Doggy Bag: Six Months Later, the Chronicle Discovers the Nonstaurant
Our favorite morsel from the blogs.
Joyce Croft/Flickr Oops, missed one: Little Skillet.
Late to dinner: Who better to comment on what's happening across the broad sweep of local dining than Chron critic Michael Bauer? But today on his blog Between Meals, Bauer writes like a man who doesn't get out much. In "A Brave New World for Restaurants," MB addresses the Bay Area's food culture beyond the traditional restaurant. Pop-ups, temporary eateries, the occasional prix fixe, the communal table, for chrissake. Trouble is, Bauer's trend piece is stale as diner Saltines -- the rest of the city's food press has been writing about the nonstaurant for the past six months. At least.
And Bauer doesn't go far enough, into 2009's exploding culture of street-food carts, taco trucks tricked out for other cuisines, the new generation of supperclubs and pirate eateries. Even the hook for his exploration of this "new" world is bent: The caption under Cane Rosso says it will "begin offering sit-down, family-style dinners nightly." Oh, really? We reported back in October that Cane was about to launch nightly suppers, which it did. First week of November. Admitted, we get stuff wrong. But MB shows how difficult it can be for an O.G. critic to adapt to a very fluid dining culture, a place where -- in 2009, anyway -- concepts bubbled up from the streets and into restaurant kitchens. Eventually.
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