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Local Edition Papers

Concealed behind an unassuming storefront, there is a hidden gem of a lounge in San Francisco known as Local Edition.  Housed in the basement of the vintage Examiner building in the Financial District, Hearst inspired cocktails and mid-century libations permeate the area that once contained the newspaper’s printing presses.  Upon hearing of this great bar, some of my friends and I decided to make some headlines of our own on a Monday Night, and headed down for a drink.

Local Bar 02

The entrance to Local Edition is located on Market, not far from 3rd Street.  After one’s checked in with the doorman, a staircase leads down to the submerged tavern.  For residences, I am not a fan of basement level apartments (also known as garden apartments).  These offer far too much yin energy, as one’s home is literally underground, completely surrounded by the earth (similar to a burial plot).  Those who inhabit such dwellings can suffer from a variety of issues, including  feelings of being stagnant, and poor health.  However, this is not a residence – it’s a bar.   When bars or restaurants reuse subterranean spaces like this, it adds a wonderful yang energy to a very yin space.

Local Bank Seating

Everywhere one looks, the history of William Randolph Hearst and The Examiner has been captivated and transformed.  Famous newspapers are showcased throughout in frames or under glass tables (pictured at the top of the post).  Vintage manual typewriters are displayed as monuments to a bygone era of news reporting.  Even the marble-topped tables make a statement.  Not only are they beautiful, durable, and a wonderful example of the earth element, the marble used is remnants leftover from the construction of Heart Castle.

Local Table 01

Honoring and preserving history is of vital importance to every generation.  In order to evolve and grow, we look to the  past to see our former successes and our unfortunate mistakes.  Using this knowledge helps us to decide which paths to take, inspires us to create and innovate to new heights, and further enriches us as a people.

How is preserving history good feng shui?  Well, first you have the green aspect.  When one reuses or repurposes an Local Typewritersobject or material in a new fashion, this helps to reduce energy and resources that would be needed to make something brand new.   It’s also a way of clearing clutter.  An item that has been sitting around collecting dust is employed in a new way, thus changing negative energy into positive energy.

There is also the matter of style, which I find to be of great importance in feng shui.  In our home environments, one common factor is that everyone has their own sense of what they do and do not like.  And, either knowingly or not, history influences our individual style.  There can be a particular time period we are drawn to – or music from a decade we can’t seem to get enough of – or an allure to vintage clothing of a specific era.  We take samples of the past and intermingle them into our modern tastes.  Having items that are personally nostalgic in one’s environment is comforting, and gives one a sense of peace and belonging.

Local Leather Seating

History influences us in all kinds of beneficial ways.  One example is in alcohol and mixed drinks.  All of the specialty cocktails at Local Edition are influenced by vintage recipes with modern flare, looking at those from the 1950’s and 1960’s.  Many of the libations derive their names from things of a newspaper origin, or anything connected to William Randolph Hearst.  One drink I didn’t get to try was The Rosebud, a tequila based beverage with vanilla simple syrup and sea salt.  The namesake of this concoction was actress Marion Davies, Hearst’s mistress of over thirty years.  Rosebud was her nickname.  Let’s look at the libations I did try:

The Eagle

The Eagle – My friend Rachel could not stop talking about this drink, so I had to try it – and I’m so glad I did!  Bourbon, soda water, and a root beer simple syrup combined make this an incredible beverage.  I could drink these all day.  Refreshing and addictive.

Local Edition Cocktail

Local Edition Cocktail – The namesake of the establishment, this is Local’s own edition of an Old Fashioned.   Bourbon, cherry-infused bitters, and an orange peel simple syrup are the main components of this headliner.  Strong and bold.

Rex Roth and Fidel and Che

Rexroth – Pictured on the left is the Rexroth, named for the famed poet and political activist.  A complex mixture including Peychaud’s bitters, pisco, and an egg white, this was intriguing and unforgettable – much like Rexroth’s poetry.   His writings are poignant and impressive.  A selection of his work can be found at Poemhunter:  http://www.poemhunter.com/kenneth-rexroth/poems/

Fidel and Che – On the right is Fidel and Che, a unique twist on a mojito.  Although rum, lime, and mint are used as in traditional mojitos, this drink also uses aperol, an Italian apertif similar to campari.  Vibrant and invigorating.

The Pulitzer

The Pulitzer – Named after the famed publisher and journalist, The Pulitzer was the ideal libation to close the evening,  Scotch, honey, angostura bitters and manzanilla sherry served straight up in a small goblet with an orange peel garnish.  Very strong, and perfect for sipping.  Daring and memorable.

Local Table 02

Comfortable  seating, walls draped in scarlet fabric, and high ceilings evoke a romantic and relaxing atmosphere.  Although reservations are not required, my party and I did make some just to be safe.   Decanter service is provided should one desire a favorite bottled spirit.  Local Edition also offers great live music on Wednesdays and Saturdays.  On the record, I will state that is a brilliant and highly auspicious place to grab a drink.  Off the record – This place is awesome!  I can’t wait to come back here again – for the drinks and the history.

Local Edition Entrance

Local Edition

691 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94105

415 795-1375

Hours:  Monday – Friday 5:00 pm – 2:00 am,   Saturday 7:00 pm – 2:00 am

http://localeditionsf.com/

Shaun Local 03

Cocktails at Cliff House

Since we talked so much about the wood element in the last article, I thought I’d devote this blog to another of the elements:  Water.  In feng shui, the water element is associated mainly with the North, which is the Career area of any room  But water is also associated with wealth and prosperity for many reasons.  For example, if one’s career is thriving, then one will have more earned income, thus providing more prosperity.  Water abundance isn’t always monetary, either.  Being around water in general  (be it an ocean, lake, river or fountain)  tends to rejuvenate the human spirit, thus creating a sense of calm and comfort.  It makes people feel safe and reminds us of the womb.  This leads into another reason – waterfront property.  Nearly all major cities in the world have a large body of water directly attached somehow.  Also, most residential waterside property tends to be more affluent in nature, which raises the chi in those areas.  Unfortunately, this also raises the cost of living and mortgage rates for homes near the water.  Despite the costs, however, this is no shortage of those wishing to acquire condos by the beach.   From a biological standpoint, humans are comprised mostly of water.  It makes complete sense why we, as a race, tend to flock towards water whenever we can.  It’s not just limited to humans, either.  Those seagulls in the photo above were enjoying the ocean as well, but they paused so I could capture their image.

For my birthday this year (I’m turning thirty again – it’s a good age to be for awhile), I went to visit my best friend Wendy.  She lives in San Francisco, one of my favorite cities in the world.  After a purely luxurious day meandering through Golden Gate Park, we decided to have some cocktails at the historic Cliff House.  The original Cliff House was built-in 1863.  Over the years, the building was completely rebuilt twice – once in 1894, and again in 1909, both due to destructive fires.  The current Cliff House has undergone a variety of architectural facelifts throughout the years, before being renovated to its original glamour in 2004.   Below are two vintage postcards showing the second and third variations of Cliff House.

Two very distinct versions of Cliff House. On the left is the late Victorian model. On the right, its Edwardian counterpart, which the restaurant resembles today. Historic images provided by Penny Postcards: http://www.usgwarchives.org/special/ppcs/ppcs.html

The renovations to Cliff House also included a modern addition, the new Sutro Wing.  They cleverly managed to combine both vintage and modern styles throughout the design and decor of the structure.  Below is a photo of their lounge, facing inward, where we had drinks.  The rounded supports above tend to create a canopy-like feeling over the guests.  The railing overlooks into the lower level, which features another bar and more dining.  I really liked the dining chairs used here as well.  This is a prime example of a good feng shui dining chair.  Beautiful, comfy, and not too heavy.  It also has a mostly solid back – important for security and back support.  For more on how to select a proper dining chair, take a glance at the article here:   https://fengshuifoodie.com/2012/06/16/finding-a-place-to-sit/

And now onward to the provocative and intoxicating items that we sampled.

Old Fashioned – One of my favorite beverages.  Made with modest ingredients, and mixed extremely well.  I love the orange hue the liquid displays.  Strong, tasty, and sophisticated.

Pear Martini – One of the specialty drinks favored by Cliff House.  Using Grey Goose Le Poire, this makes for a refreshing and mildly sweet cocktail.   Pleasingly alluring.

On the left is a glass of Brassfield Estate Pinot Grigio.  A crisp and enticing white wine, perfect for drinking at the seaside.  On the right is The Bird of Paradise.  This champagne cocktail, which includes St. Germain and pineapple juice, tastes exactly like passion fruit with bubbles.  So good was it, in fact, that I had two of them.  Enchanting and tropical.

Of the savory food offerings available, we went with the Buffalo Wings and the Garlic Fries.  The wings were sauceless, with heat-inducing spices rubbed into the skin.  Served with bleu cheese dressing, these were mouth-watering.   The fries, covered liberally with crushed garlic, were the perfect accompaniment to our intoxicating beverages.  And being a native Californian, I asked for ranch dressing to accompany the fries  (Californians like their ranch).

I was entranced by the waves crashing below us outside the window.  Our table overlooked these two impressive rocks emerging from the seas.  In addition to the beautiful scenery and tantalizing items, another impressive aspect here was the service.  The hostess was welcoming, and our server, Josh, was jovial and attentive – we wanted for absolutely nothing.   He also invited us to stay and listen to the live jazz being played later – which we did.  I didn’t catch the name of the three-piece ensemble, but their melodies were as enticing as the breathtaking view.

If one doesn’t live close to a body of water,  I suggest visiting an ocean or a lake at least once a month to boost one’s sense of tranquility and well-being.  Even stopping by a fountain or koi pond for a few minutes can help to improve serenity.  Another way to add more water energy to your surroundings is art.  A beautiful painting or photo of a watery landscape can help tremendously.  Just make sure the art in question is beautiful and serene.  A painting of ships battling at war on the ocean, or of the Titanic sinking, are two examples of sha art.  Sha is the word for negative chi, and should be avoided.  It’s also important to drink lots of water, at least eight glasses a day.  Most of us don’t drink enough water, and this makes our bodies work harder to keep us healthy.  Not consuming enough water can result in various illnesses and discomforts, which is also a lack of abundance and prosperity.  I strongly suggest embracing more water energy in your life.  And, if you happen to be in San Francisco, stop by the Cliff House for some cocktails – and a glass of water – and maybe some garlic fries, or dinner…

Cliff House

1090 Point Lobos, San Francisco, CA 94121

415 386-3330

Hours:  Please refer to the hours located here:  http://www.cliffhouse.com/home/pdf/CH_Hours_Res.pdf

Note:  For Sutro’s at the Cliff House, and the  Sunday Brunch, reservations are strongly encouraged.  All other areas (including where I sat) are walk-in.

http://www.cliffhouse.com/