Ike's Place Has a Secret Menu!

Pete Kane
The John Connor (#154): Steak, habanero, mushrooms, avocado, and mozzarella sticks.

As a rule, the concept of a "secret menu" should be regarded with healthy skepticism. They're essentially a ploy to get you to feel super-cool and in-the-know about ordering from things you don't see the price of, so you usually wind up paying extra for the warm feeling of superiority towards the sheep who think, say, a Double-Double is the end-all-and-be-all.

See Also: Salumeria's $12 Sandwiches Are Worth Every Shekel

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Week in Vegan: Vegan Seders, Soyless Tofu, and Baby Sloths

  • Having a vegan Seder? Here's everything you need to know to keep your event kosher and cruelty-free. Yes, matzoh balls are included.
  • If you're looking for a way to further make your Passover ethical and conscious of issues such as feminism and the discrimination suffered by the LGBT community, Jewish News has some excellent ideas. Even if you're just going traditional, there are some excellent ideas on what to replace the egg and the shank bone with. (Beets are the answer!)

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Talking Subs with Merigan's Liza Shaw

Categories: SOMA, Sandwiches

Jenn Pries
The porky Arista sandwich at Merigan Sub Shop.
I walked into Merigan Sub Shop on a Thursday, otherwise known as "pig day." In between building subs, Liza Shaw and her team were butchering down a whole pig. All of its parts lend themselves to different sandwiches. The shoulder and loin are combined in the Arista, the back legs become the prosciutto for the Italian combo, the belly becomes the porchetta and any other bits and pieces become meatballs. The liver becomes the liver terrine and even the skin is fried to make addicting pork cracklings.

Shaw, a former chef at A16, is meticulous in providing the best sandwich she can. Over an Arista (a juicy combination of braised and roasted pork mixed with provolone, rapini, and hots) we talked subs, baseball, and her plans for the future.

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Kale Tacos in a Dive Bar -- How Totally S.F.

Yelp/Ann L.
Here we are in the midst of what may as well be the Decade of Kale. You can't walk a block without seeing the super green on a menu in this city. Kale is the new pork belly -- in terms of its ubiquitous presence, not necessarily in regards to nutritional value -- and while we've seen it on pizzas and in all manner of smoothies and salads, we're surprised it's taken this long to encounter it in taco form.

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Meet Kilovolt: High Voltage Coffee Coming to Oakland

Categories: Coffee

Ethan Ashley
Kilovolt hopes to open this weekend.
When Ethan Ashley moved back to the East Bay in 2008, he wasn't looking to open a coffee shop. Rather, he was hunkering down on a different project, getting an old, run-down West Oakland house back into shape. The house was his, just purchased, and awaited four years of work. Ashley took it on, learning very quickly that coffee is a vital ally in a project of that size, but hard to find on his side of the freeway. The four years he spent building, he also spent driving across town to spots like Subrosa and Awaken, scheming a way to give his own neighborhood the caffeine jolt it needed.

See also: Three Coffee Drinks You Don't Know But Should
Meet the Newest Coffee Game in Town: Red Bay Coffee Roasters
Six Places to Find Great Coffee in Oakland

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Drink of the Week: Sacramento Cocktails

Lou Bustamante
Aged Martinez cocktail at Hook & Ladder
Chances are you've driven your carload of friends by or through Sacramento at some point, possible en route to Tahoe. And chances are also good that if you made a stop to eat on that long drive, you probably hit one of the many strip-mall fast-food joints right off the freeway.

While your mental image of Sacramento might be only of the state's political engine, quite a treasure trove of eats and drinks can be found there, in a big city that acts like a small town. Here's my guide and great excuses to plan a stop.

See Also:- Drink of the Week: Hitting a Triple Header at Trappist
- Drink of the Week: Ahumado at CHAYA Brasserie
- Drink of the Week: Mixing from Scratch at Plum Bar

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Eat This: Salumeria's Fried Chicken Sandwich

Categories: Eat This, Mission


A good fried chicken truly hits the spot, especially when it comes in the form of a sandwich. The one served at Salumeria on 20th St is a must-eat.

Here, chicken breasts are seasoned overnight and fried twice daily: once in the morning, and again around 2 p.m, and kept in a warmer. That the bird isn't served blazing hot out of the fryer is actually a good thing -- letting the chicken rest allows the flavors and juices to settle within itself while maintaining the crispy fried coating. You're not burning your mouth on a grease-bomb.

See Also: Just in Time for Baseball Season: the Haute Dog at Craftsman & Wolves
Salumeria's $12 Sandwiches Are Worth Every Shekel

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Srirachapocalypse: Delicious Sauce Given 90 Days to Fix Noxious Odors

Pete Kane

Oh, noes, Sriracha is back in the news. And not because someone discovered a tasty new use.

Last fall, the town of Irwindale, California complained that parent company Huy Fong Foods' plant was causing widespread health problems, including irritated eyes, headaches, sore throats. (So much for those highly coveted Scoville units.) The facility was forced to shut down for awhile, causing looting and food riots as people ransacked shelves for the vinegary Vietnamese/Thai condiment. Now the Irwindale city council has given Huy Fong 90 days to do something about the odors generated from processing 45,000 tons of chilies a year -- the actual grinding of which resumes in August.

See Also: Sriracha Factory Shut Down Again

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Little Chihuahua Brunch Doesn't Quite Satisfy

Little Chihuahua's Mexican French Toast
A walk down Valencia on a Sunday afternoon means the smell of various foods floating over the sidewalks accompanied by the din of laughing eaters. This is a prime area for brunch and many a San Franciscan takes advantage of the various options for mid-day grubbing.

Little Chihuahua recently rolled out a new brunch menu and we were especially interested in their twist on French toast. The Mexican French toast, offered only on weekends, wraps plantains and applewood-smoked bacon into flour tortillas that you can then smother with maple-agave syrup.

See also: Beyond Bacon and Eggs: Three Out-of-the-Box Brunches to Try This Weekend

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East Bay Bite of the Week: Sketch Ice Cream

Molly Gore
Vanilla soft-serve with candied cocoa nibs is one of the simplest and best things at Sketch Ice Cream.
Before artisanal ice cream became the Bay Area's benign drug of choice (see Humphry Slocombe, Smitten, Three Twins, etc.), Sketch was doing it all, and doing it quietly. The spot opened nearly a decade ago, and with the exception of a three-year hiatus, has been a much-loved East Bay ice cream sanctum. The pair behind the shop are Eric Shelton and Ruthie Planas-Shelton, a couple with a high-end pastry pedigree that includes a mutual stint at Aqua.

See also: East Bay Bite of the Week: BBQ at Smokey J's
East Bay Bite of the Week: Fournée's Ham and Egg Croissant
East Bay Bite of the Week: Grégoire's Crispy Potato Puffs

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