Category Archives: New Products

Free Boozy Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream, and More

Humphrey Slocombe's Hot Toddy -- Glenlevit ice cream with clove caramel and candied citrus. (photo courtesy of Humphrey Slocombe)

Humphrey Slocombe’s Hot Toddy — Glenlevit ice cream with clove caramel and candied citrus. (photo courtesy of Humphrey Slocombe)

Humphry Slocombe’s The Glenlivet Ice Cream

Some folks may have pledged to a dry January following the over-indulgent holidays. But you may find yourself falling off the wagon with Humphry Slocombe’s new The Glenlivet flavor.

Yes, the famed 12-year-old single malt scotch stars in this new flavor by the artisan San Francisco ice creamery known for its creative rebelliousness.

Throughout the end of January, The Glenlivet will be available at all three Bay Area Humphry Slocombe locales.

But head to the original Mission District scoop shop, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Jan. 25, for a real treat. That’s when that location will be offering free scoops of the Hot Toddy Sundae, which features The Glenlivet ice cream drizzled with clove caramel and topped with candied lemon.

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A Visit to the Chuck Williams Culinary Arts Museum

The lavish display of gleaming copper molds at the Chuck Williams Culinary Art Museum.

The lavish display of gleaming copper molds at the Chuck Williams Culinary Art Museum.

 

You don’t often get to meet a legend. But I did in 2005.

I remember climbing the stairs to the top floor of the flagship Union Square San Francisco Williams-Sonoma to meet for the first time, its revolutionary company founder who single-handedly changed so much about the way we now cook.

Chuck Williams was about to turn 90 and his cookware company about to celebrate half a century.

A genteel, elegant figure, dapper in a sports jacket, tie and sweater vest, he was still editing every cookbook Williams-Sonoma published then. And his appearance anywhere in the store would provoke a rock star’s reaction, with starry-eyed shoppers coming up to pay their respects.

The new museum is on the second floor of the CIA at Copia.

The new museum is on the second floor of the CIA at Copia.

He started the original Williams-Sonoma in, yes, Sonoma. He filled it with French cookware he found on his travels, items that were well made and served a real purpose: hammered copper pots, gleaming molds of all kinds, coffee makers built to last a lifetime, and the first food processors. In so doing, he introduced to us all sorts of marvels we never knew we needed but now can scarce live without.

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You Don’t Know Babka Until You’ve Tried This Babka

Chocolate (left) and halva (right) babkas by Babka by Ayelet.

Chocolate (left) and halva (right) babkas by Babka by Ayelet.

 

If you think babka is just a sweet yeasted bread swirled with chocolate or cinnamon, then get ready to have your mind — and palate — blown.

After months of delays, Babka by Ayelet finally opened its doors two weeks ago at Palo Alto’s Town & Country Village to serve up babka in a variety of flavors, both sweet and savory.

Babka Logo

Made by Israeli-born Ayelet Turgeman Nuchi, a former private chef on the Peninsula, this Eastern European specialty bread has been transformed.

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A Sneak Peek at Northern California’s First Shake Shack

Get ready for fried chicken on a potato bun at the Bay Area's only Shake Shack.

Get ready for fried chicken on a potato bun at the Bay Area’s only Shake Shack.

 

You might as well get in line right now because hordes are no doubt going to descend upon Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto on Saturday when the first Northern California Shake Shack finally opens.

Yes, the wildly popular gourmet burger chain by New York’s Danny Meyer will finally open its doors in the Bay Area. It is right next to P.F. Chang’s in the ritzy outdoor mall.

Opening hours will be 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. And the first 100 people through the doors on opening day get a free Shake Shack travel bag.

Last night, I had a chance to get a sneak peek and taste when I was invited to a media preview party.

The Palo Alto Shake Shack in Stanford Shopping Center.

The Palo Alto Shake Shack in Stanford Shopping Center.

The menu boards.

The menu boards.

The interior features reclaimed and repurposed materials.

The interior features reclaimed and repurposed materials.

The 2,491-square-foot former Wells Fargo bank building features outdoor as well as indoor seating, including tabletops made of reclaimed bowling alley lanes.

It’s also cashless. You place your order at self-serve kiosks.

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Three Gourmet Gifts For Friends, Family — Or Yourself

Rice crackers and cheese puffs are among the treats inside this Bokksu box.

Rice crackers and cheese puffs are among the treats inside this Bokksu box.

Elevated Snack Attack

Founder Danny Taing has elevated the snack box — big time — with his Bokksu subscription service.

Every month, he curates a selection of premium Japanese snacks, which — yes — can include such coveted treats as the newest Japanese Kit Kat flavor — that are mailed directly to you from Japan.

Recently, I had a chance to try a sample box. They come in two sizes, the $25 “Tasting” size and the larger $39 “Classic” size, which is the one I had sent to me.

Each month, there is a different theme for each box. For the November one, it was “Tea Story,” which meant everything inside — about 20 items — married well with Japanese tea. With every month’s box, there is always tea included, too.

Everything is tucked inside a custom box.

Everything is tucked inside a custom box.

Voila!

Voila!

The snacks arrived in a sturdy, custom logo box, which is a nice touch if you’re giving it as a gift. Inside, there’s a pamphlet with a primer on tea (apparently, it originated in Japan in the 9th century by Buddhist monks as a religious practice), as well as descriptions of the items inside. That’s a handy guide, too, since much of the information on the actual packages is in Japanese. It even identifies possible allergens in the various products.

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