There is no shortage of food and drink TV shows featuring Northern California. But right now, there’s a particular abundance of Bay Area residents making appearances on Netflix, Food Network, and more. Chef Dominique Crenn, who San Franciscans may know for her three Michelin-starred Atelier Crenn and viewers world-wide may have encountered thanks to her appearance on Netflix’s “Chef’s Table,” is back on the streaming service with its latest rendition of Iron Chef, “Iron Chef: Quest for an Iron Legend.” The Napa Valley film festival screened the final episode earlier this month, and the intensely dramatic competition began streaming on June 15.
It’s not just fine dining getting the gas, though. Leo Oblea of West Oakland’s La Santa Torta just got back from Flavor Town, USA. In a recently aired episode of “Guy’s Grocery Games,” Oblea represented his ode to quesabirria in an instant coffee-infused challenge against two other food trucks for a prize of $10,000. Not quite as recent but nonetheless significant is local restaurateur and podcaster Chris Ying making multiple appearances on Hulu’s “The Next Thing You Eat.” Ying, who worked at McSweeney’s in the Mission District and helmed now-defunct Lucky Peach, works for production company Majordomo Media and offers insight on sushi, breakfast, and even tries Don Bugito’s chocolate crickets on camera (spoiler: he likes them!)
Napa resort names Bay Area fine dining alum as executive chef
Rogelio Garcia, a TV star himself as a “Top Chef” alum, is heading the Four Seasons Resort and Residences in Napa’s restaurant, which has yet to be named, and TRUSS Restaurant + Bar. The new executive chef will offer a more elevated menu at the new restaurant than at TRUSS, the two businesses being adjacent to each other at the resort. It will no doubt be a stable new home for a chef, who spent the majority of the pandemic traveling from catering gig to gig before earning even more acclaim at Luce.
First-of-its-kind meat vending machine’s launch delayed
V. Miller Meats, an East Sacramento butcher, was set to debut its 24/7 vending machine on Thursday, June 16. But the Sacramento Bee reports the county’s Environmental Management Department told the business owners that detailed schematics and further information is required before meat can begin flying off the racks. V. Miller Meats owner Eric Veldman Miller told the Bee the machine is the first of its kind and designed “specifically to safely carry meat.”
North Beach brunch spot opens for Friday night drinks
Kristina Liedags Compton and Rachel Sillcocks of Hilda and Jesse launched a pop-up arm called Bar Jesse on Friday, June 17. Every Friday from 3-7 p.m., fans can show up for small bites with accompanying wine. Moonlighting as fortune tellers, the couple will also host a guided tarot reading with a wine pairing on Friday, June 24 for $45.
And a local James Beard award-nominated chef’s book launch
Arabiyya: Recipes from the Life of an Arab in Diaspora, the new cookbook from chef Reem Assil, is a testament to cooking as an Arab woman (“arabiyya” translating to “Arab woman”). On June 24 from 6-9 p.m., readers and eaters can head to Restore Oakland for a party to welcome the book into the world. Tickets are $35 or $65 for an included copy of the book. The night is hosted by the Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA) and the Arab Resource & Organizing Center (AROC), with proceeds headed to both causes. Assil was nominated for the Outstanding Chef award for 2022’s James Beard Awards.