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Tony Bennett, k.d. lang, Star at Black & White Ball

May 25, 2010
Kirsty Gumina

Excerpts From Miss Bigelow’s Social City:
“The Black & White Ball is an iconic, San Francisco event and nothing says, ‘San Francisco’ better than the artists performing tonight,” said SF Symphony President John Goldman. Earlier in the night, deep-pocketed Symphony patrons arrived for cocktails and a delish McCall Associates supper (caviar Russian egg and white asparagus, short rib tournedo, Black & White Ball chocolate mousse dome) served in a Robert Fountain-designed tent.

Between grazing at bounteous McCall Associates buffets and bars set along Grove Street and Van Ness, revelers delighted in searching for their tweets which included a mash-up of joyful Ball exclamations, a few misspellings and at least one marriage proposal.

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McCalls Chef Josip Martinovic on View from the Bay

May 19, 2010
Kirsty Gumina

About Josip Martinovic:

Josip came to the USA in 1999, but his story starts in his homeland of Croatia where he completed his 4-year studies at the culinary academy in 1989.

In 1991, Josip moved to Germany where he worked at the Four Seasons Hotel and eventually ran the Kitchen at Julep’s New York Bar and Restaurant in Munich for 6 years.

In Europe, he worked with many top chefs where he gained strong skills in all aspects of cooking and learned to respect and master the techniques of different cuisines; including German, French, and Italian.

His desire to expand his horizon took him to California where he joined McCalls Catering & Events in 2000. Josip enjoys working for McCalls, because the broad spectrum of events they cater allow him to combine different cuisine around the world with his classic French Mediterranean techniques, and an added bonus of cooking with fresh local produce and meat.

Currently, Josip is the Chef de Cuisine and is responsible for menu development, tastings and executions of high-profile sit-down dinners. Josip loves people, food, art, humor and creativity. He expresses this to his guests through the dishes he prepares. He emphasizes that you must cook with love; otherwise it does not work. And he adds, if you are angry; do not go near the pot.

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Stars Shine at the Shanghai Opening-night Gala

April 22, 2010
Kirsty Gumina

The spirit of Shanghai shimmered in the spotlight on Wednesday at the Asian Art Museum during the joyous opening-night gala celebrating the exhibition, Shanghai. “Our exhibition only needs one word, ‘Shanghai’,” announced Asian Art Museum Director Jay Xu. “Because it is the most dynamic and fastest-growing city in the world, Shanghai is big enough for all of us!”


Photo by Catherine Bigelow.
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Fall Antiques Show Meets King Tut

March 2, 2010
Kirsty Gumina

San Francisco’s Fall Antiques Show has been around a long time, but not, perhaps, as long as the treasures on display as part of its “Egypto-mania: Nile Style in the Decorative Arts” theme this year. Among the gilded French dressers, mirrors and urns was an exhibition featuring an Egyptian Revival scarab and figurine of Osiris from the Palace of the Legion of Honor; an 18th-dynasty ebony chair from the Rosicrucian Museum in San Jose; and an English mahogany gueridon, after a design by Thomas Hope, loaned by philanthropist Ann Getty.

The exhibition, curated by Maria Santangelo of the Fine Arts Museums, encircled the center courtyard, with a singular vitrine setting the theme at the entrance of Fort Mason. It was all by design, to tie in to the “Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs” exhibition at the M.H. de Young Museum through March 28. Cross-pollination is smart marketing and good business, you see.

The preview party benefit gala drew hundreds for a luxuriously appointed night of browsing: caviar, Champagne, vodka and assortments of lamb chops and salmon by McCall Associates catering for guests to nibble while contemplating which of the wares to buy. Choices included vendors such as Axel Vervoordtof Belgium, Steinetz of Paris and the Bay Area’s Imari Imports and Therien & Co.

Honorary chairs were Egyptian Consul General Hesham Elnakib and his wife, Dalia. Chairing the Connoisseurs Circle were Wendy and H. Richard Bingham; the Collectors’ Circle, Laura King Pfaff; the Designers Circle, Suzanne Tucker; and the Aficionados’ Committee, Summer and Brooks Walker III, to name a few of the many people involved in the event. The gala night preview had its philanthropic merits, too, as an annual fundraiser for Enterprise for High School Students, which helps educate and train young people for the workforce.

Photo: San Francisco Chronicle

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