Recipe: Scallops in Herbed Brown Butter

This is a favorite dish at our home! But Scallops are pricey, so we usually splurge on them as an appetizer, sometimes served simply as shown at left, sometimes atop a small hill of mashed potatoes and turnips (boiled together, 1:1 ratio) or mashed sweet potatoes. When shopping, be aware that you’re likely to find […]

Recipe: Red Wine Chocolate Brownies (Guest Post!)

People often ask for my recommendations on the best red wine to pair with chocolates and the honest truth is that many red wines don’t pair that well with even the finest chocolates. But cocoa powder! Now THAT’S a different thing altogether. And this recipe for wine-infused brownies from guest author Melissa Gallo proved quite […]

New Book: “Unique Eats & Eateries – San Francisco”

I thought this book would be of interest only for Bay Area foodies, but as one of my wine club members explained “all paths lead to San Francisco eventually“.  So I post this review for perusal by all who want to be prepared for that next trip to San Francisco, even if that trip is […]

New Cookbook from “Once Upon a Chef”

Online chef sensation, Jennifer Segal, has developed a considerable following for her home-tested recipes. Today she introduced the release of her first cook book – Once Upon a Chef, 100 Tested, Perfected, and Family-Approved Recipes.  I’ve subscribed to Jennifer’s email feed for years now, and though they include more desserts than I can feature with […]

“Man that toast was too short!” (Said nobody, ever)

Want to show some appreciation for friends and family at upcoming Holiday events?  Read my ten tips for Toasting Success and you’ll be remembered as a pro. It’s not as hard as it seems.  Although public speaking is intimidating for many – telling someone “Thank You” in public is what most of us have been trained […]

Recipe – Caldesi’s Six Elements for A Perfect Salad

I spend a fair amount of time in the air these days.  On one of my recent sojourns, the in-flight magazine featured an article on Giancarlo and Katie Caldesi, who run the eponymous restaurant/cooking school/cookery shop – London’s “Caffe Caldesi” (118 Marlybone Lane, W1U 2QF) and La Cucina Caldesi (4 Cross Keys Close, W1U 2DG) and […]

BOOK REVIEW: Pinot, Pasta and Parties. Dee Dee & Paul Sorvino

Renaissance man Paul Sorvino has many talents.  He’s a musician, an opera singer, a sculptor, and a great cook.  But he’s best known as an actor – of his 200+ roles on stage, film and TV, it was his roles in Goodfellas and Law & Order that raised his level of familiarity above the casual […]

The Booty Call – A Very Short Screenplay

  Opening: Night scene – Camera pans a woman’s upscale bedroom. The bedroom is neat and well decorated.  Woman is in bed, alone, and fast asleep. She may be sleeping in the nude, we can’t really tell.  Alarm clock on the night stand reads 1:15.  There is no sound, and then her cellphone rings.   (Groggily) […]

Pre-Arrival Offer – Cult Wine from OR

In case you’re a few issues behind in your wine periodicals, let me remind you that ‘Antica Terra’ is the Oregon winery co-founded by Maggie Harrison, who tutored under Manfred Krankl down at Sine Qua Non.  Her wines are beautifully crafted, and for a short time are available on pre-release.  Prices go up after the order […]

Featured Wine – Barrel 27, 2012 “Head Honcho” Syrah, Paso Robles ($29.99)

The Region Paso Robles, I feel safe in saying, is the envy of many of California’s wine regions (click map at right to see larger image on Wine Folly).  With a relatively unified group of owners (admittedly, winery owners tend to be only slightly more in synch than a litter of kittens) supporting some impressive marketing efforts on behalf […]