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Name: Gutenberg

Location: Somewhere near the Golden Gate Bridge.

Occupation: BRPR (Bunrab public relations.)

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May 17-23, 2007


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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

We arrived at Bar Bambino at 8:30 but were told that the wait was about an hour. Yow. Who knew that Wednesday was the new Friday?

We decided that unless we wanted to go meth shopping that this area of 16th street was not the place to stand randomly on the sidewalk (unless we wanted to take part in a new TV series - Survivor San Francisco.)

We hopped over to Coco500 where we sat down immediately to some cocktails and snacks including the de rigueur greenbeans ($6.00):

We also dug into some fresh and tasty ahi tuna ceviche ($8.00):

...with coconut, ginger and lime, a coppa salami pizza ($14.00):

...mushroom flatbread ($9.00):

...and some citrusy and delicious shaved asparagus ($12.00):

... with buffalo mozzarella and anchovies.

Dessert was green tea ice cream ($8.00) with tapioca which was eclipsed by the mandatory order of vacherin ($8.50):

...which is a bunrab fave for its crisp meringue, coffee ice cream, candied almonds enhanced with crème anglaise and chocolate sauce.

I guess we’ll have to wait until the crowds die down at that baby bar, luckily there was no wait at this adult one.

500 Brannan St.
San Francisco, CA





Tuesday, May 22, 2007

This warm weather put us in the mood for sushi and the best place for this in Marin is Sushi Ran.

We felt lucky that we were seated immediately (without rezzies) at 7.

In addition to our usual items:

... (including a salmon citrus roll and various nigiri) we got a vegetable tasting ($9.00):

... which included eggplant, crispy potatoes, garlicy bok choy and spaghetti squash. All of these were good, but the bok choy was the standout.

We had a shaved tako salad ($10.50):

...which had a lemon gelee and capers with purple basil leaves over paper thin slices of octopus. Delish.

The long days meant that there was still some sunlight to stretch our octo-legs after dinner:

... while we checked out the goofy ship names.

Sushi Ran
107 Caledonia St.
Sausalito, CA





Monday, May 21, 2007

Burgermeister is a local chain:

... where they flip Niman Ranch patties.

We were in North Beach at their Columbus Ave. branch for a filling lunch.

We both had cheeseburgers ($8.65 each) with grilled onions.

I got one with Jack:

... which was melted over the half pound of beef. The onions were grilled a little less than I prefer and the bun was a little soft to hold up to this juicy, robust job, but it was still good.

The fries were standard issue. I requested mine extra crispy but I still yearned for more chunchy bits.

Chubby got his burger with Swiss cheese and coleslaw:

The cabbage was crispy in this freshly chopped green haystack with bits of carrot and not too much mayo.

One nice feature of this burger counter is that they have a wine and beer license in addition to their shake license for which they use Mitchells ice cream.

759 Columbus Ave.
San Francisco, CA






Sunday, May 20, 2007

Pie High

We decided that it was time to fill out pieholes after seeing Shuna and Catherine’s posts on Mission Pie.

If you haven’t heard about this Mission High student-staffed café, it’s time for you to check out their goods:

We got a slice of strawberry galette ($3.50):

... which had a nice balance of sweet and tart. This oat and sugar sprinkled, free form, homey disc didn’t last long.

The apple pie:

... was just the way we like it. Tasty fruit with a nice balance of acidity and sweetness were cooked until the apple was done but maintained it’s chunky identity. The crust to fruit ratio was perfect.

They extend their baking beyond pie to include scones and muffins:

Fair trade coffee and tea is available to wash it all down.

This community conscious eatery is not only an antidote to the chain coffee routine, it’s clear that there are caring people encrusted in this operation.

Don’t look for the entrance on Mission Street:

... it’s actually on the side of the building.

Mission Pie
2901 Mission St.
San Francisco, CA





Saturday, May 19, 2007

Dopo mine

Dinner with A&B at Dopo:

... began with some crostini ($10.00):

... which were topped with a dice of local salmon with a green cap of fava puree. This crisp bread, fresh, rich salmon and vegetal combo was seriously delish.

They make their own salumi here so we couldn’t pass up the testa rossa ($7.00):

... which had a pleasant caliente kick.

We got a Dopo ($10.00):

... and a morel ($16.00) pizza:

... which were thin crusted and with a nice topping to dough ratio. The tomato sauce, cheese and oregano topped, Dopo pie came with chopped, house-cured anchovies. The fungus and leek ‘za came with a nice portion of morels. Both were re-orderable.

The service was friendly, knowledgeable and efficient.

This casual and popular Italian eatery was the perfect setting to catch up with our pals.

4293 Piedmont Ave.
Oakland, CA






Friday, May 18, 2007

Vasco is an Italian eatery:

... with a full bar and woodburning oven. This seems like a formula for success, but when we sat down for dinner, we decided to pass on the ‘za when we checked out pies on neighboring tables and they were 100% blister free.

I ordered the halibut and was told that it was unavailable because it was “out of season” (a fact that has not been brought to the attention of some other local restaurants – maybe they should just say that they are out of it.) I decided to go with the salmon ($14.50):

... extra rare. They cooked it to my specified degree of doneness and served this pink meat over orzo with tomatoes and olives. It was fine for what it was, but to be fair, it wasn’t meant to be anything fancy.

Chubby got the seafood linguine ($15.50):

The tomato based sauce and commercially made noodles were standard issue, but the scallops, squid and shrimp was cooked to a tender a flavorful degree of doneness.

I don’t think we will return to Vasco, but we respect it for what it is – a neighborhood eatery for families that delivers a non-threatening, well-priced product.

Vasco Restaurant
106 Throckmorton Ave.
Mill Valley, Ca





Thursday, May 17, 2007

Do you remember the Fourth Street Grill in Berkeley? Mark Miller and Susie Nelson’s old digs had gingerly changed hands before finally becoming Christopher Lee’s Eccolo.

When Bette’s Oceanview Diner:

...moved in, the condition laid before them was that they were not to compete with FSG by selling hamburgers. A diner without burgers was a big limitation, but they had a meatloaf sandwich for those who required a ground beef and bread fix.

There is something about scarcity that enhances a Rosamunde, Prather Ranch and Bette’s burger acquisition. Don’t get me wrong, they are all fine, but they are made better by the grill line-like alignment of stars when you find yourself adhering to their calendar dictated serving schedule.

Bette’s still has no burgers on the menu, but on Thursdays, the cheeseburger special ($9.95):

... is worth ordering. This well seasoned patty comes on an Acme bun with slices of tomato, lettuce and grilled onions to round out this tasty, post hump day meal.

The only kind of fries available are the home variety. Luckily, these had a sufficient supply of crispy bits to keep me from missing shoestrings.

We split a Cobb salad ($10.95):

... with our former 4th street contraband. This green haystack is our default lunch item with it’s ripe avocado, perfectly boiled eggs and tasty bits of bacon strewn among chunks of chicken and sliced cherry tomatoes.

Although we miss Mark and Susie’s burgers and Caesar salads, we’re glad Bette’s has us covered.

Bette’s Oceanview Diner
1807 Fourth St.
Berkeley, CA


From the bunrab email bag, Cindy writes about Tuesday’s Boca break:


"We have found the best bets to be the burgers, skewers, prawns and calamari." And the fries! Don't forget the fries!


Gutenberg replies:

Dear Cindy,

How could I forget those ducky spuds - just don’t confuse potatoes fried in duck fat with the “duck fries” at Incanto.


Some responses to other BR missives:

A.J. Thanks for the encouraging words.

Also to S. – we’ll have to check out that pork sandwich. Sounds tasty.





back to last week - May 9-16, 2007



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