Coqueta A flirt with Spain featured

Marking Michael Chiarello’s first food-related foray into San Francisco, Coqueta is the product of its award-winning, TV show hosting, perma-smiling patron’s flirtation with Spanish cuisine. And by all accounts Chiarello’s got the sort of seduction skills that could bag you the finest flesh on the pier—culinarily speaking of course. Focusing on regional dishes from Madrid, Catalonia, the Basque Country and beyond, Coqueta’s menu is a fiesta of hot and cold tapas (including choice cuts of Iberico pork and whole Monterey calamari) and other Spanish classics—including a sharing Paella that’s so good you’ll definitely try (and probably fail) to eat it all yourself. And the cocktails ain’t half bad either, mixed using homegrown shrubs, tonics and enough sherry to drown the Armada.

Aesop The land of milk and honey scrub

This antipodean outfit has expanded to all parts of the globe, and it’s safe to say that many are hopelessly hooked. With a stripped back aesthetic that stretches from shop to gloriously wide range of products, it makes looking after your biggest organ (minds out of the gutter, folks—we mean your skin) a stylish indulgence that’s all kinds of luxury, without breaking the bank. It’s more than just moisturizers, though: exotic fragrances, hair treatments and lip creams ensure you’ll get a pampering workout, from top to toe. This Fillmore Street store is another reminder that there’s more from Down Under than just Kylie and Vegemite.

Boxing Room Down on the Bayou featured

The Boxing Room is a nod to Louisana’s legacy when it comes to fine food. Chef Justin Simoneux thoughtfully crafts and re-creates some of South’s best dishes giving Californian palettes the jolt that organic vegan style food cannot muster. Located in the Hayes Valley, Boxing Room has gained a popular following with its rib sticking indulgences, such as the chicken andouille gumbo, fried chicken, and raw bar that features oysters—but ones native to California’s coastal shores.

The desserts are custardy and rich, featuring New Orleans inspired confections like Banana’s Forester and if vegetarians are dubious about this finger licking Cajun hotspot, they can rest assured as Boxing Room has plenty of veg-based dishes to choose from including everything from dirty rice to a zucchini relish, proving that the South is unmatched when it comes to culinary creativity pushing its influence westward pairing nicely with California’s rich biodiversity.

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