Check, Please! Bay Area: Episode 6 (#106)

Check, Please! Bay Area’s episode 6 (#106) profiles and reviews these three Bay Area restaurants:

Watch episode (requires RealPlayer: windows | mac)
View photo gallery (flickr.com)

1) Piperade: | restaurant information | reviews | recipe |

2) Manresa: | restaurant information | reviews | recipe |

3) Bissap Baobab: | restaurant information | reviews | recipe |

Leslie SbroccoMy name is Leslie Sbrocco and I’m the host of Check, Please! Bay Area. After each episode I’ll serve up a behind-the-scenes look at what went on during filming, including the wine we were sipping…

Sugam’s a young, hip, city dweller who eats out almost every night. Andrew joked that he used to be that kind of guy, but now he is “just plain old” (sadly, if he’s old then so am I). Due to Andrew’s so-called advanced years, he just couldn’t get into the atmosphere at Sugam’s choice of Bissap Baobab.

Jeannine was all business. A lawyer hailing from Chicago (which is my hometown), she knew what she liked in food. Her pick was Manresa, an ultra-pricey, much-lauded restaurant in the South Bay. I don’t know if Sugam felt comfortable there. He was probably too young, I guess. Andrew’s pick, Piperade, was clearly was the favorite. It couldn’t be because Andrew’s passion won them all over? Just a note: Piperade has an impressive wine list that complements the Basque-influenced fare, but make sure to ask owner and chef Gerald Hirigoyen about the wine he makes. Delicious.

Wine of the Week:

2003 Louis M. Martini Cabernet Sauvignon, Sonoma County, California $14-16
A classic producer known for their expensive Monte Rosso Cabernet, this is an affordable wine that over delivers in quality. Dark berry fruit notes are complemented by a supple texture and floral aromas. Serve alongside pizza or burgers.

Sponsor Wine of the Week:

2004 Bonterra Vineyards Chardonnay, Mendocino County, California $12-13
Even people who don’t like Chardonnay will drain their glass. Bonterra’s crisp, melon-scented version is made from organically-grown grapes from cool Mendocino. It’s bright yet smooth, loaded with juicy fruit flavors, and a kiss of spiciness. Try with roast chicken or salmon.

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  • Sergé

    There have been some good reviewers on Check Please!, and everyone has had something interesting to add.

    I must say, though, that Jeannine’s reviews are fantastic. Future reviewers should read her writing and pick up on what makes for a good review: Descriptions of an environment that include all the senses, comparisons that put a flavor or texture in a context familiar to a diner, and a seemingy agendaless and careful deconstruction of a meal. Some of the “Characters” probably make for good television, but Jeannine and reviewers who approach her level of ability provide the backbone for the show’s utility. Thank you, Jeannine, and good job on the selection, Leslie.

  • dub

    Sugam was AWESOME. Jeannine didn’t know what she was talking about.