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State Bird Provisions, Another Look

By   /  July 3, 2012  /  Restaurants  /  1 Comment

I reviewed State Bird Provisions for the Examiner shortly after it opened in February, 2012, jumping the gun because I was so excited about it.  Chef/owner Stuart Brioza and his two partners were still tinkering with the concept, an unusual food delivery system of dim sum carts and trays that stopped at each table. Essentially [...]

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Salumeria

By   /  July 1, 2012  /  Restaurants  /  No Comments

Almost every neighborhood in San Francisco has its beloved corner grocery/deli, where the hungry can get thick, made to order subs, chips, a beer.  For fourteen years I lived in North Beach a block away from Freddy’s, an old timer on the corner of Francisco and Grant. I still have fond memories of the prosciutto [...]

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Special dinner at Heirloom Cafe

By   /  June 21, 2012  /  Restaurants  /  No Comments

We food fanatics are barraged by announcements of special events, but two came along today that grabbed my attention. On Sunday, July 1, Heirloom Cafe is offering a mouthwatering six course summer menu with wine pairing for $75 including tax and tip, an amazing price considering that  sommelier/owner Matt Straus is a great curator, and [...]

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Haven

By   /  June 21, 2012  /  Restaurants  /  No Comments

Jack London Square, a scenic and historic piece of real estate along the Oakland estuary, has had its ups and downs over the years. Those of us who lived in Berkeley during the 70’s and 80’s remember JLS as a down market Fisherman’s Wharf of chain restaurants, bars and schlock shops.  But over the last [...]

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Cold Soba at Nojo

By   /  June 15, 2012  /  Food, Restaurants  /  No Comments

We’re feeling the summer in Hayes Valley. While not quite as warm as the Mission, the sun is hot and people walk around in shorts. The urge for cold soba, buckwheat noodles, a summertime favorite in Japan, propelled me into Nojo, Greg Dunmore’s farm inspired izakaya. His chilled soba salad ($8.50), like nothing I’ve ever [...]

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Etxebarri: The Best Restaurant in Spain and Maybe the World

By   /  June 14, 2012  /  Restaurants, Travel  /  No Comments

This simple asador in a restored farmhouse  in Axpe, a tiny village tucked into a velvety green valley in the Cantabrian mountains near Bilbao, embodies everything I love about food. The menu is just a list of ingredients: most local, some rare, all sourced to be the most exquisite examples of their kind. All the [...]

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Contigo

By   /  May 9, 2012  /  Restaurants  /  No Comments

Tucked away in a small storefront on Castro, three year old Contigo casts a net much wider than its immediate Noe Valley neighborhood.  Eaters from all over the city make the pilgrimage to this smart little dining room, aglow with hand crafted natural wood furnishings, including stools in front of the open kitchen and a [...]

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Source

By   /  May 2, 2012  /  Restaurants  /  No Comments

It takes a special effort to get me to a vegetarian, let alone, a vegan restaurant.  So many of them have been so unsatisfying.  But I trust one vegetarian I know, Alma Hecht, who happens to be a certified arborist and sustainable landscape designer, a woman attuned to plants.  She turned me on to Cha-Ya [...]

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LihoLiho Yacht Club at Citizen’s Band

By   /  April 26, 2012  /  Restaurants  /  1 Comment

Normally I would not write about a meal that is not regularly available, and such is the case with Ravi Kapur’s pop up dinner I attended on Monday at Citizen’s Band.  But, based on the popularity of these 12-course family style meals–$65 a person including tax and tip–I am pretty sure that they will pop [...]

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Ippuku

By   /  April 24, 2012  /  Restaurants  /  2 Comments

Japanese barmen milk shochu from a long overhead rack of upside down bottles, at the front of Ippuku, the authentic yakitori in Berkeley. They squirt 50 proof barley, rice and sweet potato liquors into frosty glasses and   concoct cocktails with the vodka-like liquor, citrus, ginger and spritzer over ice. They purposely over pour cold, artisan [...]

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