best of 2011: the restaurant edition…

Mood and mind, place and time: once recorded, they cannot be erased. Neither can company nor cast, nor the events that happened at table. To do so would be a pity anyway, for dining is theatre; every part a prop, everyone a role.  And, as with life, in its unscripted scenes are often its finest […]

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best of 2011: the restaurant edition…

Mood and mind, place and time: once recorded, they cannot be erased. Neither can company nor cast, nor the events that happened at table. To do so would be a pity anyway, for dining is theatre; every part a prop, everyone a role.  And, as with life, in its unscripted scenes are often its finest […]

Continue

best desserts of 2011…

(Frozen Sake; elBulli) Is pastry having a “moment?” Judging by the desserts I’ve had this year, I’d say it is. In the past, I’ve tacked on a dozen or so desserts to my annual “best dishes” post in a section at the bottom called “just desserts.”  While their inclusion was far from an afterthought, even […]

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best desserts of 2011…

(Frozen Sake; elBulli) Is pastry having a “moment?” Judging by the desserts I’ve had this year, I’d say it is. In the past, I’ve tacked on a dozen or so desserts to my annual “best dishes” post in a section at the bottom called “just desserts.”  While their inclusion was far from an afterthought, even […]

Continue

best dishes of 2011…

(Crispy Pig Ears; Husk) * * * Another December, another set of listicles. Every year for the the past six, I’ve rounded up the best edibles of each and posted them here for posterity. They’ve included a list of my twenty-five favorite dishes, the best dozen desserts, and the top ten restaurant meals of each […]

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best dishes of 2011…

(Crispy Pig Ears; Husk) * * * Another December, another set of listicles. Every year for the the past six, I’ve rounded up the best edibles of each and posted them here for posterity. They’ve included a list of my twenty-five favorite dishes, the best dozen desserts, and the top ten restaurant meals of each […]

Continue

best of 2010: the restaurant edition…

A blizzard of gastronomic white paper from tastemakers here and there gave this lame-duck week of 2010 a needed dose of excitement, angst, and confusion.  Who doesn’t love rummaging through another’s list of dirtied linens at the end of the year? While I’m a taster, not a tastemaker, I happily add to the storm my […]

Continue

best of 2010: the restaurant edition…

A blizzard of gastronomic white paper from tastemakers here and there gave this lame-duck week of 2010 a needed dose of excitement, angst, and confusion.  Who doesn’t love rummaging through another’s list of dirtied linens at the end of the year? While I’m a taster, not a tastemaker, I happily add to the storm my […]

Continue

best dishes of 2010…

It’s that time of year again when I shock myself into making new year resolutions by taking a look back at all of the food I ate in the last twelve months. Over the past few weeks, I’ve revisited hundreds of dishes and, through some mysterious and highly subjective process that involves memory and mood, […]

Continue

best dishes of 2010…

It’s that time of year again when I shock myself into making new year resolutions by taking a look back at all of the food I ate in the last twelve months. Over the past few weeks, I’ve revisited hundreds of dishes and, through some mysterious and highly subjective process that involves memory and mood, […]

Continue

review: olio…

I wanted to catch up with two friends whom I hadn’t seen in a while. Anticipating that I wouldn’t be particularly peckish (there was a whole lot of eating going on those few days in San Francisco), I was more fixated on my good company than the venue. They suggested Luce, the newly Michelin-starred restaurant […]

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review: olio…

I wanted to catch up with two friends whom I hadn’t seen in a while. Anticipating that I wouldn’t be particularly peckish (there was a whole lot of eating going on those few days in San Francisco), I was more fixated on my good company than the venue. They suggested Luce, the newly Michelin-starred restaurant […]

Continue

review: sanglant, mais pas bleu…

I’m fairly certain I was whining about the demise of the daringly bloody roast beef sandwich when chuckeats told me about the one at Il Cane Rosso, Daniel Patterson’s walk-up eatery in the Ferry Marketplace in San Francisco.  It could be a quick lunch option, he suggested. We made it happen.

Continue

review: sanglant, mais pas bleu…

I’m fairly certain I was whining about the demise of the daringly bloody roast beef sandwich when chuckeats told me about the one at Il Cane Rosso, Daniel Patterson’s walk-up eatery in the Ferry Marketplace in San Francisco.  It could be a quick lunch option, he suggested. We made it happen.

Continue

review: the asian laundry…

“You’ll feel like you’ve left the city,” someone told me when describing their experience at benu. I didn’t understand what he meant by it then, but I understand it now. You’ll see benu’s kitchen through the big, picture-windows on a quiet stretch of Hawthorne Street in San Francisco’s SoMa district.  If you arrive after nightfall, […]

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review: the asian laundry…

“You’ll feel like you’ve left the city,” someone told me when describing their experience at benu. I didn’t understand what he meant by it then, but I understand it now. You’ll see benu’s kitchen through the big, picture-windows on a quiet stretch of Hawthorne Street in San Francisco’s SoMa district.  If you arrive after nightfall, […]

Continue

review: damn the torpedoes…

Abalone Aqua, San Francisco This review is moot.  You’ll see why in a second. To the best of my ability, a timeline: 1991: Aqua opened at 252 California Street in San Francisco with George Morrone as the executive chef. 1993: Michael Mina took the reins in the kitchen as executive chef.  He also assumed ownership […]

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review: damn the torpedoes…

Abalone Aqua, San Francisco This review is moot.  You’ll see why in a second. To the best of my ability, a timeline: 1991: Aqua opened at 252 California Street in San Francisco with George Morrone as the executive chef. 1993: Michael Mina took the reins in the kitchen as executive chef.  He also assumed ownership […]

Continue

best of 2009, the restaurant edition…

Corton New York, New York The course of any meal unfolds in a highly personal and circumstantial way.  Evaluating any restaurant experience devoid of personal context (e.g. company, mood, and personal preferences) is an impossible task. Though I like think that I can be scrupulously objective, I know that emotion trumps reason, personal preferences cloud […]

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best of 2009, the restaurant edition…

Corton New York, New York The course of any meal unfolds in a highly personal and circumstantial way.  Evaluating any restaurant experience devoid of personal context (e.g. company, mood, and personal preferences) is an impossible task. Though I like think that I can be scrupulously objective, I know that emotion trumps reason, personal preferences cloud […]

Continue