Kathleen Hill: Filipino food, chocolates and Betty White birthday cuisine

Filipino food coming to Sonoma

Last Sunday I called Sweet Pea Bakeshop to ask if they are still open because their “opening” banner was drooping badly.

Not only are they open, they are adding Filipino food, one of my favorite cuisines, to their repertoire.

Starting this weekend, co-owner/chef/baker Albert Rivera will offer Filipino bento boxes. Rivera is Filipino, and we should all try this exciting food.

For those who haven’t experienced the cuisine of the Philippines, it is more tasty than Chinese or Japanese food and, like most countries, capitalizes on what is available in that country. For decades the San Francisco Bay Area has been home to a large immigrant community from the Philippines. As is true of immigrant cuisines brought from Mexico and other countries, the food varies by home region.

Having been a guest in the Philippines and having written an exposé book on the assassination of presidential candidate and Ferdinand Marcos’ rival Benigno Aquino, we were often guests in Filipino homes here and in Manila.

Rivera and Sweet Pea were to begin selling Filipino boxes to-go yesterday, Thursday, Jan. 21 at $18. I look forward to trying each week’s special. Open 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. 720 W. Napa St., Sonoma. 681-5886.

Soroptimists sell chocolates for Valentine’s

With all the inauguration, insurrection and pandemic news inundating all of us, don’t forget Valentine’s Day is coming up again on Feb. 14.

Instead of linking with See’s Candies again, Soroptimist International of Sonoma Valley has decided to sell super local Chocolate Cow chocolates for Valentine’s Day to benefit both a local business and the club’s scholarship fund and aid for young women.

The colorful chocolates come in both a 6-pack and a 4-pack, just the right sizes to please without stirring guilt. The 6-pack includes two sea salt caramels, one “chocolate cow,” and three chocolate truffles ($17). The 4-pack box has one sea salt caramel, one “chocolate cow,” and two truffles ($14), and both come in festive boxes.

Orders must be placed by Friday, Feb. 5 by calling Juliette Andrews at 338-1874 or Maida Herbst at 337-7672.

Soroptimist also offers contact-free pickup in the parking lot behind the Atrium Building at 670 W. Napa St., Sonoma on Friday, Feb. 12, or Saturday, Feb. 13. This is the same location they used for their last lobster feed pickup.

The Chocolate Cow, celebrating 30 years of father and son handmade chocolates, is located in the Mercado off First Street East in Sonoma, between La Salette and the new Prohibition Spirits shop.

Glen Ellen Star’s new Mobile Oven

Glen Ellen Star has a new mobile wood oven.

The newly named Sonoma Star Mobile Oven also offers salads ($8), pizzas including a tomato cream pie ($20 to $23), empanadas ($8 to $10), focaccia ($6), and pop tarts ($7) from this rolling cooker. And of course interesting beverages.

Every weekend from now through the end of February the oven will be parked at Three Fat Guys winery tasting room at 20816 Broadway, Sonoma. You can order online to save time at

Tips Roadside’s great news

Susie Pryfogle, owner of Tips Roadside in Kenwood, is definitely a person who fights her way out of adversity. In the last month she lost her beloved mother and then had to close temporarily while the staff all got tested for COVID-19, quarantined and were cleared as virus-free.

She is the “fight back kid” and has come up with a great idea: serving the same specials Wednesdays through Sundays, such as soups, stews and chili for two on Wednesdays, fried chicken for two every Thursday, and a Sunday special barbecue family meal for four, or priced for one as well.

This week included short rib stew with a puffed pastry top and mixed green salad ($45 for two), Trixie’s fried chicken with mashed potatoes and gravy, cole slaw and buttermilk biscuits ($28 for two), and root beer glazed smoked pork spare ribs, a bacon and cheddar twice baked potato, chopped wedge salad and fresh banana pudding Friday through Sunday ($79 for four, $20 for one). Order at 509-0078.

Edge to go

No, Edge is not going anywhere.

Executive Chef and Culinary Director Fiorella Butron now offers takeaway dinners weekly Wednesday through Saturday.

Sample menus from this week included Painted Hills rib eye, pommes frites, winter greens, and housemade ketchup for Wednesday and Thursday, and Ahi tuna and shrimp with pumpkin curry, basmati rice and pickled radish for Friday and Saturday ($50 to $165). Sometimes you can add truffle risotto for $17. For more info call 935-6520 or get on their mailing list via

Morgan Twain-Peterson

A proud and excited Morgan Twain-Peterson posted his joy in saying, “Wow, still kind of wrapping my head around Antonio Galloni naming Bedrock (as) his Winery of the Year - this is an enormous honor considering all the amazing properties and stunning wines that (wine website) Vinous reviews every year.

“It is also some wonderful news to get as a year of challenges gives way to a year that will ideally contain more joy, opportunity, prosperity and hopefully a lot more hugs.

“Something like this doesn’t happen without an incredible community —and I am overjoyed that the diligence, passion and work put in by our team of lovely humans and growers has been recognized.

“As always, I am extraordinarily grateful to the efforts of my father (Joel Peterson, the zinfandel master of Ravenswood Winery), Paul Draper, Kent Rosenblum and so many more who labored for decades telling the tale of California’s incredible old vineyards—that a winery which specializes in California’s oldest vineyards can now be called Winery of the Year, within a global context, is something I hope they would be proud of.”

Antonio Galloni was born in Venezuela, has a degree from MIT and, for several years, was on Robert Parker’s tasting staff for The Wine Advocate.

Corner and Boyes Food Center updates

Rosa Smario Turner wanted to clarify the lineage of the Boyes Springs Food Center, which I mentioned a couple of weeks ago in conjunction with the history of the Palms Grill corner at Verano Avenue and Highway 12, where her parents owned a Foster’s Freeze.

She wants to clarify that Ann and Frank Del Rosso were family as well as full partners with her parents, Horace and Rose Smario, in the Boyes Food Center for over 20 years.

“When the four of them chose to retire and sell the market it was to Rosemary and Jim Haver and Francine and Bill Maffei, daughters (and sons-in-law) of Ann and Frank and nieces of Horace and Rose.”

Francine Maffei and Rosemary Haver were both popular principals of Sonoma Valley schools.

Thank you, Rosa Turner, for straightening all of this out.

Hairstylist and super Disney fan Lori Struthers remembers Cios at the corner restaurant location, saying, “I do remember Cios. My family used to eat there with my grandmother almost weekly in the ‘80s when I was a teenager. One of the owners I think, a Korean lady, adored my baby/toddler nephew. She loved to hold him and treated us so well every time we came in to eat.”

A cheese nibble

The American Cheese Society has officially canceled the judging and competition associated with its conference for 2021. The Wisconsin and World Championships are also canceled for this year, according to Amy Sherman, a.k.a. the Cheese Professor.

Girl & the Fig news

Girl & the Fig proprietor Sondra Bernstein has hired Michael Elliott to be communications director for her enterprises and ventures. A Monterey county native, Elliott studied marketing at Sonoma State University and never left.

According to Bernstein, “Michael comes with over nine years of experience in the digital marketing space and has led such projects as a New York Times Bestsellers book marketing campaign and has established numerous social media business accounts.

Elliott lives in Santa Rosa with his wife, Laura, his daughter, Camille, and his two dogs, Rizzo and Addison. Find him at

Betty White birthday cuisine

The fabulous actress and comedian Betty White announced that for her 99th birthday dinner last week she was having “a hot dog and French fries.” You go, girl!

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