Just in time for Fall, when I continue to dive into my beloved classic country albums (my ultimate hero, Cash, but also Hank Williams, Dolly, George Jones, Loretta, Waylon, etc ), I get nostalgic for hearty BBQ and roots music. There are a number of us in a city as diverse as San Francisco who were born or grew up in places like Oklahoma (my birthplace, before we moved to Kansas City when I was one, then on to California at age six), the South, Mid-West or anywhere classic country music and good BBQ are considered imperative.
Where can a down-home boy or gal get a fix in our metropolitan West Coast city? Though there are tons of cowboys in the Wild West of California (theres a huge amount of cowboy events year round in towns like Visalia and Victorville, or the annual Monterey Cowboy Music & Poetry Festival yep, cowboy poetry), but less for you little cowhands in the big city. Events like the Grand National Rodeo at Cow Palace should help satiate, as might a few of these local stops:
Atlas Café Bluegrass Thursdays: Long time Mission tradition, Bluegrass Thursdays at Atlas (8-10pm) are down home, good time jams. Youll hear not just bluegrass but country swing and hillbilly in this small café with fresh, affordable food, coffee, teas, and draft beers.
Twang Sundays at Thee Parkside: Every Sunday, 5-8pm, Potreros divey neighborhood fave, Thee Parkside, serves icy cold beers to go w/ free live twangy country, Americana, rockabilly and western music.
Freight & Salvage Coffee House: Berkeley does it their way at this classic coffee house and non-profit community arts organization known for its concerts. Though the focus ranges in Traditional music from all ethnicities (read: World Music), much of the concerts here are comprised of Americana, bluegrass, and fiddle bands.Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays a free sample of cialis role in suppression of the damaged intimal hyperplasia. Oodles of folks around the world have hypothyroidism (low thyroid). Let’s see how many punches your iPhone can take: Rainfall Well, lately you’ve been running for your pristine phone’s life so it won’t get even just a raindrop, but, little did we know that they rarely affect an iPhone-really. Silagra, an effective drug for increasing the sexual ability in men by helping them maintain an increased level of erection for a mutually satisfying intercourse.
SF Hootenanny Night at Café International: (in Lower Haight) Held every second Saturday of the month, this folk music jam/concert is raucous and free. Yeehaw!
After my BBQ tasting road trip through the South, I concur with Michael Lee West, quoting her Mama, in Consuming Passions: A Food Obsessed Life: I can understand leaving a man, or even a town but not good barbecue.
Uncle Franks BBQ: The number one reason to drive all the way down to Mountain View (besides an occasionally great Theatre Works play, is Uncle Franks. In the back room of a dingy bar on a non-descript, suburban street (since only through the bar, the back patio is the spot for 21 and under!), lies a dim dive with killer BBQ sauce, sides and, of course, BBQ. Ive been a fan for years, but this year it popped up in Zagat for the first time, so the word continues to spread. This is the closest were gonna get to real Southern BBQ on the West Coast, yall. Signature, tender beef brisket is thick with fat AND, thus, robust with flavor. Pork ribs and Louisiana links will make your belly well, lets just say happy. Sides are excellent: fire-hot Cajun Corn is one of my top choices, but baked bean and coleslaw lovers wont be disappointed. Then theres Sweet Potato Pie and cinammon-y Peach Cobbler. Uncle Frank, why must you be all the way down the Peninsula?
Ironwood BBQ: Randomly situated on a golf course in Golden Gate Park, next to the Archery Field (with parking!) this unexpected BBQ mecca offers some of SFs best Pulled Pork, Brisket and homemade BBQ Sauce. Using a rare Wham Turbo BBQ Pit from Memphis, meats are 100% oak-wood fired. Theres Ribs or Chicken but Im a Pulled Pork girl first and foremost, and theirs does not disappoint. Sit outside overlooking the golfing green, whether foggy or sunny, for a unique experience of down home BBQ in GG Park. Ive been happily going since they opened, as this is one of SFs lesser-known food havens.
Bluegrass Grill: A delightful new Wine Country addition in the middle of Glen Ellen is this mid-range restaurant dishing BBQ and Western eats in a more refined setting. Laid back and friendly, its décor honors cowboys and Indians without being kitschy. In an old mill over a stream (natch) with a picture window view of the rotating water wheel from the bar area, you can smell the meat simmering. On the back deck, families and hefty, all-American guys chow down on beers and ribs comforting in a hip, Midwestern sort-of way. I heart their brisket, BBQ sauce and Smoked Pork Nachos! Settle your stomach with a cold Bundaberg Ginger Beer as you fill up on appetizers like Blue Cheese Chili Oil Fries or Panko Crusted Chili Relleno. But save some room for the meat!
Johnsons BBQ: Though SF isnt swimming in authentic BBQ joints, there are a few gems, Johnsons being one. This is Arkansas style BBQ when they say their sauce is hot, they mean it. Lunch is a deal: for $6.75, I get a half order of the pork sandwich plus two sides (coleslaw, baked beans, yams, etc ), which is actually a huge heaping of BBQ pulled pork over a slice of bread (worth it even if you dont want the bread!) They serve ribs, catfish, oxtails, links and more. I have to say the dingy environment is far from appealing, but thats part of the authenticity.