Lots of San Francisco-area restaurants are thinking outside the ham-shaped box this Easter, offering inspired original creations and ethnic specialties instead of the standard fare.
At Foreign Cinema in San Francisco, chef-owners Gayle Pirie and John Clark will offer a three-course prix-fixe Easter menu that includes warm brandade with Thai green chilies, pickled onions and organic sunflower bread; baguette French toast with cardamom-blood orange butter, bananas, poached golden fruit and brown sugar bacon; croque madame with French ham and gruyere, béchamel, egg crown and harissa potato chips; and poached eggs with duck breast.
Bocanova in Oakland will serve fanesca, an Ecuadorian soup that is traditionally eaten only during the week leading up to Easter. Made with twelve different beans and grains and milk-cooked salt cod, the richly elaborate soup will be served — as is also traditional — with fried plantains, hard-boiled eggs, onion salsa and empanadas. On Easter Sunday, Bocanova will also feature pounded mustard-marinated lamb-leg steaks a la plancha.
In the summer of 2005, downtown Manhattan Beach’s first hotel opened its doors to the picturesque beachfront community in Southern California. Adjacent to dining and shopping destination Metlox Plaza (a former pottery factory that produced the ceramic sign for Pantages Theater in Hollywood), Shade Hotel is an upscale property conveniently located within walking distance of the pier and beach, and just fifteen minutes from Los Angeles International Airport. The area is known for its beauty – it’s even nicknamed the “Pearl of the South Bay” and has been used as a filming location for numerous movies and television shows, including “Jerry Maguire,” “Point Break,” “The O.C.” and “90210.”
For those of you who want to learn more about the chefs who are the recipients of the 2013 GAYOT.com U.S. Restaurant Awards, watch the video above. It was filmed during Chef Jamie Gwen’s radio show Food & Wine, which airs every Sunday morning in the Los Angeles area on KFWB News Talk 980.
Of the Top 40 Restaurants in the U.S. selected, nine of them did not appear on last year’s list, and three of those, The Mansion Restaurant at Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek, Michael Mina and The Willows Inn, are gracing the list for the very first time. Six that made Top 40 lists in earlier years are making a comeback: Bacchanalia, Bouley, CityZen, Corton, Georgian Room and The Restaurant at Meadowood. That means that nine from last year’s list did not make the cut: Cyrus, The Herbfarm, L’Espalier, Masa’s, Michel Richard Citronelle, Patina, Restaurant Eugene, TRU and Twist by Pierre Gagnaire.
General Motors recently announced a partnership with AT&T that will bring 4G connectivity to most of its vehicles by 2014. With the new 4G system, cars will act as mobile Wi-Fi hotspots, allowing for back-seat video streaming, more sophisticated navigation and wireless internet access for multiple devices. While some companies such as Ford Motors are relying on systems that work through drivers’ smart phones, GM notes that an in-car 4G system would transfer data ten times faster than existing 3G networks, and holds the potential for constant updates and upgrades through the use of apps. Although the technology is still in the developmental stages, production is on the horizon and consumers can expect 4G in most 2015 model year Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac vehicles. However, while General Motors may be the first out of the gates with Wi-Fi on the road, don’t be surprised to see other automakers follow suit in the near future — luxury brands such as Audi and BMW have already expressed interest in developing similar systems.