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April 2007
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June 2007

Human-assisted Web Search

I've long said my ideal job would be to help folks with Internet search. I have a special knack for weeding through search results with a deftly built query, honing in on the information folks are looking for.

Now the guy who founded has gone and founded Mahalo, apparently a company full of people like me helping create a better search experience. If only they weren't based in Santa Monica...

Slow Food Nation Showing Some Cracks

I was wondering how long it would take local foodies to realize that Carlo Petrini's new book took some major pot shots at the Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market. I'm guessing for most of them, it was the scoop item in the SF Chronicle's food section today. In the book, Petrini is somewhat dismissive of the Market as being elitist and catering to rich ladies who lunch, happy to pay exorbitant prices for trophy food, from farmers who are milking the organic food trend in the Bay Area. I know I was taken aback when I read the anecdote, and that it colored my reading of the book. It's interesting that he would make such a sharp jab at exactly the constituency whose support is needed to make next year's Slow Food Nation event in SF a success.

I'd been planning on offering up myself as a SFN volunteer -- both on site (since I have worked as a volunteer at dozens of food and cultural events in SF) and pre-event. I've been a SlowFood member off and on for 5 or 6 years, after all. But after I read the book, I've cooled on the idea. Am I any less of an authentic slowfoodie because I am not a multi-generational farmer? Or not part of an indigenous people trying to save their own cultural traditions? Is my own evangelizing of eating locally and supporting local farmers of no value to the Slow Food movement? It sort of feels that way.

Happy Birthday Indigo!

Nestled into the greater SF Symphony/Opera House neighborhood, Indigo is one of my favorite places to take small groups of friends for celebratory dinners. Not as fancy or expensive as the nearby Jardiniere, Indigo provides good value tasty seasonally-influenced multi-course dinners with a well thought-out wine list. I just received the following note from them, with some of the festivities they have planned to mark their 10th Anniversary:

Dear Friends of Indigo:

Please join us in celebrating our 10 Year Anniversary!  It is hard to believe that so much time has passed and so many other restaurants have closed their doors over the last 10 years.  We have you to thank for our success.

Our way of saying "Thank You" is simple and fun.  If you join us on May 8, 9, 10 or 15, 16, 17, at the end of your meal you will get to pick one envelope from a box. 
That envelope is guaranteed to have one of the following treats:

* Receive 10% off your entire meal! or
* Receive 20% off your entire meal! or
* Your most expensive bottle of wine is FREE! or
* Receive a complimentary round of cocktails for your entire table at Jade bar! or
* Your ENTIRE meal is FREE!

Another way of our saying thanks is for you to book a table in our WINE CELLAR and enjoy a

custom 4-course meal paired with one bottle of each of these boutique wines:
* 2005 Cakebread Sauvignon Blanc
* 2005 Peter Michael Belle Cote Chardonnay
* 2004 Dehlinger Pinot Noir Goldridge Vineyard
* 2003 Plumpjack Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville

We will be doing one dinner in the cellar each night, with a minimum of 4 people and a max of 8 people.
Price is $89 per person, exclusive of tax and gratuity.  Wine cellar reservations must be made by phone (415-673-9353), and do not receive an envelope.

For reservations please go to or call 415-673-9353.

Again, thanks for your support over the last 10 years, we hope to see you on May 8, 9, 10 or 15, 16, 17!


Greg and the Indigo Staff

Indigo Restaurant is located at:

687 Mcallister Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
Phone: 415.673.9353
Fax: 415.673.9369

For more information (dress code, parking, map, etc.) or to make reservations at
Indigo Restaurant:

Le Sanctuaire

Like everyone, I have a few places at which I simply do not allow myself to just "stop in." This includes Sephora, where a girl can easily drop a few hundred dollars on lip gloss and skin care products, and Anthropologie with all its cute dresses and sweaters that can easily blow a month's discretionary spending.

And that's why you won't see me traipsing up the stairs to go to 's SF outpost of Le Sanctuaire. It's hard enough for me to leave Sur La Table without coming home with some kitchen tool I can barely stuff into my overflowing utensils drawer. It would be dangerous for me to enter a place that supplies the tools and raw materials for all sorts of kitchen science projects. Just reading Amanda Gold's Chronicle article this morning made me fear for my wallet. Like I could leave a place like that without trying to procure some of my favorite supplies from Italy and France.

I run away in the face of such temptation.

Le Sanctuaire
315 Sutter St., fifth floor, San Francisco
(415) 986-4216