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Eat + Drink

Who Needs Bottled Water?

I don’t think I’m alone in saying that I dread it when I go out to eat, and the server asks: “Bottled or tap?” I always go for tap, but then feel like a second-class citizen, like riff-raff, like maybe I belong at the burger joint down the street instead. But when classy restaurants such as Chez Panisse, Incanto, Poggio, Nopa and Bushi-Tei are taking bottled water off of their menus, I can say “tap!” with gusto.

Carpal Diem

This post on Explore the Pour rang true with me since I've started working a couple of bartending shifts at Cantina. My problem isn't the incessant muddling of mojitos (we get a few orders every night for these, but nothing over the top), but rather the toll of hand-squeezing hundreds of limes, lemons, oranges and grapefruits in a night. The day after a shift, my hands are a bit cramped and in desperate need of a good massage.


Mega-sized rinds

Beer of the Week: Brasserie Dupont Foret



People who read me regularly enough will know that I love Belgian beer. In its infinite complexity and variability, it’s a subject as absorbing and satisfying as any wine region.

A Legendary Lunch



Since I’m moving from the Financial District to Cole Valley, I thought I’d spend one of my final lunches in my soon-to-be-former neighborhood trying out the café everyone’s been raving about: Myth Café.

Up and Out



Rolling hills on one side, ocean on the other.
Between the two, the sweetest berries around.

A Tree Hugger

The oldest tree on Union Street was planted in 1867 and is still standing—in fact, it even has a restaurant named after it. Palmetto, the new restaurant that replaced Home on Union, opened its doors a few weeks ago and probably hopes that some of the tree’s longevity will rub off. The Mediterranean menu is the work of executive chef Andy Kitko, who was most recently sous chef at Aqua and, before that, executive chef at Bar Tartine.

Crustacean Cravings


Crab roll

Food memories have been haunting me lately. Although I’ve made SF my home, there are definitely times (usually the summer) when I toy with the idea of hopping on a plane home to D.C.—Bethesda, actually—for a brief visit. The tomatoes, peaches, corn and cantaloupe that I grew up eating have not met their fresh, juicy, perfectly flavorful match here in California—believe it or not. And then there are steamed Maryland blue crabs with a touch of Old Bay. MMMMMM.

Hottest Dog in Town


Photo by Stefanie Michejda.

Earlier this week I went to B Restaurant & Bar, the new, glass-enclosed restaurant/lounge in Yerba Buena Gardens just next to Samovar. It’s the third outpost of Boxed Foods on Kearny, a Hartle Media lunchtime favorite with its super-fresh, delicately dressed organic salads and inventive takes on traditional sandwiches.

The Hemingway Daiquiri

Ernest Hemingway, July 21, 1899 - July 2, 1961

As was pointed out by one of the genial, twittering, PR birds so constantly abuzz in my ear, this is the week of Hemingway's birthday (and the anniversary month of both his death and birth).

Hemingway's contributions to many fields are in no need of enumeration here. But the man did stamp his identity on the cocktail with his favored way of taking the drink.

The Daiquiri is named for a Cuban mining town where an American engineer came up with the simple formula of lime + rum + sugar (hmmm, hard to imagine that had never been done before) that worked so beautifully that it became canonical.

Port of Call: Farina



I visited this new Italian outpost in the Mission yesterday (just one block from that classic but still vibrant Italian outpost, Delfina).

The design is gorgeous. I loved the shelves of wines and wine glasses that separate the bar area from the dining room. The warm lighting and off-white walls suffuses the entire space in a gorgeous glow the color of fresh, organic cream. Tables and chairs have beautiful wood, and there is rustic marble placed throughout the restaurant.
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