Dispatches from the Front of the House

“The restaurant server is never just serving food, they are also: the mediator, the buffer, the northern Italian wine expert, the allergy navigator, the appetite fulfiller, the charismatic leader, the caretaker, the recommender, the check splitter, the mutable chameleon oscillating between being sophisticated and distant and sassy on-demand entertainment.”

Independent Producer Sara Brooke Curtis spent six months interviewing restaurant servers in San Francisco. Here, she shares her observations.

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Making Umeboshi with Sonoko Sakai

Umeboshi. Break down the word and it means Japanese plum (ume) dried (boshi), but the flavor is of a salted or pickled plum – salty, sour and sweet.

Sonoko Sakai grew up in Japan where every June she would help her grandmother prepare the ume for pickling. Now that she lives in California where ume are unavailable, she is experimenting with making her own apricot-boshi.

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Mixing Cocktails and Conversation

Jews and Muslims in Los Angeles don’t often get together for drinks. After all, religious Muslims don’t drink, and the two groups have had their differences.

But a new project aims to get members of both groups talking to each other, while crafting simple yet delicious non-alcoholic beverages, or “mocktails.”

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