SUMMERTIME IN THE CITY
The afternoon sun is grand as are the crowds enjoying Saturdays at The Lot SF Pop-up Beer and Spirit Garden (thelotsf.com) in the former parking lot of the Taco Bell/KFC space on the corner of Fillmore Street and Lombard. There’s a varied selection of brews, bubbles, wine, and cocktails throughout the summer, and you can even reserve a table (18 are vintage German) for a group from noon to 2 p.m. And, proceeds benefit local charities, so it’s an all-around win. Drop by with your ID or shoot them an e-mail for group rezzies at email@example.com, and follow their Instagram page for updates. You gotta love these pop-ups that donate to charity, right?
To combat your munchies, the next-door Poki Time (2101 Lombard Street, pokitime.com) has popped up to serve an easy-to-choose menu of poki your way before the entire building is demolished for condos. So poki and party while you can.
One of our go-to places is Marengo on Union (1980 Union Street, marengosf.com), where we often stop after our Sunday trek to the Fort Mason Center Farmers’ Market (2 Marin Boulevard, fortmason.org), which, by the way, is currently brimming with with all things summer — berries, stone fruits, and tomatoes. Marengo’s back bar, with its retractable roof, is the perfect mix of sunshine and breeze, and just the place to grab a refreshment and a light slider snack, like a chicken ‘n waffle, Monte Cristo, or a bacon ‘n biscuit (which is a house-made biscuit, mind you). All range from $3–$4.75, which seems like quite the deal in our fair foodie city.
To help us get over hump day, and make us think we’re on a tropical vacay, The Palm House (2032 Union Street, palmhousesf.com) recently launched a “Weekend Wednesday” menu from 5–9 p.m. that’s cocktail-focused — the fruity kind adorned with umbrellas and orchids served in a pineapple with two straws for sipping with your favorite person (but no one says you have to share). If you don’t like fruity, you can choose from two rum flights. Enjoy it all with a pu pu platter of coconut-crusted prawn and kalua pork wontons and other tasty bites on the popular sunny outside seating area, or in the playful tropical-themed indoors with the lighted birdcages.
CHARMED BY ELIZABETH
We needed a birthday gift recently, and because we always purchase those from local merchants, we headed to Elizabeth W (900 North Point Street, elizabethw.com) in Ghirardelli Square, the flagship boutique of the local brand. We recently came across some samples in a small white paper bag, with the name elegantly penned in silver ink, so with a soft spot for simple elegance, and heartwarming stories (the founder named the store after his great grandmother because of all the fragrant scents he recalled as a child visiting her Sierra Nevada ranch), and the enclosed card with a dog running on Baker Beach, their letterpress packaging, and no animal testing, we were five times charmed. Check out their most popular scent, the woodsy, earthy vetiver, suitable for both genders. And their oversized silk (or wool) sleep masks with a velvet strap, for those of us who prefer not to wake up every time the neighbors turn on their bathroom light.
A few days later, we stumbled upon another Elizabeth, Margaret Elizabeth (2230 Chestnut Street, margaretelizabeth.com), which opened recently to showcase their own jewelry collection of semiprecious gems dipped in 24k gold, plus collections from other artists. With their first store and office on Sacramento Street in the Laurel/Presidio Heights neighborhood, they recently came down the hill to where it’s really happening, and did a beautiful rehab of the former women’s clothing boutique De Novo. Also in their finely honed inventory is a delightful array of lovely gift items like scarves, Herbivore bath salts and body oils, and, our favorite, lovely handcrafted bowls and small vases.
ANOTHER FILLMORE FASHION FIND
The Bermuda Triangle is now a fashion paradise. Les Lunes (3027 Fillmore Street, leslunes.com) opened recently right next to Palette Boutique (3027A Fillmore Street, paletteboutique.com), which we told you about last month. Les Lunes features clothing for both men and women designed in Paris and constructed of beautifully draping and travel-friendly sustainable bamboo, and in sustainable styles (no trends) sewn in their workshop in Shanghai. Before you turn your nose up about “made in China,” the values-driven, woman-owned company encourages its seamstresses to participate in the design process to create quality products and also to spend time with their families while paying them an above-average wage. Drop by on Thursdays from 5–8 p.m. for their neighborhood meet-up, Styling & Sips, and check out their collection.