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Check, Please! Bay Area reviews: Kinara Fusion Kitchen, It's Italia, Delage

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Check, Please! Bay Area, season 18, episode 15, airs Thursday, February 15, at 7:30 pm, on KQED 9. See other television airtimes, and never miss an episode by subscribing to the video podcast.

First up, guests are greeted by fragrant desi dishes in San Francisco’s Lower Nob Hill neighborhood. Kinara Fusion Kitchen features modern Indian and Pakistani favorites, from classic chicken tandoori to tikka chicken burgers. Then, with origins in 1990s San Francisco, It’s Italia in Half Moon Bay features fresh pastas, savory flatbreads and more in a cozy, charming space. Finally, in downtown Oakland, the seasonal ever-changing prix fixe menu at Delage boasts delicate and intricate California-inspired Japanese omakase with French techniques.

Host Leslie Sbrocco joins guests Thien Pham, Kimo Hogan and Andrea Sola 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.


2022 Aviana Verdejo
Spain $20
Aviana is a new line of wines from the legendary California winemaking dynasty began more than a century ago by Cesare Mondavi Sr. The “G4” (or fourth generation) of the family began Aviana in 2023 to create affordably delicious worldwide wines, blended with cutting edge technology and supporting women’s empowerment programs. This Spanish Verdejo is crisp with juicy fruit notes and a succulent finish. It pairs with fresh fish, salads, grilled vegetables, or simply sipping on a spring day. Want to experience more than the wine inside the bottle? Scan the QR code on the label and it comes alive telling a story on your screen. A new era for wine has begun.

2021 Barramundi Shiraz
Victoria, Australia $13
Want fun in a bottle? Unscrew a Barramundi. This whimsical brand explains Aussie lingo with a translation page on the website where you can discover the meaning of terms such as: “Get Cracking” (to begin something) and “A fair suck of the Sav!” (an exclamation of amazement). You can also follow their raucous road trip photos on Instagram. With a lineup of wines that qualify as “good drops,” I recommend starting your exploration with their signature Shiraz. Rich, dark berry flavors are smacked with zesty freshness, making it a red to serve with burgers, pizza, and BBQ. It’s a ripper! (…that means great, btw).

2021 Sonoma-Cutrer Pinot Noir
Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California $36
This wine is a California classic. Sonoma-Cutrer was founded more than forty years ago focused on Chardonnay. Over two decades have passed since they expanded their Euro-centric elegance to Pinot Noir bottlings. Their single vineyard examples stand up to some of the best in the world. Their signature Russian River Valley Pinot Noir blends the Owsley and Vine Hill vineyards capturing the complexity and purity of fruit from these iconic vineyards. Red berry aromas with hints of tea leaf and rose petal are followed by a silky texture that defines the best Pinots. Pair with pork loin and mushrooms, grilled salmon with pilaf or a pungent cheese and indulge your passion for Pinot.

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