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Josh Groban's Napa Wine, Peek at Oakland's Duende

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Robert Mondavi Winery. [Photo: Flickr/prayitno]

WINE COUNTRY — Pop crooner Josh Groban is the latest in unlikely musical winemakers. He's partnering up with Wine Enthusiast's 2011 Winemaker of the Year Robert Mondavi Winery to create a Napa Valley wine of some sort in time for his next album release, which he's currently recording and is due in 2013. [EaterWire]

EAST BAY — Duende (468 19th St.), the Oakland restaurant project from ex-Oliveto chef Paul Canalas, is well under construction. The finished space will host live music and art and will also include retail wine sales. [ISSF]

COMING ATTRACTIONS — "Climbing the SF Food Chain" is a panel featuring Craig Stoll (Delfina), Anthony Myint (Mission Chinese Food), Iso Rabins (forageSF), and Richie Nakano (Hapa Ramen) and moderated by Valerie Luu (Rice Paper Scissors) that takes place on August 9 at the Commonwealth Club (595 Market). There are limited tickets left for the "surprise" dinner with graffEats and Rice Paper Scissors ($75) that follows the program at SF FoodLab, with more availability for the panel discussion alone ($20); find more info here. [EaterWire]

EXCELSIOR — August 29 is set as the opening date for a new Whole Foods Market (1150 Ocean Ave.). Amenities on the 29,000-square foot property includes underground parking, outdoor seating, free WiFi, and bus/BART alerts. [EaterWire]


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