Don’t miss the chance to sample the handiwork of new Pino Alto Restaurant Executive Chef Beverlie Terra - yes, the same Terra who masterminded the dining rooms at Chaminade for two decades.  Terra and Cabrillo’s ace culinary program students will match foods to Guglielmo Winery wines, in a four-course menu plus pairings for $65 per person (excl. tax & tip).

November 1 - 6pm - be there!
Contact the dining room at 831.479-6524 to reserve seating!

Brunch Pizza….

Pizzeria Avanti has just started a new weekend brunch offering - scrambles, fritattas, poached eggs, even classic French toasyte plus loads of breakfast side orders.

It happens Friday through Monday from 9am. Call 425-1807 for details.

Pizzeria Avanti is located on Mission St., former home of the original Ristorante Avanti.

2011_tour_photo.jpgThe Dinner Parties: Art & Agriculture, is the title of a new collaborative exhibition about to unfold at the Sesnon Gallery, at 5pm today, April 10.

The opening reception—replete with gorgeously prepared foods—for this intriguing interweaving of cuisine, ideas, and documentation begins at 5pm today, and the displays featuring social vignettes, dining strategies and agricultural communities will remain on exhibit through May 11.

The adventures of Jim Denevan, founder of “Outstanding in the Field,” Chez Panisse chef Jerome Waag, and SF-based artist Chris Sollars will be documented, as well as works by EG Crichton and Susan Working, Chelsea Wills and Leif Hendendal.

Admission is free! but best make plans early—the parking lot at Porter College will fill up fast! Be at the Sesnon @ 5pm today.

watermelrad.jpg1. Go to the farmers market.

2. Check the Happy Boy stand.

3. Grab a big ole radish that’s white on the outside, but brilliant pink on the inside.

4. Slice it over some arugula (just like in this picture).

5. Drizzle with garlic-infused olive oil and white balsamic vinegar. Toss on a few capers.

6. Enjoy and feel über gourmet!

neobiscotti.jpgFrom those busy bakers at Companion Bakeshop comes this super delicious stocking stuffer, a six-pack (as it were) of artisenal biscotti perfumed with orange zest and studded with almonds and cranberries.

One lovely package for $4. Better get some extra to consume with your morning coffee!

Notti or nice? Why quibble. Everybody loves biscotti!

heirloomtoms.jpgThis outstanding appetizer salad of organic heirloom tomatoes, and a tumescent pannacotta laced with garden basil was one of many flavor-intensive summer dishes I enjoyed at Main Street Garden & Cafe last week.

Our main course— a wood-fired pizza topped with lamb sausage, yellow taxi tomatoes and basil salsa was a showpiece. Classic, thin crust, delicious, toothsome — authentic Italian pizza. The gorgonzola studding the pizza was the exact perfect counterpoint.

If you haven’t stopped by here (the former Theo’s) for a few months, you’re in for a treat. The new owners are quite serious about presenting gorgeous, simple Italian country-style dishes.

bastille.jpgAnd here are two more possibilities among the many ways (see post below re: Storrs) to celebrate our Gallic cousins in their annual Fête Nationale.

Consider joining French wine legend Martine Saunier at a pouring of old world beauties, including vacqueyras, pouilly-fuisse, and blanc de blancs, chez Soif of course, where $20 can still purchase a seat at a palate-pushing tasting.

Soif’s chefs offer a special Bastille Day menu as well, which includes tartine of lamb, flageolet bean purée and chèvre crostini, gnocchi a la Niçoise, a variation on bourride, and any number of Francoholic appetizers.  The wine tasting happens on Saturday July 14, from 2-4. Reservations and details here!
Or, join Michel and Muriel Loubiere at their intimate Aptos restuarant, Au Midi, More…

Bastille Day @ Storrs

Can you say “allons enfants de la patrie?” Well it’s time once again to raise a glass to our revolutionary French brethren. On Saturday, July 14th, Storrs Winery will be hosting “La Fête Nationale”, better known as Bastille Day.  Featured wines include the 2007 BXR, a Bordeaux style blend More…

halibutlaposta.jpgThat would be Katherine Stern, who’s busy transforming the season into edible orgies of flavor, texture and delight.

Last night we sampled an outstanding entree of roast halibut, toasted farro and roasted leeks sauced with a pistachio pesto.

A great pasta dish and the never-better antipasti plate of mixed salumi (shown below) took us a long way to enlightenment.

Dessert involved More…

Yes there is a new chef, and a new name over at the Bonny Doon seafoodcigare.jpgTasting Room. Le Cigare Volant’s the name, and Ryan Shelton—formerly of the Michelin two-star restaurant Baumé in Palo Alto—is the chef.

Our initial dinner last week gave us plenty to smile about. The food is deeply flavorful, i.e. not tricky or overwrought. The ingredients impeccable, and yes, the presentation was both attractive and uncluttered.

Here are some observations. We began with a small plate of house-cured boquerones ($5) fresh from the Monterey Bay. And they were outstanding, neither “fishy,” nor aggressively seasoned. Actually delicate. Great with glasses of Le Cigare Volant Blanc and the 2008 Nebbiolo.

Next we shared what I predict will be the destination starter at the new Le Cigare Volant—an order of the evening’s flatbread creation, topped with spinach, earthy hen of the woods mushrooms and fresh lemon basil sprigs ($14). More…

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