Food, Wine & Friends Page 116
After ravaging the county of Sonoma last year, Amy FitzJensen was wary of
revisiting the scene of that crime, so she selected San Francisco as the site of
this year's festivities.
The evening centered on the music and libations at the Boom Boom Room in the
Fillmore District. I'd scoped out the new, fancy, "hot"
restaurant called NOPA, but they laughed and said "NO WAY" when I
called to reserve a table a week and a half before the celebration. We
finally settled on dining at the Alamo Square Seafood Grill and this turned out
to be a great choice!
We took a series of tables to accommodate our little group of 12 merry-makers
and I immediately requested flute glasses for everyone. I opened a nice
bottle of Pierre Moncuit Champagne.
Jesper was delighted to have a sip of bubbly...and many interesting choices
on the menu.
Antoinette immediately got busy...
That first bottle of bubbly seemed to put some people to sleep...
Samantha and Georgette show off their eye make-up.
Amy, meanwhile, was wide awake.
Joe, having had a sip of the Laugner Cremant d'Alsace Ros immediately started whistling
the "Happy Birthday" song.
Dogs in the neighborhood immediately started barking and Humane Society
representatives issued a warning to stop this and they weren't just
"Bitch, bitch, bitch..." Joe replied, but it wasn't clear what he
Pierre and Aviva enjoy a night without kids and a sip of bubbly that's nearly
the same color as their daughter Clementine's hair.
Toni's daughter Chelsea was baby-sitting Amy and Jesper's kids. At least,
that's her view. Some contended Alanna and Dane were watching Chelsea.
We were trying to be rather quiet so as not to wake Georgette.
Meanwhile, Samantha was certainly "in the pink,"
finding the Cremant to be "dreamy."
I ordered a starter of Mussels and these were delicious!
Jesper ordered a plate of fried calamari for the whole
table, but one was not really sufficient.
A white bean soup is one of the signature offerings at this
Pierre had some risotto...
The birthday girl ordered the Gnocchi with vegetables, a
savory and rich plate...
Toni opted for one of the fresh seafood plates, a bargain
The restaurant menu offers a selection of fresh fish...you select which way you
want it prepared and then choose an appropriate sauce for it.
Though it's name has "seafood grill" in it, Alamo Square offers a
number of meat dishes, too. I'd read about their braised short ribs, so I
went for those.
Jesper's plate of tuna looked good, though it appears to
have been run over by a car whose parking brake came unhinged out there on
Samantha was telling Joe about her cousin Stella.
Joe, apparently, knows Stella.
Toni and Jesper are thrilled not having to wash dishes...
Rebecca, on the other hand, engaged in a little game of peek-a-boo...
Stephane enjoyed the food, wine and friends...
Amy, though, didn't have time to talk...she was busy!
Joe and Samantha found it very amusing when Amy started showing off her
"shadow puppet" techniques.
Soon it was time for Amy to open some birthday gifts...
"Wow...you guys did buy me some pwesents!" Amy cried out.
Rebecca may have a relative who's face is on a birthday card...
Of course, there was the obligatory box full of "Girls
Love This Stuff."
Dane and Alanna...home with the "sitter," Chelsea.
Pear Tarte "Tatin"
Meanwhile, Samantha shows off her dental work.
Stephane and Rebecca.
Then it was on to the Boom Boom Room!
It was getting late and Jesper and Pierre were "sleep
dancing" to some funky tunes...
Hey! What are you doing?
At 2 in the morning, after about a 4 hour, non-stop set of
music, the Greasetraps put down their instruments and bid a fond
"adieu" to the party animals who were still anxious to funkify.
hear some of their music if you click here to get to their web site...
We all made our crawl back to our respective hotels, hoping
to meet again in a few hours for a little Sunday morning breakfast...
A few hours later, I drove over to the Grove Inn (I was at a little
place in Japantown, close to the Boom Boom Room) to pick up Amy and Jesper.
We motored over to the Embarcadero...
Here's a look in my rear-view mirror...
It was a gloriously clear, crisp winter morning, about
I'd found a breakfast place which gets good reviews...
Quite a popular spot...we were told the wait would be about 45-60 minutes.
We waited a bit more than an hour for a table...
In the meantime, we moseyed across the boulevard to look in a store with a giant
"sale" sign. I think it was called "Girls Love this S*#t
But guys can take only so much of this sort of window
shopping, since guys don't love this s#*t.
So we crossed the street and waited in the cool shadows of
the Town's End building.
We found some Canadian Eskimos.
Finally the FitzJensen name was called and we ambled from
the frosty outdoors inside to a window table in the sun...
The kitchen crew was busy making all sorts of tasty treats,
including some delectable potato pancakes.
One of the niceties of this place is the basket of
fresh-baked scones and muffins which are brought to each table.
The two ladies were then presented a little gift.
Aviva started to calculate Amy's age, but it kept coming up with "39."
Meanwhile, as we waited, Aviva prayed for good food.
And soon her prayers were answered...
Pierre's Steak & Eggs.
We finished a wonderful breakfast, with a short drive to the Ferry Building...
We ventured over to the Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant's wine bar
and ordered a bottle of Ren Geoffroy's excellent Brut Ros.
Another toast to Amy on her birthday!
And then it was time to motor back to the Peninsula...
And so we made plans for the next birthdays...Pierre and
Jesper, coming up in April.
Watch out Santa Cruz!!
BACK TO THE FIRST FOOD, WINE & FRIENDS PAGE
BACK TO THE PREVIOUS PAGE
ON TO THE NEXT PAGE