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Monday, June 20, 2011

Goodbye to Shirley Fong-Torres, Fernet Branca Gets Its Own Music Video

Posted By on Mon, Jun 20, 2011 at 8:03 AM

click to enlarge talkpoints.jpg

Today's notes on national stories, local trends, random tastes, and other bycatch dredged up from the food media.

click to enlarge Shirley Fong-Torres. - WOK WIZ
  • Wok Wiz
  • Shirley Fong-Torres.

Goodbye, Shirley. I flipped open my computer this morning to learn some sad news: Shirley Fong-Torres, author of The Woman Who Ate Chinatown and owner of the Wok Wiz walking tours of Chinatown, passed away on Saturday.

Few people knew more about the food scene in Chinatown or did more to bring visitors in contact with its shops and restaurants. And what a joy she was to eat with! When I was at the East Bay Express, she came with me on a number of reviews, occasionally bringing her bisexual, bipolar stuffed bear and unpacking dozens of anecdotes about Edsel Ford Fong, San Francisco's most terrifying waiter. She will be missed.

Fernet: The Musical. The Guardian just interviewed DJs Doc Fu and Pause, members of the Red Wine Crew. A few years ago, Pause and Equipto recorded "I Drink Fernet," an ode to San Francisco's favorite liquor, and just put out a video filmed at Nickie's.

"Get with this, it's like you're sippin on a licorice stick/For the players, it tastes a little bit like Jaeger/But smoother, tell me if you're feelin the flavor." Much better than that damn Whole Foods Parking Lot cut that got lodged in my head on Friday and lurked there all weekend. (For the story of why everyone in San Francisco drinks Fernet, check out Nate Cavalieri's 2005 story.)

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Follow me at @JonKauffman.

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