Not for tourists: 10 Silicon Valley hotel restaurants locals love

Madera's foie gras terrine with rhubarb jam, strawberry, walnut and espresso financier; Dinah’s Poolside Restaurant serves up locally inspired fare and an assortment of cocktails; The Emerald Hour Bar’s crema catalana is infused with orange and cinnamon. (Photos by Michelle Le, Natalia Nazarova and Magali Gauthier) Looking for a staycation? Whether you're staying overnight or popping in for a drink or a meal, there are plenty of delicious hotel restaurant ...

Read More

Bubbles on the rise: Silicon Valley vintners open up to sparkling wine

Peninsula wineries are tapping into California’s forgotten knack for producing quality bubbly By Carol Maskus “Sparkling wines are pretty versatile with food, are great aperitifs and generally make people happy — what’s not to like?” (Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons) Most of us need a little nudge to open up a bottle of sparkling wine—celebratory occasions like a birthday or anniversary—but otherwise tend to dismiss it the rest of the year. In this regard, Valentine’s Day not ...

Read More

“An island of sobriety”: getting to the bottom of Palo Alto’s non-alcoholic history

On Leland Stanford’s orders, PA was dry for a really, really long time. Oh man…if Leland knew: Stanford students drinking up (presumably on a remote section of campus) in 1938. (Courtesy of the Stanford Photo Archive) A few months back I was chatting with my father-in-law, who grew up in Palo Alto back in the 1950s. It’s funny talking with him about the area back then, because he doesn’t so much tell me stories ...

Read More

The unknown varietals and exquisite oddities produced by Silicon Valley wineries

Moving beyond the obvious with the obscure offerings of Peninsula vintners By Carol Maskus Rows of grapes ready for harvest at Ridge Winery’s Monto Bello vineyard. (Courtesy of Ridge Winery) Wine tastings can often be a case study in the usual suspects: list after list of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay — typical varietals that have long-thrived throughout California. In the highly competitive world of wine, it can be a risk for vineyards to invest in more unusual varietals. ...

Read More

The alchemist of Belmont bottles the world

Davorin Kuchan updates traditional Croatian recipes with California ingredients in Old World Spirits’ high-octane elixirs by Kasia Grobelny Davorin Kuchan at his Old World Spirits distillery in Belmont. (Photo by Charles Russo) Growing up in Croatia around his family’s vineyard just north of Zagreb, Davorin Kuchan found himself drawn to the incendiary end of the family business: high-octane spirits distilled from grapes, plums, walnuts and pears. “I liked winemaking, but I loved distilling,” says the ...

Read More

Cheap Eats and $5 Cocktails At These Redwood City Happy Hours

Colorful cocktail options at LV Mar via IG: lvmarrwc The after-work crowds may be more visible on Mountain View’s compact Castro Street but Redwood City may have Silicon Valley’s most cocktail-centric downtown. The last few years have seen several bars open up with an emphasis on craft mixology while new and old restaurants are refreshing their bar menus and happy hour offerings. The Six Fifty likes to highlight what’s new and unique but ...

Read More

A former techie pushes wine lovers out of their comfort zone at Cin Cin in Los Gatos

Wine flight at Cin Cin via IG: waterxwine Los Gatos restaurants know wine. So running a successful wine bar near perennial Michelin faves like Manresa means offering something beyond the ordinary. Cin Cin Wine Bar & Restaurant wants you to step outside your wine comfort zone and they go to great lengths to source unusual and unheard of labels in the name of that mission. The 2015 Michelin recommended restaurant challenges customers to ...

Read More

Leave Work Early for These Mountain View Happy Hours

Cocktails at Scratch via IG: jaclyncatania Mountain View happy hour is looking less and less like a quiet glass of wine and more like a shot pounded on a Friday night in the Mission. Castro Street wants to be Silicon Valley’s buzziest downtown: a host of restaurants and bars have opened, apartments are going up and the city fathers are considering closing off the east end of downtown to limit traffic. ...

Read More