Category Archives: Enticing Events

Get Ready For A Feast Of Greens — And A Food Gal Giveaway

The makings for a tasty vinaigrette from Gift A Feast.

The makings for a tasty vinaigrette from Gift A Feast.

Perk up summer salads with a zesty vinaigrette of California olive oil, late harvest Viognier-honey vinegar and mustard made with Cabernet Sauvignon grapes.

It’s easy to do so with Gift A Feast, a San Francisco company that sources local gourmet products, wraps them up in a pretty package, then ships nationwide with a hand-written note attached.

I had a chance to test out a sample of its “For A Feast of Greens” gift set ($54.95).

The lovely wrapped box holds a trio of goodies: a bottle of Rio Bravo Ranch Blend Extra Virgin Olive Oil, made by a fifth-generation farming family near Bakerfield, using Ascolano, Picual and Coratina estate olives, which has a buttery finish and tomato leaf-aroma; Katz Late Harvest Viognier-Honey Vinegar that is sweet, fruity, tangy and has a hit of vanilla from being aged in wood barrels; and KL Keller Violet Mustard, which is the color of tapenade, has a coarse texture from mustard seeds, and possesses a deep red wine flavor from grape must (concentrated, unfermented juice).

Also enclosed with the gift box is a recipe card for a simple vinaigrette using those three ingredients. You just need to add sea salt to taste to have a fruity, piquant and tangy dressing perfect for any combination of crisp greens. Add a few slivers of fresh plums and some toasted or candied walnuts, and you have a winning salad as easy as that.

The wrapped box.

The wrapped box.

And what it holds inside.

And what it holds inside.

CONTEST: One lucky Food Gal reader will win a free “For A Feast of Greens”  gift box. Entries, limited to those in the continental United States, will be accepted through midnight PST Aug. 29. Winner will be announced Aug. 31.

How to win?

Read more

Add Robert Mondavi Cab to That BBQ Sauce, Why Don’t You? (Plus A Food Gal Giveaway)

Cabernet Sauvignon in barbecue sauce -- what's not to like?

Cabernet Sauvignon in barbecue sauce — what’s not to like?

 

What’s better than sipping a nice wine while enjoying a summer backyard barbecue?

Adding some of that wine to the actual barbecue sauce, that’s what.

And that’s exactly what Woodbridge Wines by Robert Mondavi has done.

It’s added a good glug of its Cabernet Sauvignon to create a limited-edition Daddy Sam’s & Woodbridge Wine ‘Cue Sauce. Texas-based Daddy Sam’s has been making barbecue sauces for generations.

You know it’s a good sign when the Cabernet Sauvignon is the first item listed under the ingredients list. The pourable sauce is at once smoky, tangy, sweet, savory and just a little bit spicy, thanks to molasses, tomato puree, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic, cayenne, and jalapeno.

Read more

Sacramento — America’s Farm-To-Fork-Capital

Chef Ravin Patel holds cute little mason jars of baby root veggies in edible "soil.''

Chef Ravin Patel holds cute little mason jars of baby root veggies in edible “soil.”

 

When one thinks of California’s top food cities, San Francisco and Los Angeles come to mind immediately.

As for Sacramento? Not nearly so readily.

In fact, a publicist for the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau told me that when arranging a tour recently for an out-of-state food writer, the visiting scribe’s first question was, “Is there an airport there?”

Why, yes, there is. It is the Golden State’s capitol, after all.

Indeed, Sacramento is home to nearly half a million people, as well as 1.5 million acres of farmland. With a year-round growing season, it produces more than 120 different crops that are enjoyed not only locally but abroad.

It grows more sushi rice than any other place. In fact, chances are if you eat any sushi in California, the rice was grown in Sacramento. The city produces 80 percent of the nation’s caviar. The breadth of the bounty includes everything from almonds to Kobe beef to wine grapes.

The fork in Farm-To-Fork.

The fork in Farm-To-Fork.

Even the table was decorated with freshly grown provisions from Sacramento.

Even the table was decorated with freshly grown provisions from Sacramento.

I was reminded of just how crucial Sacramento is to our plates when I attended a special private dinner last week in San Francisco that spotlighted the city’s culinary treasures. It was a Sacramento roadshow, as Executive Chef Oliver Ridgeway of Grange Restaurant & Bar and Chef Ravin Patel, chief culinary officer of Selland Family Restaurants, trekked down from Sacramento to EatWith’s South of Market event space in San Francisco to prepare a multi-course feast for a dozen food journalists and bloggers. All of it featured fruits, vegetables, meats and seafood sourced from Sacramento.

Read more

Chimichurri Sauce to Gild Snake River Farms Porterhouse (And A Food Gal Giveaway)

Snake River Farms porterhouse steak gets glam with homemade chimichurri sauce.

Snake River Farms porterhouse steak gets glam with homemade chimichurri sauce.

 

This steak is more than a meal. It’s two meals and two tastes in one.

This 2-pound porterhouse, from Snake River Farms, the Idaho-based specialty meat purveyor, is easily hefty enough to feed two people.

One one side of the bone is a super tender filet mignon; on the other side is a more toothsome New York strip.

I had a chance to try this massive steak ($43) sourced from Double R Ranch in Washington State. It’s aged 28 days to concentrate its flavor. And it cooks up quite juicy.

How do I best like to enjoy steak?

Read more

Join the Food Gal and Chef Patrick Kelly of Lure + Till For A Cooking Demo at Macy’s

MacysLureTill

Join yours truly when I host Chef Patrick Kelly for a cooking demo at Macy’s Valley Fair in Santa Clara, 6 p.m. Aug. 13.

Kelly is the executive chef of the stylish Lure + Till at the Epiphany Hotel in downtown Palo Alto. He also has serious cooking chops, having worked previously at the much lauded Spiaggia in Chicago, as well as Redd in Yountville, Angele in Napa, La Folie in San Francisco, and Gitane in San Francisco.

Culinary talent runs in the family, too, as Kelly is married to Chef Bridget Batson, former chef of Gitane and Hawthorne Lane in San Francisco, and now resident chef of the gourmet meal delivery start-up, Munchery.

Read more

« Older Entries