2/07/2013 04:33:00 PM

SF Weekend Planner: Beer, Bourbon, Lunar New Year and Romance

Beer dominates this weekend’s activities as SF Beer Week formally begins (check out our recommended itineraries and food picks), but between soaking up all those suds and enjoying Chinese New Year’s feasts, consider swinging by one these culinary events.
Get in the mood early at the 9th annual Food From the Heart, a romance-themed night market at the Ferry Building Marketplace this Friday. On Friday, the Grand Nave will be transformed into a candlelit foodtopia featuring merchants, restaurateurs and wineries offering chocolate tastings, seasonal hors d’ouevres and Napa Valley wines. In addition, they’ll be live music and tango dancing and stores will stay open late to sell holiday gifts. Entrance is free, and food and wine tastes will be sold separately for a nominal fee, with proceeds benefitting Slow Food San Francisco (Friday 5-7:30 PM, 1 Ferry Building Marketplace, Ferry Plaza). 

The Vietnamese pop-up Rice Paper Scissors is hosting a month-long series called the Lucky Mission Festival that honors and reinterprets the Lunar New Year. The first will be Good Luck Biergarten, a pop-up beer garden and mess hall, taking place this Saturday at Florida Street CafĂ©. The a la carte menu will feature dishes designed to bring you good luck (and fertility, if you want) such as banh chung (Tet sticky rice cake), fried mochi dumplings stuffed with pork and shrimp, and Vietnamese imperial rolls (the latter of which resembles ancient money so the idea is the more you eat, the more bucks you’ll get). Diners can also order beers by the bucket, another streetside bar tradition, so they don’t have to get off their stools to get another one (Saturday, 6-$10 PM, 710 Florida St.).

Bourbon paired with chocolate sounds like a match made in heaven if you ask us. An Alchemy of Distinctive Flavors: Single Origin Chocolate and Barrel Strength Bourbon will feature Lisa Gallinger, chocolate maker at Dandelion Chocolate and Michael Lazar, bar manager of Hog & Rocks, who will be leading a tasting of three different single origin chocolate paired with three different barrel strength bourbons. Tickets are limited but don’t despair; the pairing will be a permanent fixture on the Hog & Rocks bar menu going forward ($40/person, 3:30-4:30 PM, Hog & Rocks, 3431 19th St; buy tickets here).

It's virtually impossible to stay jaded while witnessing the theatrics of live noodle pulling. And who better to watch than America’s first TV celebrity chef Martin Yan and MY China’s executive chef Tony Wu, who is said to be able to take a five-pound ball of dough and pull it into 16,384 noodles in two minutes. They'll be giving a lo mein demo at Bloomingdales’ test kitchen on Sunday afternoon (Sunday, 2-4 PM, get more info here).


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