The Hot Sheet

What's in, what's fresh, what's cooking.

ON THE PLATE Caf頁mbrosia Fairview Avenue's vegetarian haven is back in business after a Memorial Day fire at the marina next door and is celebrating the fresh (if belated) produce of summer. Depending on what's in the markets, you might encounter asparagus tart, eggplant cannelloni in smoked-tomato sauce, or lentil-mushroom roulade. Sunday brunch features mushroom-stuffed cr갥s, wheat-free waffles with berry compote, and tempeh sausage. 2501 Fairview E., 325-7111. TOI Now playing in the former Dahlia Lounge space at 1904 Fourth, Seattle's latest twist on Thai fusion cuisine, featuring salads of papaya, cucumber, and mango ($6) or portobello, greens, and Thai noodles ($7), and a spicy salmagundi of pork, lobster, basil, and cashews ($11). 1904 Fourth, 267-1017. Ristorante Buongusto Queen Anne's temple of traditional Italian gastronomy offers summer dining with openers like grilled eggplant topped with mozzarella and basil ($8.75), and grilled portobello on radicchio ($8.50); rigatoni pasta tossed with sausage, eggplant, and basil (a house specialty, $11.95); and a saltimbocca of chicken breast, prosciutto, and fontina seasoned with fresh sage ($16.95). 2232 Queen Anne N., 284-9040. IN THE GLASS '95 mystery red When the Chalone Group bought Staton Hills (now Sagelands) Vineyard back in 1999, 830 cases of a blend labeled "Phoenix" turned up in the warehouse, apparently never publicized or released. A 75-20-5 blend of cab, merlot, and cab franc from the home vineyards, it's in stores now, priced at a tempting $9.99. Beringer Estates Esquin Wine Merchants hosts a tasting of new releases from one of California's most venerable fine-wine producers, including their '98 Knight's Valley reserve chardonnay ($35) and '97 cabernet sauvignon ($30) as well as the '96 private reserve cab ($100). Saturday 6/30 from 1 to 4. 2700 Fourth S., 682-7374. AT THE MARKET Beautiful bivalves Sweet, succulent Mediterranean mussels from Northwest farms are coming into season. Bigger and much more easily cleaned than the native variety, the mytilus galloprovincialis is ideal for stuffing, baking, and broiling as well as pan frying. Or serve them shelled and saut饤 like oysters. In the produce department, local strawberries are rampant (look for varieties like Hood, Shuksan, or Rainier), but buy and use 'em the same day. Blueberries are in hot pursuit. COMING UP 7/15 Celebrate Bastille Weekend in Woodinville by sampling Delille Cellars' 2000 Chaleur Estate Blanc (not in stores until November) to the accompaniment of snacks from Mistral, Brasa, Fandango, and Avenue One. $40. Call 425-489-0544 for reservations. 1-3 p.m. 8/25 Time to start thinking about buying tickets for the summer's biggest wine bash, the annual black-tie Auction of Washington Wines at Chateau Ste. Michelle. Bill Cosby's the entertainment headliner this year. Your $500 ducat also entitles you to admission to the new, less formal picnic preview on Thursday. If you've been thinking about attending just the picnic, better get to work; only a few tickets, at $125 each, are on sale on their own. Call 667-9463, ext. 204, for information. E-mail food@seattleweekly.com to let us in on the hot stuff.

 
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