Esther Mobley, SF Chronicle

Esther Mobley

SF Chronicle

San Francisco, CA, United States

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Past articles by Esther:

Silicon Valley Bank made itself perfect for wineries. Then their accounts froze.

Silicon Valley Bank made itself the perfect institution for Bay Area wineries. Then their accounts froze. → Read More

He wrote ‘Sideways,’ which became the most influential wine movie ever made. Now he says he was ‘completely ripped off’

Nineteen years after the movie and book came out, Rex Pickett is on a “redemption... → Read More

This quiet S.F. restaurant is still one of my favorites, even after a major change

Heirloom Cafe has new owners. They're keeping things the same, mostly. → Read More

This beloved S.F. restaurant has a new owner. Have the pastas changed?

Cheryl Maloney is the new owner of beloved Sardinian restaurant La Ciccia in San Francisco's Noe Valley. Little has changed. → Read More

Want to bring your own wine to a Bay Area restaurant? That'll cost $50

Corkage fees have risen since the pandemic, sometimes creeping up to $100. → Read More

Flaky Jamaican pastries arrive at the Ferry Building, plus 6 more great new Bay Area restaurants

These are the best new restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area so far in 2023, including Acre, Casa Borinqueña, Parche, Peaches Patties and Piglet & Co. → Read More

A luxurious new wine bar hopes to revive a neglected corner of downtown S.F.

Mili wants to lure downtown San Francisco office workers with glasses of fancy wine. → Read More

Why one of Sonoma’s best wineries hired a winemaker who'd never made wine before

Hirsch Vineyards is one of Sonoma County's best wineries. When its last winemaker left, daughter Jasmine Hirsch put herself up for the job. → Read More

Napa wine may cost more in 2023, as 71% of wineries plan to raise prices

California wine is likely to become more expensive in 2023. According to a new study, 71% of wineries plan to raise their bottle prices during the year. → Read More

California's storms are actually a good thing for vineyards

California's devastating storms are good for one thing: vineyards. The intense rains are revitalizing grape vines that had been parched by years of drought. → Read More

Bay Area bars hoped for a post-COVID renaissance. But people are still staying home

Bay Area bars hoped for a post-COVID renaissance. But long after pandemic restrictions have lifted, people aren't going out the way they used to. → Read More

An easy New Year's drinking resolution: Shop for wine locally

Last year proved that online wine businesses don't always work. This year, stick with a tried-and-true way of finding great wines: local, independent shops. → Read More

A $17 glass of wine is normal at Bay Area restaurants now. Here's why

A few years ago, it was easy to find a glass of wine for $12 in many Bay Area restaurants. Now, at many, the average is closer to $17, due to rising wine costs. → Read More

We tried a lot of Trader Joe's sparkling wines. These are the 7 best ones to buy for New Year's Eve

Are the cheap sparkling wines at Trader Joe’s any good? We decided to find out. → Read More

Mulled wine is the best use for cheap bottles at Christmas

Mulled wine, popular at Christmastime, is a great way to use up cheap bottles that you wouldn't otherwise drink. Here are a wine critic's tips. → Read More

Here's how expensive visiting Napa and Wine Country has become

Exploding costs in Napa and Sonoma have huge implications for Wine Country, and what it means to Californians. → Read More

The best new bars that opened in the Bay Area in 2022

These are the best bars that opened in Oakland, San Francisco and the Bay Area in 2022, plus restaurants with exceptional wine, beer or cocktail lists. → Read More

The Prisoner Wine Co. says it’s reforming its problematic imagery. Is it enough?

The Prisoner Wine Co., one of Napa Valley's most popular wineries, says it's reforming its problematic imagery that glamorized incarceration. Are its new social-justice initiatives enough? → Read More

This Bay Area winemaker found a much more affordable vineyard — in France

Jonathan Pey, of Pey-Marin Vineyards, wanted to leave the Bay Area because of affordability and climate change. So he bought a vineyard in the storied French wine region of Beaujolais. → Read More

You’re at Total Wine on Thanksgiving. Here are the best bottles to buy in the Bay Area

If you're doing your Thanksgiving wine shopping at Total Wine & More in the San Francisco Bay Area, these are the best bottles to buy for the big meal. → Read More