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[whitespace] Bastille Day Is Coming

As well as a bunch of other things worth celebrating this month

By Christina Waters

WITH THE FABULOUS FOURTH OUT OF THE WAY, let's look ahead to a few major food and wine haps on the horizon. I gotta tell you that you have only one weekend to rest up before trying to clone yourself for a handful of don't-miss events. On July 8 at the Triton Museum, the Silicon Valley Wine Auction gives you a chance to bid on many items--intriguing vintages, luxurious vacations and theatrical memorabilia--all to benefit the S.J. Rep. Check out the online auction site at www.sjrep.com, and for details contact Alyssa Byrkit at 408.367.7298.

The Connoisseur's Marketplace--taking place July 15-16 in Menlo Park--gets a gold star for one-stop food fun. The big draw once again will be the popular chefs' demo pavilion, where some of our hottest local cuisinartists will show you exactly how they do it. The emcee for the event is that incredibly productive czarina of chic cuisine, Jesse Cool (most recently of the organic-intensive Cool Cafe at the Stanford Art Museum). The Cool one will roam the audience with a microphone, allowing festival-goers to ask question of the chefs and demand food tips and cookery secrets. Joey Altman of the Wild Hare and Bay Cafe TV will be among the chefs on hand, as will Maria Costa of Trattoria Buon Gusto (ask about her pasta sauces), Hemant Surendran of The Duck Club and Pamela Keith from Draeger's. The Connoisseur's Marketplace is two days of art shows, wine and microbrew tasting, a juried art show, booths overflowing with lots of international food and two stages pumping out live jazz, soul, R&B and swing music. It's major fun, and those cooking demos are mesmerizing. Check it out--admission and parking are free. It happens July 15-16, from 10am to 6pm, on Santa Cruz Avenue, between El Camino Real and Johnson Street in downtown Menlo Park.

Beg to be admitted to Sent Sovi's July 16 Anniversary Dinner, one seating only. Appetizers begin at 6:30, followed by dinner at 7:30. The cost is $125 for a six-course dinner paired with wines from Mount Eden vineyards, Stony Hill Vineyards and Joseph Swan. Executive chef David Kinch promises "surprises with each course assigned to one chef from our five years past or present to show their current personal styles in a celebration of a big milestone." Indeed. Call the lovely Saratoga restaurant for your reservations, and don't forget to stop first at A.P. Stump's (163 W. Santa Clara St., San Jose), where the 12th annual Taste of the Nation, Silicon Valley style, will shimmer from 2 to 6:30pm, featuring gorgeous food and wine from our very finest chefs. This is a hot dress-up soiree fueled by the culinary energy of Diane Rose (Mio Vicino), Jim Stump and Vito Serpa of A.P. Stump's, and restaurateurs from Eulipia, 71 St. Peter, Viaggio, Plumed Horse, Paolo's and many others. One hundred percent of the proceeds ($75 per person) goes to fight hunger and poverty. You can't do better than that. For details and reservations, call 408.292.9928.

Chef Kyle Wiens over at the lovely Valley Fair California Cafe emails to confirm that the Sterling Vineyards winemaker will be present to chat about his wares at the upcoming winemaker dinner on July 19. Starting at 6pm, the dinner will showcase Wiens' gastronomic flair and Sterling's excellent vintages. Starting with a sea scallop and bay shrimp ceviche paired with a 1999 sauvignon blanc, the meal continues with heirloom tomato and bufalo mozzarella caprese teamed with a 1998 chardonnay. Following an intermezzo of red plum and ginger sorbetto--yeow!--the entree of cherrywood-smoked venison with potato and Roquefort pots de creme will be joined by a 1997 merlot. Cabernet sauvignon and Fallen Angel torte with mixed summer berries rounds out the experience. For details and reservations, call the California Cafe at 408.296.2233. Then, start dieting!

Email me! Readers, restaurateurs, chefs: Please send any news items, tips, menu changes, openings, special events and juicy gossip to [email protected]

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From the July 6-12, 2000 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2000 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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