April 26, 2013
Hayes Valley, San Francisco - Travels
Hopped off the bus to visit Hayes Valley area of San Francisco. Playground busy with children and people sitting on the benches enjoying the day. Next to the playground you will find Miette where there is plenty of cookies, cakes and other confectioneries.
On the other side of the playground, I noticed a group of people setting up tables, benches and umbrellas behind a chain link fence. The corrugated metal container was opened showing a bar complete with beer taps, ready to serve customers after completely setup. I wandered over and noticed the sign Biergarten on the gate. Biergarten, who's bigger sister is Suppenkuche(located in Hayes Valley also), is exactly as the name states, a beer garden. They offer German beers and eats, very similar what you would find in a beer garden in Germany. I would love to sit outside under the outdoor string lighting, having a beer and bite with friends or even meeting new people. I wonder if they even play oom-pa-pa music?
Right next door you will find Smitten Ice Cream, where you can watch your ice cream being made from scratch with some funky machine using liquid Nitrogen. They offer seasonal flavors and I opted for the blood orange ice cream with pistachio shortbread. Makes my mouth water typing about it.
There are many funky furniture & clothing stores as well as specialty food-related shops and restaurants in Hayes Valley.
Pick up some colorful macarons and tea from Chantal Guillon (sorry, I ate them and didn't take a picture!) or some beautiful artisanal chocolates from Christopher Elbow
I read in the local paper that the pad thai at Lersros Thai was voted a must eat or the signature dish of roast chicken at Zuni Cafe and don't foget the many cocktails at Absinthe.
I think what I liked the most about Hayes Valley was the sense of community. I wandered over, ice cream in hand, to a very large green space and saw the sign "Welcome to Hayes Valley Farm".
I spoke with some individuals who let me know it is a volunteer run farm and they have had many events and get-togethers. I immediately thought to myself: How is this possible? Who owns this prime real estate?
Then I found this article: Goodbye Hayes Valley Farm which explains that it was always an "interim-use urban farm project" and that it would soon be ending. I read angry comments in the newspaper about it's impending end.
Sad as it may be, I'm glad I got to enjoy a stroll amongst the luscious greens. I truly enjoyed everything that Hayes Valley had to offer and it was definitely one of my favorite places to discover.