AT ITS REGULAR monthly meeting tonight, the Board of Appeals ruled that Oska, the German clothing line, is a chain store and must comply with the city’s formula retail ordinance before it can proceed with plans to open at 2130 Fillmore Street, formerly the home of Jet Mail.
By Gary Kamiya
San Francisco Chronicle
FEW PEOPLE who pass the violet-painted house at 1712 Fillmore Street give it a second look. It’s another Victorian in a city full of them.
But this building is different. Perhaps no other structure in San Francisco has such an extraordinary story. If its walls could talk, they would relate virtually the entire history of the city.
IT’S A BIT of a ’tween time at the Fillmore Farmers Market. Winter’s larder of sweet potatoes and oranges is still filled to abundance, the spring asparagus has just arrived, but the full bounty of summer tomatoes and melons is yet to come.
Nonetheless, on a sunny Saturday morning in late April, there is no shortage of spicy exchanges that make for delicious eavesdropping as locals meet and greet and take in the sights and sounds of the market in a richly diverse neighborhood.
A woman bustles by bellowing into a cell phone: “I got here early, but you know that candyass don’t wake up ’til midnight.”
Some talk even focuses on the food and flowers offered for sale by the farmers, bakers and specialty food purveyors.
A noted surgeon is spotted stocking up on dessert: “I’m trying to avoid carbs and sugar, but they’re so friendly at that booth I just couldn’t resist.”
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SUDDENLY THE CORNER of Fillmore and Pine has a completely new look and feel — and taste. Glaze Teriyaki Grill opened at the end of April, heralding a switch from Johnny Rockets burgers and fries to teriyaki plates, salads and sides.
Seattle natives and partners Ian McCormick and Paul Krug created Glaze as a “fast casual” option for diners seeking inexpensive, healthy fare. Krug commandeers two existing New York locations; McCormick heads up the new local spot. Their eateries focus on chicken, steak, salmon, soy, pork and vegetable teriyaki plates accompanied by white or brown rice and a green salad.
“For Seattleites, teriyaki is comfort food,” says McCormick. “It’s fun for us to take the cuisine we grew up with and introduce it to new places.” All Glaze sauces are made fresh daily, he says, and most dishes feature local, organic ingredients. The open kitchen allows diners to witness the preparations.
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By Julia Irwin
AT SAN FRANCISCO GYMNASTICS at 1405 Fillmore, toddlers scramble over large geometric foam blocks, twirl colorful streamers and jump across a long trampoline track — all while waving to iPhone camera-wielding mothers. In recent months, the studio has made the move from its former location in the Presidio, re-establishing itself in the long-vacant ground floor of the Fillmore Center.
For owner Eric Van der Meer, the relocation has been well worth the effort: Its new home is easier to access both by car and public transportation and is also better maintained than the Presidio facility, which had no heat or running water.
And for Van der Meer, the atmosphere of Fillmore’s jazz district is another bonus.
“I feel very at home here,” he says. “I grew up in Holland, which is very diverse, and the middle of San Francisco reminds me of that. There are so many different nationalities, different cultures, and I think Fillmore represents that quite a bit, actually.”
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FIRST PERSON | Fran Johns
Beyond the pain, angst and despair of downsizing, there is always a story. And there are questions: How can I convince my parent or spouse or partner that it’s time? Who’s going to take care of the logistics and legalities, not to mention the tricky finances? Will I lose my independence? Can I ever replace the old familiar neighborhood? Where’s the best place for me? Can we afford what we need?
I stewed over them all.
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The annual San Francisco Decorator Showcase is now open in the neighborhood, this year at the top of Pacific Heights at 2800 Pacific Avenue. It features the work of more than two dozen local designers and invites the public to tour one of the iconic mansions designed by pioneering architect Ernest Coxhead.
By Mark Mitchell
IN A TIME when so many people live nose deep in their electronic devices, opening a bookstore seems almost like a subversive act.
Still more subversive is opening a used bookstore. No screaming bestsellers. No fresh off the presses celebrity memoirs or political apologies from disgraced officials. Just a room full of books that have already passed through someone else’s hands.
Nonetheless, Forest Books is now open in Japantown at 1748 Buchanan Street.
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LOCALS | Photographs & Text by Carina Woudenberg
At only 350 square feet, Mureta’s Antiques doesn’t take up much space at 2418 Fillmore, yet the wares inside originate from several continents and span centuries of time, from the Georgian era of the 1700s to the late Art Deco period.
And much of the shop’s contents — from the teacups stacked in the front window to the jewelry encased inside — is sourced from homes right here in the neighborhood.
Gary Mureta, who has owned the shop for 29 years, knew he wanted to be an antique dealer from a young age.
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LOCALS | Chris Barnett
For centuries, historians, scholars and food lovers have argued over who invented the pizza. Greeks claim the honor with a round flatbread topped with meat, cheese, fruit and tree leaves that debuted in 1 B.C. Italians insist a baker in Naples was commissioned to create the first real pizza in 1889 to celebrate the visit of Queen Margherita.
Dino Stavrakikis wins either way. He’s half Greek and half Italian and for the past 25 years has been baking both styles of the humble pie in his corner pizza palace at Fillmore and California. During that time, Dino has done his damnedest to ensure its reputation as a fun, friendly, family-minded place to pop in for a slice, a plate of spaghetti and meatballs or a Greek salad. And diners needn’t worry about waiting an hour for a table or a seat at the bar — or being snubbed by a snooty maitre d’.
At Dino’s, the greeter is usually Dino himself or, during the week, his Uncle Nick Nickolas, a retired restaurant mogul as smooth as the silk sportcoats he wears. Indeed, the bigger risk is being schmoozed to death by Dino, Uncle Nick or any of the doughboys who have worked there 10 to 20 or 25 years, who know your name and what you like.
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