The Revival of the Soda Fountain (part 1)

This weekend I visited the The Ice Cream Bar and Soda Fountain, located in Cole Valley.  The art deco signs, restored 1930s bar and vintage cash register had me smitten from the beginning.

We went straight for the soda fountain in the back and received the best root beer float ever, as well as a wonderful history lesson on soda fountains from our server!


First our server (or soda jerk, as I learned he is called) whipped up a house made root beer with some of the flavors I saw before me.

Then ice cream was added and a creme brulee marshmallow – heaven in the form of a marshmallow!

The amount of detail our soda jerk paid to our float made it a unique experience.  Not only was is fun to watch but it tasted amazing!  I’m already thinking about the next time I can go back!

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Ciao, North Beach!

One of my 2012 new year’s resolutions was to start taking advantage of the numerous walking tours offered by San Francisco City Guides.  A few weekends ago I took the North Beach tour.

I love North Beach, mainly because North Beach combines two of my great loves: Italian cuisine and a rich literary history (being one of the famous stomping grounds for the Beat Generation).

On the tour I learned that it was during the Gold Rush that many Italians arrived to California with the hopes of striking it rich.  With little success, many made their way to the San Francisco coast and found something else that they had better luck with – fishing.  A community was formed near the northern beaches of SF (at the time North Beach was coined, the bay shore was only a few blocks from the neighborhood – dredging and landfill extended the city to what it is now) and Italian restaurants, coffee houses and markets were born in the neighborhood.

It was in the 1950s that the Beat poets found their way to North Beach.  I am so accustom to the North Beach of today, with it’s sky-high housing prices, that it’s hard to believe that in the 50s rents in this neighborhood were actually very low (conducive to struggling poets!).  It was a little bittersweet to see that the coffee houses and restaurants frequented by the Beats are no longer here, but some places are still alive and thriving, including some of the bars and the bookstore City Lights.  If you have not been to this bookstore (founded in 1953 by Lawrence Ferlinghetti), visit the upstairs, a room devoted to poetry.  I fell in love with Beat literature when I was in high school.  This was probably the worst (or best!) time to read On the Road, as I was young and very impressionable and Jack Kerouac’s crazy, free spirited travels left me intoxicated with his work!

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Delicious Cocktails

I just came across the food blog The Forest Feast and am already hooked.  Every recipe looks delicious and the pictures are gorgeous.  And Erin has some wonderful cocktail recipes that I look forward to trying!

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My Night with Marilyn

The other night I had a glass of wine in bed and watched Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.  What a perfect night!  Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell are such a pair and their clothes are outstanding.


Jane Russell is such a comedic force in this movie.  The following picture is from one of my favorite scenes.  But I will say no more, you have to watch it for yourself!

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SF, I Love You

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Head over Heels for Chelsea Crew

I love Chelsea Crew shoes for their vintage look and reasonable prices.  My Chelsea Crew collection is slowly growing…..

Plus many of their high heels are actually quite comfortable for walking steep hills (a major plus in this very hilly city!).

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Mes Dames Look Book S/S 2012

I am completely enthralled by the spring/summer 2012 lookbook by Mes Dames

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