Italian Inspired SPICE – SAT. 2/9 DINNER SOLD OUT

Italian Inspired SPICE - SAT. 2/9 DINNER SOLD OUT

We wanted to let everyone know that our Italian SPICE Dinner is completely sold out for Saturday, Feb. 9th.

For those of you who can’t join us tomorrow, we hope you can attend our next dinner!

Happy Friday!



After a long break traveling around the world and working like crazy we’re finally back in action. I must say. We are so excited for this dinner! While spending some time eating and drinking our way through Tuscany over Christmas, Kelly and I were inspired to bring back a little piece of our trip to all of you. As we started thinking about this dinner we thought, “what the hell. If we’re going to do it let’s go big.”

Now here’s where the fun begins. We’ve managed to wrangle together some of our favorite underground Italian Chefs. John Churillo (or “chu” as we call him) has always been our go to guy for homemade pasta. When you grow up visiting family in the south of Italy every year and you’re the only one of your 75 cousins to hang with grandma in the kitchen you learn a thing or two. What was even better is that when I gave him a buzz he was delighted to tell me that he had just returned from a wild boar hunt and we all know what that means for us! CINGHIALE!! Now that we had our pasta man locked it was time to call in the troops from across the country.

We are excited to share that our long time friend and founder (Jason Anello) of the famed Forking Tasty Dinners in Brooklyn will be joining us in the kitchen for a very special meal. SPICE and Forking Tasty will unite for a one night only, chef’s table, Italian celebration. Drawing from Ben, John and Jason’s extensive travels through Italy we’ll present a 7-course meal that’s sure to keep you guessing what’s next. Following the traditional style of Italian suppers you’ll work your way through an unexpected series of dishes, flavors and presentation. Drawing on northern, southern and foreign influences the meal will be an over-the-top tour for your taste buds and emotions alike. We’ll also pair select Italian and Californian wines that match the dinners flavor progression from small to big. This one comes with major bragging right so grab a seat while you can. We only have room for eight (8) food friends so they’ll go VERY fast. The dinner contribution for this one will be $80

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All Beer-ed Out

Just a quick thanks to all of you who joined us this weekend for our SPICE Oktoberfest. Not sure I’ve ever seen that much beer consumed in one evening – you should be proud!

For those of you who couldn’t make it, we missed you! And posted the menu below as a reminder that you shouldn’t miss the next one …


Quail Scott Eggs

Homemade Soft Pretzels Stuffed w/ Caramelized Onions and Cream Cheese w/ Fresh Mustard 

Schnitzel w/ Beer and Mushroom Sauce

German Sausage & Fixin’s

Käsespätzle w/ Bacon and Truffle

Barley Syrup Caramel Corn

Beer Pairing Highlights:

Lagunitas Bavarian Styled Doppel Weizen

Hofbräu Oktoberfest

Festbier by Victory Brewing Company 

Jolly Pumpkin Weizen Bam

… and about 20 others with crazy German names that I can’t remember how to spell!

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SPICE Oktoberfest Celebration

Join us this Saturday, October 22nd, for a fun and festive evening in true Oktoberfest style!

With this year marking the 201st anniversary of the original Munich Oktoberfest, we thought … well of course we should join in the celebration with a SPICE Oktoberfest.

As many of you know, with the closing of Amberjack earlier this year, we’ve been on the hunt for a new venue. Unfortunately, the reality is, we still haven’t found one. So we figured, what the hell, let’s bring SPICE back to our home where it all started almost two years ago. Yeah yeah, we know this is VERY last minute but … we just couldn’t let another month go by. We miss you guys damn it!

So in honor of the wonderful month of October, Ben and Kyle have reinvented some of the most traditional Bavarian food most commonly found at Oktoberfest celebrations around the world – a variety of homemade sausages/wursts, pork chops, sauerkraut and cabbage. And although we love our wine, the hero for this Saturday’s SPICE will be our international brew tasting station!

So grab your beer stein and throw on your lederhosens if you feel so inclined and come celebrate with us!

We’ve only got room for 30, so RSVP as soon as possible if you want to attend. Please make note that this month’s SPICE will be a casual, non-seated event.

When: Saturday, October 22nd @ 6:00pm

Where: Noe Valley, San Francisco (the specific address will be sent upon confirmation)

Member’s Share Contribution: $50 per person

Purchase Tickets Here: Tickets

ein Prosit der Gemütlichkeit

(a toast to good cheer!)

The SPICE Crew

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Eat and Be Married!

This month, we had the honor of hosting our first wedding rehearsal dinner in the fabulous coastal town that is Half Moon Bay. However … it wasn’t just any wedding. This was the wedding that literally hundreds of people had been waiting for (including us) for quite some time … one of our dearest friends and pseudo big brother, Dante Marcello Pellegrini, got hitched! Seriously. And best of all, it was Jody Adams that walked down the aisle to meet him.

So in proper Italian and North Carolinian form … we helped them prepare for the big day the night before with FOOD, and LOTS of it, that represented both the bride and groom’s background and cultural heritage.

As guests arrived, they were greeted with a glass of Prosecco and an amuse bouche of roasted beets w/ feta cheese, pickled onions, caramelized almonds and a balsamic reduction. Then as people made their way to the bar, we also served two passed apps – miniature cuban sandwiches and black pepper cornbread with a honey cream fraiche.

For dinner, we started off with local butternut squash soup with meyer lemon cream and shaved artichoke hearts, and a handmade caesar salad. For the entrees, we offered a meat and vegetarian option – grilled polenta with roman style braised pork shoulder or grilled polenta with heirloom tomato marinara sauce and a truffle scented wild mushroom medley. And the sides? … white bean ragout with braised leeks, grilled summer vegetables, and braised kale with pancetta and toasted pine nuts.

And we can’t forget dessert … another labor of love – homemade “Brittscotti” made by a great friend of ours, Britton Montalvo.

Thank god for our behind-the-scenes “crew” – Kyle, Mary “mom” Delaney, Deb “mom” Long and Jim “pops” Long for helping prep, cook, serve and continually fill our wine glasses! It was a true family affair.

Dant and Jod, HUGE CONGRATS to you both!!! We loved every minute of being a part of your amazingly special wedding weekend. Salute!

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Back from Bali

Hello SPICE Friends!

First off … apologies that you haven’t heard from us since May. We’ve had a lot going on this summer and are finally coming up for air. We wanted to update you all on what we’ve been doing, where we’ve been and what’s on the horizon for the rest of the year.

June brought some unexpected change for us with the news that Amberjack Sushi (one of our usual homes for our larger SPICE dinners) had been sold and has officially closed up shop. On a side note, we want to thank Raymond and the entire Amberjack crew for opening their doors and welcoming SPICE for the last year and a half! We will miss you all more than you know!

As a result, we have been on the hunt for the past few months trying to find a new home for our 30-person SPICE dinners. (If any of our members have ideas, we’d love to hear from you! Shoot us a note at or on our FB page). We’re open to any and all suggestions … lofts, cafes, churches, restaurants, art galleries, etc. – the more creative the better … only requirement is that it’s got a kitchen.

The following month brought happier news. Nissa had a birthday and Chef Kyle got hitched! (we’re anxiously awaiting to see honeymoon photos).

It also brought us (the Long’s) a much needed break (and a ton of culinary inspiration for future events). With the help of many socked away miles, we hopped on a plane at the end of July and headed south east to Bali, Indonesia.

Along with scuba diving adventures, volcano hiking and hours of cocktail consumption on the beach, we also did a ton of “taste testing” through our visits to the spice fields, rice paddies, and some of the most amazing traditional warungs in Ubud (Naughty Nuri’s was our favorite – best BBQ ribs and martinis in town!)

Once we find a new pad, we’re hoping to host an Indonesian inspired SPICE soon! In the meantime, we’ll be in touch shortly about an August event on our horizon. It’s a joint event in SF with some close friends of ours AND this one will be outdoors, so cross your fingers for some warm weather in the coming month. It won’t be a traditional SPICE dinner, but will of course involve some tasty treats whipped up by Chef Ben Long.

We’re looking forward to hopefully seeing you all soon – it’s been much too long and WE MISS YOU!

Until then, eat and drink well!

The SPICE Crew

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Finally Forking Spicy!

The month of March brought an extremely special SPICE to life - Forking Spicy finally!

The entire evening has already been rehashed by our dear friend (and Kelly’s business partner), Jason Anello on his New York based foodie blog – Forking Tasty. So … we’re just gonna send you straight there.

There’s not a single word we could have used to tell the story any better! (I mean, come on now, he’s a Sicilian Italian from Brooklyn).

more pics here


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A Very Spicy Valentine

For some reason, Valentine’s Day – a holiday that is supposed to encapsulate any and all things romantic – has somehow become one of the more stressful and almost despised days of the year for many. So … we thought we’d try to change that.

February’s SPICE brought together couples and singles, a menu more affordable than the standard SF Feb. 14th pre fixed menu, and an atmosphere that discouraged dresses, sports coats and by any means, red roses!

Actually, I take that back … we did sneak in a few petals but at least these kind were edible.

We hope our guests left February’s dinner with a slightly new (and more optimistic) outlook on Valentine’s day, and perhaps even excited for it to roll around again next year. And for those that didn’t, well, we hope you at least enjoyed the food. The full menu is below and more photos here. Until next month …

Cheers from The SPICE Crew!


Amuse Bouche

“Breakfast In Bed”

Roasted Bacon Rubbed w/ Ras al Hanout and Cayenne Pepper on Pain de Mie

Brut Sparkling Wine with Fresh Pomegranate, Vanilla, and Lemon Essence

“A Dozen Roses”

Salad with Hearts of Palm, Blood Oranges & Beet Juice

2009 Domaine des Cassagnoles, Vin de Pays des Côtes de Gascogne, France

“Steak & Lobster”

Lightly Seared Beef Filet with Lobster Powder and Fried Potato

2009 Domaine des Cassagnoles, Vin de Pays des Côtes de Gascogne, France


2008 Strange, Pinot Noir, Santa Maria Valley

“Cupid’s Arrow”

Grilled Polenta Cakes with Sauteed Purple Cauliflower and Local Mushrooms

2008 Strange, Pinot Noir, Santa Maria Valley


2008 Vina Robles, RED4, Paso Robles

“A Box of Chocolates”

Roasted Chicken with a Homemade Chocolate Mole Sauce

2008 Vina Robles, RED4, Paso Robles

“Valentines Explosion”

Blue Velvet Cake, Conversation Heart Frosting, and Red Hots Ice Cream

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