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Check, Please! Bay Area reviews: Restaurant Gish, Zona Rosa, Wildseed

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Check, Please! Bay Area, season 18, episode 3, airs Thursday, May 4, at 7:30 pm, on KQED 9. See other television airtimes, and never miss an episode by subscribing to the video podcast.

Santa Clara’s Restaurant Gish dishes up modern Korean fusion favorites as part of an ever-changing, seasonally focused prix fixe menu that’s full of delight. Then, in San Jose, the menu at Zona Rosa transports you to Mexico, delivering creative, homemade dishes (and handmade tortillas!) alongside smoky mezcal and tequila-based cocktails. Finally, in San Francisco’s Cow Hollow neighborhood, Wildseed’s all-vegan menu serves up good food that’s good for you; their fresh, flavorful and surprisingly hearty plant-based dishes support the local community by sourcing seasonal ingredients from nearby farmers.

Three Bay Area residents join host Leslie Sbrocco in lifting their wine glasses in a "cheers."
Host Leslie Sbrocco joins guests Kim Samson, Carlos Rueda and Liz Najlis from KQED in San Francisco.

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Host Leslie Sbrocco sipping wine
Host Leslie Sbrocco sipping wine (Courtesy of Leslie Sbrocco)

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.

Shows the wines Leslie Sbrocco recommends


Tycoon VS ‘Very Special’ Cognac
France, $45
This sumptuous sipper is like drinking liquid gold. It’s lush and smooth with hints of caramel, toasted nuts, and orange zest. Cognac is brandy hailing from the Cognac region in France. It’s made with grapes such as Ugni Blanc then double distilled and aged for at least two years in oak barrels gaining smoothness and complexity. Pour yourself a snifter of Tycoon at the end of the evening for a deliciously drinkable dessert.

2021 J. Lohr ‘October Night’ Chardonnay
Arroyo Seco, Monterey, California, $25
J. Lohr is an iconic California winery located in Monterey. The cool, coastal influences of vineyards in the Arroyo Seco region of Monterey County, have shaped this stunning Chardonnay. Crafted from the Chardonnay Musqué clone (which imparts a distinctly aromatic quality to the wine) and harvested in a single October night (hence the name), this mineral-laden, succulently crisp white is a top choice to pair with grilled fish, creamy cheeses and a scenic sunset.

2020 Wade Cellars ‘Three by Wade’ Cabernet Sauvignon
California, $25
Famed basketball star, Dwyane Wade, partners with noted Napa vintner, Jayson Pahlmeyer, and together the two create game-winning wines. The notable names may be familiar to sports and wine fans, but this isn’t some ‘celebrity’ brand made just for headlines. On the contrary. Wade Cellars crafts both highly collectable and high-quality, affordable wines to enjoy daily. The ‘Three by Wade’ Cabernet is lush yet vibrant and comes in a beautifully designed bottle that makes a statement. Grab a glass, watch a game, and enjoy.

Thirsty for more beverage advice? You can find more of my wine, beer and spirits tips for you here.

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