If anyone knows how to captivate an audience, it's Chris Anderson who, for the past 15 years as the curator of TED, has ushered some of the world’s best and brightest minds onto a stage set to send their insights into an online viral frenzy.
It's common knowledge that Ari Shapiro, host of the NPR program All Things Considered, is a rock star reporter with an iconic radio voice, but for two nights this month, Shapiro will put his vocal prowess on display when he joins the San Francisco symphony and "little orchestra" Pink Martini for a two-night run at Davies Symphony Hall.
On a grey afternoon in Oakland, I'm headed toward Stanford Avenue in Emeryville to pick up a dinner I had ordered online. Rather than using Caviar or Munchery, or one of the many on-demand meal service apps meant to have your dinner ordered, delivered, and eaten within an hour, I opted for a home-cooked meal (Cá Kho Tộ, a traditional Southern Vietnamese dish, to be exact) that must literally be picked up from someone else's home.
A cup of tea is more than dried leaves and hot water. It is a social experience, an afternoon escape, a ceremonial ritual, a reason to take a break. For centuries cultures across the world have been cultivating and consuming herbal remedies, spicy chais, delicate infusions and sacred simmered brews.
If you set out on a quest to find San Francisco's Barbary Coast, the chances that you'll end up sipping a barrel-aged cocktail beneath a fig tree in North Beach are good, but not great.
"It's rare for a cup of coffee to taste like its story," said Blue Bottle coffee buyer Charlie Habegger—and yet a story is exactly what Blue Bottle is selling with every cup of its new partnership with Port of Mokha. And considering that story costs $16 a pop, rest assured it's a damn good one.
Whether it’s the cool Pacific breeze, an unexpected bout of summer fog, or that morning-after haze that follows a night of one too many craft cocktails, there are plentiful reasons to search for coffee in San Francisco, the epicurean capital of the country and home to some of the nation’s top artisan coffee roasters.
What goes into a good cup of coffee? Ground beans, hot water and maybe a little cream or sugar? For Doug Hewitt and Rachel Taber it’s a lot more than that. Friends and former employees of the International Rescue Committee (IRC), a humanitarian organization that responds to worldwide crises, Hewitt and Taber see coffee as a venue for social justice.
“I always tell people, ‘When I was a little girl all I wanted to do was grow up and be a butcher. Didn’t you?’” says Monica Rocchino, co-owner of The Local Butcher Shop in Berkeley.
When local coffee shops began charging $4 for a slice of grilled bread, the nation rolled its eyes at San Francisco's hipster-approved toast trend — but leave it to SF to put the "art" in artisanal.
I walk through the single glass door of Berkeley’s MeloMelo Kava Bar in the middle of a rainy Friday afternoon. There’s a man in a plaid shirt reading a book on a bright orange couch in the back corner and a woman perched on a bar stool, gazing into an empty coconut shell.
As the sole performer in the one-man musical The Lion, a 2015 Drama Desk Award-winner that will be running on the stage of A.C.T.’s Strand Theater April 19-May 1, songwriter and story teller Benjamin Scheuer appears to be a show unto himself.
At the start of Sunday’s spin class, my path seems easy, almost effortless. There are a few changes in resistance and a challenge to up my RPMs, but for the most part I feel strong.
Food Shift launches a test kitchen for a better food system.
This year — Henley's second as George Dickel Whiskey's master distiller — she is giving up the fright fest of Halloween for WhiskyFest in San Francisco.
Walnut Creek may seem a world away to a San Franciscan, but consider this: a 35-minute BART trip is significantly shorter than a flight to Spain for foodies seeking delicious Barcelona-style tapas.
In Search of a Local Coffee Shop That Doesn't Smack of Hipsterdom
“Here, fishy fishy” — these three words mark a promotional post card I pick up at a mercantile. It was designed for Real Good Fish, a community-supported fishery that is the fisherman’s equivalent of a farmer’s CSA.
I pass through the door of Spats Restaurant and Saloon and take a seat at the long wooden bar. Classic rock pours from the speakers. The World Series plays above the bar. Snatches of conversation fill the rest of the space weeks after its Oct. 21 grand reopening.
"Come up with something that you’re passionate about and we’ll help you do it." It’s not the sort of offer you usually hear from someone in the world of spirits, an industry in which secret recipes and undisclosed methods abound. Then again, Nelson isn’t your typical distiller.
I am sitting in a Starbucks at the intersection of Battery and Clay on a hazy Monday morning. I’ve claimed a coveted seat beside the window, a station from which I feel safe. It is my second week at a new job. It isn’t going poorly, but it isn’t going well.
In 1944, the San Francisco Ballet debuted the first-ever American production of The Nutcracker, which has enchanted children and dazzled audiences every year since. While we focus on the spritely spirits waltzing across the stage, there is more to the holiday tradition than those dancers.
Japanese cuisine is widely spread across cultures, but has yet to reach the kitchens of American home cooks like me. Something about those unfamiliar terms and mysterious ingredients leaves even adventurous eaters wary of Japanese home cooking. It was this quandary that inspired recipe developer and food educator Ema Koeda to create Nippon Gochiso Select (NGS), a premium line of artisanal Japanese products specifically curated for Western markets.
Randall Munroe doesn’t think you’re stupid. Though you might get that impression when you open the cover of Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words. Larger than a laptop and loaded with pictures, arrows, and Munroe’s telltale stick figures, it may not strike you as a book for grown ups.
What does a meal designed by artificial intelligence taste like? Last Thursday, about two dozen curious eaters gathered at Cookhouse in North Beach to find out how Watson, IBM’s famed cognitive system (and Jeopardy! champ), would do at devising a menu.
"I love this city," says whiskey king Tom Bulleit, gazing out the window of a Market Street café. His bright brown eyes track pedestrians and take in traffic before resting on a steaming cup of black coffee — the sixth that he has had. Ever.
Roughly translated as “new and inventive hands,” Manos Nouveau is a restaurant that lives up to its name. An upscale space with black-clothed tables, a candle-lit ambiance and an intimate feel, it isn’t a location for dinner on the go. Think of it as more of a gallery for the senses...
"The dark eras are for transforming, no?" Santiago Suarez says. We're in a third-floor room of Anchor Brewing, comparing San Francisco's boom with Mexico City's struggles.
When she went to the hospital with split vision in 2004, medics told artist Michael-Che Swisher that there was a possibility of multiple sclerosis, a disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain and between the brain and body. "I didn't even know how to spell it," Swisher recalls.
Char Orina is a thinker and an artist. She likes Tudor houses and big fat fish. She is fascinated with jewelry and collects bracelets and lipstick, though she rarely wears either. She takes her coffee black and in large quantities. She doesn't like gossip. She does like scary movies.
For a man in his 70s, Alan Cupples is impressively active. "I get kidded by people who ask me 'What are you doing at your age playing ball?' And I say, 'What do you mean, I'm one of the young ones.'"
As someone who doesn’t know the difference between a piston and a spark plug, I wasn’t sure what to expect at The Cobra Experience museum in Martinez. I was familiar with Mustangs and Jaguars, but not the Shelby Cobra, a rare sports car produced by Ford and Shelby American in the ’60s.
Since 1958, San Francisco has played host to the Miss Chinatown U.S.A. pageant, which draws dozens of young women from Chinatowns across the country. Here, 2010 winner Crystal Lee (who was then earning a bachelor’s degree from Stanford and now works for Google) describes how it feels to win the competition.
In one of the world’s premier wine regions, why might you order a cocktail? Well, a carefully crafted concoction rejuvenates a weary palate after a long day of wine tasting; a sexy twist on a classic provides the perfect vacation nightcap; and an interesting mix of the two can jump-start an evening out in the area’s growing nightlife scene.
Smartphones and their apps follow us everywhere - to grocery stores, soccer games, school, the movie theater. We use them in our cars and at restaurants, for work and on vacation. With the ability to find friends online and take the Internet just about anywhere, is it possible that we are missing out on real connection with each other? Maybe even with ourselves?
Smarter than the SAT and more powerful than a PH.D., these superpowered Philanthropists, athletes, and achievers are ready to conquer the world.
Recent innovations in educational technology are changing the face of traditional classrooms. "In the last decade, especially in the last five years, I've seen more and more technology used," said Raina León, assistant professor in the Kalmanovitz School of Education at Saint Mary's College. "I'm a huge proponent of using a lot of resources."
The No Guilt Book Club began with a seed of hope planted back in 2004. In time the group grew, and today what started as a monthly book discussion has transformed into a loving community
Seven signs that the local animation studio hasn't forgotten where it comes from.
The buzz about bees is spreading through Lamorinda, most recently to local nurseries, resulting in a partnership that is beyond symbiotic.
From expert: Dominica Rice-Cisneros, chef-owner of Cosecha.
It all started with one bitter little berry. Actually, with 200 bitter little berries that together form the base of an acai berry bowl - one of the latest trends in health food and the premier product of Vitality Bowls, a San Ramon-based chain of superfood cafés that will open over 30 new stores by the end of the year.
Rancho Cantina takes Lamorindans back to the culinary roots of the region, blending the traditions, culture and recipes of Spanish conquistadors and Mexican rancheros, the original Californios, for an eating experience that is truly "autentico."
"You know that space you walked into as a kid? The place you took all your favorite things and made into your own?" J.B. Balingit asks as he gestures over a plate of bright orange sweet potato fries. He sits across from me at a patio table outside of the Hideout Kitchen & Cafe on a Wednesday afternoon, the sun scarcely slipping through tree branches and umbrellas. "That's the sort of place I had in mind."
There’s a beer for every moment and a bite for every palate during happy hour at Forge.
With the introduction of a Napoli-inspired “aperitivo hour," this Oakland hotspot is spreading the amor all over the East Bay.
Too much time minding monitors, swiping screens, and making calls? Need to get away without going very far? The East Bay offers more than cheaper apartments, pop-up breweries, and hella crowded commutes.
What do you do with 50,000 books? Make a sculpture, of course.
The island just off of Oakland can be easy to overlook—or dismiss. Sure, Alameda might have a different pace of life than Soma—but that's not a bad thing. Here, five ways to take it easy this weekend on the Bay Area's best approximation of Hawaii.