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Friday, September 12, 2014

Watch the Trailer for The Grain Divide, a New Wheat Documentary Coming in October

Posted By on Fri, Sep 12, 2014 at 4:17 PM

There's a new documentary about the rebirth of the wheat economy coming in October. The Grain Divide features locals like Michael Pollan, Tartine's Chad Robertson, Community Grains' Bob Klein, Whole Grain Connection's Monica Spiller, Craig Ponsford of Ponsford's Place, and more food figures from around the country discussing whole grains, bread, and how we got so far from the basic farmer/miller/baker paradigm.

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Hot Tomato! 150 Varieties at Kendall-Jackson

Posted By on Fri, Sep 12, 2014 at 2:18 PM


If the sight of fresh goji berries at the Noe Valley Farmers' Market causes you to pant just a little because you hope and wish they are a petite and new (to you) variety of tomato, have faith. An upcoming heirloom tomato festival at Kendall-Jackson in Sonoma wine country on Saturday, Sept. 27 (11 a.m.-4 p.m.) has 150 varieties of tomato to taste, see and touch – wine pairing(s) optional.

Every year it is amazing to see how the festival serves up tomatoes in so many shapes, sizes, textures, and, of course, flavors. 150 is definitely a high number of tomato beauties, and there's an educational component that gives guests a chance to learn more about the fruit from tomato expert Tucker Taylor, the culinary gardener for Kendall-Jackson.

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Paniolo Social Brings the Crowds to Bloodhound

Posted By on Fri, Sep 12, 2014 at 9:39 AM

Tuna poke at Paniolo Social. - FACEBOOK/LILHOLIHO YACHT CLUB

Word's gotten out about Paniolo Social. Bloodhound was packed with wall-to-wall people last night thanks to Ravi Kapur's new Thursday pop-up. The chef has been serving his signature Hawaiian fusiony food at the SOMA bar as he readies his brick-and-mortar, Liholiho Yacht Club, which he's opening with Nopa's Allyson Jossel and Jeff Hanak this fall. At Paniolo Social he's keeping things simple — five menu items, a few drink specials at the bar. Judging by the hordes there last night, he doesn't need to complicate them.

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Thursday, September 11, 2014

Go Back to School With a Yale Professor's Lecture on the History of Celebrity Chefs

Posted By on Thu, Sep 11, 2014 at 4:21 PM

Do you like interesting things? Then you will probably like this 20ish-minute lecture from Yale history professor Paul Freedman all about the history of celebrity chefs from the ancient Greeks to royal chefs to Alice Waters. Eater dug up this talk the professor gave at the MAD 4 symposium in Copenhagen.

It's a fascinating look at the growth of an icon we take for granted in today's food world, with none of the self-aggrandizement of a TED talk. There's also some riffing on the meaning of the chef in the modern world. Worth watching!

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Trend Watch: Will Clay Become the New Green Juice?

Posted By on Thu, Sep 11, 2014 at 2:26 PM

Bentonite supplements on the shelf at Rainbow Grocery. - PETE KANE
  • Pete Kane
  • Bentonite supplements on the shelf at Rainbow Grocery.
Perhaps by now you’ve heard that eating clay is a hot new trend among celebrities. Bentonite clay, after all, is about as neutral of a substance as you can get, and it’s touted for its detoxifying properties. Until now, those applications were mostly external (e.g., facial masks), but clay reportedly also freshens your breath and helps you lose weight, as Shailene Woodley and Zoë Kravitz told Seth Meyers and Us Weekly, respectively.

Skeptics will probably conclude that this is just the latest açai berry, another mildly beneficial fad that will be hyped up by an industry preying on people’s anxieties only to be discarded in 18 months for the next mildly beneficial remedy.

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Ten Ichi’s Donburi is Comfort in a Bowl

Posted By on Thu, Sep 11, 2014 at 11:01 AM


If you’ve lived in San Francisco for many years, chances are you’ve walked by Ten Ichi on Fillmore and Clay. The sign, with its cresting blue waves beneath the restaurant name, is hard to miss. It’s a place you might drop into for dinner before or after a film at the Clay, and while it doesn’t have the dazzle of SPQR or the retro charm of Palmers Tavern, it has served its reliably good Japanese fare for over thirty-five years.

Sushi can be had – there is a curved sushi bar in the back of the space – but where Ten Ichi shines is with its home-style dishes: sukiyaki, yosenabe, udon, and donburi. This is food that comforts, fills your stomach, and doesn’t put a huge strain on your wallet.

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Eat This: ABV's Falafel Lamb Dog

Posted By on Thu, Sep 11, 2014 at 8:00 AM

If the Middle East made a corn dog. - OMAR MAMOON
  • Omar Mamoon
  • If the Middle East made a corn dog.

ABV has garnered some positive attention lately from the press. Whether it’s for the  bar's “impressive burger” from The Chronicle’s Jon Bonne or its “unusual” and unique cocktails from our very own Pete Kane, things are looking good for the Mission newcomer. But it is the addictive falafel lamb dogs that have gained my attention and quickly become a weekly craving.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

La Taqueria is Best Burrito in America, According to FiveThirtyEight

Posted By on Wed, Sep 10, 2014 at 4:00 PM

Home of the best burrito in America, according to Nate Silver. - FLICKR/EGAN SNOW
  • Flickr/Egan Snow
  • Home of the best burrito in America, according to Nate Silver.

A San Francisco burrito won FiveThirtyEight's exhaustive search to find the best burrito in America — duh. What is surprising to many Mission burrito aficionados is the place that won. Not Taqueria Cancun, not El Farolito, not any of the other contenders, but La Taqueria, a spot most famous for its tacos.

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Cabanas and Cocktails: New Drinks at Twilight at the Presidio

Posted By on Wed, Sep 10, 2014 at 2:25 PM

Presidio Buck cocktail - LOU BUSTAMANTE
  • Lou Bustamante
  • Presidio Buck cocktail

One of the best reasons to live in San Francisco is the expanse of park and outdoor spaces available. Routine and workloads can make us forget to enjoy the dozens of neighborhood parks. Certainly the weather here makes it hard to plan a nice day out, but as Twilight at the Presidio (from Off the Grid folks) shows, even on cold days, it’s still a lot of fun.

I swung by Twilight last week to check out the new cocktail menu from Quality Beverage, the bar at the event. While Twilight took the month of July off, the bar revamped the menu with new drinks, including a hot cocktail. While the drinks stick mostly with the classics, they cover a satisfying range of flavors and spirits to give most everyone something to enjoy.

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Celebrate Bourbon Heritage Month at a Pop-Up Old Fashioned Bar This Friday

Posted By on Wed, Sep 10, 2014 at 11:40 AM

The Demerara Old Fashioned at SlingBAR. - THE DAPPER DINER
  • The Dapper Diner
  • The Demerara Old Fashioned at SlingBAR.

“Why are you putting black olives in my Old Fashioned?,” the young man wearing a shirt with a popped collar asked. The bartender paused and quizzically looked up at his customer. The live jazz band wailed away on the stage of the lounge area in the Ritz-Carlton hotel in New Orleans. The young man asked his question again, thinking the bartender’s hesitation was due to him not hearing the original question, rather than it being out of confusion. The bartender replied, “These aren’t olives. They’re Luxardo cherries.” At least he was trying and wasn’t out on Bourbon Street drinking an awful drink out of a plastic hand grenade, I thought to myself upon overhearing the interaction.

And now that September has rolled around, you are obligated to enjoy more Old Fashioneds with “black olives.” Why? Because September is Bourbon Heritage Month, which means you have a bonafide excuse to drink bourbon every day this month, as opposed to those other months where you shamefully drink bourbon every day.

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