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Check, Please! Bay Area Season 12 Premiere reviews: Myriad Gastropub, Squeeze Inn Hamburgers, Terzo

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The Check, Please! Bay Area Season 12 premiere airs Thursday, April 13 at 7:30pm on KQED 9. See other television airtimes. And never miss an episode by subscribing to the video podcast.

Globally inspired food and drink is offered at our first stop in the SF Mission district at a spot called Myriad Gastropub. And nothing says USA like a good, juicy burger blanketed in cheese in Napa at Squeeze Inn Hamburgers. Lastly, Mediterranean flavors, seasonal ingredients and a well-selected wine list make this a cozy SF spot at Terzo.

Host Leslie Sbrocco and guests having fun on the set of the premiere episode of season 12.
Host Leslie Sbrocco and guests having fun on the set of the premiere episode of season 12. (Wendy Goodfriend)

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Host Leslie Sbrocco tasting wine.
Host Leslie Sbrocco tasting wine. (Wendy Goodfriend)

My name is Leslie Sbrocco and I'm the host of Check, Please! Bay Area. Each week, I will be sharing my tasting notes about the wine, beer, and spirits the guests and I drank on set during the taping of the show. I will also share some wine tips with each episode. This week I discuss: Wine from the Greek isle of Santorini.

Schöfferhofer Hefeweizen Grapefruit Bier, Germany $9 (bottle six pack)
I’m a beer lover, but tend to fill up my glass with sparkling wine for outside sipping or brunch. No longer…I’m adding this lively beer to my daytime roster. The world’s first blend of equal parts carbonated grapefruit juice and unfiltered wheat beer, the Schöfferhofer (pronounced Chauffeur + ah + Hoff + ah) is pleasantly tart and lightly sweet at the same time. With a whisper of alcohol (ringing in at only 2.5 % ABV - alcohol by volume), try this refreshing sip beachside, poolside, and tableside.


Montenisa Brut Rosé, Franciacorta, Italy $39
As a bubbly geek, I’m on a never-ending quest to discover unique worldwide fizz. This elegantly-styled dry rosé qualifies as distinctive AND delicious. Hailing from the Lombardy region of Italy, Franciacorta is an area designated to make top-quality sparkling wine in the traditional method. The grape varieties permitted in Franciacorta include Chardonnay and Pinot Noir (known as Pinot Nero in Italy) and a touch of Pinot Bianco. This version – from the famed house of Antinori – is 100 percent Pinot Nero. It ranks alongside top California sparklers as well as those from the French region of Champagne. #love

2014 Assyrtiko by Gaia “Wild Ferment” Santorini, Greece $29
I am lucky to travel the world tasting wine. One of the best visits I’ve ever had (and that’s saying a lot) is a day spent on the island of Santorini with Yiannis Paraskevopoulos. He is the co-owner of Gaia (pronounced Yeah-Ah) and a fascinating man. This complex yet crisp white is made from the island’s signature grape, Assyrtiko. Using only wild yeast strains to ferment the wine in both tank and oak barrels, the resulting white has a character all its own. The citrus, spicy flavors are accented by a minerality that speaks to the volcanic soil of this island paradise.

2013 Medlock Ames “Heritage” Merlot, Alexander Valley, Sonoma County, California $50
Living in Sonoma County I get to sample my fair share of world-class wines. I discovered this boutique producer last year after sampling their stellar reds. Located in the northern reaches of Alexander Valley along the winding road dotted with other recognized names like Jordan, Medlock Ames was founded by Chris James and Ames Morison. The vineyards are farmed organically and they focus on sustainability in all wines they produce. This stylish Merlot captures a European-esque vibrancy coupled with California suppleness. Next time you visit Sonoma, put a stop at Medlock Ames on your itinerary. Note: the current vintage is 2014.

Pierre Ferrand Cognac “1840” 1er Cru de Cognac, Grande Champagne, France $45
One of the best ways to end an evening is by savoring a glass of Cognac. A spirit born in France’s Cognac region, it is made by distilling grapes grown in bucolic western France. Pierre Ferrand’s vines are planted in the chalky soil of the Grande Champagne area (not to be confused with the sparkling wine region of Champagne in northeastern France). Their singular, stunning Cognacs are crafted with a sense of pride and history. The 1840 Cognac from Ferrand is an homage to the pioneers of another craft – the cocktail kind. Stylistically, this bottling is based upon a rare version of Cognac from 1840 and is rich and lush. It transports you to a time when Cognac reigned supreme in cocktails such as Juleps and Punchers. Treat yourself to a snifter.

Wines that guests drank on the set of the premiere episode of season 12.
Wines that guests drank on the set of the premiere episode of season 12. (Wendy Goodfriend)

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