Posts Tagged ‘dining’

Assignment Desk: Just How Fake was the Recent Episode of “Mystery Diners” Taped at Chapeau! on Clement in the Richmond?

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

I’m saying very fake, or mostly fake.

Last year, Michael Bauer had the Inside Scoop on the recent Mystery Diners fiasco up at Chapeau! on Clement Street in the Inner Richmond:

“It was halfway into our anniversary dinner when things turned for the worst, as the camera crew from Mystery Diners rushed through the dining room with lights and mikes to catch a naughty bartender/actor in the act of giving away free drinks for a group of fake diners.”

I’ll tell you, I don’t have that cable TV so I can’t actually watch all the fakery, but here’s a quite gullible writer on the topic over at Examiner.Com.

I’m auspicious of this whole deal, I tell you.

Oh, EaterSF has this:

This is scripted. This would never really happen in Philippe’s restaurant. I live down the street and go there.”

So, have at it, MSM. Philippe himself prolly would have contractual reasons to tell you to go to Hell, but there are other ways of getting a scoop…

Oh, and SFWeekly had this to say about this particular TV series a few years back

In short, I call shenanigans.

Eurotrash at “The Chaya Brasserie” Gape in Wonder Upon Seeing Their First Critical Mass Bike Parade – Embarcadero, USA

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

They were delighted:

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“Creators of “La Nouvelle Cuisine Franco-Japanese” located in San Francisco, Beverly Hills, and Venice…”

“We Balling” – Gracious Sidewalk Dining on Tony Pacific Street, Amidst Dumpsters, Garbage Cans, Parked Cars and Graffiti

Thursday, March 8th, 2012

I don’t know, I think they do it better in Paris:

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1865 Post in J-Town: From Yelp-Fraudulent “Kabuki Kitchen” to “Sundance Kitchen” to Nothing in a Few Short Years

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

First, it was all like this, the Kabuki Kitchen at 1865 Post near Fillmore, where a little five-star Yelp Fraud didn’t have the intended effect:

So then it was all like this, with a new name and menu for Bob Redford’s joint right next to the Sundance Kabuki movie theatre:

But now it’s all like this, all closed up:

Oh well.

Hey, maybe if Japantown hadn’t chased away so many tenants all these years there’d be a critical mass of foot traffic?

Maybe. Storefronts on Post what were empty in 2005 are still empty in 2011.

The whole place looks like a ghost town (a cold, 1960′s-style 100% cement ghost town) at night, pretty much. (Concrete and clay and general decay…)

Oh well.

SFO’s New Terminal Two Will Be “Sustainable?” Sign Up Now For the T2 Kick-Off on April 9th – Party With 11 Thin White People

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Here are the bus ads around town these days.

See? Terminal 2 has arrived. April, 2011

Click to expand

Now, is this something to get excited about?

Well, as always, You Make The Call. Hey, why not show up for the FREE SFO T2 Community Open House on Saturday, April 9th, 2011 and decide for yourself.

But hurry, they’re running out of the tickets that you all will need to get in. Check it:

(As promised, there are 11 thin White People on the invite page. Count them for yourself, why not? Where’s Waldo ‘n stuff.)

As you might have expected, Inside Scoop’s Paolo Lucchesi is all over the food sitch at our new T2. All’s I can say is that it all should be pretty pricey, but, prove me wrong, SFO, prove me wrong.

Now, leaving aside the big picture of labeling anything to do with jet travel sustainable,* I’m a little baffled as to how a “cage-free” egg is a “sustainable” egg, but oh well.

All the deets:

Concessions Program

The airport expects its food and beverage tenants to provide sustainable food to the greatest extent possible.  Expectations include using:
  • organic, local products
  • organic or natural meats
  • rBST-free dairy products
  • cage-free antibiotic eggs
  • sustainable seafood
  • fairly traded organic coffee
  • non-modified agricultural products
  • no artificial color, flavor or additives
  • non-hydrogenated oils
  • biodegradable to-go containers and utensils
  • compostable bio-resin or paper bottles for water
  • low- or no-phosphate detergents.

As with other tenants, SFO’s concession tenants are encouraged to use green building materials for their facilities and will be required to recycle and compost.”

O.K. fine.

I don’t know, I’m used to hearing all this overblown stuff from SFO. So it’s like yes, SFO  was ready for the long-delayed Airbus A380 superjumbo, but so what. And yes, Lufthansa will soon be using an A380 from Frankfurt daily, but it burns more fuel than the Boeing 747 it’s replacing, right? Well, the Mayor’s Office and SFO both reported that one wrong. Oh and then QANTAS was supposed to start flying A380s in and out of Millbrae, but, instead, they’re going to bug out of NorCal entirely due to a little corporate welfare (like 3 mil., something like that) from Texas, so maybe the Mayor’s Office and SFO were, once again, wrong/insanely optimistic about that as well?

Remembering when the T2 construction site was a vast ocean of free parking. Good times.

(Man, are they still flying three-decade-out-of-production DC9′s out of SFO? Or that’s a baby McDonnell Douglas MD-80 in the upper left? Can’t tell. No matter, flying dinosaurs they are regardless.)

So, we had a Terminal 2, then we shut it down, and now we’re opening it again. O.K.

Meh.

Make that super-meh.

*Cheap international air travel using relatively cheap dino-juice is “sustainable?” Really? And instead of bringing food to the people, ’cause that’s unsustainable ‘n stuff, we’re bringing people to the food?

All the deets here and after the jump.

SFO: Ask about our recomposure zone!”**

**Srsly. (Call us when the shuttle lands, SFO.)

Anyway:

“SFO T2 Community Open House
Saturday, April 09, 2011 from 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM (PT)
San Francisco, CA

Ticket Information
TYPE ENDS QUANTITY
12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Apr 09, 2011 Free Sold Out
1:00 pm – 2:00 pm Apr 09, 2011 Free Sold Out
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm Apr 09, 2011 Free
3:00 pm – 4:00 pm Apr 09, 2011 Free
4:00 pm- 5:00 pm Apr 09, 2011 Free Sold Out

The City of San Francisco, Mayor Edwin M. Lee and the San Francisco Airport Commission invite you to a special Community Open House to celebrate the Grand Opening of Terminal 2, SFO’s dazzling new terminal that elevates air travel to a new level of comfort, relaxation, beauty and fun – and all with a commitment to sustainability.

The Community Open House will feature food and beverage specials from T2′s new tenants, activities and entertainment provided by T2 partners and sponsors and local organizations. Discover how T2 + U = a greener way to travel! Compete in the Skytracker Eco-Challenge and see if you can score enough points to win exciting prizes and gifts, including a fabulous trip for two.

12 noon to 5 pm: Public Admission

Bring the family — this is a FREE event, open to everyone.

FOR MORE DETAILS: flysfo.com/t2opening
Contact: Event Coordinators: Winslow & Associates, Inc.
Phone: (415) 551-5190, Fax: (415) 551-5195,
Email: info@winslowevents.com

 

(more…)

Ragazza Pizzeria Opens Tonight at 311 Divisadero, But You Already Knew That, Right?

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

Ragazza opens tonight, as if you didn’t already know.

I can’t tell you anything more than what’s in this amazingly detailed report from Andrew Dudley other than oven temperature for the pies - it’s a surprisingly low 575 degrees. (I must have been on the same tour the same day.)

And it’s five-star rated already, even before opening…

Bon Courage, Ragazza!

HOURS
SUN-THURS 5 – 10 PM
FRI-SAT 5 – 10:30PM

LOCATION
311 DIVISADERO STREET
SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94117

PHONE 415.255.1133

How Much Street Furniture is Too Much for the Sidewalks of Market Street?

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Part of the problem of having wide, wide sidewalks in San Francisco is when people go and try to fill up the wasted space.

As here, in front of the Hotel Whitcomb on inbound Market near 8th Street. See? Terry Frye’s recent photos seem to show quite a lot of stuff on the red brick. Is Market now a Livable Street or something? Are potted plants required for every public-private partnership to come down the pike?

If this trend keeps up, then San Francisco Honda will run out of room to hawk its wares. I mean, there are only so many red bricks for businesses to put their stuff on out there, right?

The New Zagat Book is Here! The New 2010 San Francisco Zagat Book is Here!

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

Oh it’s here, the new 2010 Zagat for San Francisco Dining is here. Unlike telephone books, the “Burgundy Bible” is something Bay Areans actually still want to have these days.

This year, it’s all Gary Danko. Pretty much.

But there’s a lot of other stuff in today’s release. Check it out, below:

zagat_logo copy

SF Bay Area Diners Adjust Habits in Response to Slow Economy

SAN FRANCISCANS ARE EATING OUT LESS, BUT BEING TREATED BETTER GARY DANKO IS BIG WINNER; BOTTEGA NAMED TOP NEWCOMER

The Zagat 2010 San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants guide was released today.  Echoing the trend around the country, the 9,700 San Francisco surveyors say they are cutting back on their restaurant spending.  Fortunately, they also report getting plenty of good deals, prix fixe menus, attentive service, and access to formerly hard-to-get reservations.  All told, the new guide covers 1,308 restaurants from the Wine Country in the North down to the Monterey Peninsula.

“The economic downturn has definitely affected San Francisco diners. Quite simply, they are being more careful with their money,” said Tim Zagat, CEO and Co-Founder of Zagat Survey. “The good news is that local restaurants have been going to great lengths to hang on to their clientele.”

Industry Woes: When asked what effect the slow economy has had on their dining habits, surveyors report dining out less (52%), eating in less expensive places (42%), being more attentive to prices (42%), cutting back on alcohol (20%), appetizers and/or desserts (21%). Diners (5%) are even switching to tap/filtered water to save money. They are so price-sensitive that the percentage who list price as their main complaint has jumped to 10%, up from 6% last year. That’s not surprising since San Francisco ranks among the nation’s most expensive dining cities, with an average meal cost of $39.40, compared to the $34.54 national average.

The Good News:Many restaurants are offering bargain deals and 62% of diners say they are taking advantage of these opportunities; 40% say they feel their patronage is appreciated more; and 36% find it easier to obtain hard-to-get reservations. Despite their financial concerns, San Franciscans by a 73% vote consider green issues (organic, sustainably raised, locally grown products) to be as important as ever; ditto healthy menus, by a 70% margin, which explains the success of newcomers such as eco-Mexicans Nopalito and Little Chichuahua. Finally, 61% say they’re still willing to pay even higher tabs to support worker healthcare and wages.

Cheap Eats:Fortunately, options abound for budget-conscious Bay Area diners. This year’s Top Bang for the Buck is Saigon Sandwiches, serving “fabulous Vietnamese pork sandwiches.” Following behind are In-N-Out, El Metate, and Arinell Pizza. In the Mission (named San Francisco’s best dining neighborhood), Baby Blues BBQ has brought Southern BBQ to the Bay, while inexpensive pizzerias, flour + water and Tony’s Pizza Napolentana have also premiered this year. In the Downtown Area, Showdogs brings the “best of the wurst” from all-natural hot-dog vendor Let’s Be Frank, along with house made condiments and plenty of sides.  Best of all, many restaurants are sticking to prix fixe lunches for $25, and dinners for $30 year-round (not just during Dine around Town), while other restaurants like the Ritz-Carlton Dining Room and Masa’s are offering bargain a la carte and prix fixe options.

Winners:  Showing that top-of-the-line dining is still going strong, Gary Danko not only reclaimed the title for Top Food, but won for Most Popular and Top Service this year. Taking home honors for Top Decor is the “re-opened cliff hanging” Sierra Mar. The survey also includes 70 noteworthy newcomers. Bottega, located in Yountville and led by chef Michael Chiarello is this year’s Top Newcomer. The Top 5 ranking in each category are as follows:

Food:              

 1. Gary Danko 
 2. Cyrus      
 3. French Laundry    
 4. Kiss Seafood  
 5. Acquerello

Decor:

1. Sierra Mar
2. Garden Court
3. Ahawahnee               
4. Auberge du Soleil
5. Pacific’s Edge

Service:

1. Gary Danko
2. Cyrus
3. Ritz-Carlton
4. French Laundry
5. Masa’s

Popular:

1. Gary Danko
2. Boulevard
3. French Laundry
4. Slanted Door
5. Chez Panisse

Newcomer:

1. Bottega
2. Zinnia
3. La Mar Cebicheria
4. Marzano
5. Nopalito

Tweeting and Trucking:It’s no surprise that San Franciscans rank among the most tech-savvy in the nation. Thanks to Open Table, this year 52% of surveyors say they typically make reservations online (up from 49% last year and 43% two years ago) and 85% report visiting a restaurants’ website before eating there. Avid diners have even taken to the streets – and the Twitter-verse – following the ever-growing slew of gourmet food trucks. These mobile street vendors, now including ChowderMobile (from Sam’s Chowder House), Spencer on the Go! (from Chez Spencer), and chef Chris Cosentino’s Salumi Cycle, are being faithfully followed via their websites, email and Twitter.

A Tree Grows in Oakland:Oakland has seen a swell of good-value eateries opening this year, including tapas-bar Barlata, wine bar and salumeria Adesso, Commis and Sidebar. On the horizon is the Jack London Square waterfront with a new gourmet marketplace, opening in early 2010, which will be flanked by 15 new restaurants including the already opened Bocanova (Rick Hackett of MarketBar) and the forthcoming Bracina (Daniel Patterson and ex-Delfina’s Lauren Kino) and Pizzeria Zanna (Richard Corbo).

The Guide in Detail:In addition to ratings and reviews, the new guide includes listings and maps of the Most Popular restaurants, as well a transit map and 44 useful indexes including Historic Places, Power Scenes, Winning Wines Lists and Teen Appeal. The 2010 San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants guide ($14.95) was edited by Meesha Halm and Karen Hudes and is available at all major bookstores, through ZAGAT.com, on Zagat’s mobile apps for iPhone and Android, or by calling 888-371-5440. For more information, please visit our press center (www.zagat.com/presscenter).

Known as the “burgundy bible,” Zagat Survey is the world’s most trusted source for information about where to eat, drink, stay and play around the globe, and as such has become a symbol of quality. Zagat Survey rates and reviews airlines, restaurants, hotels, nightlife, movies, music, golf, resorts, shopping, spas and a range of other entertainment categories in more than 100 countries. It has been lauded as producing the “most up-to-date, comprehensive and reliable guides ever published” and as “a necessity second only to a valid credit card.” Zagat content is available in print, on the web, on the mobile web, iPhone, BlackBerry and on TV. For more information, visit ZAGAT.com.

Yelp Fraud Involving Robert Redford’s Restaurant in San Francisco?

Wednesday, March 12th, 2008

Here it is, the Kabuki Kitchen, owned by Sundance Studios, at 1865 Post Street in Japantown.

On this night at around 8:00-something PM, it appeared to have just one customer.

img_8081a1.jpg

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The term “Yelp Fraud” applies to reviews that are deceptive, such as those from a business owner posing as a customer to praise his own products. Do you see any of that possibly going on here?

One recent posting with a five-star rating:

Best of the best! The new Executive Chef Mark Lackie has completely revamped the menu.”

Look a little suspicious to you? Notice any others? Exclamation points are a clue.

As for the restaurant itself, it appears to close early on a regular basis for want of customers.

For what it’s worth, three cheers for SunDance founder Robert Redford and SunDance itself for putting a boatload of money into the Kabuki theatre complex. It must be tough getting a new restaurant off the ground, especially without having a liquor license from the get go. Kabuki Kitchen certainly looks nice, as this photo from Eater SF shows, but $13 burgers might seem too costly for some.

Keep on trying Bob/SunDance! We’re rooting for you.