Towse: views from the hill

May 31, 2007

New eats in the ‘hood: Nua

Filed under: food,life,San Francisco — Towse @ 7:39 pm

His nibs was at a business dinner last night and, as it was the last night free before the younger younger one heads back to Beantown, the younger younger one and I went out on the town on our own.

First choice for eats would’ve been Da Flora, where the younger younger one has never eaten but, as we discovered when we tried to get in over the weekend, the chef there had emergency dental work done last weekend and the restaurant was closed. The restaurant didn’t look like it was opening last night when we walked by it in the afternoon (on our way to XOX Truffles and the art supplies store at Columbus and Chestnut that I visit some times to drool over paints and canvases and stuff). Other plans had to be made.

A couple weekends ago, after we’d been to “the California Wine Classic” (a fundraiser for the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation), we’d stopped off at Dell’uva, a new winebar that had opened that evening. (565 Green, SF). As we were sitting there, absorbing the scene, we looked across the street and said to ourselves, “selves? You haven’t eaten at Nua yet and they’ve been open far longer than Dell’uva.”

With DaFlora not an option, the younger younger one and I decided to eat at Nua.

550 Green Street, San Francisco, CA 94133
dinner Tu-Su

Yumpscious food. The wine list can be a bit pricey for my blood and his nibs wasn’t there to help me wade through it. The nice guy there helped us choose a wine by the glass to go with the appetizers and mains we were planning. Delicious pairing, but $10/glass? Ouch.

For appetizers we shared brandade-stuffed Piquillo peppers ($9). Tasty. My companion thought them too salty. We also had the chicken liver mousse and a rustic country pate made with pistachios, crostini ($11). Very tasty. The mousse comes in a ramekin and melts in your mouth. You wish you were at home and could lick the ramekin clean. The mousse and pate come paired with a kumquat-quince marmalade. Delicious.

For main dishes we ordered the Parisienne herb gnocchi (with baby artichokes, mushrooms and Pecorino Romano) ($14) and the duck confit (with pistachio apricot couscous) ($21) and that’s where we hit our first hiccup. (Did I mention the service is terrific, our water glasses were always full, the client/staff ratio was probably 2/1?)

First (and only) hiccup? They brought our gnocchi … and the Porterhouse pork chop.


“No. That’s not what I ordered,” I said. “I ordered the duck confit.”

“Oh. We’ll fix that right away. Why don’t I leave the pork here for you while you wait for the duck.”

“Um. No. I really don’t want the pork.”

So, they took it away and the duck came later (along with apologies at different intervals from at least three of the staff). No problem. Mistakes happen.

The gnocchi was delicious, tender, drenched in butter with mushrooms. I know how hard it is to make gnocchi. These were perfecto. The wait staff said the gnocchi was so tender and delish because they were made with wheat flour, not potato, and there was that to be sure, but the gnocchi I make are not made with potato either, but with wheat flour and ricotta and they are delish but nothing like this.

The duck confit was two sturdy legs worth with meat that fell off the bone. The couscous was delish.

Of everything we had, I was tempted to ask for another order of the gnocchi for dessert, but our wait staff told us that there was a cherry clafouti on the dessert menu that wasn’t to be missed and I didn’t want to break the heart of the person running the dessert end of the menu. So we ordered the clafouti and I had a glass of (what else) muscato for dessert.

Definitely a place to return to. His nibs needs to try the food (and check out the wine list). That Nua comp’d me the muscato as an apology for the mixup with the pork and duck just added to the good vibe of the restaurant.

Nice to have a new place nearby with good food. (Not that we don’t walk a ways for good food, including the dinner at bushi-tei on Sunday and a walk over to Cow Hollow Tuesday night to have a dinner-by-special-request at Isa with the younger younger one.)

eBay Acquires StumbleUpon

Filed under: app,social networking,URL — Towse @ 6:11 pm

eBay Acquires StumbleUpon

The $75 million cash acquisition gives eBay access to about 2.3 million people who have filled out profiles at StumbleUpon, founded in 2001 by three Canadian software engineers in Calgary.

… and the acquisition of my profile will provide eBay with what?

Let’s hope the eBay folks don’t mess up an excellent app.

The news from the StumbleUpon blog

May 30, 2007

[URL] Updated and checked all links for subsection: Business: Submissions & Markets

Filed under: internet resources for writers,URL — Towse @ 9:46 pm

Internet Resources – Writers Resources – Writing Links & Writers Links for Writers – Business: Submissions & Markets

[URL] popurls | popular urls to the latest web buzz

Filed under: app,social networking,URL,webstuff — Towse @ 9:38 pm

popurls | popular urls to the latest web buzz

Aggregate of W2.0 feeds like digg and reddit and boingboing. Someone called it a look at the hive mind. Probably a good analogy. Similar to and with more links than (which was inspired by popurls). Includes flickr links and

Looking for article ideas? This site gives you a look at what’s poppin.

[Caution: Can be a HUGE time waster …]

[URL] Darwin Correspondence Project

Filed under: science,URL,writing — Towse @ 1:13 am

Darwin Correspondence Project

Welcome to the Darwin Correspondence Project’s new web site. The main feature of the site is an online database with the complete, searchable, texts of around 5,000 letters written by and to Charles Darwin up to the year 1865. This includes all the surviving letters from the Beagle voyage – online for the first time – and all the letters from the years around the publication of Origin of species in 1859.

Adieu, Miss Snark

Filed under: blog,URL,writing — Towse @ 12:46 am

Well, looks like she’s serious.

Miss Snark, the literary agent, has retired from blogging. She’ll keep agenting, she sez, and It wasn’t a specific event. The questions were increasingly ones I’d already answered or ones I couldn’t answer.

Adieu, Miss Snark. Bon chance. It’s been a grand run.

(Miss Snark promises to keep the blog up with all its tasty bits of knowledge for the foreseeable future. … and, no, she’s not writing a book based on the blog.)

May 29, 2007

[URL] The Pulitzer Prizes

Filed under: journalism,URL,writing — Towse @ 11:47 pm

The site for all you’d want to know about The Pulitzer Prizes

  • Resources
  • Archive of winners (including Full texts, photographs and cartoons [...] for Journalism winners from 1995 – 2006)
  • History
  • Luncheon Remarks

[URL] Classic Shorts

Filed under: URL,writing — Towse @ 7:55 pm

Classic Shorts brings you the texts of classic short stories.

The majority of the stories are old (classic) enough to be out of copyright. How did they get a Tobias Wolff short though? Or GGM?

Sample shorts:

[via StumbleUpon]

May 28, 2007

A Sunday walkaround

Filed under: art,food,life,San Francisco,shopshopshop — Towse @ 8:28 pm

We ate again last night at bushi-tei. The younger younger guy joined us. For the first time we tried Waka’s tasting menu. Superb. We added an extra dish, one I’ve mentioned before — seared fresh foie gras, pumpkin pot de crème, pistachio crunch, red onion marmalade — which we shared amongst the three of us. The description sounds weird but this is really one of the tastiest things ever. I wanted the younger younger guy to sample it because I rave about it so much. Perbacco Chardonnay with dinner. Sparkling sake with dessert. The bushi-tei staff is terrific. The food is delish.

We walked to dinner and back with a side trip to visit Sunday Open Houses at 1998 Broadway #905 and 2502 Broadway, two very different homes for sale. After visiting 2502, we backtracked through Pacific Heights and wandered down Fillmore where we stopped at the California-Pacific MC Thrift Store, Zinc Details, Design Within Reach, and the Goodwill (‘natch) which was having a Memorial Weekend Sale: 50% OFF ALL CLOTHES!

We poked through the stores at the Japantown mall before stopping in at bushi-tei (with our Goodwill bag in hand) for an early (6 p.m.) dinner. Six-plus miles of walkabout in all.

Whilst in Japantown wandering around before dinner, we made a sidetrip to visit Ruth Asawa’s fountains at the Buchanan Mall. Lovely work she did. The fountains remind me of her Aurora Fountain, on the west side of the Embarcadero, between Mission and Howard.

Do-it-yourself highway repairs

Filed under: science — Towse @ 8:21 pm

News in ABC [] Science Online – 28/05/2007:

Marching ants fix their own roads

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