A Meal at In Situ

Inside the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SF MOMA) is the restaurant In Situ. The restaurant is dedicated to bringing to its diners iconic dishes from Michelin starred restaurants or those on the World’s 50 Best lists – incredible dishes from around the world. The menu changes often, and consists of small, medium, and large plates that you can order for lunch or dinner. Essentially, you can think of In Situ as restaurant inside a modern art museum that is itself a dining museum- it curates dishes globally from famous culinary artists and presents them to you as a visitor.

A Meal at In Situ, a restaurant at SF MOMA offering iconic dishes from Michelin restaurants around the world

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Fall at Tanner Creek Tavern

I can’t believe it’s November already – the end of the year seems to be going by so fast! Winter will be on us all too soon. Before we get to winter, I wanted to share one of my favorite fall dishes that I’ve had in Portland which is from Tanner Creek Tavern. Tanner Creek Tavern is the latest restaurant opened by David Machado, the restaurateur also behind classic Nel Centro and the Altabira City Tavern with one of the best outdoor dining spots in the city. Tanner Creek Tavern has only opened a couple months, and is now serving lunch, happy hour (4-6 PM), and dinner.
Tanner Creek Tavern Squash Tortelli with Roasted Seckel Pear, Chanterelles, Radicchio and Brown Butter Tanner Creek Tavern Shaved Kohlrabi with Apple, Candied Walnuts, Pickled Mustard Seed and Cheddar salad
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Dia de Los Muertos Dinner with Hand Made Mexico

I love pop up restaurants because it allows chefs to have a life without the grind and debt of a brick and mortar restaurants with set daily hours, and these more intimate dinners always present an opportunity for a chef to come in front of the guests and talk about what inspired the food or how they made the food. The recent Dia de los Muertos Dinner with Hand Made Mexico series is a perfect example of how going to a pop up, even solo (you are sitting usually at communal tables and meeting people anyway!) is worth it for those backstories.

Dia de los Muertos Dinner with Hand Made Mexico with Chef Cynthia Vigil and Feastly

The dinner was a family affair, with references to food memories of meals by or with Chef Cynthia Vigil’s  mom or with her sister, and hearing the techniques (some time consuming, some causing blisters!) passed down through generations being used to make our dishes. Here’s a look at the dinner, which also served as a fundraiser – 10% of the total sales were donated to Pintando Esperanza (Painting Hope) to help build houses for those who lost everything on the 9/19 earthquake in Mexico City and Morelos.

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Travel Tuesday: Jelly Belly Factory Tour

My recent visit to San Francisco unfortunately coincided with the Wine Country wildfires, so I had to pivot on some of the excursions I was planning on doing with my mom while my sister was working. Particularly I tried to think of things to do that were indoors to avoid possible poor air quality. One of the destinations that I ended up choosing to take my mom was the Jelly Belly Candy Company, and try out their free Jelly Belly Factory Tour and do some shopping for candies she could take to relatives in Thailand. It was more of a trip for her since she loves candy, but I think I ended up having just as much if not even more fun. It was much cooler then I thought it would be for someone like me that loves the idea of sweets but doesn’t love eating sweets. There’s a lot that go into making a Jelly Belly bean!

Jelly Belly Factory Tour in Fairfield, California, entrance area Jelly Belly Factory Tour in Fairfield, California, cafe area

The location of the Jelly Belly in the Bay Area is out in Fairfield, which is north towards Napa, and also happens to be across the street from an Olive Oil and Vinegar tasting room and also the Budweiser Tasting Room, so you can make this a productive day excursion for the one hour drive. If you’re staying by Napa, consider it to take a break from wine. We only stopped for the Jelly Belly Factory Tour, which I’ll share here.

It’s best to visit on a weekday because then you’ll see the machines working with the people running them, vs when it is not operating on weekends or holidays. Overall, I recommend going to the Jelly Belly Factory Tour because it is cool to learn how the jelly beans are made and prepared for sale, and Jelly Belly really strives for a mix of efficiency with machinery but also relies on people for quality every step of the way. The workers seemed happy – several waved at me and smiled, and I’m not a cute kid on a tour. Though I think the paper hats they require you to wear the whole tour are both silly (so non functional) and cute.

Jelly Belly Factory Tour in Fairfield, California: the rainbow of 50 flavors and more of Jelly Belly Jelly Belly Factory Tour in Fairfield, California: the rainbow of 50 flavors and more of Jelly Belly

I am all for technology and progress I don’t believe it means completely displacing people out of jobs, though it may mean changing the job description to work with the technology. As fascinating as automation is, seeing it paired with people too is heartening – and if you come on a working factory day you’ll be able to watch that interaction.

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Rucker’s Bitchin Kitchen Photo Recap

Every year, the restaurant Le Pigeon steps away from it’s French technique meets Northwest free spirited attitude and foie gras fine dining for a special Halloween celebration where the restaurant and it’s chefs and menu dress up as a new character. This year for Halloween 2017, the theme was Food Network mainstream American a la Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives and it’s blond fiery Guy Fieri host. Since most of you were not part of the two intimate dinner seatings for, here’s my Rucker’s Bitchin Kitchen Photo Recap so you can still feel like you were there, at least through my eyes.

Rucker's Bitchin Kitchen Photo Recap Rucker's Bitchin Kitchen Photo Recap
Rucker's Bitchin Kitchen Photo Recap Rucker's Bitchin Kitchen Photo Recap Rucker's Bitchin Kitchen Photo Recap
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