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Whew. I was worried.

Couldn’t get through to Mario at his Hancock Street Café (3354 Hancock Street, between Old Town and the Sports Arena area).

Turns out he has a new number (619-408-2101). I wanted to get to him to see if he’d heard: Herbie Hancock, his jazz piano-playing hero, is coming to town, late summer.

See, most of Mario’s café is studio, with pianos, guitars, drums. He’s a heckuva musician, but his dream has always been to invite the great Herbie Hancock himself to come play here. Heck, that’s why he chose this location, on, yeah, Hancock Street.

I’ve always gone for good value Italian chow (Mario’s oh-so Italian, from New York), but I've also come here to Mario's for the talk, and the music. Most days, he’s open from 8:00 to around 2.30 p.m. Friday, Saturday that extends to about two in the morning. It's food, wine, good vibes.

Specially late, when you’ll likely catch Mario and friends making music. Who knows, if the great Herbie himself turns up, come September, Mario may have a thing or two to teach him about tickling those ivories.

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