Bay Area

February 14, 2017

There’s a Tiny Tearoom in Berkeley for Japanese Tea Ceremonies

by Sarah Han

Recently, I visited Blue Willow Teaspot in West Berkeley, a new tea cafe that has a tiny Japanese tearoom tucked in the back, where visitors can experience chado, or the ceremonial preparation of matcha. Blue Willow Teaspot opened in October 2016. Originally, Blue Willow was solely a wholesale business. Its current owner, Ali Roth was an employee at the company under previous […]

January 3, 2017

Bartender Spotlight: Troy Bayless of Holy Mountain

by Chris Cabrera

I sat down and had coffee with Troy Bayless, the co-owner and bar manager of Holy Mountain, a bar tucked upstairs from Hawker Fare restaurant in San Francisco’s Mission District. Troy’s an interesting guy and I had a lot fun talking to him about what he’s been up to and what Holy Mountain is all about. I’ve always known you as the guy […]

December 7, 2016

Go Here Now: Onsen, a Japanese Bathhouse in San Francisco

by Kayoko Akabori

A labor of love has finally been realized after nearly two years in the making: a Japanese-style bathhouse and restaurant in San Francisco! Opened in the Tenderloin neighborhood by husband and wife team Sunny Simmons and Caroline Smith, Onsen is a relaxing oasis in the middle of the city, in a location that was once an […]

September 30, 2016

The Umami Reader: Pork Bun vs. Typhoon. Pork Bun ALWAYS WINS

by Sarah Han

– A 53-year-old Taiwanese woman won the hearts of food lovers around the world this week when she decided, “Typhoon and broken umbrella, be damned – I’m eating this pork bun!” Associated Press photographer Chiang Ying-ying captured the woman, a fruit stand owner, eating her pork bun in the midst of Typhoon Megi, a powerful storm that rocked Taipei […]