Category Archives: Events

BottleRock Napa Valley to feature Major Culinary Stage with Star Chefs & More

BottleRock Napa Fried Chicken

BottleRock Napa Valley has announced its star-studded culinary lineup and the addition of a fifth stage – the Williams-Sonoma Culinary Stage. BottleRock Napa Valley will deliver a lineup of chefs, restaurateurs, winemakers, sommeliers, and craft brewers that is unparalleled in the music festival world. Michelin stars fly among the musical stars at the 3-day festival, May 29 through 31, in downtown Napa, California.

BottleRock Napa

One of the stages at BottleRock 2014 (Photo: BottleRock)

 “BottleRock Napa Valley is all about blending great music, food and wine,” – David Graham, CEO of Latitude 38. 

President of Williams-Sonoma, Janet Hayes adds, “Williams-Sonoma’s Culinary Stage will showcase some of the country’s top chefs and sommeliers with musicians and celebrities. We are excited to create unique culinary experiences for festival attendees that will differentiate BottleRock from all other food and music festivals.”

Ca Momi Pizza

Centrally located in the Whole Foods Restaurant Garden of the festival, the Williams-Sonoma Culinary Stage will be hosted by the Bay Area’s “Foodie Chap,” Liam Mayclem of KCBS, and will feature celebrated chefs, vintners, actors, professional athletes and sommeliers participating in entertaining demos, performances, and other hi-jinx. The chef lineup includes Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, Michael Mina of the Mina Group, Iron Chef Marc Forgione, two Michelin-starred chef Dominique Crenn of Atelier Crenn, Top Chef Michael Voltaggio, Larry Forgione of the Culinary Institute of America, Top Chef Mei Lin, Michelin-starred chefs Brandon Sharp of Solbar, Ken Frank of La Toque, and Robert Curry of Auberge du Soleil, 11-time World Pizza Champion Tony Gemignani, Bryan Forgione of Buddy V’s, Rick Moonen of rm Seafood, Oenotri’s Tyler Rodde, and Dario De Conti of Ca’Momi. Joining the fun will be the Williams-Sonoma Chef Collective featuring Sarah Simmons of Birds & Bubbles, Matt Jennings of Townsman, the Bon Vivants of Trick Dog, and Jason French of Ned Ludd.

The Cure BottleRock Napa

The Cure – one of my favorite bands at BottleRock 2014 (Photo: Kara Murphy)

Many of the region’s best chefs, vintners, and breweries will also showcase their talents in the VIP areas and Platinum Lounge. Noted Napa Valley restaurants including REDD and Redd Wood, Goose & Gander, and Atlas Social will provide exclusive offerings for Platinum guests, paired with rare and cult wines presented by Master Sommeliers and wine experts including Ian Cauble, Sur Lucero, Jay James, Gilles de Chambure, Mark de Vere, Jimmy Hayes, Robert Bath, DLynn Proctor, Willi Sherrer, Chris Blanchard, and Desi Echavarrie.

Food Fashionista Mika Takeuchi BottleRock Napa

We are rocking the shades at BottleRock

 All festival guests will enjoy a global tour of culinary offerings, featuring Japanese, Indian, Italian, Spanish, Mexican, American, Mediterranean, and Vietnamese cuisines. Mouthwatering dishes include Morimoto Sticky Ribs, wood-fired pizzas, pork belly sandwiches, Vietnamese shrimp rolls, barbecue, fried chicken, vegetarian, vegan and more. Culinary hotspots to be showcased include Morimoto Napa, Ca’Momi, The Thomas at Fagiani’s, Whole Foods, La Condesa, Tarla Grill, Taqueria Rosita, Eiko’s, Fume Bistro, Il Posto Trattoria, Eight Noodle Shop, Ristorante Allegria, The Q Restaurant and Bar, Bui Bistro, Napa Palisades Saloon, Smoke Open Fire, Jax White Mule Diner and food trucks like Bacon Bacon, Curry Up Now, Kara’s Cupcakes, Mark’s The Spot, MeSoHungry, Drewski’s, and Napa Valley Crust, among others.

 

Many of the regions finest wineries will be sharing their finest vintages, including Miner Family Winery, Robert Mondavi Winery, Silver Oak Cellars, Del Dotto Family Vineyards, Schramsberg Vineyards, Rombauer Vineyards, Clos Du Val, Gia by Gia Coppola, Goosecross Cellars, Round Pond Estate, Aviary Vineyards, Hill Family Estate, Jamieson Ranch Vineyards, JaM Cellars, JW Thomas Group, NakedWines.com, JCB by Jean Charles Boisset, Ca’Momi Wines, ONEHOPE Winery, Piazza Del Dotto, Starmont Wines, Twomey Cellars, and Vezer Family Vineyards.

There will be A LOT of wine at BottleRock 2015 (Photo: BottleRock)

There will be A LOT of wine at BottleRock 2015 (Photo: BottleRock)

Wine cabanas and beverage bars will be conveniently located throughout the festival grounds. All bars will be stocked with delicious pours from title wine sponsor Miner Family Winery and other premium Napa Valley vintners, dozens of craft beers, along with artisanal cocktails made with premium spirits. The craft brew garden will feature 20 brews from premium brewers and distillers such as Lagunitas, Crispin Cider, Boston Beer, 21st Amendment, Pyramid Brewing, New Belgium Brewing, Green Flash, Ninkasi, Heretic, and local favorite Napa Smith brewery. Fan favorites including Coors and Blue Moon Brewing round out the brew selections.

For more info on BottleRock Napa Valley, including a full lineup of 90+ music and culinary artists on five stages over three days, visit www.bottlerocknapavalley.com.

(Photos: BottleRock, Mika Takeuchi, and Kara Murphy http://bit.ly/1DzG2wr)

Eat Drink SF 365 – Join the Club

Eat Drink SF

In this work hard, work-harder culture of San Francisco, it’s nice to be able to enjoy some well-deserved play once in a while (or more often than that!). In addition to being surrounded by tech, tech and more tech in this neck of the woods, we are blessed to have the vastness of California farms and vineyards providing us with a high-quality level of local food and wine to satiate our appetites and days year round. Non-stop restaurant visits, trips to the farmers’ market, and informative classes and lectures centered around a culinary aspect are always available here in the Bay Area.

Offering a year-round extension of San Francisco proper’s biggest food and wine event of the year: Eat Drink SF is a new Eat Drink SF 365 club that will host fun and flavorful events throughout the year. With this membership, you’ll also gain invites and discounts to festivities including exclusive Wine Spectator magazine wine class(es), CUESA’s Cocktails of the Farmers Markets , Summer Celebration  plus a whole lot more.

If you want to be a part of the local food community and meet other like-minded diners and imbibers, this club may be for you. I’m not only a member, but happy to be on the advisory board as well.

Eat Drink SFAnd best of all, proceeds from Eat Drink SF support two local Bay Area food-related charities: the Center for Education About Sustainable Agriculture (CUESA) and the Golden Gate Restaurant Association’s own Scholarship Foundation.

Learn more and sign up for club Eat Drink SF 365 HERE 

 

Second Annual Relais & Châteaux GourmetFest March 5-8, 2015

Relaix & Chateau GourmetFest

Coming soon to Northern California’s picturesque Carmel-by-the-Sea is an intimate gastronomic festival that you won’t want to miss. Headlining the  second  annual  Relais   &  Châteaux  GourmetFest will be domestic and globally renowned Chefs Michel  Bras  (Bras  -­‐  Sébastien  et  Michel), Olivier   Roellinger   (Les   Maisons   de   Bricourt,   France)  Féolde  (Ristorante  Enoteca  Pinchiorri,  Italy),  Tetsuya Wakuda (Tetsuya’s), Colin   Bedford   (The   Fearrington   House   Inn,   Restaurant   & Spa,   North   Carolina),   Diego   Muñoz  (Astrid & Gastón,   Perú),   Gary   Danko   (Gary   Danko,   California),   Justin   Cogley   (Aubergine   at   L’Auberge  Carmel,  California) and Lanshu  Chen  (Le  Moût  Restaurant,  Taiwan).

Relaix & Chateau GourmetFest

A sampling of the eighteen featured  events during the 2015 GourmetFest include:

Welcome  Party   -­‐  March  5,  2015:  Watch  the  talented  Relais  & Châteaux  Chefs   in  action.  Chefs  will  be  paired  with  wine  estates  to  welcome  and  kick-­‐off  the  festival

Grand   Women   Chefs  & Winemakers   -­‐   March   6,   2015:   Discover   dishes   and   wine   pairings  prepared  by  an  all  star  team  of  renowned  international  female  chefs  and  winemakers

Rarities   Dinner   -­‐   March   6,   2014:   Experience   one-­‐of-­‐a-­‐kind   dinner   with   Michel   Bras,   Olivier  Roellinger,   Tetsuya,   and   Justin   Cogley   while   exploring   rare   wines   and   champagnes   from   the  around  the  world

Aubergine Chef Justin Cogley

Wild   Mushroom   Hunt   &   Lunch   -­‐   March   7,   2015:   Partake   in   the   ultimate   hunt   for   wild  mushrooms   with   Ranger   Chuck   Bancroft   amidst   2o,000   acres   of   the   beautiful   Santa   Lucia  Preserve

Dom  Pérignon  &  Black  River   Caviar   Lunch  –  March   7,   2015:   Dine   in   an   intimate   setting  with  winemaker  Richard  Geoffroy  and  Black  River  Caviar’s  Graham  Gaspard

Relaix & Chateau GourmetFest

For more information and full schedule of events, visit GourmetFestCarmel.com

See photos from last year’s Relais & Châteaux GourmetFest HERE.

Hall Winery Cabernet Cookoff Raises Thousands for Charity

Ca' Momi Pizza at Hall Winery Cabernet Cookoff

Ca’ Momi Pizza at Hall Winery Cabernet Cookoff

Is there anything better than indulging in good food and wine out in the fresh open air under the warm California sun? I can’t think of too many things, but one situation that could definitely top that off would be if all of the above were going to benefit those in need. So, that’s exactly what happened on a recent luminous Sunday afternoon in the picturesque Napa Valley wine country when tens of thousands of dollars were raised to help local charities. It was a well-deserved reason for 600 attendees to clink their wine glasses.

Hall Winery Cabernet Cookoff

The fifth annual HALL Cabernet Cookoff featured 15 All-Star San Francisco and Napa Valley-based Chef teams who were presented a task to create a personal dish to pair with 2011 HALL Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and compete for a local charity of their choice. Although it was a “competition”, the wine and food-filled affair was fun, friendly and indeed festive.

Hall Winery Tasting Room

This year’s event marked the first at HALL St. Helena’s new tasting room. The bright, naturally-lit, contemporary space was open throughout the Cabernet Cookoff, allowing guests to taste the entire portfolio of HALL Wines. Four recently released vintages were served including 2011 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, 2013 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, and 2011 “Jack’s Masterpiece” Cabernet Sauvignon. Proceeds from wine sales as well as HALL merchandise benefitted the Cabernet Cookoff as well.

Hall is more than a winery, it's an art gallery.

Hall is more than a winery, it’s an art gallery.

Since inception, the Cabernet Cookoff has raised $75,000 for charities in and around the Bay Area. The 2013 HALL Cabernet Cookoff drew more than 480 culinary and wine lovers and raised $30,000 for the top four winning team’s sponsored charities.

Hall Winery Cookoff - One Market

Team One Market at Hall Cabernet Cookoff

San Francisco Chef Mark Dommen from One Market restaurant took the coveted ‘Judge’s Choice’ first place for his charity, Napa Hospice & Adult Day Service, with his Potato Gnocchi dish. The ‘People’s Choice’ winner was a dish of Crispy Oxtail Tacos by Chef Daniel Capra of Paula Le Duc Catering. Their charity partner was the St. Helena Hospital Foundation.

Hall Winery Cabernet Cookoff

Judges and Winners at Hall Cabernet Cookoff

“The Cabernet Cookoff is a fun way to help our community. Everyone involved with this event – including our generous sponsors,  the incredible Bay Area chef teams, enthusiastic non-profit organizations and the entire HALL staff – all donated their time, joining forces to create a spectacular day full of opportunities learn about various philanthropic missions. Today, everyone came out a winner.” –  Kathryn Hall 

Thirsty at Hall Winery

Come Thirsty to Hall Winery

See all who participated by visiting the Chefs teams’ page on the Cabernet Cookoff website for a complete list of winners, participants, and featured non-profit organizations.

Learn more about HALL Winery and the HALL Cabernet Cookoff at hallwines.com

Pebble Beach Food and Wine Weekend April 10-13

Pebble Beach Food Wine - Food Fashionista

There are still some tickets left for this weekend’s Pebble Beach Food and Wine Festival. PBFW is the premier epicurean lifestyle event on the West Coast, matching 250 acclaimed wineries and 75 celebrity chefs to create a hedonistic four-day destination on one of the most picturesque strips of coastline in the world. Throughout the weekend you’ll enjoy intimate access to the pinnacle of culinary and wine talent at wine tastings, cooking demos, and some of the most exclusive, unique dining opportunities available in the world.

Get tickets at: PBFW 2014

Half Moon Bay Brewing Company on the PCH

Half Moon Bay Brewing Company

Just a short jaunt from San Francisco is the picturesque coastal town of Half Moon Bay – the famed spot where surfers from around the globe gather to attend the annual Mavericks surf competition, and a relaxing spot along the Pacific Coast Highway where some lucky locals get to call home.

Half Moon Bay Brewing Co.- Food Fashionista

One thing residents and visitors have in common when they find themselves with a little free time in this coastal neck of the woods, is a visit to Half Moon Bay Brewing Company. Casual and inviting, this quintessential California surf shack was name one of America’s best beach bars by Travel + Leisure magazine. Beer lovers will appreciate the 1,200 square-foot Mavericks Beer Garden and on-site brewery, where hand-crafted, award-winning Mavericks® Beers & Ales are piped directly to the bar. The Mavericks Amber Ale won a bronze medal in the 2012 World Beer Cup, and the Ocho Barril Saison won Best in Show for session beers and the gold medal in the Wood/Smoke Ale category at the California State Fair in June 2013.

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At a recent Beer vs. Wine dinner event, guests were treated to a four-course meal prepared by Half Moon Bay Brewing Company Chef Gaston Alfaro with select pairings of beer and wine from in-house brewmaster James Costa and Hatcher Winery’s Sewell Hatcher respectively.

The evening’s dishes spotlighted local farms in every course and although ballots were taken at the end of the meal to determine a winner, it was no doubt a friendly competition where diners, and all those tinvolved were asking themselves…why isn’t beer and wine simultaneously paired with every meal.

Half Moon Bay Brewing Co.- Food Fashionista

Here are some more photos from the event, and a schedule of some upcoming beer and cheese (yup, you heard it right) dinners taking place at the brewery:

CHEESE & BEER MENU 2014

March 1-8
Chicken with Cilantro Lime Vodka Cream Sauce, Red Hawk Cheese and Sundried Tomatoes
Paired with Princeton-by-the-Sea IPA

March 9-15
Savory Spinach and Cheesy Artichoke Bread Pudding
Paired with Bootlegger Brown Ale

March 16-22
Gourmet Grilled Cheese Panini with Housemade Beer Bread
Paired with Big Break Ale 

March 23-31
Queso Blanco with Cochinita, topped with Housemade Beer Bread Crumbs
Served with Crispy Pita Chips
Paired with Mavericks Amber Ale

For more info, visit Half Moon Bay Brewing Company

 

MICHELIN Guides San Francisco 2014 Star Gala

Bibendum Michelin Guide - Food Fashionista

‘Tis the season for Michelin Guide releases! It’s the time of the year that the most highly-regarded chefs around the globe wait in anticipation for THAT phone call, and then breathe a sigh of relief (or not), for about a week until they warrior back in their kitchens until next year’s announcements.

Michelin Guide Gala 2014

With lovely ladies Martina Kostow, Dominique Crenn, Heidi Brown, Amanda Lam. Where’s #DaisyLainu?

MICHELIN Gala - San Francisco                                          It isn’t a party without never ending bubbly

On a recent, crisp, fall evening in San Francisco, I attended the San Francisco MICHELIN gala at the opulent Bently Reserve to celebrate the launch of the MICHELIN Guide San Francisco, Bay Area and Wine Country 2014 Guide. Gastronomy-loving guests mingled with their favorite local culinary stars  while enjoying a champagne reception, and a walk-around tasting featuring cuisine from select Michelin-starred chefs/restaurants including Mourad Lahlou (Aziza), Mark Sullivan (Spruce), Lissa Doumani and Hiro Sone (Ame’), Teague Moriarty and Matt McNamara (Sons and Daughters).

Michelin Chefs - Food Fashionista

Chefs Alexa Atala, David Kinch, Dominique Crenn, Corey Lee, Josh Skenes, Daniel Patterson

Spotted in the well-heeled crowd enjoying an extremely rare Tuesday night off were chefs Christopher Kostow (The Restaurant at Meadowood), David Breeden (French Laundry), Josh Skenes (Saison), Dominique Crenn (Atelier Crenn), Daniel Patterson (Coi), Corey Lee (Benu), David Kinch (Manresa), James Syhabout (Commis), and powerhouse Brazilian chef Alex Atala of restaurant D.O.M. in São Paulo who was in town for the release of his new cookbook.

Mourad Lahlou, Michael Ellis, Teague Moriary62427                  Michelin’s Michael Ellis with Chefs Mourad Lahlou and Teague Moriarty

Truffle                                 This truffle fit perfectly into my purse ;D

Michelin Guide Director Michael Ellis flew in from Paris for the special event, and was delighted to enjoy a reunion with Le Toque Executive Chef Ken Frank, who Ellis had worked with many years back. Isn’t it funny how food always brings people back together.

Quince Chef Michael Tusk MichelinBibendum flexing with Bay Area’s newest MICHELIN two-star chef, Michael Tusk (Quince)

Mika Takeuchi - Michelin Guide Sons and Daughters                            Plating with the chefs from Sons and Daughters

Michelin Guide Restaurants and Chefs San Francisco Bay Area                                                   Striking a well-deserved pose

Christopher Kostow, Joshua Skenes

Michelin Guide Gala 2014                                             Team French Laundry in the House!!!

Michelin Guide Gala Desserts

Michelin Guide San Francisco 2014           Saison SF Caneles Michelin Guide                    Concluding the night in style with Shawn Gawle’s Canelés at Saison

Along with stellar food recommendations, Michelin is the go-to guide for all things travel. Whether it’s road trippin’ in Arizona, or livin’ it up in the French Riviera, Michelin has you covered. As a MICHELIN Brand Ambassador, I’m excited to offer you a discount on the guides that accompany me on my travel journeys. Just click on the widget below. They make fab holiday gifts for food lovers, travel junkies, and future explorers as well!

This article is part of my Brand Ambassador features for MICHELIN.

Sunset Magazine Garden & HQ Tour Celebrating their March All-Food Issue

Image_large_square (33)

Yesterday, myself and other members of the media visited Sunset Magazine in Menlo Park, California for a tour of their exquisite gardens and work place. To say the least, it was impressive. When your work surroundings consist of exotic cacti, plump grapefruit trees, and a massive outdoor kitchen, we think you’ve got it quite good.

From mini Umami Hatch Burgers, to Chicken Tinga Tostadas, it was a night to remember. After all, this is the first time in Sunset’s 115 year history that they’ve dedicated an issue entirely to food. Although the first, I have a feeling this won’t be the last. With Food Editor Margo True, the staff at Sunset are pros when it comes to all things food and drink. Their wine cellar is a vino lover’s dream.

See more photos from the event HERE.

Sunset-Magazine-HQ

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Super Bowl Recipes by Super Chefs

Superbowl-Chefs-Recipes-Food-Fashionista

Super Bowl XLVI is right around the corner and we know that many of you are either hosting your own game day party, or attending a gathering as a guest. Even if you aren’t a big fan of football, we know you’re a fan of food, and there’s going to be plenty of that to go around on this very special football Sunday.

Food Fashionista asked some super Chefs to share their favorite recipes for the annual football festivities. Best part of all, you can easily create these unique and tasty recipes at home with the step-by-step instructions and ingredients listed by these professional chefs.

This year, forego being the friend who brings the bag of chips and jar of salsa, and impress your friends with one of the dishes below. We can’t predict if it’ll be the San Francisco 49er’s or the Baltimore Ravens who’ll be holding up the trophy this year, but we can guarantee that you’ll be a winner in the eyes of your Superbowl party comrades and foes if you make one of these recipes for this coming Sunday’s big celebration.

Justin-Simoneaux-Food-Fashionista-Recipe

Chicken & Andouille Sausage Gumbo Recipe by Chef Justin Simoneaux (Boxing Room)

Chef Justin Simoneaux’s recommended recipe is Smoked Chicken & Andouille Sausage Gumbo, because it’s hearty and can feed a group! Also, since the Niners are playing the Ravens in his home state of New Orleans, it’s like bringing a little taste of the South to San Francisco.

As you can tell from the photo, Justin’s team is the Saints!

Hoss-Zare-Food-Fashionista-Recipe

Roasted Chicken Wings in Fesenjoon Sauce Recipe by Chef Hoss Zare (Zare Fly Trap)

“My recipe is for roasted chicken wings in fesenjoon sauce. This is simple and uncomplicated, the sauce even matches my favorite team, the niners. This recipe is easy and a crowd pleaser. The color is reminiscent of the 49ers. Prediction – 49ers: 36, Baltimore: 24″ – Hoss Zare

Cassava-FoodFashionista-Recipe

Curry Puffs Recipe by Kris Toliao & Yuka Ioroi (Cassava Bakery + Cafe)

Kris is more of a Manchester United Football fan, but he does like the 49er’s and Yuka really likes the New Orleans Saints because she says “their story is beautiful.

Mark-Dommen-Food-Fashionista-Recipe

Chipotle Chili Glazed Dungeness Crab Recipe by Chef Mark Dommen (One Market Restaurant)

I chose this recipe because I wanted to do something with crab, keeping the main ingredient local as the 49ers are in the Superbowl.  I also wanted to make it finger food and fun so that people had to use their hands to eat it.  I like to compare it to the shellfish version of chicken wings and something that would go really well with cold beer on Superbowl Sunday.  The crab could easily be substituted for head on shrimp in the shell.” – Mark Dommen

Mark’s favorite football team is the 49ers!

Michael-Mina-Food-Fashionista-Recipe

Cioppino, Crab Toasts, and Crudite Recipe by Chef Michael Mina (Mina Group & CookTasteEat)

Chef Michael Mina is a 49er faithful and these are Chef Mina’s “San Francisco” recipes in honor of the 49ers going to the Super Bowl (crab, seafood, RED food…)

Chef-Jet-Tila-Charleston-Tacos-Recipe

 

Charleston Tacos with Braised Short Ribs Recipe by Chef Jet Tila (The Charleston LA)

“My favorite Team has to be the Jets because I was named after them back when they would win in the 70’s!  
 
Even though it’s labor intensive, these tacos can be done DAYS ahead and bring the Big game a fancy factor!.  Braise the beef days ahead, keep warm during the game, and guests can make their tacos during the breaks in the game!  These will definitely take your game to another level!” – Jet Tila 

Francis-Hogan-Food-Fashionista-Recipe

Chef Hogan BLEEDS green…meaning he is a die hard Philadelphia Eagles fan (from his home town). He doesn’t dislike the Niners at all, but he believes “you have to stay true to your roots.”

Chef Thomas Weibull

Sourdough Cheese Steak with Homemade Chez Whiz and Crisp Onions Recipe by Chef Thomas Weibull (Velvet Room at CLIFT)

“Why is this dish my favorite? Well coming from Philly you can’t watch football without Philly Cheese Steak. It’s like drinking water for us. I think I had my first Cheese steak when I was 5 and then once every weekend since then…well when I lived there that is, I can still smell those Amorosa Rolls though this version is more a West Coast style.” – Chef Thomas Weibull

Chef-RIchie-Nakano-Food-Fashionista-

Chicken Katsu Sandwich Recipe by Chef Richie Nakano (Hapa Ramen) 

Chef Richie Nakano of Hapa Ramen may be known as a die-hard baseball and San Francisco Giant’s fan, but he hasn’t forgotten that his city is represented in this year’s Super Bowl.


 

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