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Monday, June 6, 2011


The flight from Las Vegas (which now is only down to 25% the gambling revenues of Macao, will soon lose the #2 position to Singapore) to San Francisco was uneventful, the best kind, although I was surprised to see so much snow.  Then those familiar salt ponds.

There is now no Airporter Bus into San Francisco town, although the signs are all still up.  One floor up is a melange of shuttles, most confusing and inconvenient.  As these tend to cost around $15/person, and a taxi with tip is about $40, I took the latter.  There were two problems.  One, it was drizzling.  Two, the driver refused to turn on his wipers...but that could be because it was not working.

I checked into the Hotel Nikko, which belongs to another owner and is not really part of the Nikko chain.  Again, very confusing.  I'm in one of those executive rooms with a so-called exclusive Imperial Club, which serves wine/beer and some snacks from 5-7PM.  Very modest compared to other such lounges around the world.  They have a premier night club here, but if that Imperial Club is exclusive, I wonder about that night club.  At least the internet and breakfast are free.

I went to Anzu for dinner.  This is a Japanese-European fusion restaurant located in this hotel.
Kristine (left) checked me in:
I had a sake flight:
  a.  Hana hou sparkling sake from Okayama
  b.  Otokoyama junmai from hokkaido
  c.  Katana extra dry ginjo from Shizuoka (hot) 
plus a Sapporo draft.
The one course featured a maguro poke and thinly sliced wagyu beef coulotte (I think this means tiny pieces) cooked on a sizzling Japanese river stone, served with a trio of sauces, and miso soup with rice.  To end the meal I had a frozen coconut souffle with a Robert Sinski late harvest Pinot Gris.  

The meal and service were exceptional.  The room was only about 25% filled, but the ambience was okay and convenience for me ideal.  The star of the evening was...tada....Tina.  Picture an early generation Japanese wife.  Here is Tina:

Tomorrow, Tadich Grill with some Stanford classmates and, for dinner, Ame at the St. Regis.

The Dow Jones Industrials slipped further another 61 to 12,090, with world markets also down.  Gold went up $3/toz to $1545 and oil dropped a buck, the NYMEX at $99/barrel and Brent Spot at $114/barrel.


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