Enjoying Foie Gras While You Can, Tomato Seedling Sale & More

Get it while you can -- duck confit burger with foie gras. (Photo courtesy of the Bank Cafe & Bar)

Chef Ken Frank’s Extravagant Foie Gras Duck Burger

Picture rich duck confit formed into a thick patty, then topped with seared foie gras.

At Bank Cafe & Bar in the lobby of the Westin Verasa Napa, Chef Ken Frank of La Toque fame, invites you to taste just that.

The duck foie burger has been a popular fixture on the cafe’s menu since it opened four years ago. Frank plans to continue selling it until July 1, when California will become the only state in the country to ban the sale of foie gras.

Enjoy the $24 burger at lunch or dinner — while you can.

To learn more about Frank’s strong stance against the ban, read this thoughtful piece he penned for the Los Angeles Times.

Northern California Chefs vs. Southern California Chefs in Foie Gras “Battle”

If you happen to be traveling to Los Angeles on May 14, you won’t want to miss this blockbuster chef affair.

Especially because it involves foie gras. A lot of foie gras.

Chefs from the Bay Area will be flying down south to work alongside their notable Southern California counterparts at four top Los Angeles restaurants for one night and one night only. At each of the restaurants, the chefs will be creating a six-course feast of foie gras.

It’s all a benefit for the Coalition for Humane and Ethical Farming Standards (CHEFS), a pro-foie gras organization.

Hiro Sone and Lissa Doumani will be cooking up foie in Southern California for a special event. (Photo courtesy of the chefs

OK, it’s not a full-on battle, per se. But you can be sure the Bay Area chefs will be trying to outdo the Los Angeles ones with their dishes.

Here’s who will be cooking where:

Mélisse: Josiah Citron of lisse; Brendan Collins of Waterloo & City; Raphael Lunetta of Jiraffe; Hiro Sone and Lissa Doumani of Terra in St. Helena and Ame in San Francisco; Mark Dommen of One Market in San Francisco; and Justin Wangler of Kendall-Jackson in Sonoma.

The Royce at the Langham: David Féau of  the Royce at the Langham; Michael Cimarusti of Providence; Micah Wexler of Mezze; Doug Kean of Cyrus in Healdsburg; Victor Scargle of Lucy at Bardessono in Yountville; and Peter Armellino of the Plumed Horse in Saratoga.

Patina: Tony Esnault and Octavio Becerra of Patina; Joey Elentario of Chez TJ in Mountain View; and Marc Zimmerman of Alexander’s Steakhouse in San Francisco.

Animal: Vinny Dotolo of Animal; Ludo Lefebvre of LudoBites; Michael Voltaggio of INK; and Roland Passot of La Folie in San Francisco.

Unfortunately, the Animal dinner is already sold out. Tickets to the other three dinners are $200 per person.

Tomato Plant Sale

Kendall-Jackson Wine Center in Santa Rosa hosts its 16th annual Heirloom Tomato Festival Plant Sale, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 5.

Select from more than 125 varieties. You’ll need to bring your own boxes or bags, though, to tote your purchases home.

While there, you also can buy fresh vegetables, herbs and freshly baked breads and pastries at the farm stand.

Moreover, you can be first to purchase tickets for the Kendall-Jackson Heirloom Tomato Festival on Sept. 15, which showcases a bevy of gourmet dishes featuring heirloom tomatoes.

Winner of Last Week’s Food Gal Contest

In last week’s contest, I asked you to tell me your fondest memory that involves your Mom and seafood. The winner will receive a “Regatta Gift Package” from Anderson Seafoods. The package, valued at $300, includes four pounds of wild Mexican shrimp, two cold-water South African rock lobster tails, four pounds of dry-packed scallops, 32 ounces of Norwegian salmon and 32 ounces of Alaskan halibut.

Anderson Seafoods Regatta Gift Package. (Photo courtesy of Anderson Seafoods

Congrats to:

Cheryl Stoy, who wrote, “My mom practicing with me the week before my first ‘big’ date. When she found out he was taking me to Anthony’s Fish House, she not only practiced my table manners with me, she went out and got crab legs and lobster and said ‘How we eat it at home or in a casual restaurant is not how you eat it wearing your best dress, favorite shoes and sitting across from the guy of your dreams.’ ”

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