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Monday, October 27, 2014

Why Visit Now? Two Reasons Why Wine Country is Better in the Fall

Posted By on Mon, Oct 27, 2014 at 8:43 AM

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Northeastern folks may get to jump in piles of pretty leaves and dunk apple cider donuts around this time of year. Locally, we have pretty leaves at Wine Country harvest parties, alongside tasting rooms, gardens, and even barns that may offer Calgon-y “take me away from my mouse-laden Mission apartment” moments.

There is one added bonus to getting to the Wine Country in the fall: The later it gets in the calendar year, the easier it may be to get around on the roads now that punchdown of grapes from the oh-so-recent harvest has already happened. Hotels can also be cheaper, especially for those who can go mid-week. Less traffic and fewer folks probably give a more chillax feel as you taste and learn about the soil, climate, and people who create wine.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Boozy Events Round-Up: Thanksgiving and Black Friday Relief

Posted By on Wed, Nov 21, 2012 at 11:45 AM

PHOTO BY YOUNTVILLE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
  • Photo by Yountville Chamber of Commerce

If the impending Thanksgiving holiday is giving you more grief than gratitude, or you're really looking forward to the rush of relatives, shopping sprees, and parties, then here are a few events to accomplish both.

The Big Dive

Where: Harry Denton's Starlight Room, 450 Powell (at Sutter), 395-8595

When: Weds., Nov. 21st, 8:30 p.m.
- 1:30 a.m.

Cost: $2 PBR; Wild Turkey Whiskey and a PBR for $5

The Rundown: Kick off the Thanksgiving holiday high above the traffic and Union Square madness at the Starlight Room. Look down from your 21st floor perch at the scrambling folks and the crazies already lined up for Black Friday and laugh a hearty, slightly evil laugh, while enjoying $5 combos of Wild Turkey Whiskey with a can of Pabts Blue Ribbon beer. "Like" the Starlight Room on Facebook and skip the cover charge like the big shot you are. At least for tonight.

See Also:

- Jalisco Cobbler at the Starlight Room

- Hooked on Tonics: Pricilla Young of Brasserie S&P

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Friday, September 7, 2012

Drink of the Week: Best Warm Weather Cocktails

Posted By on Fri, Sep 7, 2012 at 1:00 PM

LOU BUSTAMANTE
  • Lou Bustamante

As if we needed a more dramatic celestial gesture to signal the start of Indian Summer in San Francisco, Wednesday's dramatic sky -- complete with double rainbow, no less -- was almost as grand an entrance as a skydiving queen of England.

With a full 52 entries (yes, a full year) into my tenure with the Drink of the Week column, here's a peek at some of my favorite warm weather coolers to enjoy the sun.

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Friday, June 22, 2012

Drink of the Week: Cucumber Collins at Goose & Gander

Posted By on Fri, Jun 22, 2012 at 1:00 PM

LOU BUSTAMANTE
  • Lou Bustamante


For most people, it takes a talented bartender to make them enjoy a complex spirit in a cocktail, especially whisky or one they might have developed a terrible aversion for (usually tequila). For me, it takes a skilled person to have me enjoy the most basic spirit: vodka. There's nothing wrong with vodka, but I usually find that there are more interesting ways to get a buzz. It's also a tough spirit to build a cocktail around, where the quality of the spirit can shine.

At Goose & Gander, bar manager Scott Beattie's Cucumber Collins ($11, Square One Cucumber Vodka, lemon, yuzu, huckleberries, seltzer, fresh and pickled cucumbers) has me reconsidering my habitual avoidance of the neutral spirit. Served tall and cold in a Collins glass, the tart-floral quality of the yuzu harmonizes with the cooling cucumber for a thirst-quenching drink made for lounging in the restaurant's verdant patio. On a typical Napa summer day, a drink like this is necessary.

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