enzyme baths, and I’m a sucker for the out-of-the-ordinary. After 20 minutes of sitting in 130-degree fermenting wood, we each got a 75-minute massage in little pagodas situated near a serene meditation garden. Needless to say, we worked up an appetite (even after sharing a spectacular sticky bun from Wild Flour Bread beforehand).

Thomas In Charge

There are certain things you don't say no to: Like an invitation to an intimate multicourse dinner cooked by Thomas Keller, paired with Opus One and Mondavi cult wines, hosted by three generations of the Mondavi family at their estate located on top of a hill off of the Silverado Trail. To this, you say yes (knowing that some of your friends will be filled with a mix of envy and resentment and find your job obnoxious).

Pogue Mahon



Perhaps one of the reasons my zeal for WhiskyFest was a little subdued was that I had had a whiskyfest of my own the night before with my old pal, Jameson. The occasion was a performance by the Pogues, who played four straight nights at the Fillmore last week.

Half my blood is Scotch-Irish, meaning that when I get enough whiskey in me and hear the familiar reels of Irish folk-punk as spun by the Pogues and bellowed by their bibulous lead singer Shane MacGowan, I start to reflexively bounce off the f’in walls.

WhiskyFest Report



So, WhiskeyFest went down last week. As usual, the giant trade and consumer show had a ton of scotch, bourbon, Irish whiskey and more, arrayed on table after table in the ballroom of the Hyatt Regency.

There were lots that I’d tasted before, but standing out for me was a new distiller’s edition from Lagavulin, Stranahans Colorado whiskey, and the wheated malt from Buffalo Trace.


Ready-Made Halibut

It’s not often that I suffer from restaurant fatigue, but when I do, a night in is the only cure—which, on Friday, meant that my weeklong plans of (finally) getting over to SPQR had to be put on hold. Luckily I had a ready-to-cook meal kit from Cook! SF and a few good bottles of wine handy to lure my pal Lisa away from SPQR and to chez Sarah’s instead.


When Barflies Get Together

In last week’s post, Birth of a Great Lunch, I showed you what happens when sommeliers get together to celebrate—in this case a baby shower for imminent father Paul Roberts. Old, fine wines are uncorked, and civilized discussion occurs over the dinner table.


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