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Can Local and Organic Be Cliché?


A bowl of figs at the SFN dinner are worth a million words.

Sunday night I attended a fundraiser kick-off dinner for Slow Food Nation, hosted by Alice Waters, Thomas Keller and Peter Coyote. Held at City Hall in the rotunda (with hors d’oeuvres passed in the impressively thriving Victory Garden which is cranking out 100 pounds of produce a week, which then makes its way to the Food Bank), and catered by Paula LeDuc, it was quite an evening.

Oyaji: Where Hideki-san Knows Your Name



The other night I was taken to Oyaji, a sushi spot on Clement Street, so far out in the avenues you might as well get on a plane to Tokyo. I’ve heard a lot about it from my friends that frequent it. They talk about the sushi, sure, but what they really talk about is Hideki-san, the theatrical, ham-of-a-chef and owner who knows his fish and drinks like one too.

Sentinel's Lunch Menu Now Online

Dennis Leary's Sentinel, our favorite downtown lunch spot as of late, now has its daily menu online.  Today's special?  Roasted Pork Loin with Figs and Caramelized  Onions.  Wow. Hurry and go grab it!

It's October and It's 75! Go Eat Outside in the Mission


Bar Bambino is heating up the patio.

Where to Take the Kids

The other night, I found myself, as I often do, headed home from work, having just picked up my boys from summer camp and preschool—paralyzed at the thought of cooking dinner (and more so, cleaning up after), and grateful that so many great places to dine with kids are located so close to my house in Bernal Heights.

The downsides of being a parent in the city include things like lack of big yards to send your boys that are beating each other with plastic baseball bats out to play in (telling them to “Get lost!” in a 750 square foot apartment is easier said than done). The upsides include the fact that kid-friendly, but cool, restaurants abound. You never have to even think about caving into fast food, or the equivalent of an Applebee’s.

When Life Gives you Limón's

Every once in a while I think about moving out of the Mission. Someplace quieter, I think, someplace with fewer crazies. But then I come up out of the BART station on 24th Street after work and the smell of grilled meat hits my nose and I think, nah. I can’t leave. Good things just keep happening in the Mission.

Dining in the Dark

Take away one sense and the others are heightened—that's what they say, right? You can test that theory in spades at Dining in the Dark, a program that launched in Europe and has now made its way to L.A., San Diego and recently, SF. The experiment takes place in Crimson Lounge, the downstairs private-event space of Indigo restaurant in Hayes Valley, every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night.


New Restaurant: Russell Jackson's Lafitte


Cutting to the chase: Russell Jackson tells 7x7
about his new restaurant, Lafitte.
Photograph by John Benson

Let’s get this out of the way right up front: Russell Jackson is an intense guy, no shrinking violet. Though he’s got chops from some notable restaurants (including the now-defunct Russell’s in Los Angeles) the last few years he has been flying under the radar, operating a little underground supper club called Subculture Dining, all the while looking for a San Francisco space for a restaurant of his own.

Kaiseki at Sanraku

I’ve been going to Sanraku for a while now. It’s a solid choice when you’re craving sushi and the Sutter Street location happens to be near our office (they also have one in the Metreon, which makes a great pre-flick dinner). The food there is solid, always really nice. Above average certainly, but nothing’s ever taken my breath away.

Joel Huff on the move

It’s hard to keep up, that’s for sure. The perennial San Francisco chef-shuffle is a source of both amusement and aggravation for me, keeping me perpetually on my toes. Who, after all, wants to be the last to know?  So it’s always nice when a bit of information lands in my lap, as was the case today. My editorial assistant had just finished fact-checking a bunch of our restaurant listings (like painting the Golden Gate Bridge, this is a never-ending task—you complete it, only to begin again) and dropped the sheaf of papers on my desk, noting casually, “Oh, by the way, Joel Huff is leaving Silks. But you knew that, right?” Uh…no!


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