Big Wheels Foodies and every chef who is any chef came out in full force for the 14th annual Meals on Wheels event last week. Guests mingled and placed auction bids inside a big tent that covered Steuart Street, then dispersed to feast at participating neighboring restaurants such as Boulevard, One Market, and Cosmopolitan Cafe. Full stomachs didn't stop the crowd from returning to the big top for post-feast dancing to live music. At $250 a pop, the event wasn't exactly all-inclusive, but it did raise $400,000 for charity.
May Day Sunday, May 19, was party time at exuberant Enrico's. The North Beach icon celebrated the 10-year anniversary of its early '90s reincarnation, its 44th anniversary since Enrico Banducci started the street cafe, and the 80th birthday of Banducci himself. Appropriately, Supervisor Aaron Peskin presented Banducci with a city proclamation acknowledging his contribution to San Francisco's dining scene. Harry got tipsy on the music, cocktails, food, and titillating conversation with novelist Herb Gold and others in the colorful crowd of 600 well-wishers.
Anniversary Party Also raising a glass in honor of ongoing success is Farallon, which toasts its fifth anniversary this month with five-course optional-wine-paired celebration lunches and dinners by chef/partner Mark Franz. Stop in to satiate yourself among the deep-sea scenics June 12 and June 13 (and don't forget to check out restaurateur/designer Pat Kuleto's 1999 cabernet from the Kuleto estate winery).
Don't Call It Lunacy Luna Park owners Joe Jack and A.J. Gilbert are again expanding their empire. They have taken over the space at 1199 Valencia at 23rd Street (formally JJ's Bistro) and plan to open an "Italian comfort food" hot spot by September. Expect 70 seats inside, another 15 to 20 for sidewalk dining, rustic wood floors, plank-hewed tables, and a much lighter and brighter feel than Luna Park's.