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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Bom Dia Market is Just What a Quiet Corner of Noe Valley Needed

Posted By on Wed, Dec 17, 2014 at 2:16 PM

PETE KANE
  • Pete Kane

The first thing you notice once you walk into Bom Dia Market is that it’s modeled after that gold standard of neighborhood markets: Bi-Rite. It’s a little more low-key, though; you can move about freely without anyone bumping into you, their attention consumed by the pedigree of an organic watermelon radish, but there isn’t a cheesemonger fielding queries, either. (Wine experts, though, they have.)

This section of Noe Valley, on 29th and Sanchez, is much quieter and more residential than the commercial strip five-blocks north, so this newcomer ought to nestle in nicely, especially for anyone who loves Whole Foods but loves shopping local even more. Ordinary grocery shopping is getting more and more Europeanized.

See Also: The Hall, Featuring the Whole Beast and Little Green Cyclo, Now Open on Market Street

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Adorably Named La Snackeria in Oakland Has Seriously Good Quesadillas

Posted By on Wed, Dec 17, 2014 at 10:31 AM

Char siu pulled pork quesadilla, and the busiest tablecloth of all time. - PETE KANE
  • Pete Kane
  • Char siu pulled pork quesadilla, and the busiest tablecloth of all time.

La Snackeria
is a crowd-funded project in Old Oakland by a self-described “Third Generation Tamale Girl,” and, in short, it is a big win. Here, the masa is stone-ground and GMO-free, with a choice of jerk pork and plantain or green chicken filling. And while the tamarind Jarritos is cold and inviting, the horchata is house-made.

See Also: Donna's Tamales Makes a Mean Vegan Burrito

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As the Danes Do: Copenhagen Brings Smørrebrød and Danish Pastries to Burlingame

Posted By on Wed, Dec 17, 2014 at 8:00 AM

The Copenhagen sandwich: a delicious winter lunch without the frigid temps.
  • The Copenhagen sandwich: a delicious winter lunch without the frigid temps.

Copenhagen has been one of the trendy “hot” spots for globe-trotting eaters ever since René Redzepi’s temple to “New Nordic” cuisine, Noma, snagged the “best restaurant in the world” honors from the vaunted El Bulli in 2010. But the Danes don’t just eat foraged sea buckthorn soil and live North Sea langoustines with reindeer moss. When the clock strikes noon, just like many Americans do, Danes enjoy a nice, basic sandwich for lunch. Except, that’s an open-faced sandwich they’re enjoying at home or work in Denmark.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Warming Up with Caldo: Three Mexican and Central American Soups to Try This Winter

Posted By on Tue, Dec 16, 2014 at 11:45 AM

Chicken soup at El Taco Zamorano Restaurant in Fruitvale. - FERRON SALNIKER
  • Ferron Salniker
  • Chicken soup at El Taco Zamorano Restaurant in Fruitvale.

Comfort food comes in many forms — and one of my favorites is caldo. The Central American and Mexican broth-based soup can be chicken, beef or seafood, but usually includes hearty cuts of vegetables, an accompanying stack of warm tortillas, and a lime wedge hiding in the shadow of an oversized bowl. Extra points in my book for sides of mexican rice and avocado.

Caldo is the kind of soup that may involve some maneuvering with a fork and knife (or hands) to tackle whole chicken pieces or slices of corn on the cob, so just feel at home digging in. That’s the point of a big bowl of soup anyway.

Here are three places around the bay to get your fix.

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La Taqueria's Secret Menu: Part Two

Posted By on Tue, Dec 16, 2014 at 10:15 AM

A chorizo dorado corn quesadilla dorado. Say that two times as fast. - OMAR MAMOON
  • Omar Mamoon
  • A chorizo dorado corn quesadilla dorado. Say that two times as fast.

You read right. Part 2. Christmas came early y'all!

In case you missed the first piece about La Taqueria's Secret Menu back in June, it included a behind-the-counter salsa roja, blistered serrano peppers, and the now infamous burrito dorado: a burrito grilled to a golden crisp a la plancha. The latter was of course picked up by Nate Silver's "Burrito Bracket" and was influential in FiveThirtyEight's decision to crown La Taqueria as "America's Best Burrito."

And now, with just six days before La Taqueria shuts down its doors for three weeks for its annual holiday, I reveal to you La Taqueria's Secret Menu: Part 2.

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If Brunching at Oakland's Shakewell, Skip the Shakshuka

Posted By on Tue, Dec 16, 2014 at 8:11 AM

Shakewell's Shakshuka has lovely alliteration, but leaves much to be desired in this reviewer's opinion. - ALIX WALL
  • Alix Wall
  • Shakewell's Shakshuka has lovely alliteration, but leaves much to be desired in this reviewer's opinion.

Having written this glowing post about Shakewell when it first opened, I was excited to hear it was starting brunch service. A  friend and fellow Top Chef fan was visiting, and a look at their menu piqued her interest as well so off we went.

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Monday, December 15, 2014

Six Last-Minute Gift Boxes to Send Your Out-of-Town Relatives

Posted By on Mon, Dec 15, 2014 at 2:16 PM

Gift boxes from Luke's local have everything from fresh fruit to a eucalyptus bouquet. - LUKE'S LOCAL
  • Luke's Local
  • Gift boxes from Luke's local have everything from fresh fruit to a eucalyptus bouquet.

Guys, I hate to break it to you but you can now count down the days to Christmas on your fingers. This means that time's running out to buy presents for all your aunts and uncles, in-laws and maybe-could-be-future-in-laws, neighbors and family friends and cousins whoever else you have to get things for but don't really know well enough to give a personalized gift.

That's okay! That's what gift boxes were invented for. And instead of giving some waxy Harry & David pears or a lame basket of jams and olives and other stuff that will sit in their fridge/pantry until the end of time, share San Francisco's culinary wealth with a gift they will actually eat.

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The Week in Vegan: Hamsters, Holidays and the High Seas

Posted By on Mon, Dec 15, 2014 at 1:31 PM

VeganWeek.jpg

The latest news from newly vegan heartthrob Cory Booker is that he's feeling great, looking even better and bounding tall buildings in a single leap. A single leap, everyone. This is what eating a plant-based diet can do for you, too!*

Still don't know what to give the friend who has everything? How about a vegan cookbook? Here's a list of the best recipe manuals of 2014. Your friend or family member probably doesn't have at least one of these — and you can confirm this by breaking into their house and checking out their bookshelves. It takes a lot to be a good Santa these days!

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Visiting the Jax Vineyards Tasting Room: A Good Spot for a Date

Posted By on Mon, Dec 15, 2014 at 9:25 AM

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A little over eight-weeks old, the Jax Vineyards Tasting Room in SoMa is a small reprieve from the traffic of Brannan Street. Its industrial design is modern, sleek, and incorporates both an outdoor space — complete with fire pit and wine barrel tables — and a small, indoor space behind a translucent garage door; the entire tasting room is tucked away behind a tall, rolling door.

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Friday, December 12, 2014

SOMA Eats: Roasted Lamb and 200 Microbrews

Posted By on Fri, Dec 12, 2014 at 1:50 PM

A fantasia of eggplant on ciabatta. - PETE KANE
  • Pete Kane
  • A fantasia of eggplant on ciabatta.

One-stop-shopping appears to be falling out of favor in the Bay Area; and doing as they do in Europe, people are moving towards visiting farmers markets, wine shops and specialty markets before suffering the convenience of City Target (or so we've observed). Well, let’s all put our prejudices aside until we’ve all paid a visit to “modern café and bottle shop” SOMA Eats, to sit down for some Moroccan-Californian lunch and walking out with a 22 pack of California microbrews for later — because sometimes a one-stop shop is worth visiting on purpose.

See Also: Red Dog, a Spinoff of Il Cane Rosso, is a Long-Awaited Dream Come True

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