Easter Weekend Plans: Gourmet Brunch and Millionaire Bacon

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If you're looking for great food this Easter, we've got you covered.

If you're looking for great food this Easter, we've got you covered. We teamed up with our partners at Hoodline to bring you the best weekend eats, from sparkling wine tasting, to free donuts and a gourmet all-you-can-eat brunch. Let's start with the good stuff: Millionaire Bacon.

Easter Brunch at Eve's Waterfront

Chef Brandon Peacock's Millionaire Bacon is a sight (and smell) to behold. He cuts the pork belly in thick slabs and cures it for two hours in a mixture including molasses, habanero, rum and whiskey. It's slow-roasted for 10 hours, turning into a crispy and tender caramelized bar of spicy, salty, sweet bacon-candy heaven.

"Once you have it, you're not going to want regular bacon again," said Peacock.

And hes' right. You may recognize Chef Peacock from his turn on several television shows, including the competition Chopped, which he won, handily. He's now Executive Chef at Eve's Waterfront in Oakland, an expansive restaurant situated literally on top of the water, giving diners peaceful views from large windows and extraordinary food straight from Chef Peacock's kitchen.

The restaurant specializes in banquets and catering, and the space certainly lends itself to events. It also does a brunch buffet every Sunday, but this Easter you'll find a premium brunch. A carving station will feature herb roasted boneless leg of lamb, slow roasted prime rib and pineapple roasted smoked ham with a honey mustard glaze. Main selections range from fresh local seafood, including the Singapore style dungeness crab and peel-and-eat shrimp, to slow braised oxtails, meatballs and fluffy Belgian waffles. And of course there's Chef Peacock's award-winning fried chicken. It's the dish he credits with clinching his Chopped win.

"The secret is just making it flavorful, super juicy," said Peacock. "Mine is a two day process, I keep it in a brine for 24 hours, then I put a buttermilk solution into it... it makes a kind of shatter when you fry it."

The Easter Sunday Buffet also has 10 salads and sides and a dessert station for those who like to finish on a sweet note.

Chef Peacock says that many of the focus and time pressure skills he used on Chopped actually apply to feeding more than 200 people gourmet meals every Sunday for brunch. The restaurant has a focus on local, seasonal ingredients. In fact, the chef says he's sometimes inspired by what's in his own garden, supplying organic pea tendrils for the fresh dungeness crab and avocado salad that he picked that morning. He says that when people arrive at Eve's Waterfront, they experience an oasis of sorts.

"At Eve's, we have this beautiful kind of 'Alameda Riviera' on the water, it's beautiful, it's kind of like a vacation," said Peacock. "It's to bring everyone together, it's about food, it's about sharing and talking about things and putting everything aside and enjoying everyone's company."

After 32 years cooking, Chef Peacock says he enjoys being able to bring new flavors and innovation to Eve's Waterfront, whether it's on their weekend menu or through the private events, weddings and parties that are booked there. For him, the beautiful environment and serene water views pair perfectly with bold dishes as well as more familiar, mouth-watering classics.

"I like to create and challenge myself on a daily basis, and make it better and different," said Peacock. "If I can put a smile on everyone's face every day, it means I did something well."

The Premium All-You-Can-Eat Easter Brunch at Eve's Waterfront is $50, children under 12 are $24. For more information, visit Hoodline. To book a reservation visit the Eve's Waterfront website.

Sparkling Wine Tasting in Napa

If you want to head straight for the bubbly, go to the walk-around sparkling wine tasting in Napa on Sunday from 12-2pm. It's at the Culinary Institute of America at Copia. For $35, they're featuring bottles from around the world, including South Africa, Spain and Armenia.

To find out more, visit their event on Hoodline here.

Free Easter Egg Hunt in San Francisco

How about Easter donuts? We found an Easter egg hunt in San Francisco where everything is 100 percent free. Enjoy food trucks including Johnny Doughnuts at no cost. There's even a petting zoo for the little ones, a magic show, a bounce house, face painting and, of course, an egg hunt.

It's the first year this community event is being put on by FirstSF. Babies through fifth grade and their families are welcome. You'll find it at the First Baptist Church of San Francisco on Saturday from 10am-12pm.

To find out more, visit the Easter Egg Hunt event website on Hoodline.
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