When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
In the past 30 years, light artists have reimagined an art form that has always had the ability to turn the night sky, or a simple window, into luminescence. Last fall, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts turned its southern glass wall into a parade of sound-sensing lights, Lightswarm, that changes with the movements of nearby people and things. Future Cities Lab, the San Francisco design company behind Lightswarm, has originated another notable light sculpture. Located by the YBCA's steps at 701 Mission, Murmur Wall will light up in arresting ways as it incorporates local trending search engine results and social media postings. Onlookers can offer their own contributions, which will feed into the Murmur Wall's data stream and light up the sculpture. What's trending in San Francisco? If you're walking by the YBCA, you can see firsthand — at least through light patterns that reflect the city's volatile internet habits.
Murmur Wall debuts Thursday at 6 p.m. and continues through May 31, 2017, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F. Free; 415-978-2700 or ybca.org. More
When day drinkers just could not stop pissing along the train tracks at Dolores Park, where every weekend tons of revelers gather to partake in booze and other inebriants, the city came up with a great idea to make public urination acceptable: install an outdoor urinal.
In Homeric myth, Odysseus fools Polyphemus the man-eating cyclops by getting him drunk, telling him his name is "Noman," and driving a spear into his eye. When the other cyclopses ask Polyphemus who hurt him, he says, "Noman!" and Odysseys escapes in the confusion.
Meanwhile, Noman Coffee in the Mission has an horchata latte with a slightly more down-to-earth provenance than The Odyssey: It came from one of the baristas' abuelas. Still, the caffeine-filled shipping container that doubles as an art gallery and performance space has a lofty streak worth of its name. The art on the walls and the beer in the taps is edgy, but on a recent morning, instead of Beach House or Phantogram, the music inside came from Mozart's Cosi Fan Tutte.
Now that pop-ups are commonplace, it's good to encounter a truly creative one that's capable of serving more than six or eight dishes. Chef Joji Kumi and Alexis Katsilometes' Through the Kitchen Window, a mostly monthly enterprise formerly held inside Range (and moving to PizzaHacker for its August go-round) is one. Here, the small plates — of which there are an impressive 15 — all run between $8 and $12, supplemented by a couple meaty, for-the-table entrees for $30 to $50. (Full disclosure: Katsilometes is a former contributor to SFoodie.)
"The crazy momentum of a busy restaurant, open every day, makes it hard to implement changes, let alone the major overhaul we have been thinking about for some time now," says Thomas McNaughton.
Forgoing a typical press release in favor of a personal letter to friends (as he put it), McNaughton announced that Central Kitchen (3000 20th St.) will close on July 9. The stated goal of being an "accessible neighborhood restaurant" never really came to pass, as — to McNaughton's evident frustration — Central Kitchen has always been "perceived as a higher-end restaurant, and that has never felt right to me."
The notable writer and San Francisco resident of 35 years, known for penning the most intellectually vigorous takedown to date of the city’s tech shuttle culture advocates, recently wrote an impassioned essay in The Guardian about the murder of Alex Nieto. “Death by Gentrification” made many compelling points, but was later called out bySan Francisco Magazine’s Joe Eskenazi for presenting an incomplete picture. Last weekend, Solnit did a Facebook drive-by of Wildhawk, the PlumpJack Group venue that recently opened where longtime Mission lesbian bar The Lexington Club used to be.
Now, I'm more into putting the first part of 'cocktail' into my mouth, but if I have to have an alcoholic beverage, I want it to be a metaphorical representation of my personal human experience. That’s why I’ve created this series, to investigate what the essence of San Francisco neighborhoods would look like in cocktail form.
Long has the Manhattan reigned supreme as the classic cocktail. The flavor evokes the elegance of the borough for which it’s named, demanding respect from anyone who drinks it. Though it’s a relatively uncomplicated mixture — whiskey, sweet vermouth, and bitters — it keeps Manhattan cemented in urban royalty, which is totally unfair considering how much higher San Francisco’s rent prices are.
Seldom do you see one of the biggest openings of a given year take place during the last two weeks of it, but that’s the way the calendar fell in 2015. The Alamo Drafthouse’s debut coincided with what will surely be the highest-grossing film in history. (Hint: It’s an anagram of RAW TSARS.)
And because this is San Francisco, it’s also the debut of a massive bar, Bear Versus Bull.
Humans are creatures of habit, from the way we take our coffee to the seats we choose on an airplane. When a person finds something she truly loves — a style of jeans, a shade of lipstick, a standing order at Chipotle — she goes back to that favorite again and again. This makes the concept of seasonal eating a tough one to swallow. Just when I find an exceptional piece of produce or a favorite summer special, it goes off the menu and I'm left to start over.
Such was the case with the farm toast at Myriad Gastropub. A tribute to stone fruit, the summer farm toast featured thick slices of sage-roasted plums layered over generous waves of fromage blanc atop wedges of grill-seared baguette. The whole ensemble was sprinkled with toasted pistachios and drizzled with a balsamic reduction. As someone who lives for sharing, it was all I could do not to slide a slice to the table beside me. As it was, I shared the dish with a friend and still took a small portion home.
When I got a walk-through of the New Mission Theater earlier this week, it looked like a construction zone by way of the Vatican. In preparation for the Alamo Drafthouse’s opening next Thursday, Dec. 10, there were hundreds of workers scurrying about beneath the restored baroque ceilings and labyrinthine staircases: hardhats, front-of-house hires getting a menu tutorial, P.R. people typing at laptops on bar stools.
Chef Ronnie New was attempting to explain his Nashville hot chicken to 30 or so prospective servers, but the AV guys kept accidentally turning on a pre-screening clip involving Felix the Cat. An apologetic “Sorry, chef!” reverberated through the 330-seat main theater, and New patiently bore it out.
There’s a pernicious rumor that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It’s a lie; it’s brunch. Brunch is like the Golden Hydrant that saves you from a hangover that feels like everything is burning down all around you, it provides the foundation for more day-drinking, and it helps you forget that sooner or later, you will have to go back to work.
While Salumeria may not be the flagship of the Ne Timeas Restaurant Group, Thomas McNaughton’s wonderful deli and sandwich spot rolled out a brunch menu a couple weeks ago that makes it the eggier equivalent of those roast beef sandwiches on pretzel rolls. In a word, it’s delicious. And it’s fairly slim: three sweet things, three larger savory dishes, three smaller savory items, and three low-ABV cocktails, including the classic mimosa.
Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'.
Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"