Word of the day:
And it’s not even summer yet. Where’s global warming when you need it?
We went to the Warriors vs. Jazz game this week at Chase Center. First time there! Such a beautiful facility, with all the Bay Area restaurants represented (vs. national chains), and the views are great, especially from the nosebleed section. But you aren’t allowed to bring food and drink to your seats (per SF Department of Public Health Indoor Guidance), so we chowed down in the concession area with all the other un-masked ticket holders doing the same thing 🤔. Taking in a Giants game (first place in the NL West baby!) is next on our list of things to do while trying to get back to some semblance of normal life, but think we’ll wait until this arctic cold front moves on. Not really in the mood for a Candlestick flashback…
By the way, I'm Bruce Cole, Publisher of Edible San Francisco. Welcome to all the new subscribers this week. If you'd like to hop off anytime, simply unsubscribe. I appreciate you reading (and sharing) this newsletter.
P.S. Don’t forget to order your CUESA Summer Picnic Basket!
Thick or thin? When it comes to asparagus we are definitely in the camp of the thicker the better, and the only bunch we grab from the Zuckerman’s Farm stand at the CUESA Farmers Market are the “COLOSSAL,” which are at least 1-inch in diameter. Those stout asparagus spears have a tender middle that serves as a reservoir for that grassy vegetal flavor we 💚, and thick stalks are also higher in soluble fiber and vitamins B and C than thinner stalks. Those might be fighting words if you're a thin spear aficionado, but if you don't buy our argument, take it from an expert:
"Although many shoppers think 'younger and thinner' equal tenderness, the opposite is true for asparagus. A young asparagus plant is putting more of its energy into producing spears that will stand upright, so most of the plant material in the spears of younger asparagus plants is crude fiber." –Peter Ferretti, professor of vegetable crops, Penn State
We shared the recipe for Snapped Asparagus with Chermoula from Tara Duggan and Rachel Levin’s new book, STEAMED: A Catharsis Cookbook for Getting Dinner and Your Feelings on the Table, in the latest issue. It’s a humorous take on all the emotions we bring to the kitchen, especially after a long day spent working during quarantine. As such, they note that the book is “dedicated to everyone who cooked their way through 2020 — and beyond,” and when it comes to this recipe, “snapping the ends off of asparagus spears is one of the more mindless, meditative tasks in the kitchen. But listen closely and the snap itself brings a perverse satisfaction of its own. (Is it an asparagus stalk or your obnoxiously loud neighbor’s neck? You decide.)”
At Fig & Thistle we curate our wine selection with an overall focus on organic and sustainable farming, and we work with small producers to bring you unique and hard to come by wines. Our Fig & Thistle Apothecary offers contact-less curbside pick-up and we feature a unique assortment of concentrates, edibles, flowers, prerolls, vaporizers and CBD products.
We are firmly in the “we don’t want your fake burger that bleeds like the real thing” camp. Replacing commodity beef with commodity pea protein or soy is not a solution to the climate crisis. And as Mark Bittman notes, “the perfect meat alternative exists and has always existed. It’s natural, delicious, sustainable — even soil boosting! It takes no research dollars and is the world’s most important protein source. It’s called the legume. Sure, it’s not smoked brisket or a juicy burger, but it has fed cultures for centuries.” But when it comes to “fake coffee,” we might begrudgingly be a little more receptive because global warming is definitely a looming problem for our morning cup of joe, with “60% of wild coffee species—or 75 of 124 plants—at risk of extinction.” And (thank god?) apparently there’s a food tech start-up called Atomo Coffee Inc., where a team of food scientists and chemists are working on a coffee-like drink “made from upcycled ingredients, e.g. sunflower seed husks and watermelon seeds, which undergo a patented chemical process to yield molecules that mimic the flavor and mouthfeel of the real thing. The resulting grounds are brewed just like a regular cup of coffee. And yes, it has caffeine.” Ok maybe, but they gotta lose the “We like to think of ourselves as the Tesla of coffee,” tagline.
What’s Wrong With This Picture: out of 10,000 wineries in the United States, only 600 are owned by women.
BRB, We’re Going To Paddle Out and Dump A Case Of Wine at Ocean Beach: Aging wine by dropping it to the bottom of the ocean is has been a thing for centuries (hello shipwrecks), but now more wineries are getting in on the free cellar space: the obvious question is, of course, “But how do they taste?” Wapisa owner Patricia Ortiz describes her submerged wine as “rounder, more elegant and with fresher fruit.”
Who Are These People? White condiments, and why we hate them. The Takeout
Post Pandemic Rage Against The (Diet) Machine: “Make sure you didn't gain weight. Make sure you still look like you're in your 20s.” Rich Text
Ugh, Says Who? The gatekeepers who get to decide what food is disgusting. The New Yorker
Shot In The Arm For The Restaurant Industry? “Would an employee vaccine mandate bring them back?” The Counter
A Conversation With Reem Assil Of Reem’s California: “From colonization and occupation, to what role the restaurant plays in our society, to how to create equitable systems while living under capitalism—she is versed in it all.” From the Desk of Alicia Kennedy
For Here Or To Go? “Chipotle Is a Criminal Enterprise Built on Exploitation.” Jacobin Mag
Epicurious And Their BS/Clickbait “No More Beef Recipes” Stance Isn’t Going To Change Anything: but what does it “say about the red meat’s role in the U.S. diet and psyche?” 🎧 1A Podcast
Jumped The Shark He Did: “Salt Bae is coming to London and bringing his 24-carat gold steak with him.” GQ
Long Live NOPA: "I owe it to the legacy of all those cooks and servers and bussers and bartenders and diners to continue. I owe the neighborhood, to show—that after everything... we’re still alive." SF Chronicle
Throw The Bums Out: “I used to work as a bartender. These are the kinds of people that I threw out of bars all the time.” AOC says of MTG via Twitter
Towards A More Sustainable Community: “Local governments rarely look to independent restaurants to solve community hunger. Jacob Bindman is making the connection with the SF New Deal.” Eater
ICYMI: this month’s Spotify playlist starts off with a classic from Erykah Badu, pops into a groove by South African jazz singer Letta Mbulu, and slides into a long mellow jam with appearances by Femi Kuti, A Tribe Called Quest, Big Muff, Telex and the instantly recognizable Kid Francescoli hit, Moon (and it went like). But stick around for the last track because it’s dynamite.
That’s all for this week.
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We’re outta here. Be well and take care,
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"Everything will be okay in the end. If it's not okay, it's not the end" –John Lennon