Scenes from Taste of the Nation 2014

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Sean Timberlake

We're a notoriously foodie city, with an astonishing number of excellent restaurants at our fingertips. But every day, children go hungry in our country -- nay, even in our city -- while we sup and swill at our haute eateries.

Luckily, we can eat our way toward a solution to the problem.

Last night was Share Our Strength's Taste of the Nation, where 100 of the Bay Area's top restaurants, distilleries, breweries and wineries served up sips and nibbles to help end childhood hunger. Proceeds go to non-profits around the country, including local beneficiaries 18 Reasons and Children of Shelters.

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Tonight: Eat at La Nebbia, Then Ride a Real-Life Donkey at Rock Bar

Categories: 'Eat', Events

Juan Pardo
La Nebbia's impressive porchetta.
It's Thursday, which is more or less Friday, so you might as well go out tonight. And if you don't have plans, allow us to create an evening agenda for you.

First, I fell in love with La Nebbia, the newish wine bar and enoteca from the folks behind La Ciccia and the subject of this week's restaurant review. The menu at the 30th and Church restaurant focuses on prosciutto and thin-crust pizzas, with some other Italian specialties thrown in. Do order the burrata with pancetta and truffle sauce (dreamy), maybe a pizza or the porchetta with balsamic, endives, and blood orange, all washed down with a lovely glass of Italian wine.

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Come Drink With SF Weekly on Saturday

Categories: Events

When you picked up your print newspaper this week, you may have noticed a slim, attractive insert slip out of it. That was our annual DRINK issue, 34 pages dedicated to adult beverages and the places we love to consume them.

In it you'll find an essay on the integration of bar bites and cocktails by Lou Bustamante, a meditation on beer's coming hopaissance by Jason Henry, a study of the new wine trend of "kitchen sink blends" by Mary Ladd, a 24/7 party schedule by Derek Opperman, and an ode to nightlife by Benjamin Wachs.

To celebrate the issue and its subject matter, SF Weekly is throwing a party on Saturday at the Old Mint. $35 gets you all-you-can-drink booze and all-you-can-eat food from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Plus there will be a cocktail competition judged by me and music editor Ian S. Port (who is very well-versed in both drinking cocktails and judging things), a DJ, and more fun. Tickets are available here; the full list of vendors is after the jump.

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Weekly Urban Air Night Market Starts Thursday at SoMa StrEat Food Park

Categories: Events, SOMA

Urban Air Market
If ever you've bought, say, a wooden bow tie or a 3-D printed necklace of a pink pistol at Urban Air Market in Hayes Valley, you're probably excited that the ever-growing D.I.Y. bazaar is kicking off a weekly night at SoMa StrEat Food Park. Having already provided a home for artists and makers, artisanal food was the logical extension.

See Also: SoMa StrEat Food Park Opened Yesterday

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Remember to Get Free Pancakes at IHOP Today if That's Your Thing

Categories: Events

Admit it, you want these now.
In the vast universe of "National X Food" Days, some seem to stick more than others. The food itself probably has most to do with a food's popularity: pancakes > cold cuts, baked scallops, melba toast, and other foods allegedly celebrating holidays this month. But it also helps to have a major brand pushing the concept. (In fact, once I read that most of these days were actually made up by interest groups or corporations or smart PR firms, which makes total sense, like our nation's politicians are really going to concern themselves with National Chocolate-Covered Raisins Day, March 24, or National Turkey Neck Soup Day, March 30.)

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How to Celebrate Mardi Gras by the Bay

Categories: Events

Brenda's French Soul Food
Next month, I'm headed to New Orleans for a weeklong feast, which means second breakfasts and probably second lunches and dinners too. Luckily, Mardi Gras and Fat Tuesday fall in the next few days which makes for the perfect pre-NOLA stomach-stretching exercise. Whether you're getting ready for a big eating trip or just feeling nostalgic for the Big Easy, here's where to send yourself into a food coma.

Brenda's French Soul Food and Libby Jane Cafe have your sweet tooth covered. Libby Jane will be featuring mini King Cakes through Tuesday ($7.50) while Brenda's is blowing our minds with King cake beignets. What's a King Cake beignet you ask? It's simply a beignet stuffed with berry compote, vanilla cream cheese, and pecans, colorful powdered sugar included ($4.50 each). Brenda's, 652 Polk, 345-8100 Libby Jane Cafe, 644 Polk, 926-2540

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Weekly Event Planner: Wine & Chocolate, Napa vs. Sonoma Throwdown, French Fine Dining Pop-Up, and More

Categories: Events, Pop-Up

Dandelion Chocolate/Molly DeCoudreaux Photography
Wine & Chocolate
When: Thursday, Feb. 27, 7-9 p.m.
Where: Dandelion Chocolate, 740 Valencia Street
Cost: $40-$50
The rundown: Chocolate alone is great. Chocolate with wine is even better. Guests will follow the journey from cacao to chocolate bar, stopping at five specific stages in the process to try each with a California wine. The event includes a tour of the chocolate factory, five generous wine pairings provided by the Sonoma/San Francisco based Wattle Creek Winery, and samples of Dandelion Chocolate. Purchase tickets on Eventbrite.

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What to Do Tonight For Beer Week: Thursday, February 13

Categories: Beer, Events

Well, it's still Beer Week. And if you have the stamina to go out for another night of beer tasting, the sudsy fun continues this evening.

You might find yourself at Magnolia, where the Festival of Firkins is going on until 8 p.m. (though by then some of the more special casks might be tapped). A firkin's just a small barrel of beer with a funny name, and the ales at Magnolia today have been cask-conditioned, which means they haven't been carbonated or refrigerated and really let the natural fermentation process take hold -- they're often called "real ales." Anyway there should be about a dozen there today, available in pints or tasting glasses.

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Dishcrawl Comes to the Mission

Categories: Events, Mission

Pete Kane
Goose rillettes, artichoke and green garlic flatbread, and Moroccan fritto misto at the Vestry.
Dishcrawl, the foodie-tourism event-thrower that guides people to unfamiliar cuisines and unexplored neighborhoods, came to the Mission Tuesday evening. The multi-city company has highlighted spots like the Inner Richmond and the Marina, playing up all manner of themes. This time it was a narrow strip of Valencia that took center stage, as some forty people were led to West of Pecos, Amber Dhara and the Vestry.

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What to Do Tonight For Beer Week: Wednesday, February 12

Categories: Beer, Events

We're more than halfway through Beer Week already, which means that you're running out of excuses to sample the smorgasbord of beer and food that's on offer. We've rounded up some of the night's best events in a by-no-means inclusive list.

Get there before 5 p.m. for Magnolia's 5th annual Oyster & Beer Extravaganza. The brewery will be releasing its Oysterhead Stout, made with four barrels of Hog Island oysters, and a few other "carefully curated" oyster stouts will also be on draft. Paired with fresh oysters, fried oysters, and all sorts of briny treats. (Hint: Afterwards you can walk up the street to check out the beer cocktails at the Alembic.)

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