Side Dish

Aww, Shucks
A coupla hundred other foodies and I jammed Eastside West last week looking for free oysters. Bidden by the bivalve, Harry ventured down to Fillmore and Greenwich to check out the remains of the old Bermuda Triangle. Scott Damammann and Michael Iglesias have done a nice job with the old Baja Cantina. Wainscoting and gilt frames define the plush rooms, with casual dining up front and a more formal scene in back, while live jazz will keep the snobby chill off. As to the shellfish: Staff were serving Skookums as fast as Richard could shuck 'em -- and he's damn quick. Definitely a dark horse contender for the upcoming Shuck and Swallow Contest.

It's the Limit
Here's a pair of lovelies Harry wouldn't mind hopping into bed with -- but he hasn't been invited: Campari and Skyy have plumped each other's pillows with a recent alliance that will increase Campari's visibility stateside and make Skyy available worldwide. The Milan-based aperitif bottler is now a minority partner in the S.F. vodka house, helping with international distribution and promotion. Meanwhile, the No. 3 superpremium vodka in the U.S. is scratching Campari's back in return -- and Campari needs all the help it can get in the American market following liquor industry shake-ups. Does this mean they'll be painting the red girl Skyy blue?

Where There's Smoke ...
The Occidental Grill, which in five short years established itself as the place for the three-martini lunch in the Financial District, closed last year following a small kitchen fire -- which, contrary to rumor, had nothing to do with the copious cigar smoking going on at the bar. Now, after four months of remodeling and bureaucratic wrangling, the Occidental is back in business. But as owner Curtis Post is quick to point out, the only real changes are in the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the smoking policy.

Layin' in Supplies
Another silly quiz: Arrange these in order by size -- smallest to largest:
Jeroboam
Imperial
Balthazar
Magnum
Salmanazar

These are the names of bottles of champagne -- big bottles, the kind of bottles you'd be wise to pick up before millennium fever descends on us all. Prices are going up monthly, and the experts predict that all the good stuff will be sold out by October. Fill up the basement now and be the toast of the town come Dec. 31.

Pulp Fact
Harry was afraid to report this for fear of attracting hordes of Satan worshippers and glam kids to the altar of his weekly column, but I feel compelled by some hidden power to put bloodstained finger to keyboard. Marilyn Manson, the disease of Middle America, the plague of parents the world over, and -- gasp -- the Alice Cooper of the '90s, ate at Tokyo Go Go while he was in town stirring up the Cow Palace with Hole. Wasabi ace Ken Lowe made room for Ms. Manson and a beefy entourage who were said to have enjoyed their meal immensely. If only Manson wouldn't play with his chopsticks like that.

By Harry Coverte

Know something Harry doesn't? E-mail Coverte@aol.com and sweep the dirt out from under the rug.

 
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