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Eat + Drink

Washington's Wines


The line-up at Quilceda.

I flew up to Seattle last week to attend a special tasting of what most people consider to be Washington State’s finest wine and others even call it the best Bordeaux variety wine made in the country, Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon.

The Newest Newsiest News

Spring has arrived in San Francisco (OK, so it doesn’t look like it has arrived yet today, but it’s definitely in the air) and with it a host of new restaurants we’re eager to try out. If I poke my head out the window of our office, I can see Rouge & Blanc (334 Grant Ave., 415-391-0207), the newest venture from Aqua Restaurant Group (Aqua, Café de la Presse). I popped in the door last week and was surprised to see executive chef Laurent Manrique and Café de la Presse GM Olivier Daridon chowing down on, fittingly, some chef salads. One of four “shake salads” on the menu, the ingredients are combined in a large plastic cup, topped with a lid and shaken until well-dressed.

Kitchen Sisters


Everything is covered in chocolate at Kika’s Treats, including honey cakes and homemade graham crackers.

I recently attended the open house for La Cocina, “a nonprofit shared use commercial kitchen and business incubator… founded to serve as a platform for low-income entrepreneurs launching or expanding their food business.” (Thank god for websites and their business mission statements.)

Spirited Away

If you think covering the world of wine and spirits is fun, imagine going to work on a Saturday morning and tasting 16 vodkas before 10 a.m., followed by 14 flavored vodkas, then 13 white rums. This is my life . . .

Beer and Brats

We spend a lot of time here talking about what’s new and exciting (“hot,” I guess, is what the kids call it), following trends, and making sure we tell you all about what’s happening, food-wise, in our fair city. But it’s a sad day when new opening trumps old favorite, so we felt it was time to pay homage in our blog to an important category of restaurant: the oldie but goodie (OBG). These OBG’s may well become a regular part of our blog, and they’re also the spots where you’re likely to find the 7x7 editors on any given night. Got an OBG you want to tell us about? Leave a comment and let us know.

This week: WALZWERK

Sipping Sicily

While traveling in Sicily, it was hard not to think of wine director Shelley Lindgren and her restaurant A16. Shelley’s done more for the reputation and profile of Southern Italian wines than anyone in the city, perhaps the country. There are lots of regions you’ve never heard of, strange sounding grape varieties, wines with flavors and aromas like you’ve never experienced.
           

Fog and Flog


Sparkly fingernails and spicy mabo tofu at Genki.

Come on—let’s not pretend it’s going to be sunny forever. This is what I suggest you do when the fog rolls in.

Quiet Riot


Riotwine founders Josh Duyan and Nathan Kennedy

This is what I hate about wine (or rather, some of the people that sell it/review it/drink it and make that bubbly noise in their mouth much too loudly and too often):

Descriptions like:

Scotch to Start, Bacon for Dessert


photograpy by Frankie Frankeny

I’m a big fan of liqueurs, and an even bigger fan of food photographer Frankie Frankeny, so when she invited me to an “Amber Tasting Lab” at her SoMa studio last Monday, I was there—along with a few dozen of the city’s best bartenders and pastry chefs. They were making samples of cocktails and desserts they’ve created using Macallan Amber: a liqueur made from Macallan single malt scotch, flavored with pecan and maple.
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