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Friday the 13th will be a lucky day for diners at Superstitious Supper

By Christina Waters

THOSE OF US SUPERSTITIOUS about Friday the 13th can stop living in denial. The fortune-makers of Bay Area Action and Peninsula Conservation Center Foundation, led by Chef Laura Stec, offer us one of their inimitable, organic, highly creative food events, entitled Superstitious Supper. And guess when it happens? This coming Friday the 13th, from 7:30pm to 10:30pm, at a private home in San Carlos. Trained at the Culinary Institute of America, the School of Natural Cookery and Vega Macrobiotic Center, Stec is one of the most inventive gourmet artists around. In her hands, environmentally correct foods taste delicious. And great flavor makes a powerful political argument. An argument too subtle for George W. to understand. W probably wouldn't even get in a car and drive anywhere on Friday the 13th for fear that the bad vibes of his father's administration would track him down. If you, like W, have fears about such "unlucky" dates, then consider this group therapy. Cross your fingers and bring along that lucky rabbit's foot (unless you're a vegan, of course). Your new best friend is probably waiting for you at this designer buffet. Stec tells me that seven courses (for good luck, of course) will be served, including a Build-Your-Own-Bruschetta-Toasts-and-Toppings-Bar, Market Basket Salad (with four-leaf clovers and "wishbone" dressing), plus roasted grapes and onions, harvest tomatoes with basil, pepper potpourri, tempeh tangine, "exploding" noodles, harissa carrots, Republic of Tea potions (you can read the leaves when you're through), Lagunitas beer and Black Cat Pie.

Even if you forget to knock on wood, the food and company will be memorable. Dress with abandon and bring your sixth sense for after-dinner tarot and astrology readings.

You will have more fun than a psychic with an 800 number. Don't forget to RSVP by October 11 to 650.625.1994 or [email protected]. A donation of $20 members/$25 nonmembers is requested. Proceeds benefit BAA+PCCF's efforts towards sustainable superstition. Leftovers benefit those who attend. These are your people--call Laura Stec and find out.

Park It!

In the town that Chelsea Clinton calls "home" most of the year--I refer, of course, to Palo Alto--the big-hearted fun-lovers of the PA American Red Cross chapter are planning their 19th Annual MacArthur Park Wine Festival. That happens this weekend, Saturday, October 7, from 11:30am to 3pm. MacArthur Park restaurant occupies that fabulous old Craftsman building located at the very top of University Avenue, the one designed as a USO facility during World War I by none other than Julia Morgan, who you may recall designed Hearst Castle. OK, so you get dressed in something tasteful--this is Palo Alto, after all, where even the street people have cell phones. Admission--$50 advance/$60 at the door--gives you access to complimentary wine and food throughout the day. Foods, from the grills of MacArthur Park, include oakwood-smoked baby back ribs, grilled items, fabulous desserts and a major array of cheeses to go with all that wine--serious wine, from over 70 participating wineries including Thomas Fogarty, Beaulieu, Grgich Hills, Chalone, Ridge and lots more. In the words of MacArthur Park manager John Knudsen, this event has "all the excitement of going to Napa and Sonoma, without the hassle." Or the traffic. The very serious aficionado will consider a $120 ticket (remember, the American Red Cross is the sole beneficiary of funds raised at this event) for a private vertical tasting of single vineyard pinot noirs from Acacia Winery. It'll be tasteful. Do not expect to see George W. there. For advance tickets, hurry and call the Red Cross at 650.688.0438.

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 October 5-11, 2000 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

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

For more information about the San Jose/Silicon Valley area, visit sanjose.com.

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