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Eat + Drink

Vino Volo

If I won a million dollars in the lottery, I’d buy a first-class, around-the-world airplane ticket, then I’d invest the rest (yeah, right). Traveling ranks as one of my favorite pastimes, even after 9/11 when airports have become such a pain in the ass. I do appreciate how businesses are working to make the long layovers more bearable. Once I even got a mani-pedi at the Xpress spa in SFO’s international section, but usually I try to minimize the time I spend there to getting a burrito at Andale.


Beer from Beyond

And then, a brand new, very exciting discovery . . . new beer, also from NZ.



It’s called Moa, and I’ve been hearing about it for a few years now. The founder and brewer is Josh Scott, the son of the famous winemaker Allan Scott from the Marlborough region. I’m sure Josh is a talented winemaker in his own right, but we should be happy he turned his attention to beer—as these are unique and exceptional.

Wine From Beyond

Actually, from Down Under in New Zealand, a couple of things worth mentioning:

First, a spectacular bottle of Pinot from Palliser Estate. When it’s on, I think Martinborough is currently the most consistent and best pinot region in New Zealand, and Palliser is one of the producers there that I really love. Richard Riddiford, the pugnacious and often obstreperous owner, is a real wine visionary, an amazing character and a gracious host who entertains guests with cannon firings and meditative wine drinking at the grave of his late, lamented dog.


Adieu, Boris



Boris Champy (left) is leaving Napa’s Dominus Estate in December and being replaced by Tod Mostero (right).


Root Beer Revolution

I can’t believe how many new root beers you can find on the market these days. As my ultimate hangover cure, root beer was a sight to be seen in my fridge the other morning.


The New Bacar …

… looks a lot like the old Bacar, but in fact it’s very different. I loved the old Bacar and the people who were involved in it, but I also have to say that it’s exciting to have such wholesale change. There’s a new chef, Robbie Lewis, who came over from Jardinere and a new wine director, the joyfully funereal Mickey Clevinger, who came from Frisson.


Shabu-Shabu Elimidate


There's lots to throw into the soup at Mums.

No one told me not to go on a date to Mums in Japantown, now part of the new Hotel Tomo, for shabu-shabu. So I'm telling you now: Don't go on a date to Mums for shabu-shabu.

Sicilian on Fillmore

My list of restaurants to try is as long as I am tall, and it’s elaborately broken down into more specific categories: just opened, classics I’ve never been to, classics to repeat, etc. To my frustration, the list grows longer and longer, even though it feels like I’m an eating-out machine.

Dinner with My Brother

My brother swept into town the other day for dinner. He lives on the East Coast and was in Sacramento on business, so he drove over to SF to visit. Actually, it was the first time he’s come over since I moved here just about nine years ago. Needless to say, I was excited—if a bit daunted—by how to show off my adopted city.


Tasty Capes


As a kid, I used to accessorize with candy—ring pops and Smarties necklaces were all the rage—but these days, edible haute couture would be lost on me. With my ravenous appetite, all of my clothes would end up sleeveless (or worse). So I couldn’t think of a better idea than combining food and fashion on the runway (the clothes will be safe since most models don’t eat anyway).
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