March 1, 2021

“I am all the writers that I have read, all the people that I have met, all the women that I have loved; all the cities I have visited.”
— Jorge Luis Borges

Dear friends ~

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March — and Spring — are underway and with it, increasing vaccines and indoor dining changes. A much smaller version of the crucial Restaurant Stabilization Act finally just passed under our new administration (yes!), though our independent community will need more if any significant number of small businesses are to get aid (why the nation’s biggest private sector employer needs this).

I continue to lead webinars and virtual tastings, including GGRA restaurant industry panels: join us on March 11 for our Media Perspectives webinar on the state of food and drink media — and on March 25 as I talk to restaurant industry one year into pandemic.

Per usual, I’m posting my daily research in dining and drink (takeout to outdoor dining) at @ThePerfectSpot on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

Merchant Roots’ Mad Hatter tea party dinner


Top Tastes/The Latest — February’s Top 10 Bay Area Restaurants: 10 Bay Area newcomers and longtimers, from SF, Oakland, Sonoma and the Peninsula, including standouts in modern Indian, Peruvian, sushi, pizza, sandwiches, Caribbean/Trinidadian, New American, Japanese, Argentinian and butchery.
Imbiber — Distiller Magazine Bottle Review Column: This month I review amaro, vermouth, cachaca, RTDs (canned cocktails), gin, rakija/fruit brandy, rum, Irish whiskey, non-alcoholic spirits, saké.
Top Tastes5 Magical Dining Options to Celebrate a Pandemic Valentine’s: My latest at The Bold Italic for celebratory meals anytime, whether escapes to Italy or Japan, or whimsical themed dinners.
Wandering TravelerDistiller Magazine: My Michigan interviews with Long Road Distillers in Grand Rapids & bar manager of Kiesling in Detroit.
Featured NeighborhoodThe Ever-Shifting Future and Flavor of Chinatown: As America’s first Chinatown continues to struggle greatly a year into pandemic with lack of tourism/visitors, I revisit some of my articles on its rich history and ushering in of Chinese food to the U.S. in my KCET Los Angeles article on SF Chinatown. Also here: my Bold Italic and Food Republic Chinatown features.

I am also available for consulting, moderating, leading classes and tastings and more (info at


ThePerfect Spot Founder
The Worlds 50 Best Restaurants’ Academy Chair

 National Editor/VP — ZAGAT SF Editor — SF Bay Guardian Critic

**Judge or Lead Judge at SF World SpiritsTales of the Cocktail Spirited AwardsIWSC Spirits, Whiskies of World, World Drinks AwardsADI International Craft Spirits**

Regular Outlets:
Bobcut Dining Column — 
The Bold Italic — — Food Republic — WhereTraveler — Gin Magazine — Time Out Dining & Drink — Distiller Magazine — Haute Living — Google’s Touringbird — Oakland Magazine — Wine Access

Alaska Airlines Magazine,Whisky Magazine UKThrillistThe Times DrinkwirePaste Magazine TravelEaterTasting Panel, PureWow, Drink Me MagazineSpoonwizCitysearch, NBC’s The Feast, Blackboard Eats, Tasting Table, Grubstreet

Books: Pur in Spirit & Distilled Stories