San Francisco Leads West Coast in Burgeoning Natural Wine Scene

San Francisco Leads West Coast in Burgeoning Natural Wine Scene

By Justin Dolezal, Foodable Contributor

If you count a high quality wine scene as one of your must haves in a city, there are few places better to live in or travel to than the San Francisco Bay Area. Situated near the famous wine regions of Napa and Sonoma and infused with a culture that has always valued high-end cuisine and old world charm, the Bay Area has embraced wine culture on a level unmatched in the United States (you'd expect no less from the “Paris of the West”). And though there's certainly an abundance of extravagantly priced, oak-bombed bottles littering the city, wine lovers here have also embraced the current hot trend in the world of vino: natural wine. 

Natural wine may feel very of the moment, but at its core the movement is based around an attempt to bring wine making back to its roots. “Natural Wine” may mean different things to different people, but in a basic sense it refers to wine made with minimal human intervention, using organic or biodynamically grown grapes, free of additives and fermented with native yeasts. Flavor additives and chemical manipulation are also not allowed. Unable to use human devices to interfere with the process, winemakers must instead work with the natural process that creates wine, focusing on terroir, vine health, and seasonal variation. The result is a class of incredibly complex, diverse wines which can be seen as pure expressions of their environments. Natural wine is lively, unique, and interesting, and offers an alternative to the Chardonnay and Malbec class of wines that have come to dominate the wine market. The following is a list of San Francisco hot spots that have achieved great success by including natural wines on their lists.

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Bar Agricole and Trou Normand Return to Traditional Tipping Model

While the growing trend of restaurants as of late seem to be favoring a tip-less model, two San Francisco restaurants who had previously abolished tipping in their establishments have returned to the traditional model.

Both Bar Agricole and Trou Normand underwent a ten month trial period of a tip-less system, however owner Thad Vogler decided to return to the traditional tipping system due to issues with staff retention. Claiming that his decision to abolish tipping lost him more servers than it gained, Vogler also added that it was unfair to impose an ideological decision like this on his staff. Read More

A Foodie's 48 Hours in San Francisco

A Foodie's 48 Hours in San Francisco

By Allison Levine, Foodable Contributor

What happens when two foodies travel to San Francisco for two days with individual lists of places to try? We merged our lists, mapped our plan and hit the road for 48 hours of non-stop eating and drinking.

Day 1: Sunday

9:45 a.m. — Depart Los Angeles for San Francisco. 

11:00 a.m. — Arrive in San Francisco. Through Airbnb, we have rented a room in the Mission District so that we are central to the BART. We drop our bags off and head out for brunch. As we begin to walk, we spot Panchita’s Pupuseria with a woman making fresh pupusas on the sidewalk, so we stop for one and continue on our way.

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Five New Restaurants to Try in SF This Season

Foodable WebTV Network

Foodable WebTV Network

One of our favorite San Francisco bloggers, Marcia Gagliardi, has just compiled a list of shiny new restaurants to check out in the area this month, and it doesn’t disappoint. Each of them offer completely different fare spanning from all over the world.

From Italian at Il Casaro — none of that over-the-top stuff; we’re talking wood-fired pizza and authentically delicious cow’s milk cheese served in a cone — to new restaurant Trou Normand, run by Bar Agricole’s Thad Vogler, your palate is sure to be satisfied this season. Read More