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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Pop-Ups: The Galley's Justin Navarro Cooks 3 Kinds of Belly, Naughty Hindu Eats Sacred Cows

Posted By on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 8:45 AM

click to enlarge Belly, get in our belly. - FLICKR/ARNOLD | INUYAKI

The Galley, Justin Navarro's pop-up at Clooney's, has acquired a cult following for serving vegan flatbreads and French onion soup sandwiches at a dyed-in-the-wool dive bar on lower Valencia. (He also pickles eggs, if you want to get really old-school about it.)

While most pop-ups aspire to brick-and-mortar status, Navarro's teaming up with chef/photographer Wes Rowe to advance along another route: a four-course prix-fixe "Belly Dinner" on Sunday, April 21. For $27, some 20 diners at each of the two seatings can enjoy salmon belly, lamb bacon (over arugula and potato soup with crème fraîche), BBQ'd pork belly with pickled slaw, and a dessert of strawberry rhubarb pie and Jelly Belly ice cream.

See also: American Bao Bar Extends Pilot Series at Nombe and Southpaw Through June

The meal will be paired with wines by Kris Esqueda of Vinyl for an extra $20 per person, or you can order wine by the glass or bottle -- and there will likely be a few beers for sale as well.

The Belly Dinner won't be held at Clooney's -- so you won't be bellying up to the bar, as it were -- but down the block at 974 Valencia. Tickets can be purchased at Eventbrite, although wine aficionados are asked to hit up the ATM en route.

The following Sunday (April 28), head over to Dear Mom for Sudhir Popat's "The Naughty Hindu Presents Meatball Madness." Raised vegetarian, Popat discovered buffalo wings and never looked back. Why smash sacred cows when you can (figuratively) eat them? There's no beef, but you can opt for a Crispy Clucker (buffalo chicken meatball with crispy skin, creamy buffalo sauce) or some Sweet Balls (deep-fried dough, filled with chocolate and rolled in cinnamon and sugar) to go with your PBR-and-Bulleit.

One of the three mains -- vegetable meatballs with garlicky Manchurian sauce -- contains no meat, so Popat isn't entirely lost to carnivorous perdition. This baby runs for a marathon seven-and-a-half hours, too, so you have no excuse to skip out on some most delicious sin.

Belly Dinner, Sunday, April 21 at 7:00 and 9:00pm, at 974 Valencia.

The Naughty Hindu Presents Meatball Madness, Sunday, April 28, 4:00 - 11:30pm, at Dear Mom, 2700 16th St., (415) 625-3362.

Follow Pete at @wannacyber

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About The Author

Pete Kane

Pete Kane

Pete Kane is a total gaylord who is trying to get to every national park before age 40


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