Maine Lobster is staying on these SF restaurant menus despite calls to avoid it


The Monterey Bay Aquarium, influential enough for a riff in “Finding Dory,” and his Seafood Watch The Sept. 6 monitoring program designated Maine lobster as “red,” meaning the crustacean is on its “avoid” list when it comes to dining out. The Seafood Watch program places seafood products, such as Dungeness crab, on a color scale determining sustainability, ranging from red to yellow, which means a “good alternative” and green means “the best choice”. While worrying, the San Francisco Chronicle spoke with a number of Bay Area restaurants that won’t be removing lobster from the menu. Only Waterbar on the Embarcadero decided on September 16 to adhere to the advice of the aquarium.

Restaurants like Burlingame’s New England Lobster Co. and SoMa’s Luke Lobster won’t take David Foster Wallace’s fascination off the menu, saying the issues surrounding lobster endangerment are being resolved. North Atlantic right whales tangle in lobster fishing lines, leading to species – with around 350 whales rest in total — perish in the nets. Congressional delegation from Maine says there have been no right whale entanglements since 2004, though data is hazy in 2019 report by the North Atlantic Right Whale Consortium documents five entanglements. Either way, La Toque in Napa Valley will continue to serve lobster, as will Jo’s Modern Thai in Oakland. At Waterbar, purchasing manager Eric Hyman told the the Chronicle “I don’t know if there is a perfect alternative, but there are certainly other animals that can fill that lobster void for a lot of customers.”

There’s a big Oktoberfest happening on Treasure Island

In lighter news, Bay Area brewery Woods Beer & Wine Co. will throw a shindig Oktoberfest on September 24. Tickets are $25, or $10 for community club members, and the an event will feature bratwurst, branded mugs and beer releases.

Opening of the Berkeley pizzeria in the Stonestown shopping center

There’s a third outpost in the works for Blondie, 42,’s pizzeria in another San Francisco mall. The Berkeley store opened in the Civic Center’s Westfield food court in January, and the San Francisco Business Times reports that the company will take over the 250D suite on the second level of Stonestown Mall, formerly Villa Italian Kitchen.

Why do convenience stores in San Francisco offer so much baklava?

Tolgay Karabulut came to San Francisco in 2009 from Turkey and found the filo pastry game in the city to be weak. The San Francisco Standard he and his new venture, Baklavastory, in their “Chinatown”-style investigation to figure out why baklava hangs out in so many convenience stores across town. (Spoiler: Diamond Baklava, our local “baklava baron,” has been in the game since 1969.)

Filipino Heritage Festival and Market back this year

Philippines is hosting its annual Undiscovered SF Party on October 22 from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. at SoMa. Former vendors include Sarap Shop and the Lumpia Company, which now distribute merchandise at Chase Center. Applications from vendors, volunteers and performers are on line.

500 Terry A Francois Blvd Suite, SF, CA

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