Even though we were headed to Aspen before the crack of dawn this morning, last night we passed up packing in favor of the Star Chefs Rising Stars Revue, a traveling event that recognizes some of the most avant-garde culinary professionals in various cities like New York, Chicago, Seattle, and our home base of San Francisco. Over a jaw-dropping view of the bay, we enjoyed vittles from various chefs, some of whom were just beginning to realize their own potential. To get a peek at what cutting-edge creations were served, keep reading.
Having spent some serious time in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco, I've had my share of love affairs with all kinds of pizza, from the giant, thin pies at Grimaldi's in Brooklyn to the sausage-stuffed deep dish at Giordano's to the organic, local ingredient-laden, egg-topped variety at Alice Waters's Chez Panisse. But if I had to choose, my favorite type of pie would be the one made in the ethereal Neapolitan style. It has a crisp, ever-so-slightly charred exterior and a chewy but light interior. In San Francisco, the best of this kind is found at A16. What's your choice pizza?
A few weeks ago, I raved about a new Italian cookbook called A16 Food + Wine that has a delicious (and unique) meatball recipe. Well, I'm still learning great things from it. This week, I made a panzanella with tuna and capers, another item on the menu at the launch party. Every ingredient, from the briny capers to the fragrant basil, was well-balanced.
This is a fantastic meal to make if you've got too much bread or when your loaf is going stale. I left the capers whole, since I like their saltiness and texture. You can easily adjust the recipe to your liking; get your hands on it (and step-by-step pictures) when you read more
To celebrate the cookbook's debut, Williams-Sonoma, which will carry the book, hosted a launch party with the authors on hand. There, I not only scored a copy of the book but also sampled some entries from the new tome.
I couldn't get enough of the moist, complexly flavored meatballs. The recipe can be time-intensive, but once you taste the finished product, you'll think it's totally worth the wait. Learn how to make the meatballs (and check out photos from the bash!) when you read more
Last Tuesday night I found myself on a date with a surfer from Maine at one of San Francisco's hottest new spots A16. You know I'm crazy about wine experimentation, and my date was willing to come along for the taste adventure. The waitress was 100% knowledgeable on most of the wines and recommended we try a Fiano, so we most happily obliged her. A Fiano is a highly regarded dry white wine whose grapes are grown in the Campania region, east of Naples in Italy. This wine was excellent with a clean vibrant palate and a smooth finish, there were subtle flavors similar to that of a refreshing brut champagne. It was very pale in color with delicate floral aromas with an underlying hazelnut note. I enjoyed this wine so much that I am contemplating hunting down another bottle.