December 31, 2013

Sign of the Times: Snickerdoodles for Bitcoins

Spotted on 24th St:
Via @colbyh

December 30, 2013

Open: La Tira Wax Studio Moves To Its Own Space

Started as a pop-up at the back of Episode Salon in February of this year, La Tira has grown into its own space at 1301 Church. Owner Christine Fong tells us: "I am very excited to expand and grow my business in this neighborhood I love!" Besides being the only dedicated waxing studio in Noe Valley, what sets La Tira apart? From the website:
The studio uses only the highest quality wax and products on clients, and always adheres to the most sanitary practices possible. The studio supports local vendors, carrying beauty products and housing custom-made furniture created by local artists in San Francisco and the Bay Area. Many of the beauty products sold in our boutique are hand-crafted using sustainable, organic + vegan ingredients.
The space became available when Dermalounge abruptly closed in October We weren't able to contact the owners at the time, but apparently there's been hint of a bankruptcy. Seems likely - all assets are up for auction.

Meanwhile, Episode thinks the space La Tira vacated would also make "a GREAT spot for waxing" (archived here).

La Tira Wax Studio
1301 Church St

December 28, 2013

This Week In Noe Valley: A Grinch, A Local Candle Company, And A Real Estate Rivalry

News from, about and for Noe Valley from around the interwebs:
[Photo: "Carol singers making their way through Noe Valley. Brilliant." via Esbale]

December 21, 2013

This Week in Noe Valley: Real Estate Makeovers, Google Bus Rage Escalates, And A Town Square Documentary

News from, about and for Noe Valley from around the interwebs:
Happy Solstice, Noe Valley. 

[Photo: Moon setting over Sutro at sunrise, Tamar Hurwitz]

Closing: Sway

The former home and birthplace of Streetlight Records at 3979 24th St will soon be vacant again. The inexpensive women's clothing store Sway, which moved into the space in 2010, is closing up shop in Noe Valley and consolidating in the Haight. A sale is underway and the shop will be closed by the end of the month.

Fans of the shop can still buy their stuff online, or visit one of their five other stores around the Bay Area.

No word on who might move into the new space which back in 2009 was commanding $12K per month in rent. Here's hoping it becomes something fun and useful.

December 10, 2013

A History Of One Irish Family In Noe Valley

We've received some great photos and stories in response to the announcement of Horner's Corner Bar, and have put people in touch with Ivor Bradley so he can share their history. We had asked him how he plans to balance the current tech culture with the heritage of "old Noe" being a haven for working class Irish and German families. It's a tricky proposition, and judging by the comments not everyone will be happy.

But hope also springs eternal. Longtime resident Jim Lynch sent a history of his family in San Francisco reminding us that Noe Valley isn't all Google Buses, double-wide strollers and Whole Foods parking lot drama.

Here's Jim's story, posted with his permission: 
Like Mr Bradley, I had 2 grand uncles (Michael & John Lynch) who came to Noe Valley from Gort, County Galway in 1907. Michael Lynch started a general contracting business (M.J. Lynch Construction) and his first jobs were concrete sidewalks. As was the custom, he would place his stamp in his work. Though they are getting scarcer due to ADA curb ramps and re-construction, they can still be found in the Noe Valley, and throughout the city. This is the oldest that I have found (in the Bernal at Aztec & Coso) but I have pictures of newer, more professional ones from the 1930's. Uncles Mike and John lived at 26th & Guerrero for decades. My grand uncles were bachelors well into their sixties. However, MJ married at age 67 to his girlfriend of 17 years, the daughter of a former member of the S.F. Board of Supervisors (1919 - 1930) - Charlie Powers, also a contractor, who lived at 26th and Church. Mike & Dorothy re-located to 20th & Noe.

My father and uncle came to SF in 1949 and also lived at 26th & Guerrero. Like many other Irish immigrants they went to work for M.J. Lynch. My uncle Paul owned an Irish bar (The Skyscraper) at 24th & Mission in the early 1960s. My dad met my mom (from County Leitrim) in S.F. They married in 1955 and raised their family in the Noe Valley until they died. My family currently lives on Duncan Street. So the Lynch family has been in Noe Valley since 1907.

We lived at Vicksburg & Elizabeth in the early 1960's and my Dad and other locals would meet at Noe's, but then it was called Doyle's (named after the owner at the time). My family knew the Forde's well, and like them, my sister (1), and brothers (3) grew up in the Noe, attended St. Paul's or St. Philip's. We worked in the Noe at Mitchell's Ice Cream, the original 24th Street Bell Market, and delivered the local newspapers. I retired from SFPD after 31 years in 2010, and 2 of my brothers are currently officers in the department.

I know a picture of concrete is unusual, but as they say every picture tells a story. This one is about Irish immigration to the Noe Valley in the last century, and a family fond of a great neighborhood. Many Irish Fled to the Sunset in the 50s and 60s, but some like the Fordes and the Lynches, knew a good thing, and stayed!

I wish Mr. Bradley and Dave (who always stops to treat my wheaten terrier - Mulligan) all the best on their new venture.


Jim Lynch

December 6, 2013

The New Normal For Income Property In Noe Valley?

A reader pointed us to a listing on Craigslist offering 1688 Dolores for $9500/month. What raised his eyebrow is that 1688 recently flipped and sold after a relatively long time on market. We;re curious, too, so we turned to John Downing for some background. In short, a developer bought it from the bank in 2011 for $928,000, renovated and put it on the market in April of 2013 for $2.295M. It went in and out contract, on and off the market and eventually closed escrow on November 4 for $2.2M.

All of which begs the question: why would someone pay $2.2M for a house and then put it on Craigslist as a long term rental? We asked John if he knew anything more:
That's an interesting question. I did some more digging. Looks like the buyer purchased it as a 2nd home. They put $1.2M down and got a $1M loan with a 30/yr amo from BOA. The mortgage payment, taxes, and insurance might be just be under the $9,500 asking rent.
What do you think? Is a $2,200,000 single family home on Dolores near 30th the new normal for income property?

NVV Dec 2013: We Read It So You Don't Have To

The Noe Valley Voice is published ten times a year and has been a neighborhood fixture since 1977. Here are notable highlights from the latest issue. Links are to stories we've covered here on NVSF or other resources. Follow the NVV link at the bottom for full articles and all the ads.

December 2013 / January 2014

Front Page:The Noe Valley Farmers Market celebrates 10 years on December 7th; Interview with NV resident and Twitter editorial director Karen Wickre (@kvox); An update on the continuing process to update Noe Courts [Ed.--Scott Wiener's take is here]; Church St artist Stan Heller exhibits "the faces and stories of long-term San Francisco residents caught in the current real estate frenzy" at Borderlands Cafe on Valencia through January 17th.

Letters: A promotion for SFSU's Osher Lifelong Learning Institute; Not everyone agrees with Tom Peck's poem last month condemning Scott Wiener; In memory of Kathleen Albert, who ran With Care preschool on Fair Oaks St.

Short Takes: Upper Douglass Dog Park to remain closed "until further notice;" A reminder about 24 HoliDAYS on 24th St; Announcement of yesterday's meeting of the NVDC and UNN about CCSF; The next community meeting for the Noe Valley Streetscape Project tentatively scheduled for Jan 20th; Horner's Corner Bar announced.

Cost of Living in Noe: Expensive. Still. 2-4 unit buildings are popular for converting to TICs.

Police Beat: Since NV beat cop Lorraine Lombardo has stopped providing blotter info, the NVV has discovered just how frustrating it is to get timely and pertinent crime information from the Mission and Ingleside stations. The Voice is experimenting with

Rumors: Only 33% of Noe Valley voters voted in November, shooting down Prop B & C two-to-one; Swatdee is closing, New Dehli moving in; La Nebbia on track to open "sometime mid-Decemberish;" Real Foods cited, faces max fine of $6885; Local activist Peter Gabel to be first to hold author event at Folio Books; Starbucks closed for remodel; Easy Breezy awarded.

Notable: The copy editor who is so kind to offer his/her services in our comment section may want to give the Voice a call -- there are many blocks of text that are repeated in this issue.

[The Noe Valley Voice]

December 1, 2013

Announced: Horner's Corner Bar From One Of The Creators Of The Creamery

Rumors have been circulating for some time that Noe's Bar / Basso's has been sold. We've been searching for details, but no one was talking. The usual permit searches have come up negative. But then a few days ago we heard from Ivor Bradley announcing changes to come:
We are a local partnership team who are looking to reopen Noe's as a local neighborhood bar with good food, and we are calling it "Horner's Corner Bar" after John Horner, a historical figure from 1850 who purchased the surrounding area of Noe Valley from Jesus de la Noe in the mid 18th century. He's also known as the man with the plough, a father figure of California agriculture.
For the newbies, here's a brief history. Mr Bradley isn't new to the scene - he's part owner of the wildly successful The Creamery in SOMA. This time around, Mr Bradley wants to tap into the history of Noe Valley and display old photos and other tributes to the history of Noe Valley. He's consulted local historian Bill Yenne, but he'd also like your help (more on that in the interview below). 

We also asked Mr. Bradley for some more details on what to expect in the months (weeks!) ahead:
Are you the same Ivor Bradley who is associated with The Creamery? And if so, what have you learned from The Creamery that you think will resonate in Noe Valley?

Yes I am the same Ivor Bradley associated with the Iron Cactus & The Creamery, located at 683-685 4th St. Over the last 6 years I've learned a great deal in the course of developing both of these businesses in the Soma community. I have become an active member of the local business community, becoming involved in numerous charities and events, such as the Saint Vincent De Paul, The SF Aids Walk, The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, as well as the numerous school and event donations that occur throughout the year.

I believe that in opening our new business in Noe Valley we will be able to bring some of our core practices to our new venture: we use only the freshest ingredients and free range meats; our commitment to the local community and merchants will strengthen as we grow each year; our commitment to our staff and their families will allow us to build a strong team approach to service and quality; we will ensure that all labor codes and standards are adhered to as a respectable member of the business community; we will be initiating a long term business growth plan to ensure that we can cope during the different stages of our growth plan.

You stated you want to create “a local neighborhood Bar & Grill, for local residents and families to enjoy daily, with weeknights dinner, weekend brunch, and a great happy hour for all to enjoy “Tell us a bit about who you and your partners are.? Are you all local?

My grandfather's brother and his two sisters moved to Noe Valley from Galway, Ireland, in the mid 1930s,settled on Valley St, and continue to live there today. Pete Forde raised his sons there, and one of his sons Ricky Forde worked and retired from the Noe Valley fire station where he had served for many years.

I have been a San Francisco resident for the last 19 years. I live in Parkside, with my wife Sarah and our two children, Molly (7) and Michael (5). I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Hotel Business Management, and a Masters in Hospitality Management. I have managed neighborhood restaurants and worked with hotel companies in the city for over 12 years, before branching out to work on my own in 2007. I have worked for some of the best companies in the Bay area, such as McCormick & Kuletos, Real Restaurants, Kimpton restaurant group, Chow restaurant group, and the Four Seasons Hotel Group, gaining extensive Food & Beverage experience in my time with them in a management role.

In my spare time I am an active sportsman with many hobbies. I like to fish for trout and salmon, go clay pigeon shooting, and golf. I am a keen gardener,with a strong appreciation for all wildlife.

My partner, Dave O’Donnell, is married to Patricia Gillespie who is a Hospice Nurse and they have twin daughters Eva and Lauren aged 8. They have been in SF for 20 years. They lived for 5 years on Noe and 25th before moving to Glen Park. He has been an IT professional for many years, but also worked as a club DJ and club promoter in Ireland before emigrating in 1994. He is a big sports fan, loves baseball (Red Sox and Giants), plays golf to a 16 handicap, and coaches soccer with the SF Glens ( u-9 girls soccer team).

We both have many friends and families who live in Noe Valley & the surrounding neighborhoods, and have shopped and socialized on 24th street for over 15 years. We are on a first name basis with a wide variety of Noe Valley locals and residents and staff who work on the street.

What kind of food will you serve? Paint us a picture.

We are in the process of writing our menu with our chef who is also a seasoned veteran of the San Francisco Culinary scene, and our goal is keep the menu focused on using local vendors, ensuring customers have a variety of choices at a great price. We would like to see good American comfort food being served in a great bar environment with a great children’s menu nightly and on the weekends.

There will a wide range of appetizers, salads, and entrees, a great house burger, a variety of Pizzas, and daily specials, with a Happy Hours menu, including some exciting finger foods. Above all we are aiming to provide simple, elegant, tasty, comfort food, with the emphasis on affordable quality.

Noe's Bar caters heavily to local sports fans? Will Horner’s cater to them?

We would like to continue to build on the sports theme that's already in Noe's, and ensure that sports fans and locals can continue to come in and watch all their favorite teams as we continue to be a destination for all sports fans in 2014. We will be upgrading the visual and audio systems to enhance the experience.

How deep will you carry the nostalgia? How will you balance the current tech culture with the heritage of Noe Valley being a haven for working class Irish and German families?

That’s a great question, and I will simply say that we will try to create a feel that is historical - with a repainted exterior, and new signag, with a stylish Logo, and branding for the new concept. We intend to do a minor remodel to the bathrooms, and some light interior painting with a wide selection of photographs and memorabilia from the 1850s era, to the turn of the century, and mid-century Noe valley photos on display. Our goal is to show the historical side of Noe valley, and how the old and the new can be incorporated into a modern day concept in a neighborhood in San Francisco. We also intend to have wireless internet access for patrons, to help people navigate our website and menus though there hand held devices at any time.

We want to make the bar a place that people can identify with, regardless of their background. We believe that these visual links with the past will provide a timeline of what the neighborhood was, and is today.

You're working with Bill Yenne to research old photos and historical artifacts/information - is there anything in particular you'd like to have but haven't found yet?

While researching old photos, and speaking with Bill Yenne, we are still compiling our list of items and photos, through extensive searches of the San Francisco Library, and the California Historical Society, Noe Valley Archives, and numerous other sources.

We would like to ask residents of Noe Valley if they have any old photographs of 24th street, and around 24th/Church that were taken around the turn of the century or earlier. If they would like to the opportunity to show them to us, we would consider putting them up on the wall, as a gesture of historical significance to Noe Valley. Moreover if any resident has an old sign, or metal tagger we would love the chance to view them.

You're taking over Noe's and Basso from the Basso family and hope to close escrow in January. When will the new space open?

We would like to take possession of the location in early January, and reopen to the public in early February as Horner’s Corner Bar. We dream of having customers old and new enjoying the Super Bowl at Horner's Corner!
If you have old photos, signs or other memorabilia showcasing Noe Valley Way Back When get in touch. We'll connect you with Mr. Bradley. If you don't? You can check out the display while watching the Super Bowl.

[NVSF: Rumor: Noe's Bar Has Been Sold]
[SFGate: Creamery is deal central for SF techies]
[FoundSF: The Farmer with the Golden Plow: John Meirs Horner (1821-1912)]
[Photo1878, 24th/Church opposite the current Noe's Bar via FoundSF]

November 22, 2013

Affordable Indian Restaurant To Replace Swatdee Thai

We learned last week that Swatdee Thai Cuisine is closing, and this week there's news from Tablehopper about what will be fill the space:
James [Swatdee] said the restaurant is closing on November 30th, and will then be remodeled for about six weeks or so. Taking Swatdee’s place will be an Indian restaurant (the owners are also behind Little Delhi in the Tenderloin). Indrajit Ghosh, one of the owners, reports that the new location will be very similar to Little Delhi, but will feature a menu inspired by different regional dishes of India. Many of their staples will be on the menu, as well. The name will be new, but it’s still under wraps, so we can’t tell you quite yet.
Check out Little Delhi's website for an idea of what's to come.

November 15, 2013

Closing: Swatdee Thai Cuisine

The Twitter brought news today that Swatdee is to close:

More from Swatdee:
After 26 wonderful years in Noe Valley, Swatdee Thai Cuisine will close its doors on November 30th. We would very much like to thank each and every one of you for your love and support over the past two decades. It will be one of the toughest things to do, but we are more than excited to start a new chapter in our lives. Many memories have been made and we are very grateful to have been a part of your lives, as you were a huge part of ours.

Thank you.
Sawatdee Family and Staff

November 4, 2013

NVV Nov 2013: We Read It So You Don't Have To

The Noe Valley Voice is published ten times a year and has been a neighborhood fixture since 1977. Here are notable highlights from the latest issue. Links are to stories we've covered here on NVSF or outside sources as the Voice doesn't post stories online until the middle of the month.

November 2013

Front Page: Valley Tavern hosts "Pub Quiz" Nights every Tuesday; Aesthetic Dentistry participated in Give Back a Smile to help a battered woman; Phoenix becomes Folio; Noe Valley Ministry remodel is on schedule and will reopen with ¡HolaKids! preschool next fall; Mazook gets 4" of Rumors on the front page.

Letters: The NVMPA wants you to know that 24th between Castro and Noe made San Francisco Magazine's top ten blocks for gift buying; Poet Tom Peck is angry Scott Wiener helped shut down the Market Street Recycling Center.

Short Takes: Plans to renovate Noe Courts stalled when tennis players showed up in force at last meeting, so there's a new final meeting on Nov 13 from 6-8pm at St Philip's.

Cost of Living in Noe: Low inventory, relatively lower prices for homes in September; 1 bedroom apartment average hovers around $2,700/month.

Store Trek: Buttons Candy Bar.

Rumors: Scott Wiener and Carol Yenne went to Utah and met with Nutraceutical Corp, which plans to demolish the Real Foods building next year and construct an unspecified replacement that won't include one of their own stores (start dreaming); Tom Taylor and Jerry Goldstein of the "Christmas Tree House" on 21st St got married once the Supreme Court struck down DOMA and Prop 8 - 40 years after they hooked up at the baths; Be Yoga has opened; "Best of" lists recounted; La Ciccia offshoot La Nebbia plans to open by the end of November; Firefly celebrates 20 years.

[The Noe Valley Voice]

October 27, 2013

Photos: Noe Valley Harvest Festival 2013

It was a stunning fall day for The Noe Valley Harvest festival. Some highlights from this year's fun:

Long lines at the jumpy tent
Costume contest: Shirley Temple, a tiny snail and Dia de Los Muertos took home the top prizes
Bubbles! Candy!
Water dunk high-five via Townsquared
Hayride horses via ms_monti
Little ones
Mask shopping
Organic pumpkin
The bulldogs in costume return via Jessefreidin
The pumpkin patch 
Scary pumpkin raffle
Even Scott Wiener dropped by...
Happy Halloween Noe Valley via ebrazill

October 24, 2013

This Weekend Is The Noe Valley Harvest Festival

The 9th Annual Noe Valley Harvest Festival is this Saturday from 10-5 on 24th St between Sanchez and Church. Expect music all day on two stages, over 50 local vendors, lots of fun for kids, costume contests (for dogs, too, natch) and the ubiquitous hay ride. The Farmer's Market will be open all day. Check out the official website and also photos from past years: 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012.

Harvest Fest is organized and run by volunteers from the Noe Valley Merchants and Professionals Association, the Noe Valley Association and local residents.

What: Noe Valley Harvest Festival
Where: 24th St between Sanchez and Church
When: Saturday, October 26, 10AM-5PM
Cost: Free!

October 18, 2013

Rumor: Noe's Bar Has Been Sold

Earlier this month we received a tip via email that Noe's Bar and/or Basso's has been sold:
Rumor is that Noe's (including the Basso's restaurant) on 24th & Church has changed ownership and will be closing for several weeks of renovations sometime before the end of the 2013. It will reopen under a new name. I can only assume it won't be anything like the same neighborhood bar anymore.
We can't find anything online - nothing pending on CA ABC, SF DBI, or rumored on the NVV. Admittedly, we've been too busy this month to stop in for a drink and ask some questions.

Lending credibility to the rumor is this post from last year advertising a Noe Valley pizzeria for sale. Key words include "well established for 30 years" and "not a distressed business." At the time we suspected Haystack was ready to cash out, but now we think otherwise. Turns out Wayne Basso and his family have owned and operated Noe's Bar since 1982 - exactly 30 years before a pizza restaurant in Noe Valley was posted for sale. They took over the restaurant side from Cybelle's in 2008. The listing also indicates that the owner will relocate abroad.

Today we received another tip via Twitter that the bar has been sold, and since we really don't know anything we're asking for your help.

As we're posting Twitter is responding:

What have you heard? We'd like to know more, and we'd like to hear from all parties involved if possible. Comment, or send us an email.

[NVSF: For Sale: Noe Valley Pizzeria]
[NVV: Store Trek, February 2008]
[Photo: Roberto Cosenza]

Come Celebrate 28 Years Of Phoenix Books And Meet The New Owners Of Folio Books

We posted in August that Kate Rosenberger was looking for a buyer for Phoenix Books so she could simplify her life and this week we learned who the new buyer is. More on that lower down. Phoenix Books is shutting down this Sunday, October 20th, and Kate would like to celebrate her 28 years in Noe Valley with a party. There will be pie, cake and drinks all day with live music by Octomutt from 2-5pm.

If you recall, Kate is not getting out of the book business - she will continue to operate Dog Eared, Alley Cat and Badger Books. Here are a few details from the FAQ posted at the store for those of you who have done business with Phoenix:
Can I sell/trade my books? Will it have new used books?
No, the new store will carry only new and remaindered books.

Will my credit still be valid?
Credits on a Phoenix trade slip will be valid until the end of the year.

Will there be a sale?
No, the used books are going to the other stores.
The new owners will also be at the party and will be familiar to many: Paula and John Foley were partners at the Castro St location of Cover to Cover Books from 2003-2005. We contacted Paula for a few more details:
At one point you were involved with Cover to Cover. What have you been doing since it closed?
I left Cover to Cover in 2005, and have spent much of the time since working at a couple of other great Bay Area independents - Book Passage and The Booksmith. I managed the Book Passage store at the Ferry Building for a number of years, and also did all sorts of back office jobs at their main store in Marin.

What made you want to open a bookstore of your own?
When I was growing up my grandfather owned a small restaurant. It was a wonderful place with a lot of regulars and a warm staff who made everyone feel at home. It’s still my ideal of a small, neighborhood business and I hope I can follow his example. It’s always a privilege to further people’s reading lives, and being able to do that in a neighborhood setting is really special. In a neighborhood like Noe Valley, even more so.

Folio is a great play on your name, and has great book related meaning. Is there a story of how you chose the name?
When we were searching for a name, I made a long list of book-related words and read them aloud to my husband. He has a theater background, so “folio” immediately brought Shakespeare’s First Folio to mind. I liked how it refers to physical books and the making of books, and also that it comes from the Latin word for leaf. We were so focused on the meaning of the word that it took me a bit to realize that it was also basically our name. I felt a little self-conscious about that, and at first I couldn’t say “Hi, I’m Paula Foley from Folio Books” without cracking up. But now I’m having fun with it – it’s a built-in way not to take things too seriously.

In a nutshell, what’s the focus of the shop? What types of books will you be featuring? Bestsellers, fiction, travel or …?
We’ll search for great choices across a wide variety of subjects and genres, and we’ll be putting a lot of emphasis on the children’s section. We’ll also feature small, focused collections – maybe around a particular small publisher, or tied to something going on in the city, or just because, and those will change out often to keep things fresh.

Do have plans for events at the store?
Yes, definitely. Everything from author nights with Noe Valley characters like Peter Gabel and Bill Yenne, to authors on national tour, to fun things like spelling bees and word-game nights. We also hope to participate in Litquake, One City One Book, that sort of thing. We’ll have events for kids as well.

Why did you decide not to carry used books?
My goal is to have a financially healthy bookstore that will serve the neighborhood for a long time. I can best accomplish that with a “new” bookstore. As different as a used bookstore and a new bookstore can be for a customer, they are even more different to run, with very different business models and economic realities.

How do you plan to be involved in the community?
First and foremost, I hope we’ll serve as a “third place”, one that helps anchor the community and cultural life of the neighborhood. We want to be a place where you get into a conversation about books with a neighbor you haven’t yet met, or run into your friends. Beyond that, we hope to partner with groups and organizations with fund-raising nights, special events, and other ways to help them in their efforts. Schools and literacy are obvious areas of common interest, but I also have an interest in elder issues and trying to help people continue to have meaningful reading lives as they age.

Bernie’s, Philz, Starbucks or Martha’s?

Folio Books plans to open the first week of November. Stay tuned.

Folio Books
3957 24th St

[NVSF: For Sale: Phoenix Books]

October 17, 2013

Firefly Restaurant Is Turning 20

The homey, charming, best-fried-chicken-in-SF restaurant Firefly is turning 20 on November 3 and owners Brad and Veva are throwing a birthday dinner from the past to celebrate:
During the week of Wednesday, October 30 to Tuesday, November 5th, we will honor our humble beginnings with a menu featuring some of our greatest hits from our first few weeks.  And then, on our actual Birthday Sunday, November 3rd, we will feature our greatest hits menu with the special addition of Brad at the stoves, Veva at the door and former line cook Brian Moran swingin' some of the most amazing Brazilian jazz guitar you've ever heard. To top it off, on Nov 3, our menu will have original prices as well.  That's right!  $6.50 for Shrimp and Sea Scallop Potstickers!  Sound too good to be true? Well, kind of. Seating will be limited, so we want to make sure the people dining with us on Nov 3 have a special connection to Firefly.
More here if you want to email the owners your Firefly memories and land a reservation on November 3.

Firefly 4288 24th Street

[Photo credit: Bay Area Bites]

October 11, 2013

Announced: Be Yoga

The Corner of Clipper and Sanchez will host a new yoga studio beginning October 22nd. Be Yoga is opening its fourth outlet, the "first of several SF locations" with a celebration including free yoga on the 26th. Details on the Be Yoga Noe Valley blog.

Clipper Corner dog grooming vacated last month when the owner retired.

Be Yoga
1250 Sanchez St

Closed: Dermalounge

We received a tip via Twitter that Dermalounge abruptly closed up shop at 1301 Church St. The notice posted on the states "Dermalounge has suspended operations as of October 5, 2013. Thank you for your support over the years." It directs inquiries to the mailing address for its other location in Burlingame - also closed. We attempted to contact the owner via phone and email without success. Dermalounge's website and Twitter have been pulled down.

We weren't the only ones surprised by the closure. Reviews on Yelp express anger that Dermalounge would close without contacting customers about future appointments, credits due or even to cancel an invite-only event at the vacated Burlingame location.

Dermalounge had been here since 2006 when it took over the space from Nourish Skin Care Center.

October 3, 2013

NVV Oct 2013: We Read It So You Don't Have To

The Noe Valley Voice is published ten times a year and has been a neighborhood fixture since 1977. Here are notable highlights from the latest issue. Links are to stories we've covered here on NVSF or outside sources as the Voice doesn't post stories online until the middle of the month.

October 2013

Front Page: Noe's bar is hosting an Animal Care and Control fundraiser on Oct. 19; Harvest Fest is coming on Oct. 26; Real Foods is still closed (this is year 10).

Letters: Shannon on Duncan Street is not a fan of the many pigeons (aka flying rats) in the neighborhood; RIP Kathleen Dwyer, the "Bird Lady of Noe Valley."

Features and Short Takes: The Noe Valley Association is meeting for input on how to make 24th St safer for pedestrians on Oct 30 at 7pm in the Sally Brunn Library community room; several blocks in Noe will be under road construction to upgrade the water main - get details at

Cost of Living in Noe: Thirteen homes sold in Noe Valley this August and all for more than $1.35 million. The most expensive home that sold cost $5 million - and the average price of a home here is now $2.5 million. The average rent for a 1 bedroom? $2,761.

Store Trek: Griddle Fresh (4007 24th St)

Rumors: Todd David reports that The Noe Valley Town Square improvements should happen after the first of the year - in the meantime, the Square still needs to raise $300,000 more to reach the final improvement goal; Google and Genentech workers have pledged the most to the Square so far, but other companies have also kicked in with matching programs including Survey Monkey, Chevron, Apple, Disney, Salesforce, the Gap, Tibco, VMWare and nVidia; over 500 residents have pitched in. Millionaire NIMBYs are protesting their neighbors plans to improve or expand their houses. Noe Valley's red-hot real estate market makes news after the Twitter IPO was announced. A CardioTone pop-up opens in the old Bay Cleaners spot; the former Lola spot on Castro at 24th St. will soon be occupied by Nail Chic which is moving in from next door - the old Nail Chic space will become Tone of Music Audio, a high-end home entertainment components store that currently operates out of a living room on Jersey St.; Elisa's Health Spa has been taken over by the Huynh family which operates Crystal Island Massage in Oakland's Chinatown; When Modern Was owners Dona Taylor and Alison Porter are converting When Modern Was II into Buttons, an old-fashioned candy store. Douglass St resident Janet Kessler has created a YouTube video to raise awareness about coyotes in the city.

[The Noe Valley Voice]

October 2, 2013

Is This Your Lost Cat on Vicksburg?

A concerned neighbor and good Samaritan emailed us this item:
We found an injured grayish/brownish male tabby cat on the sidewalk in front of our house on Vicksburg Street (something was wrong with his back legs, he couldn't walk). A neighbor brought him to Animal Care, where he is being cared for.   

The phone number at Animal Care is 554.6364 and his ID number at the shelter is A345506.  He does not have a chip. He seems like a really sweet cat.
Help get the word out and let's get this kitty home!