Category Archives: New York Times

San Francisco’s Bookstores and Readings Reflect a Lively Literary Scene

December 1, 2010

ON a balmy fall evening in the Mission District of San Francisco, hundreds of people spilled onto Valencia Street, where they chatted happily for a few minutes before pouring back into bookstores, cafes and theaters. It was a giddy, animated crowd, but most of all bookish — a collection of fans and believers, here to listen to the written word.

The occasion was an event called Litquake, which, over the course of nine days, would draw some 13,000 residents and visitors to readings by scores of authors, many of them — like Maxine Hong Kingston and Daniel Handler (a k a Lemony Snicket) — local celebrities. The “Lit Crawl” finale alone featured more than 400 readings at bars, laundromats and even the police station in a single evening.

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Posted in New York Times, Newspapers

Small Bay Area Coffee Roasters Spread Out

April 9, 2010

Coffee has been part of Bay Area culture from the start. Folgers and Hills Brothers started by providing java (a term coined on San Francisco’s piers) to thirsty 49ers. And there have long been boutique roasters like Caffe Trieste in North Beach, which has made Italian-style espresso since 1956, and Peet’s, which introduced its characteristic dark roasts in Berkeley in 1966 and led, through its descendant Starbucks, to a wholesale revision in the way America drinks coffee.

Today the pattern is repeating itself as small local roasters are expanding to make their marks in distant cities.

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Posted in New York Times, Newspapers

At Pop-Ups, Chefs Take Chances With Little Risk

February 11, 2010

Lung Shan is an unremarkable Chinese restaurant in the Mission District. But on Thursday and Saturday nights it’s rocked by an invasion of diners and chefs with much more than sweet and sour pork on their minds.

On those nights, Lung Shan becomes Mission Street Food, one of a number of pop-up restaurants that have opened in the Bay Area over the last couple of years in spaces not normally used for fine dining.

On a recent Thursday, Tommy Halvorson, the chef that night, ignored Lung Shan’s huge woks as he worked pans crammed onto its small stove. Behind him, Anthony Myint assembled sea urchin into sashimi with young coconut and candied pecans ($8).

Read it on the NYT site…

Posted in New York Times, Newspapers