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Side Dish 

Swig, Brother, Swig; Cosmo Current; Extra Sauce; Mergers

Wednesday, Jun 7 2000
Swig, Brother, Swig
Always thought those pictures of rock stars and glitterati swilling bubbly straight from the bottle were just the coolest? Ever try it yourself? You basically end up with a faceful of agitated champagne foam -- which is fun too, but a different thing altogether. To the rescue comes Pommery Champagne, with POP, a cute little version of its signature blue bottle that comes with its own straw. It's smaller than a split, but perfectly fashioned for the dance floor -- or that little black cocktail bag.

Cosmo Current
Ate a good meal and had a great experience at the new Cosmopolitan Grill, the latest occupant of the Etrusca/Capital Grill space in the Rincon Center. The new owners have kept the beautiful wood paneling, but have turned the restaurant around, making the outside entrance the central one and pulling out the entire center row of booths to install an additional 40-seat bar for drinking and munching on chef Steven Levine's creations. Now that's a true commitment to stool-top dining ....

Extra Sauce
La Salsa, the "taqueria" chain, has undergone a summer makeover. Out is the industrial brushed metal; in is the light and airy blond wood. I don't know what Martha would say regarding burrito chain décor, but I don't think the spots should add hanging plants anytime soon. However they have had one implicit vote of approval -- I spied Dr. Loco of the Rockin' Jalapeño Band enjoying almuerzo at the Fillmore and California location. ¡Ay caramba!

Yet more national press for Danko, this time in Conde Nast Traveler, which voted the North Point jewel one of the 60 great new restaurants in the world. Look for a new direct shuttle service from SFO bearing the destination sign "Danko." And speaking of which, who were the newlyweds snuggling at that corner table last week? Annie and Craig have heated up the city with their Delfina, and now they've turned up the heat on their relationship -- they dumped plans for a complicated September East Coast wedding in favor of a City Hall elopement. The couple drank Veuve with friends on the terrace at Le Colonial after the ceremony before heading off to Danko, where the also-soon-to-be-wed maitre d' Nick Payton secured them a romantic spot and chef Gary personally built the smallest three-tier wedding cake ever. Then they left for the honeymoon suite at the Palomar: a truly San Francisco wedding for a great San Francisco pair. All my best.

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Harry Coverte

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