Anzu Gets A Fresh Look, New Campbell Eateries, Half-Off Wines & More

Anzu's new glam look. (Photo by Matthew Millman)

Restaurant Anzu Gets Glam

The Hotel Nikko’s Restaurant Anzu in San Francisco has debuted a chic new look with its bold citrine, black and white decor.

Jewel-like chandeliers, beaded pendant lighting, a black wall treatment, heavy, damask curtains and oversized white banquettes add an even more luxurious feeling.

You can still enjoy an array of sushi there, but the restaurant also has added a new emphasis on prime meat with  Kurobota double pork chop ($33), local rack of lamb ($34) and Wagyu beef that’s cooked tableside on a sizzling hot Japanese river stone ($34).

Campbell Welcomes Tasty, New Businesses

Downtown Campbell is hopping lately with new foodie places, including an intriguing Austrian-California restaurant, Naschmarkt (pronounced “nash-marked”), which just opened.

Long-time South Bay foodies may fondly remember the now-shuttered Cafe Marcella in Los Gatos. Those owners, Alain and Martine Staebler, have partnered with their son-in-law, Austrian chef, Matthias Froeschl, to open this restaurant that is named for Vienna’s largest open-air market.

Look for classic wiener schnitzel with lingonberry sauce, Hungarian beef goulash, steamed Scottish salmon with baby artichokes, and apple strude — but of course.

Soda pop buffs will get a kick out of Rocket Fizz, which also just opened downtown. Owners Chris Dunn and Lisa Pelgrim sell more than 500 varieties of soda, including more than 50 root beers. They’re all sold in glass bottles, which can be purchased individually, by the pack or by the case.

Don’t miss the candy selection, either, that boasts more than 2,000 kinds from around the world.

Finally, if that wasn’t enough sugar for you already, wander over to the new downtown Frost Cupcake Factory.

Owner-Pastry Chef Andrea Parks, who grew up in Los Gatos and Campbell, features cupcakes in such delightful flavors as S’Mores Please, Bananarama, Maui Coconut Dream and Vanilla Twinkie.

J. Lohr Stay-cation Dinner

Don’t have the bucks or the inclination to travel this summer?

Then, do so vicariously through this fun dinner July 9 at the J. Lohr Wine Center, 1000 Lenzen Ave. in San Jose.

The dinner will feature six small-plate courses, each one representing a different country or region. OK, France does appear twice, but heck, you can’t go wrong with two French dishes, can you? Not when they include rosemary-grapefruit and Lillet granite and blueberry tart with basil whipped cream. Among the other courses will be duo of oyster shooter, representing Japan; and green tea smoked duck breast, representing China.

Chef Justin Perez overseeing construction at his future Santa Clara restaurant site. (Photo by Carolyn Jung)Price is $85 per person or $80 per person for wine club members. For tickets and reservations, call Lisa at (408) 918-2176.

The dinner will be prepared by Restaurant O Catering & Events, headed up by Chef Justin Perez. For those who have been wondering when Perez will finally open his Restaurant O in Santa Clara, in the old Wilson’s Jewel Bakery site, you’ll have to wait a little longer. Because of permit delays, Perez says he’s now hoping to move his catering facility to that spot later this year, but the restaurant probably won’t open there until next year.

Baker & Banker Team Up with Guest Chefs

San Francisco’s Baker & Banker restaurant will be hosting a series of special guest chef dinners this summer, each priced at $75 per person.

First up, everyone’s favorite ice cream maker, Jake Godby of San Francisco’s Humphry Slocumbe, who will be in the kitchen at Baker & Banker on July 20.

His creative tasting menu will feature gougere prezel with mustard, chicken fried sweetbreads with upside down cornbread, and honey wort pie with peaches and yogurt sherbert.

He’ll be followed by Chef Thomas McNaughton of San Francisco’s Flour + Water on Aug. 24, then Ryan Farr of San Francisco’s 4505 Meats on Sept. 14. For reservations, call (415) 351-2500.

Wine Deals at Lark Creek Restaurants Through July

For the ninth year in a row, Lark Creek Restaurant Group establishments are slashing prices on bottles of wine by half during brunch, lunch and dinner throughout July.

That means that 2008 Caymus Vineyards Special Select Cabarnet Sauvignon, Napa Valley that you’ve been wanting to try at Parcel 104 in Santa Clara is now $137.50 (normally $275).  It also means that 2010 Gary Farrell Redwood Ranch Sauvignon Blanc, Sonoma County you love at Yankee Pier is now only $23 (regularly $46).

Kristee Rosendahl wants to help make your gardening easier and more successful. (Photo courtesy of Rosendahl)

High-Tech Gardening Help

Kristee Rosendahl, former Apple computer interface co-founder, has developed a gardening product that may turn out to be as coveted as any iPhone.

Rosendahl, who lives on a 300-acre ranch in Healdsburg, was a novice gardener who grew frustrated with finding information to help manage her burgeoning garden. So, she created a free Web site to help gardeners of all abilities better plan, plant, grow and harvest their bounty. is customized for each user. Just plug in information on your available space, household size, frost dates, climate conditions and food choices, and you’ll get a personal “Smart Garden Plan,” which will help you figure out crop rotation, sun orientation, and size of plants needed. Once you set up your account, you’ll also receive weekly emails of to-do lists to help your garden thrive. Best yet, at the end of each season, the site offers recipes to cook up what you’re harvesting.

Additionally, SmartGardener has partnered with Peaceful Valley Farm & Garden Supply and Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds to make ordering seedlings and seeds a breeze.

More: The Plans for the New Restaurant O in Santa Clara

And: My Dinner at Baker & Banker

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