Lure of the Urban (Wine) Road

Periscope Cellars Tasting Room, Emeryville, CA

Recently, we went up to Northern California to visit Adam’s mom and go wine tasting. However, rather than hit any of the nine wine regions in that half of the state, we toodled ’round Oakland, on the eastern shores of the San Francisco Bay.

But what’s it like to go wine tasting in an industrial city full of warehouses?

Delicious, fun — and surprisingly inspiring.

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A Bay Area Weekend

Happy Labor Day Weekend, everyone!

We’re off to spend the holiday in San Francisco and Oakland, California, with a whole slew of new-to-us adventures.

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San Francisco: California Academy of Sciences


By October of last year, I’d already read five articles about the newly revamped California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park; overkill, to be sure, as I had been hooked from the first glance.  

Housing a four-story rainforest lit by skylights on a “living roof” — an undulating field of California native plants — this incredible science museum is also home to coral reef aquariums, African penguins, a rare albino alligator, a hall full of gorgeous wildlife dioramas, and the largest digital planetarium dome on Earth. It’s like a trip around the entire universe.

But none of the press prepares you for the huge crowds, long lines and odor of cafeteria food…and feet.  So, here’s how to have a better time than I did.

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A Dream Drive Through Marin County


Road through the midst of Marin County’s Point Reyes National Seashore

There’s never a bad time to clear the cobwebs in your head. To get the job done in any season, we highly recommend grabbing a sweater and jumping in the car to drive wild and farm-studded backroads, eat beautifully, and stroll on a wide, blustery beach in Northern California’s Marin County.

From Point Reyes to Inverness, Kehoe Beach to Olema, and through nature preserves and historic bedroom communities, a day’s drive here will have you both seeing life in color again.

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San Francisco’s Ferry Building Marketplace

Nothin’ wrong with a little food porn, all dressed up and respectable.

It’s all on display at San Francisco’s Ferry Building Marketplace, and you can choose to simply look or participate.

There’s no shame in either. [Read more…]