What to Eat and Drink During the Final Days of Our Summer of Racing
By: Marcia Gagliardi
The America’s Cup in San Francisco! Photo © ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget (via Facebook).
So the Louis Vuitton Cup has wrapped up, and a big congrats to Emirates Team New Zealand, who will be challenging Oracle Team USA for the America’s Cup, which kicks off September 7th, and will (potentially) run until Saturday September 21st—it all depends on how the races go! You can keep track of the schedule here.
Have you had a chance to check out some of the pop-up places and activities on the waterfront in honor of the Summer of Racing? In case you’re heading to the waterfront for the races, here’s a reminder of a few things that are going on:
The most time-sensitive one is the pop-up beer bar, Bar of Arrr, from New Zealand’s Moa brewery (one of my favorite breweries I tried during my trip to New Zealand—be sure to try their breakfast beer). It’s only around until Sunday September 8th, so if you want to taste some quality Kiwi brews (which use killer Kiwi hops!) while kicking it in a pirate-themed space, be sure to swing by. Eye patch optional. Open 12am–7pm, but it will be open at 10am on Saturday September 7th. Pier 29.
I have mentioned pop-up restaurant Waiheke Island Yacht Club from Auckland ‘restaurateur Tony Stewart a few times, serving lunch, dinner, and now weekend brunch. It’s a chic-yet-relaxed spot, with cocktails, and burgers, or a more refined dining experience (dishes from chef Hayden McMillen are progressive and very seasonal), whatever you’re in the mood for. And hey, don’t miss the venison tartare. Also: the wine list is going to go through some changes after the America’s Cup wraps up. For now, Waiheke is only serving Napa Valley wines, but since it’s open until the end of the year, it will start offering some New Zealand selections starting at the end of September. (You can also order Moa beers there right now.) Pier 29, 415-956-1048.
For more boozing on the water, the America’s Cup Park at Piers 27 and 29 has three different bars: the Napa Valley Wine Lounge (open daily 11am–7pm), the Flute Bar and Lounge (pouring bubbles from Mumm Napa in a 1920s-themed environment from 10am–7pm on race days and from 12pm–5pm on non-race days), and the America’s Cup Sports Bar, with an outdoor patio and big screens to watch the race (there’s also weekend brunch); the Sports Bar opens at 11am, and will remain open through September 30th. Piers 27 and 29, 415-371-5500.
Chaya Brasserie San Francisco is offering a special from September 9th–20th: Buckets of Bubbles & BBQ. You’ll be able to enjoy barbecue oysters and buckets of Moët & Chandon, either on the patio or indoors, Mon–Fri 11:30am–5pm. 132 The Embarcadero.
New Zealand has a strong presence in San Francisco this summer, and not just on the water: Kiwi wines are popping up on a variety of wine lists around town, at places like A16, Atelier Crenn, Brasserie S & P at the Mandarin Oriental, Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant, Fifth Floor, Marlowe and Park Tavern (of course—one of the owners is a Kiwi!), Michael Mina, Waterbar, and more. If you’re curious about New Zealand wines, here’s your chance to try some selections you may not have as much access to. You can email here for a complete list of participating restaurants and retailers.
Waterbar has taken things one step further, integrating a number of New Zealand food products on their menu (I had a chance to check it out a couple of weeks ago). You can try three of the country’s superlative oysters in an oyster flight, and if you like clams, there’s also a Tuatua clam available. The dinner menu features chef Parke Ulrich’s killer salmon pastrami (using top-notch Ora King salmon), Greenshell mussels (I looooved all the shellfish in New Zealand), and meaty options include Merino lamb and Firstlight grass-fed wagyu beef. Beverage director Steven Izzo has come up with some fab pairings as well. Available through September 21st.
Have fun out there! Oh, and here’s a handy backgrounder on the Cup in case you need it.
Marcia Gagliardi writes a popular insider weekly e-column about the SF dining scene, subscribe for free at www.tablehopper.com. Out now is her first book, The Tablehopper’s Guide to Dining and Drinking in San Francisco: Find the Right Spot for Every Occasion, a groundbreaking new style of guidebook. And check out her new app, Tablehopper’s Top Late-Night Eats, which highlights 95 SF spots serving food past 11pm!
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