Duff Goldman Comes to Santana Row, Michael Mina Anniversary Celebration & More

Meet Chef Duff Goldman at Santana Row. (Photo courtesy of the Food Network)

Duff Goldman vs. Robert Sapirman

Yes, the “Ace of Cakes‘ Food Network star takes on the local chef of Citrus restaurant in the Valencia Hotel in San Jose’s Santana Row. All in good fun, of course.

It’s all part of the Oct. 8-9 “Cadillac Culinary Challenge,” in which celeb Pastry Chef Duff Goldman (who is also trained in savory cooking) will be challenging Chef Robert Sapirman in battles at 11:30 a.m., 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. each of those days to see whom will be crowned “Cadillac of Chefs.”

Seating is first come, first serve. And of course, while you’re there, you also can test drive a new Cadillac.

Never Too Early To Start Thinking About Thanksgiving

If there’s one holiday that strikes fear in even seasoned cooks, it’s Thanksgiving.

Tante Marie’s Cooking School in San Francisco wants to help. It’s hosting two one-day workshops to teach you how to host a “No-Stress Thanksgiving Dinner.”

This hands-on class is being offered 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 8 and Nov. 15. Price is $195.

You’ll learn how to make everything from hazelnut gougeres with stilton and red grapes to sourdough stuffing with prosciutto and Parmesan to pumpkin pie with toffee pecan topping. You’ll even make your own pie crust that you can take home to freeze for your holiday pie.

Chef Michael Mina has a lot to celebrate this year. (Photo curtesy of the chef)

Special Michael Mina Dinner

Oct. 9, Michael Mina will celebrate his 20-year career, as well as the first anniversary of his eponymous San Francisco — in grand style.

He will host a special Anniversary Tribute Dinner, 6 p.m. at Michael Mina restaurant, which will feature six courses prepared by famed chefs who have cooked alongside him over the years, including Traci des Jardins of Jardiniere in San Francisco, Melissa Perello of Frances in San Francisco, Joseph Humphrey of the soon-to-open Dixie in San Francisco and Ron Siegel of the Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton in San Francisco. Also lending a hand with one of the courses is Mina’s mentor, George Morrone.

If that weren’t star power enough, guests expected to attend include such culinary luminaries as Nancy Oakes of Boulevard in San Francisco, Julian Serrano of Julian Serrano in Las Vegas, Gary Danko of Gary Danko restaurant in San Francisco, Roland Passot of La Folie in San Francisco and Bradley Ogden.

Canapes also will be prepared by San Francisco executive chefs Omri Aflalo of Bourbon Steak, Jason Berthold of RN74 and Jeremy Ravetz of Michael Mina.

Wine pairings will reflect Mina’s favorite wines, including ones from Iron Horse and Au Bon Climat.

Price for this opulent evening plus after-party? It’s $500 per person, will all proceeds going to Ronnie Lott’s All-Stars Helping Kids, which promotes a safe and healthy learning environment for disadvantaged kids.

If you can’t make it to that unforgettable evening, you can still join in the celebration as Michael Mina restaurant will be offering a 20th anniversary menu all through October. The seven-course dinner is composed of dishes that pay tribute to Chef Mina’s long career.

Among the courses are ahi tuna tartare with ancho chile, Asian pear, sesame oil and pine nuts; and butter-poached beef rib eye with potato gratin, bone marrow, creamy spinach and leeks.

The anniversary menu is $125 per person.

Food Truck Frenzy at Rock Wall Wine Company

In celebration of San Francisco Fleet Week, Rock Wall Wine Company invites you to come out to its 40,000-square-foot hangar in Alameda, noon to 4 p.m. Oct. 8, to enjoy its wines and offerings from a bevy of food trucks as you take in the sight of the Blue Angels whizzing by.

Ten trucks will be dishing up their specialties, including Little Green Cyclo, Naked Chorizo, and Le Truc.

Tickets are $5. Wines will be available for purchase by the glass. And of course, bring cash for any noshes you might want to buy from the food trucks.

Also on hand will be a DJ, caricature artist, and tarot card reader. For more information, click here.

More: My Q&A with Chef Robert Sapirman

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