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Chefs and Restaurants

  By: Ann Wycoff January 29, 2016 - New Orleans has po'boys, Chicago loves its pizza, Philly takes pride in its cheese steaks, and San Diego, well here, it's all about tacos - a nod to the city's beach lifestyle and Baja neighbors. Tacos are the ultimate expression of San Diego's Cali-Baja cuisine that celebrates two cultures, along with fresh fish, farm produce, wood-smoked meats, zesty salsas and sauces. From food trucks and hole in the walls to oceanfront and high-design eateries, San Diego offers up everything from delicious 99 cent deals to gourmet tacos prepared by local top chefs.…
Dr. Paul Thomas and Robert Chang of the American Truffle Co. are flanked by Chefs David Barzelay, Frank Tramonto, Ken Frank, and Stefano Ciotti    By Betty Teller January 28, 2016 - What do a former lawyer turned chef of an underground restaurant, an Italian chef who began his career as a teenager, and a well-known restaurateur have in common? They were the exciting guest chefs for the 2016 Truffle Festival.
Looking eastward from edge of The Richmond. Photo: David Sawyer  By Marcia Gagliardi January 18, 2016 – San Francisco’s Richmond District (which runs north of Golden Gate Park) is full of international restaurants, from Chinese to Vietnamese to Burmese to pizza. Here are a few highlights of some local favorites that visitors may enjoy.
TASTE News Service December 29, 2015 – The coming months are an especially beautiful time to visit Yosemite as the valley is blanketed in fresh snow and the winter brings a solitude that you cannot match any other time of the year in this very popular destination. The view from the tall windows of the Ahwahnee’s solarium is lovely anytime. On an afternoon when deer are crossing the meadow as new snow falls, it’s just about perfect.
Azalina Eusope serves Malaysian food By Paula Keung The name San Francisco is derived from Saint Francis of Assisi, a Roman friar who was canonized in 1228. What’s interesting about Saint Francis is that he is the patron saint of animals and the environment. So it is only natural that the vegetarian lifestyle is so popular in the scenic City by the Bay. We tapped into the veg-scene via two locals, Mirran and Jenny, who shared with us some of the best places for deliciously conscientious dining. Mirran Raphaely, Founder & CEO at FLOW GLOBAL “I’m a lifelong vegetarian at…
Chef Paul Prudhomme 1940 - 2015 By Dan Clarke October 9, 2015 – Chef Paul Prudhomme has died at age 75 after a brief illness. A native of Opelousas, Louisiana, the young Prudhomme traveled around the United States to expand his culinary horizons beyond the Cajun culture in which he’d grown up. He returned to New Orleans in the 1970s and soon became head chef at that city’s Commander’s Palace, a plum job for any chef, especially one who was relatively young and without formal training. In 1979 Paul Prudhomme and his wife, Kay, created their own restaurant, K-Paul’s Louisiana…
 By Marcia GagliardiOctopus at La Ciccia People always ask chefs where they like to eat, but unfortunately chefs don’t get to eat out very much, and when they do, it’s often on the late side. But here are a few places where you’ll find cooks and chefs in San Francisco when they have a chance to let someone else do the cooking. La Ciccia (291 30th St.) A San Francisco restaurant industry favorite, this authentic Sardinian restaurant in Noe Valley always has a happy crowd dining on chef Massimiliano Conti’s spaghetti and bottarga, spicy octopus, fresh seafood, and fregola and…
Chef Cimarusti and piscine friendTASTE News Service, September 21, 2015 – Chef Michael Cimarusti has announced an innovative fish-sourcing project for his Los Angeles restaurant, Providence. Working with 16 commercial fishermen from Santa Barbara organized by Captain Brett Wilson, the pilot program is establishing the first-ever Restaurant Supported Fishery (RSF) in the state of California. Through the Dock to Dish program, participating restaurants receive a weekly delivery of freshly caught seafood, based on the species available to local, small-scale fishermen. The concept is reimagining the seafood marketplace throughout multiple domestic seaports and making wild, traceable and local fish readily accessible…
Cracked Dungeness crab at Alioto'sBy Marcia Gagliardi Let’s take a look at some dishes that come from San Francisco, mythical items that almost every visitor has on their checklist. (To be clear, while items like the focaccia at Liguria Bakery and the egg custard tarts from Golden Gate Bakery are superlative and local favorites, those dishes’ origins are not in San Francisco.) And don’t forget: if you want to try an It’s-It, you just need to visit a corner store and nab one on the fly. The question is: vanilla or mint chip? Dungeness Crab When local Dungeness crab comes…
TASTE News Service September 16, 2015 - This month, the iconic Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar, located at Fairmont San Francisco, will celebrate seven decades of delighting guests with tropical décor and island-inspired libations and cuisine. Tonga Room, the oldest continually-operating tiki bar in North America, opened its doors on September 18, 1945 and has reigned as a swanky outpost of South Seas splendor ever since.
TASTE News Service August 24, 2015 - With nearly 40% of its population being Asian, Irvine offers foodies true global cuisine, with a wide selection of delicacies from China, Taiwan, Japan, Vietnam and other distant shores. Several restaurants that originated in Asia's Pacific Rim can be found at Diamond Jamboree, a unique Southern California retail destination that brings together a variety of cuisines and international flavors. Three such restaurants include; Curry House CoCo Ichibanya, Nagoya, Japan, Chef Hung Taiwanese Beef Noodle, Jinmen, Taiwan and 85°C Bakery, Bao-Ping, Taipei. Specializing in coffee, cakes, and breads, 85°C Bakery opened in Irvine in…
Japanese-influenced Rintaro is on Top 50 list. photo: Aya Brackett TASTE News Service, August 15, 2015 - Bon Appétit  magazine has named San Francisco “The Best Food City in the Country Right Now.” Andrew Knowlton, Bon Appétit's deputy editor, wrote that “Over four days and 15 meals, San Francisco proved itself on culinary fire in 2015 . . . I don't think I've ever experienced such a concentration of exciting and invigorating restaurants in a single year, in a single season. Not even in New York.” “Yep, the city's eating scene is having a great year. I'd say it's time…
El Celler de Can Roca By Dan Clarke Earlier this month an internet news link caught my eye. It had to do with the announcement of a 2015 list of the world’s best restaurants. Of course I had to find out more. How many of the honored establishments would I have read about? Might I actually have eaten a meal at one? Likely not, I thought, but maybe there would be a California restaurant among the winners we could tell you about. Whose life would be so charmed that he could dine in enough of these great restaurants to form…
Sonoma County chefs John Stewart and Duskie Estes have fun at Chef's Holiday TASTE News Service June 27, 2015 - Yosemite is approaching its 125th anniversary of becoming a National Park and, while justly famed for its natural beauty, the Park and surrounding area also justify a gustatory reputation. Here are some aspects that our culinary-oriented readers might enjoy: Chef's Holidays at The Ahwahnee Yosemite's Chefs' Holidays at The Ahwahnee, held each year in January and February, feature some of the world's most innovative and acclaimed chefs. This Northern California cooking adventure provides a showcase for the range of styles,…
Urban and airy feeling at Ella TASTE News Service May 4, 2015 - Local, seasonal, sustainable: These may be culinary buzzwords in many places, but Sacramento restaurateurs have been cooking by these principles for decades. Surrounded by unparalleled agricultural bounty, Sacramento's restaurants showcase the region's best products, from juicy tomatoes to lush old-vine Zinfandel, sweet peaches to crisp corn, nutty almonds to succulent lamb. That cornucopia inspires Sacramento's talented chefs year-round, and the city's dining scene—especially in the convenient, central downtown and Midtown areas—has boomed in recent years. The city's fresh, new dining venues and its longtime favorite haunts alike…
A peek through the window at Benu TASTE News Service May 3, 2015 - It's been a banner year for San Francisco, and not just for the World Series Champion Giants. The city has received high praise for its restaurants from a variety of esteemed sources. Travel + Leisure In Travel + Leisure magazine's November survey of America's Favorite Cities, San Francisco came in first for Wine and second for Wine Bars. According to the editors, “A culinary scene to rival New York City's, eye-popping design, and a laid-back, outdoorsy ethos are just three reasons to visit San Francisco right…
Prince of Porc David Bazirgan TASTE News Service April 16, 2015 — Cochon US Tour has announced the SF winner of the 10-city traveling culinary competition. Chef David Bazirgan of Dirty Habit was crowned the Prince of Porc on Sunday, April 12 at Fairmont San Francisco and advances to Snowmass/Aspen for a double-hit weekend in June, including Grand Cochon and Heritage Fire. Going on its seventh year, Cochon 555 showcases the best bites, chefs and who’s who of the good food movement. The signature event featured an all-star lineup of chefs, judges and sponsors to celebrate family farms, heritage breed…
By: Esther Tseng  Dining in West Hollywood offers even more options than you might realize. We’re not just talking about that coffee house or happy hour that you’ve been meaning to try— your favorite restaurants may offer some off-menu items at that you never even knew about! These insiders-only dishes at five of West Hollywood’s best restaurants reveal the secret side of West Hollywood’s legendary restaurant scene: BOA SteakhouseBOA Steakhouse is famous for its steaks, but it also offers some secret, off-menu protein dishes that showcase the restaurant’s versatility. Seafood lovers shouldn’t miss the charred octopus taco topped with tangy…
Team USA Coach Gavin Kaysen, Chef Skylar Stover, Chef Philip Tessier, David A. Bernahl II, Thomas Keller, Daniel Bouloud, Jérôme Bocuse and Executive Director Young Yun at the 2015 Bocuse d'Or in Lyon, France. photo: BKB FoundationTASTE News Service March 6, 2015 - Pebble Beach Food & Wine,  now in its 8th year, brings some of the world’s most revered culinary talent to the Monterey Peninsula. This year’s edition, held April 9-12, will feature more than 100 celebrity chefs and 250 wineries, who will come together to showcase a weekend of dinners and chef collaborations, tastings and cooking demonstrations. Coastal…
Sheep graze in the early winter vineyard TASTE News Service October 14, 2014 - Taverna Sofia in Healdsburg, California has won the gold medal in the annual 2014 Sonoma County Harvest Fair Restaurant Competition for Best Entrée, serving Shannon Ranch lamb meatballs with tzatziki sauce. "I think it is great," says Clay Shannon, owner of Shannon Ridge Family of Wines and Shannon Ranch. "Not many ranchers can say that their employees taste so good that they win gold medals!" Shannon Ridge Family of Wines has a unique workforce. This Lake County operation is the largest scale vineyard in the United…
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