Monday, March 15, 2010

Wine Road

Another incredible part of San Francisco is that wine country is at your finger tips.  Some of the world's most famous wine regions are less than an hour away from the city.  This past weekend I participated in an awesome event that left my taste buds craving for some more jammy Pinot Noirs.  It was the 32nd annual barrel tasting along Wine Road.  Over 100 wineries participate in the event and thousands of people come from near and far to taste delicious wine for a $20 flat fee!  

We started the day off at Siduri where there were 30+ tastings from grapes grown all over California.  Siduri is famous for their many Pinot Noirs in which my boyfriend enjoys greatly. Then we went to Hop Kiln Winery which was very beautiful.  The wine was average, but it was a fun atmosphere with some great olive oil tastings. Our last stop was Thomas George Estates which we wandered through caves and enjoyed barrel tasting of futures.  Their staff was super friendly and it was a great atmosphere to end the day with.  No matter how many times I visit, wine country never fails to amaze me.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Festivals de Film

With the likes of YouTube, one can get an off beat film or indy entertainment at the click of the mouse.  However, there is something so fun about attending film festivals.  There is a sense of thrill in the air as many of these films have yet to be debuted and a friendly competitive spirit of who receives the most impressive applause.

Apparently, SF has a ton of unique film festivals including the largest International Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, City Shorts, Earthdance: Environmental Film Festival, Hi/Lo Film Festival... and many many more.

I have to admit, I am not a film festival hoppin' artsy bohemian.  But I did have the pleasure to go to Campus Moviefest's Western Regional Finale in SF.  Campus Moviefest is the largest student film festival in the world.  I attended because my brother and his incredibly talented friends won Best Picture and my brother won Best Actor at UCLA's Campus Moviefest.

Students had a week to produce a 5 minute film - films ranged from slap slick comedies to intense dramas.  There were so many awesome shorts.  The most exciting part of the festival was the award show, of course.  Especially when my brother and his group known as The Wait List won Best Picture of the entire Western region for their film, The Butterfly King.  The film has since been to Sundance Film Festival, scheduled for San Luis Obispo International Film Festival, and will compete in Campus Moviefest's International Finale in June.

They are a talented group to look out for -  Check out their other films at  The Wait List Website.  I hope to attend more film festivals in the future and report more winnings of up an coming filmmakers.

Friday, February 5, 2010

7x7 Packs A Punch

According to Wikipedia, there are over 100 neighborhoods in San Francisco.  This 7x7 city packs a punch!
I live in the Nob Hill neighborhood, so my area of expertise is North East part of the city.  Even though SF has good public transport, there is so much to do in such a concentrated area, that exploring other parts of the city is more of an adventure than an every day occurrence. Here are some of my fav neighborhoods :

  • Nob Hill - As I said, this is where I reside.  We've got adorable cable cars, eateries, delis, and funky shops.  Nob Hill is an eclectic neighborhood - a combination of old wealth, fancy hotels, homeless people, and dive bars.  The neighborhood boarders the Tenderloin which is a rough part of town, to say the least.  The "Loin" brings an influx of shady characters and a lot of eye raising occurrences.  I love this area because it's a combo of city charm and urban rif-raf. 
  • The Marina/ Cow Hollow - safe, pretty, yuppy, and charming are the words I would use to describe the Marina.  The area is flocking with 20 and 30 somethings in Lululemon workout pants, tight fitting zip-up, and designer handbags.  Often referred to as "campus", it is a place that is filled with young party animals.  It's also a common hang out for cougars and silver foxes looking for some young blood. 
  • North Beach - Awesome Italian restaurants and lots of strip clubs.  North Beach is dirty and charming at the same time.  There are some cute neighborhoods, but what comes to mind first is good food and naked ladies.
  • South of Market (SOMA) - SOMA is up and coming with sky scraper apartment buildings and swanky restaurants.  There is a diverse crowd - a mix of Financial District professionals, artsy folk, and urban duellers.  SOMA feels less like a neighborhood and more like a city, but has some enticing characteristics like easy access to shopping, unique museums, and close to all major public transport.
  • Presido - The Presido was an old US Military post, so it is very organized and uniform.  The residences in the Presido are atypical of a city - 4 bedroom, 2 story homes, yard, sidewalk, kids, dogs, etc.  These homes are surrounded by massive amounts of wilderness and trees making it a very beautiful spot.  Besides the trees and old military homes, there's not too much going on in this part of town.  I like to go here for a mid-day BBQ or a drive through the trees.
What is your favorite SF neighborhood?!  Please comment.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Doggie dates with my imaginary hound

When I was brainstorming ideas for this blog, I thought a great theme would be "dog-friendly in SF".  For example, dog-friendly parks, walks, restaurants, events, apartment buildings, best puppy day care, grooming, etc.  Only problem - I don't have a pup!

I am a huge dog lover and I often ponder about what it would be like to have a canine in the city.  Clearly, I am not the first to hone in on this topic.  There are a million resources out there about dog-friendly everything, but many are geared toward travelers and not locals.  I did some digging and these were my favorite dog-friendly activities in SF:

For now, I will continue to pretend I have a 4 legged friend as a stroll the urban landscape.  I'm fairly certain I will be part of the San Francisco dog club one glorious day :)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Simply Saturday

This past weekend was pretty standard.  Lots of friend time, boyfriend time, and football.  A couple highlights that you can only enjoy in San Francisco:

Chrissy field: Despite the week of intense rain we have been having, Mother Nature spared us a few hours on Saturday - the perfect opportunity for a lovely stroll through Chrissy Field.  Starting on Chestnut street, the beau and I grabbed a latte and went for a 4 mile walk to the base of the Golden Gate Bridge and back.  No matter how many times I've walked, ran, skipped along this path, it is always enjoyable and unique.  With views of Alcatraz,  the Presidio, and the Bay, it is truly beautiful.  Everything was magnified due to the rain that had cleansed all the smug and made the trees even brighter.

Protest / Rally:  A Saturday in San Francisco is never complete before you accidentally run into some kind of protest, march, rally, or festival.  So, in good fashion, on our way back from Chrissy Field, an anti-abortion rally was occurring with streets barricaded, chanting, and lots of signage.  After doing some research, the march occurred due to the anniversary of Roe v. Wade.

Authentic Thai Cuisine:  One amazing part of San Francisco is the abundance and variety of awesome restaurants!  On Saturday night, I was on a mission to find the best Thai in San Francisco.  After reviewing many restaurants on Yelp and reaching out to trusted foodie friends, I found the gem.  The beau and I went cross-city from the Marina District to Inner Sunset to dine at Marnee Thai.   It was definitely worth it.  It's always fun to venture to a new district of SF because it feels like you are in a completely different city - each has a unique personality of it's own.

i <3 SF.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

And... we're off!

I am new to blogging - a novice, a virgin, an amateur, an apprentice one might say.  But I am confident I may become one of the best bloggers in history.  To be a high quality blogger, one must be intriguing, open, and an engaging writer.  I'm up for the challenge.

I live in San Francisco, a playpen for counter-cultures.  SF is never boring and ever-changing.  I moved here about 2.5 years ago and have loved every minute of it.  I plan to share my day to day occurrences, especially those elements that make San Francisco the best city on earth.