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Ramen Burger (Oh, Yes!), Beringer and Scharffen Berger Team Up, and More

Wednesday, 25. September 2013 5:25

Ramen Burger. (Photo courtesy of the San Francisco Grand Hyatt)

The one and only Ramen Burger. (Photo courtesy of the San Francisco Grand Hyatt)

Ramen Burger in San Francisco

Yes, it sounds crazy. But you know you want it.

The Ramen Burger, the trend that got its start in Los Angeles, is now in San Francisco — but only for a limited time.

The Grand Hyatt San Francisco’s OneUP Restaurant & Lounge is serving this mash-up for lunch and dinner, but only through the end of September.

The bun is indeed made out of fresh ramen from a local noodle house. It holds a beef patty topped with mustard greens, cheddar cheese, smoked bacon and sriracha mayo.

The Ramen Burger is $18 and comes with fries.

Cook St. Helena Debuts Brunch Offerings

A favorite of locals and visitors alike, Cook St. Helena has debuted a Sunday brunch with Italian influences.

The nine-year-old restaurant waited this long to serve brunch because it wanted to get its liquor license first in order to offer Bloody Marys and other brunch cocktails.

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Category:Chefs, Chocolate, General, Meat, Restaurants, Wine | Comments (6) | Author:

New Desserts at Hopscotch, Your Chance to Stomp Wine Grapes & More

Monday, 2. September 2013 5:26

Peach melba at Hopscotch in Oakland. (Photo courtesy of the restaurant)

Peach melba at Hopscotch in Oakland. (Photo courtesy of the restaurant)

New Sweets at Hopscotch

Hopscotch, the upscale diner in Oakland famed for its fried chicken, aims to satisfy your sweet tooth, too.

The restaurant, which serves American classics with Asian influences, just debuted a new dessert menu.

Among the treats to enjoy are: Peach melba with Greek yogurt sorbet, fresh raspberries and chervil; fig and almond tart with red wine sauce; and chocolate ganache cake with arare rice crackers and caramel sauce.

All desserts are $8.

Chocolate ganache cake. (Photo courtesy of Hopscotch restaurant)

Chocolate ganache cake. (Photo courtesy of Hopscotch restaurant)

The Mandarin Oriental Celebrates the Upcoming Moon Festival

Join in the commemoration of the Mid-Autumn Festival, typically held during a full moon close to the autumnal equinox, at a special event at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in San Francisco, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sept. 20.

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Category:Chocolate, Enticing Events, General, Restaurants, Wine | Comments (6) | Author:

Can’t Beat Peanut Butter and Chocolate for the Long Holiday Weekend

Friday, 30. August 2013 5:25

An ice cream sandwich that you don't need an ice cream machine to make.

An ice cream sandwich that you don’t need an ice cream machine to make.

 

As a native San Franciscan, I’m proud to say that my first encounter with an ice cream sandwich was with the It’s It, the iconic treat invented here way back in 1928.

In our freezer at home, my Dad would often stash a few of those big-fisted oatmeal cookie sandwiches filled with vanilla ice cream and dunked in chocolate. As a kid, I couldn’t even eat an entire one at one sitting.

I’ve been a sucker for ice cream sandwiches ever since.

So when a review copy of “Ice Cream Sandwiches” (Ten Speed Press) landed in my mailbox recently, I leafed through it with the utmost nostalgia. The book is by Donna Egan, founder of the Buttercup Cake Shop, London’s first cupcake bakery. After opening in 2006, the bakery added ice cream sandwiches to its repertoire five years later and has never looked back.

The book features 65 recipes for all manner of ice cream sandwiches. The “Peanut Butter Dream” caught my eye because, well, who doesn’t love chocolate and peanut butter together?

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Category:Chocolate, Favorite Cookie Recipes, General, New Products, Recipes (Sweet) | Comments (9) | Author:

Steins Beer Garden & Restaurant to Open in Mountain View, Recchiuti Giant Chocolate Egg Raffle & More

Tuesday, 19. March 2013 5:25

House-made pretzels, pickles and corn nuts at Steins Beer Garden & Restaurant. (Photo by Michele Min)

House-made pretzels, pickles and corn nuts at Steins Beer Garden & Restaurant. (Photo by Michele Min)

Steins Beer Garden & Restaurant to Debut in Downtown Mountain View

March 28, the doors will open to a world of brewski at Steins Beer Garden & Restaurant at 895 Villa St. in downtown Mountain View.

The 300-seat restaurant, on the site of the former Golden Wok, will serve import and craft beers from around the world, including 30 on tap. Look for such unusual ones as Fruli Strawberry Beer from Brouwerij Huyghe brewery, Chocolate Porter from Hangar One brewery and Hitachino Nest White Ale from Kiuichi brewery.

Chef Colby M. Reade will oversee the menu, which includes house-made charcuterie, along with  breads, pretzels and other baked goods. He’ll be cooking up beer-friendly dishes such as pork belly poutine ($12), mini corn dogs with caraway beer mustard ($8), the Steins burger (house-ground blend of dry aged short rib, brisket and sirloin; $11), fried chicken and waffle sandwich ($12), grilled black sea bass with herbed lentils ($18), and caramel apple crisp with bourbon pecan ice cream ($7).

Roasted beet and watercress salad. (Photo by Michele Min)

Roasted beet and watercress salad. (Photo by Michele Min)

The restaurant features a main dining room, beer garden, two private rooms and another private beer garden for parties. The keg room is outfitted with reclaimed wood and tempered glass windows.

Steins will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and until 11:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.

La Luna Cupcakes Opens This Week in San Francisco

Elvia Buendia started baking cupcakes through La Cocina’s incubator program, which provides affordable commercial kitchen space and technical assistance to low-income entrepreneurs in San Francisco.

She did so well that after three years in the program she’s graduated to opening her own brick-and-mortar store. La Luna Cupcakes opens its doors March 21 in San Francisco’s Crocker Galleria.

Banana cupcake. (Photo courtesy of La Luna Cupcakes)

Banana cupcake. (Photo courtesy of La Luna Cupcakes)

Buendia’s sweet and savory cupcakes will be available in flavors such as: Red Velvet; Carrot Cake; Tres Leches; bacon and eggs; and beef with cheese and salsa.

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Category:Bakeries, Chefs, Chocolate, Cupcakes, Enticing Events, General, Meat, Restaurants, Spirits/Cocktails/Beer | Comments (5) | Author:

Merci Chocolates & A Food Gal Giveaway

Wednesday, 27. February 2013 5:26

Merci Hazelnut-Almond chocolate ingot is chockful of bits of nuts.

I admit that a drug store is not the first place I would think of to buy fine chocolates.

But Merci has me just about eating those words.

The German-made chocolates are available at select drug stores, including CVS. They are definitely a cut above a lot of chocolate confections found in the bins there.

Recently, I had a chance to try an 8.8-ounce assortment of its European chocolates, which retails for about $13.

The flat box opens up to reveal small ingots of chocolates in seven varieties. Each is individually wrapped in cellophane, so you can put a bunch on a candy plate to let guests choose their favorite.

The slender bars are coated in either smooth milk or dark chocolate. They have wonderful mouth-feel and are small enough to satisfy a chocolate craving without going overboard.

Among my favorites were the Dark Mousse, which has a fluffy, melt-in-your-mouth filling akin to an U-No bar. The Hazel-Almond is the perfect pick for nut fans like myself, what with its profusion of crunchy bits of nuts. The Coffee and Cream, which sports a dark top layer and a white bottom one, tastes very much like a shot of espresso with milky foam on top.

Who knew drug store chocolates could be so gourmet?

They come conveniently individually wrapped.

CONTEST: One lucky Food Gal reader will win an 8.8-ounce assortment of Merci chocolates, along with a fun “Red Carpet Kit.” It includes four champagne flutes, popcorn containers and a list of tips for making toasts.

Entries, limited to those in the continental United States, will be accepted through midnight PST March 2. Winner will be announced March 4.

How to win?

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Category:Chocolate, Enticing Events, General, New Products | Comments (10) | Author: