Check, Please! Bay Area reviews: Stay Gold Deli, Sunset Reservoir Brewing Company, Wayfare Tavern
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Our season finale begins in West Oakland with central Texas barbeque meets Italian delicatessen. With a beer garden, pinball machines and games, Stay Gold Deli has something for everyone. Then, we head to San Francisco’s Sunset District for expertly crafted brews and tasty bar bites. Outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds drop their surfboards and bikes for a seat at Sunset Reservoir Brewing Company. Finally, we journey to San Francisco’s Financial District for a turn-of-the-century-inspired American tavern experience. Tyler Florence’s famously flaky popovers and fried chicken satisfy travelers and locals alike at Wayfare Tavern.
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My name is Leslie Sbrocco, and I’m the host of Check, Please! Bay Area. Each week, I’ll share my tasting notes about the wine, beer and spirits the guests and I drank on set during the taping of the show.
Dopff & Irion Brut Rosé
Crémant d’Alsace, France, $20
If you love pink sparkling wine like I do, you will want to scoop up bottles of this beautiful bubbly. Hailing from the Alsace region of France, it’s NOT Champagne rather a French style of sparkling called Crémant. This dry, pale-garnet hued wine is crafted with Pinot Noir grapes that showcase delicate red berry fruitiness. It’s a very well-priced fizz that will take you from A to D to D (that’s Appetizers through Dinner and Dessert) with ease.
2018 Raeburn Chardonnay
Russian River Valley, California, $18
A superbly balanced Chardonnay that wraps a crisp core with a creamy texture. Juicy aromas and succulent stone fruit flavors are supported by zesty acidity from grapes grown in the cool Russian River Valley. With barrel fermentation and sur lie ageing layering on lightly-lush complexity, this affordable white is a must buy worth twice the price.
2016 Primrose Primitivo
Solano County-Green Valley, California, $40
Primitivo is Zinfandel with what I like to call an “Italian soul.” This California-grown version of southern Italy’s famed grape variety (genetically identical to Zinfandel), is lush and spicy with a richness tempered by earthy notes. Whip up a bowl of pasta with long-simmered meat sauce and uncork this stylish red.
Benham’s Sonoma Dry Gin
Gin is a spirit with personality. Each one is a blend of botanicals that impart unique character. This upcoming-star bottling from founder Derek Benham, uses local Sonoma County ingredients such as Meyer lemon and Buddha hand citrus, combined with exotic coriander seed, cardamom, peppermint and juniper berries to take the ‘London Dry’ style to a deliciously new level. As a drinker of gin on a regular basis, Benham’s is my new favorite.
Thirsty for more beverage advice? You can find more of my wine, beer and spirits tips for you here.