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Miscellaneous

Faux-be Beef


Where's the beef?

Out of Dodge


Did somebody say pig sandwich? Fatted Calf's Taylor
Boetticher has got the goods.

Puttin’ on the Ritz



I’ve only stayed at The Ritz-Carlton once in my life, but it only takes one visit to appreciate how truly decadent a stay—or a meal or even a drink—here is. After all, if it’s good enough for Danielle Steel….  (I heard on NPR on Tuesday morning that it was her 60th birthday and then saw her step out of a shiny black SUV as I was leaving the Ritz-Carlton San Francisco last night. Perhaps a b-day dinner celebration at The Dining Room?)

Attack of the Killer Tomatoes

We have a good time down here in the trenches, our food department of two (our oft-mentioned intrepid intern, Roxanne, makes three). Really, we do. Sometimes Sara and I knock off for an hour and go to Punjab Kebab, where we overeat chicken tikka masala and saag paneer and then return to our desks in a stupor. Some days, I make everything into a bet—with bottles of wine serving as the prize (I have seven bottles by my desk now. Sara has only four. Guess who’s winning?)

Weir Cooking

I know Joanne Weir about as well as most people in San Francisco know Joanne Weir—which is to say, not at all, really, save for the familiarity that comes when you watch someone on television (Weir hosts a cooking show, Joanne Weir’s Cooking Class, on PBS) and read their cookbooks. But of course I knew of Joanne, and her excellent reputation as one of San Francisco’s most beloved food personalities and cooking instructors. She’s a consummate and hands-on teacher, and she has recently opened her home to small groups for week-long intensive cooking classes.

Sipping Summer


A starring ingredient in gazpacho.

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.

Up and Out



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

What do a TV star and a hippie farmer have in common?

When you write a story for a magazine, there are always so many things you can’t get into—there’s never enough room to squeeze it all in (although should the New Yorker come calling, I’m set). It can make an editor resort to drastic measures.

A stop at Marin Sun Farms butcher shop in Pt. Reyes,
just one stop on a trip for my latest story.
Photo by Stefanie Michejda

Gourmet Dating

I’m pretty sure I might be single for life, but that doesn’t mean I’m not open to meeting new people—of course, you won’t find me online dating any time soon (not that there’s anything wrong with it). So when I was offered a chance to attend Gourmet Dating with Parties That Cook last Sunday, I snapped it up.


Turning up the heat
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