Posts for May 11, 2012

Famed Feminist Strip Club The Lusty Lady Is Cash-Strapped

The Lusty Lady in North Beach made national headlines in the 90s when the strippers there organized an exotic dancers union, and ultimately formed a cooperative to buy out the club owners. Now the club has fallen on hard times, and they're appealing to the city, or anyone, for some help to keep the club open. C.W. Nevius gets characteristically curmudgeonly about it all, noting the "the tattered and stained rug in the back room" and the sad, dollar-operated, window-booth structure they have now for watching the dancers. Also, he says, "This is truly a San Francisco place, but I can't say there is a compelling reason to keep it open." [Chron]

New Hawaiian Place Ono Grindz Does Spam & Cheese Waffles

"Grindz" is Hawaiian slang for "eats," and "ono" means "good."

We mentioned the other day that a clear trend in 2012 is a small wave of new Hawaiian cuisine in town. The newest place to open is Ono Grindz (832 Clement at 10th) in the Richmond, and the Richmond SF blog just talked to owners Bradley Lum and his wife Josefa Carballo Lum and brings us some more details about the place. They've got some of the deliciously trashy stuff that makes Hawaiian food so special, like Spam & Cheese Waffles ($6), as well as a variation on chicken and waffles with chicken katsu, Spam, and a cheese buttermilk waffle. They're also doing Kalua Pork Benedict for breakfast, and a hamburger steak at lunch. [Richmond SF]

Hirsch Loves The Codmother at the Wharf; Deseran Launches New Column; Unterman Reviews Contigo

Noting that "we long ago ceded Fisherman’s Wharf to the socks-and-sandals crowd, a demographic ... not known for discerning palates," Examiner critic Jesse Hirsch insists that there is in fact a gem in the rough over there: The Codmother (2824 Jones Street). It's a fish-and-chips shack opened by a cute British lady, and he says her fish is expertly battered and fried, and "the chips were hand-cut, flavorful Kennebecs." Furthermore, she does deep-fried Oreos and Twinkies, which are "an experience you should probably try once. But not after a meal of deep-fried fish and potatoes." [Examiner]

Read more »

Fat People More Likely to Die in Car Crashes Than Skinny People

This guy's a goner.

We all know that far too many Americans are overweight, and that with all those extra pounds come all kinds of calamities. As if heart disease, diabetes, gout, and impotence weren’t enough to worry your plump little head about, here’s some more bad news for fat folks: They don’t survive car accidents quite as well as skinny people. Researchers at University of Buffalo — who wondered why morbidly obese people are 56 percent more likely to die in car accidents than people of normal weight — released a study at yesterday's annual meeting of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, the Atlantic reports. In it lies the reason why chubby drivers die more frequently than their more slender counterparts.

Read more »

Burritt Tavern Launches Lunch

A month in, as promised, Charlie Palmer's Burritt Tavern is now open for lunch every weekday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. See the menu here, and you should be advised that the Burritt Tavern burger is topped with arugula, apple-smoked bacon, aged cheddar, and horseradish aioli. [Earlier slideshow]

The Best of S.F.: Where and What to Eat

Dinner at Outerlands is among our favorites.

San Francisco is a good-eating town, and we here at Grub Street have been doing our best to point you to the best there is when it comes to sandwiches, pasta, roast chicken, cocktails, desserts, you name it. In the great tradition of American sitcoms, allow us to take this mid-season moment to recap some of our favorite slideshow moments of the last couple years, just in case you missed one.

Read more »

Mama Cass Sandwich Truck Operator Doesn’t Seem to Get the Joke

Surely someone has told her.Photo: Courtesy of Mama Cass

It's a sandwich truck, and it's called Mama Cass. Get it? Well, apparently owner Cass Pham Thacher doesn't. She named the truck after herself, you see, and none of the press about it when it launched last summer latched on to the connection to the false but popular rumor that the real "Mama Cass" Elliot died from choking on a ham sandwich. Anyway, Thacher's Vietnamese sliders (three for $12!) already have a lot of fans, and you can catch the truck in Hayes Valley, at UN Plaza, and at Mint Plaza, by following the schedule posted here. Just don't tell the Cass Elliot fans.

Oops! Raw Milk Sickens Ten People in California

Bad moos for raw foodists

People were up in arms when federal agents raided Venice's Rawsome grocer last year, seizing wads of cash and destroying thousands of gallons of raw milk product. The controversy even attracted the attention of The New Yorker's Dana Goodyear, who asserted these verboten products were being treated as the new marijuana. Well, there seems to be mounting evidence that the stuff is a bit more dangerous than your average doobie. According to today's story in Food Safety News, at least ten people in California were infected with Campylobacter — whose symptoms include diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever — after drinking Fresno County–based Organic Pastures' raw milk. The products are now under quarantine.

Read more »

Behold the Patio at Central Kitchen

It was a nice night for an opening.Photo: J. Barmann/Grub Street

Central Kitchen (20th and Florida), the new non-Italian spinoff of Flour + Water, opened to a full house last night, and we got a quick shot of the patio, which wasn't set up when we were in earlier this week to shoot that slideshow. As you can see, the heat lamps are in but the full covering up top is not quite complete. But we like the European-feeling string lights. Check out the menu and other details here, and below, check out the patio's water feature.

Read more »

WestWood Pop-Up Launches at the Former B3/Winemakers' Speakeasy

It appears the short-lived Winemakers' Speakeasy, a.k.a. the space that was also briefly known as B3 (1152 Valencia), is no more. Thrillist reports today on a pop-up that has moved in which is operating five days a week, Wednesday through Sunday, doing weeknight dinners and weekend brunch, and it's called WestWood. The crew behind it are the guys from Criolla Kitchen, minus chef Randy Lewis, and the guy in charge here is Johnny Becklund, who's cooked at Coi, La Folie, and Tipsy Pig.

Read more »

Michael Chiarello’s Mother’s Day Plans: Two Masseuses

"In addition to hiring two masseuses for my wife and several of her friends, I'll be preparing vitello tonnato and whole-poached California King salmon with olive oil-poached asparagus and watercress and caper aioli." —Michael Chiarello to Food Republic on how to give a good Mother's Day. [Food Republic]

Brasserie S&P Delayed Until June 4; Silks Not Closing Yet

Contrary to what we reported last week, Silks will not actually be closing this weekend as planned, because the replacement restaurant at the revamped Mandarin Oriental is not yet ready for prime time. We attended a Goodbye to Silks event last night and found out that Brasserie S&P will be opening June 4, and Silks will remain open through Memorial Day, because the hotel needs to have a restaurant. (The new restaurant is off of the first-floor lobby, you see, and Silks is up on the second floor.) We also spoke to new chef Adam Mali about his plans for Brasserie S&P, which include house-made pancetta and salumis, and a focus on local ingredients. "It's an incredible opportunity," he says. As for the bar program, bar manager Priscilla Young has been tasting gins from around the globe, and has compiled a gin list 31 bottles long so far, which she believes is the biggest selection of gin at any bar. "The longest list I've heard of is 27," she says.

Read more »

Crate & Barrel Co-Opts Dolores Park for New Grill Line

Oh jeez. Crate & Barrel's new line of portable grill stuff, including an insulated cooler tote, a burger press, and an avocado-green Hibachi thing, is named "Dolores Park," and this is sure to piss off some Mission denizens. Also, no one else in the country will know what the hell that means, or that grilling with that thing would be illegal in the actual Dolores Park, but we digress. [Mission Mission]

Mill Valley Really, Really Hates Subway

For the second time, a Subway franchisee named Akki Patel went before the Mill Valley city council on Monday to try to get them to approve his permit to open a sandwich shop there. Local journalist Joyce Kleiner has been crowing about the controversy for months now, calling the town a "shrine to gentility" and telling the Chron's Leah Garchik, "I'm so embarrassed to be from Mill Valley sometimes." But it's not just the town's snobbery about tacky chain operations that embarrasses her. Get this: At the meeting on Monday, after Patel, who owns 28 Subways, stood up to plead his case and the floor was opened for public comment, someone stood up and said, "Why don't you open an Indian restaurant? I love Indian food!" Really, Mill Valley? [Garchik/Chron, Earlier]

Infographic: What Really Happens for People Who Appear on Next Food Network Star?

A few of the "stars."Photo: Jesse David Fox

On Sunday, Food Network will roll out its eighth season of Next Food Network Star, the reality competition that purports to take members of the general public and transform them into food-television celebrities. That means Food Network has been doing this for seven years running, more than enough time for us to look back and assess just how successful the show has been at, you know, actually creating stars. So, we looked at exactly what's happened to every person who has ever been a NFNS contestant and turned that data into an extremely scientific, yet still very easy to read, chart.

See the chart, right this way. »

Mugaritz Chef Andoni Luis Aduriz on Sensitivity, War, and the Pleasure of Discovery

Aduriz.Photo: Dave Ratzlow

Most conversations with chefs turn quickly to food, or their restaurants. But during a walk along the High Line yesterday with Andoni Luis Aduriz, the man behind Mugaritz in San Sebastian, Spain, the chef wanted to discuss the effect of war on humans. “Normal people kill children, neighbors take each other’s eyes out,” he said in Spanish, through an interpreter. “The context turns them into monsters. If a person in a specific context can become desensitized, then why can’t we create a space where people can become more sensitive?”

Read more »


Recent reader reviews on MenuPages

  • Lucca Food Store See the menu

    “Billy's Philly”

    Billy is only there after 5 pm but if you are around go there and ask for his billy philly, the best philly you'll find this side of the Mississippi.

  • Le P'tit Laurent See the menu

    “Elegant Sauces & Fabulous Bread”

    It is the place me and my love go for every intimate moment.

  • Hidive See the menu

    “Are you kidding?”

    You have to be totally drunk to think that this is even acceptable as a public watering hole.


Jay Barmann
NY Mag