Another August, another SF Chefs. The lively Union Square food extravaganza just wrapped up another successful round, and the local food industry is, as we speak, about 75% drag-ass hungover. Since launching in 2009, the festival has grown in scope, with this year including months of buildup with a series of event dinners dubbed The Dinner Party Project. (See our coverage of the Stars reunion dinner here, by way of example.) But the main event was the Grand Tasting Tent, which came in four shifts between Friday night and Sunday afternoon.
The event Friday was lively, with its typical cocktail-heavy selection of treats, while Saturday night’s tent was more crowded and hot, though not as unpleasantly packed as it got last year. Attendance Sunday afternoon was a bit lighter overall, but a good and boozy time was clearly had by all.
Please enjoy some photos of highlights from the festivities, including Saturday night’s afterparty at the Clift. We might just have to go take a nap.
House-cured anchovy crostini
Incanto chef Chris Cosentino greets fans.
Marlowe and Park Tavern chef Jennifer Puccio served a pair of bites: one, a canapé with fava bean hummus, and the other a hunk of grilled bacon atop a fresh fig.
Tyler Florence has proven before that he knows how to do event food, and one of our favorite bites all weekend were these jars of chicken liver paté topped with balsamic, peaches, and powderized schmaltz.
Forence greets fans at his Tyler Florence Wines booth.
At the Elixir booth they used an old-timey Lewis Bag to crush ice for their julep.
Chef Ron Siegel made a solid pulled pork slider while bartender Camber Lay made our favorite cocktail of the night: The Lucky Star, with Bulleit bourbon, Barolo Chinato, lemon, chili, and peach bitters.
Pastry chef Emily Luchetti served up these delicious little linzer cookies.
Chef Brandon Jew of Bar Agricole (right) waves alongside Mourad Lahlou of Aziza.
Here’s chef Mourad Lahlou in front of his fun artichoke custards, which were topped with caviar.
The Saturday night crowd. Why people agreed to be filmed sitting in that Ford Fusion is a little beyond us. But yeah, sponsors.
Another great bite: Wo Hing’s gau choy gau, which are pan-fried shrimp and garlic-chive dumplings.
Pastry chef Yigit Pura previewed some of the sweets at his upcoming patisserie at Macy’s, Tout Sweet, which is due to open September 8. His Frisco Disco, a dish of Valrhona chocolate cream, chocolate cake, “disco chocolate,” and salty gianduja crumble was a hit.
Newly hired Pican chef Sophina Uong served up some delicious braised BBQ pork.
Contigo’s Brett Emerson served a tasty tapa of summer corn, padron peppers, and manchego.
Plymouth and Beefeater gin rep Eric Castro surveys the ice blocks in his gin punch.
Chef David Bazirgan did a simple shrimp ceviche with cherry tomatoes.
Chef Joey Elenterio served up a nicely textured take on an heirloom tomato salad, made as tomato “tartare” with sorrel, ricotta, kohlrabi, cactus, heirloom peppers, and pieces of smoked rice cracker.
Anthony Strong brought his pizza bianca with prosciutto and fig.
At the Asian Box table, chef Grace Nguyen offered up a delicious tofu curry that was totally vegan.
… and then there was the Saturday afterparty at the Clift, sponsored by Campari America. From left, bartenders Joel Teitelbaum, Jacques Bezuidenhout, and Kevin Deidrich.
Publicists Candace MacDonald (left) and Cia Glover (center) with Chris Cosentino.
Bartender extraordinaire Neyah White turned mad scientist for the night at his DIY highball bar. Guests decided on their own spirit, spices, and mixer, and White then loaded it into a Perlini carbonation machine to create a customized carbonated cocktail.
Bartenders Steven Liles and Brooke Arthur tended to the Tiki station.
Locanda’s Anthony Strong (right) brought along his Campari-cured pork jerky.