Posts for November 20, 2012

The Hog’s Apothecary, a New Sausage and Beer Spot, Coming to Oakland

Today's liquor licenses brought news of The Hog's Apothecary, a new Oakland restaurant from owners Bradford Earle and John Streit. We've reached out for further details, but here's what we've got so far: It will be at 375 40th Street at Opal, just down the street from Homeroom; Earle is the manager of Park Avenue Bar and Grill as Eater mentioned earlier and Streit is a chef at Rotten City Pizza in Emeryville; the name of their holding company is Abe Froman Enterprises, a cheeky reference to Ferris Bueller's Day Off and the fictional "Sausage King of Chicago"; and Tablehopper points us to this Chowhound tip that it will be a sausage and beer pub, and there may also be shuffleboard. File under: Developing.

Christopher Kimball Dines at Zuni; Michael Jordan Spotted at Perbacco; Harrison Ford and Calista Flockhart Hit Cotogna


America's Test Kitchen host and Cook's Illustrated editor Christopher Kimball was just in San Francisco and seen dining at Zuni on Saturday night. He was reportedly friendly and compared bowties with one of the servers. Also in Zuni last week was Olympia Dukakis, enjoying a light dinner with two friends before one of the final performances of Elektra at A.C.T., in which she starred as the one-woman Greek chorus.

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Shorty Goldstein’s, a New Jewish Deli, on Its Way to the FiDi

Betelnut chef de cuisine Michael Siegel is branching out soon with his own Jewish deli in the Financial District, and it will be called Shorty Goldstein's. As Tablehopper reports, he'll be featuring some family recipes, like his grandmother’s chopped liver abd his great-grandmother’s potato knish, as well as house-made pastrami, smoked fish, seasonal salads, and more. And this will be the second new-school Jewish deli in town in a year, after Wise Sons. The exact location is still TBA as the previous tenants seem to still be in business through December 1. Siegel leaves Betelnut after a five-year tenure in two weeks, and hopes to open Shorty Goldstein's in January. Stay tuned. [Tablehopper]

East Side Sushi, a New Film About a Sushi Restaurant, Shooting in Oakland

Photo: Courtesy of the film

A new indie flick about a Latina single mother who goes to work in an Oakland sushi restaurant is finishing shooting today in Oakland. It's called East Side Sushi, and as Jesse Hirsch reports in the East Bay Express, "It's a timeworn tale of overcoming adversity, an exploration of prejudice in professional kitchens, and a buoyant celebration of sushi." First-time filmmaker Anthony Lucero, an East Bay native, has cut his teeth as a visual effects editor in L.A., and returned to Oakland to find there were "so many cinematic locations" in the city that have never gotten any screen time. He shot the restaurant scenes at Coach Sushi, B-Dama, and Mijori in Oakland, and his two lead actors, Diana Elizabeth Torres and Yutaka Takeuchi, both received sushi training down in SoCal before filming. As for whether the movie will be seen as riding the coattails of this year's mini-hit Jiro Dreams of Sushi, that remains to be seen. [EBX]

Michael Bauer Would Like to Remind Everyone He Doesn’t Look Like Orson Welles

For all those readers and commenters out there who refuse to believe that Michael Bauer isn't an obese testament to the fattiness of restaurant food, he lashes back on the blog today to say that, actually, he's never really been overweight, and if you must know, he recently put on four pounds because he'd stopped going to the gym, but he's lost two of those pounds thanks to getting back on the treadmill. Also, "I'm proof that you won’t become fat from eating regularly in restaurants ... My point is, you can eat healthy in a restaurant, often healthier than you eat at home, but diners do have to accept some responsibilities for their choices and for exercising portion control." He's talking about nice, vegetable-heavy California food, of course, and he obviously isn't predisposed, genetically, to obesity. But you'll have to take his word for it. [Between Meals/Scoop]

Ruth Bourdain’s Flat Thanksgiving Jokes Are All Turkeys

It's almost Thanksgiving, and thus everyone's favorite Twitter mashup of 2010 is at it again. Ruth Bourdain unleashed a flurry of Turkey Day-related tweets today, and we'd have to concur with Anthony Bourdain who said six months ago that RuBo had "lost gas." Jokes like "Moistness should be your goal when cooking the turkey, but if it's too moist, consider calling a gynecologist," and "If you are buying a local, organic, heritage turkey, make sure it has a beard, tattoos, and is wearing skinny jeans," never would have made it out of the Onion writers' room, that's for sure. RuBo then finished up her morning's work with a brief moment of shilling her new book, Comfort Me With Offal. Because, you know, with humor like this we could sure use more! Thankfully the burning question of "who is Ruth Bourdain?" isn't burning so bad anymore, and it would seem most of us have given up caring. (Last we heard it was two people, but they've remained mum.) [RuthBourdain/Twitter]

Cook Rushed to Hospital After Eating Ghost Chile Pepper Sauce

A spoonful ... of danger.

A 26-year-old cook in London was taste-testing his restaurant's "ultimate flaming hot chicken wings" in front of cheering customers when things went horribly wrong. Arif Ali started sweating while eating the wings, which were slicked with a sauce made from Naga Bhut Jolokia, or ghost chile peppers. He drank milk in an attempt quell the burn before gasping and ultimately collapsing on a dining room table. Ali was taken to a nearby hospital, treated and released, but reported severe stomach cramps and diarrhea for a week afterwards. The wings were prospective menu items at Jimmy's in London, and the restaurant intended to challenge customers to eat as many as they could withstand. "We have now decided in the interests of customer safety," Jimmy's manager tells the Mail, "not to put this particular item on our menu." [Daily Mail UK]

Asqew Grill Closing All Its Locations Today

The message on the company's website today.

Asqew Grill, the thirteen-year-old skewer shop chain that originated on Haight Street, is finally giving up the ghost. Owner Mark Nicandri tells the Scoop it was a tough decision, but after closing four of eight locations in 2009, he's now ready to give up the remaining four, including three in San Francisco (Haight Street, Steiner & Chestnut, and Laurel Village) and one at Bay Street in Emeryville. Nicandri actually founded Asqew with a partner, David Gogolak, who moved to Montana in 2007 and died in an avalanche while skiing in 2008. Nicandri may be popping up elsewhere in the future, so keep an eye out. [Scoop]

Bar Crudo Chef to Open Seaside Metal in Guerneville

Bar Crudo's stellar seafood chowder.Photo: bittermelon/Flickr

Bar Crudo chef-partner Mike Selvera has a new project in the works up in Guerneville, on the Russian River, called Seaside Metal (16222 Main Street, Guerneville). The menu will be focused on oysters, a raw bar, and fish stews, and we learn the news via a tiny item in the November issue of Food & Wine, as part of a piece on "America's Best Little Food Towns" — which also gives a generous shout-out to Crista Luedtke's Boon Eat + Drink and Big Bottom Market. Selvera opened the raw-bar-focused Bar Crudo with his twin brother Tim on Bush Street (now Bouche) back in 2005 and expanded to a second space on Divisadero in 2007, only to close the tiny original space as the economy tanked. The restaurant has thrived in the last five years of Divisadero's gentrification, and thus the expansion makes sense. Look for Seaside Metal — named for the rusting boats over at the nearby coast — to feature Russian River wines and local craft beers, and for it to open "in the next few months." [Food & Wine]


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