Posts Tagged ‘Food’

The Sweetest Venue You’ve Never Visited: Sweetwater Music Hall

Monday, January 21st, 2013

On Saturday night, Deadheads descended upon Mill Valley to see Furthur at Sweetwater Music Hall, an intimate venue that opened in January 2012.

Cardinal fans, a new music venue merits your attention.

On Saturday night, I headed up to Sweetwater Music Hall in Mill Valley to catch a concert with Furthur, the Grateful Dead spinoff band led by Bob Weir and Phil Lesh. I have been to several Furthur shows, and this was by far the best, rivaled only by Phil Lesh’s 70th birthday party a few years ago at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium.

If you could combine the intimacy of the CoHo, the coolness of Frost, and the food of The Mayfield Bakery, you would have something close to the Sweetwater experience. Then add a top-notch sound system and a beautiful setting at the base of Mt. Tamalpais, and include some of the friendliest staff I have ever encountered at a Bay Area concert venue, and you have more than enough reasons to make the hour and fifteen minute trip from Palo Alto.

Sweetwater has a capacity crowd of about 300 people, so no matter where you stand or sit, you have great sight-lines of the stage. The main bar is located at the back, preventing drink-seekers from getting in everyone else’s way. There is a cafe with delicious NorCal fare off to the side, and you don’t have to worry about the hassle of a coat-check…self-serve hangers do the trick.

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From Coast 2 Coast on 2 Wheels: A Freshman’s Bike Trip Across America

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

Reaching the California coast after 72 days on the road.

How far can you get in 72 days on a bike?

If you’re Taylor Burdge ’16, the answer is 3,886 miles and 19 states. This past summer, Taylor participated in a program called Bike and Build, which organizes cross-country bicycle trips to benefit affordable housing groups. She raised $12,145 for the cause, which was 270% of her original fundraising goal, and went all the way from Portland, ME to Santa Barbara, CA.

Talk about a full summer.

Essential to the trip were its 13 build days, in which Taylor and her fellow 32 riders pedaled to local housing groups to supply them with manual labor for their projects.

The tasks she and her fellow bikers undertook were not for the faint of heart: reconstructing a convent that would become a 10-family home, weed whacking and building sheds, putting up siding, using a 10-caliber nail gun to build compartments for building supplies, and demolishing a building that was going to be turned into apartment complexes.

“Bike and Build is wild. I have no idea where I’m sleeping tomorrow, what my next meal will be, or even what town I’ll be in. But the constant change keeps everything exciting.”

Bikers for hire.

This was not a slow crew, either. Taylor and her fellow riders would normally get up before 5:30am, and their typical pace was 15-18mph. The group even developed their own vernacular. Riding 100 miles in one day was called a “century ride.” Every three mornings, the bikers would go on a “rando-ride”…their numbers were randomly drawn from a hat, and they would ride with the corresponding group to avoid getting cliquey.

Taylor also kept a blog of her travels over the summer, which I urge you to check out. The posts are moving snapshots of America. If you quickly scan through them, you can watch the climate palpably change as she goes further south and west. You can picture her pack of merry builders battling heat, saddle sores, and flat tires, and hitting speeds of up to 50mph on downhills as they spend five weeks in the middle of the desert.

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Putting the “experience” back in “Stanford experience”

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

It shall ring and float away... hail, Stanford, hail!

A favorite high school calculus teacher of mine often said, “sometimes it’s hard to see the forest because all the darn trees are in the way.”

Sometimes I think it’s easy to miss out on crucial, amazing parts of the Stanford experience by getting too busy with academics to notice the amazing opportunities that are passing you by.  To avoid that problem this quarter, I’m taking fewer units and a different approach to making the most of my time here.  See, I’m planning on co-terming, so as the midpoint of junior year approaches, I’m reaching the midpoint of my Stanford career.  Have I made the most of it?

I hope so.  I think so.  But I’d rather know so.

I’m working to alleviate this fear the only way engineers know how: quantifying it.  I figured I’d share my game plan because if it works for me, it might work for you, too.  I’m trying to make my list well-rounded, but I’d love to hear your ideas!  Suggestions?  Pointers?  Please share ’em in the comments.  I love this place and don’t want to miss out.

The Game Plan:  

Each of these categories has a number corresponding to how many times per week to participate in a category.  The bullet point suggestions below list examples of how to fulfill them.

Swingtime takes flight at an on-campus performance.

Arts (1):  support Stanford’s incredibly talented student artists!  See world-renowned performers!  The arts may never be more accessible (or cheap!) than while you’re at Stanford.

Sports (1+):  so, you really ought to exercise every day, but as a bare minimum, here are some suggestions for your weekly quota.

  • Join a friend’s intramural team!  Subs are always appreciated.
  • Run the Dish.
  • Walk Palm Drive with a friend.  Feel free to grab gelato for the way home.
  • Dance Marathon is coming up.  Even if you’re not signed up, you can always swing by with a donation and get your groove thang on.
  • Sign up for Relay for Life.

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Duckburgers in Madrid’s Swanky Mercado de San Antón

Saturday, November 12th, 2011

It’s a real pain to watch football at 3am, but Oregon has never been tastier.

Crônicas do Brasil: A Vida Brasileira

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

Ipanema Beach, Rio de Janeiro. When Jobim and Moraes wrote "Garota de Ipanema," this is probably what they had in mind.

I have now been in Spain for close to a month with BOSP Madrid. Posts on the Iberian Peninsula are in the pipeline. For the moment, though, I would like to present a cultural wrap-up on Brazil that I never had time to do while I was working in São Paulo this summer. If you are not yet excited for the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, maybe this will get you started.

First, let it be known that São Paulo is not a conventionally beautiful city. Miles of concrete with few trees, vistas dominated by powerlines and graffiti, and a certain lack of cleanliness make it appear pretty bleak and inhospitable on cloudy days, of which there are a fair amount. Large parts of the city center are completely abandoned at night; there is one neighborhood called Cracolândia because its streets are literally full of crack addicts, who reside right next to the city’s most beautiful railway station. If you live any further than ten minutes by car from work, your daily commute is usually a pitched battle against jammed six-lane avenues, irregular U-turns, and the caprices of aggressive paulista drivers.

Yet São Paulo is unlike any other place I have seen, and I already miss it. The city has a cultural richness rivaling New York’s and plenty of charm if you know where to look. Its size is awe-inspiring. And to put it another way, São Paulo is the best answer to the question of what you would get if you stuck together 18 million Brazilians with a New York work schedule, an LA transit system, and the sensuality of Miami (which, coincidentally, has a large Brazilian population).

What’s more, São Paulo bears little resemblance to the rest of Brazil. The country is almost the size of the U.S. but far more regionalized, so that each state has its own traditions, holidays, food, dialects, and climate. Other Brazilian cities are magnificent in their own ways, and then beyond them is an ecological paradise with few parallels in the rest of the world. (more…)

The Best Burger on Campus

Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

Cheeseburger in Paradise

Stern Dining is not known for its delectable, alimentary fare. However, every Wednesday at lunch, a magical transformation takes place. If you are prepared to brave long lines and silverware shortages, you, the diner, will encounter the best burger on campus.

Burger builders will doubtless have their differences, but the following selections tend to accrue widespread approval. For the hungry and ambitious (see picture), I would suggest two grass-fed beef burgers, two slices of cheddar cheese, two slices of crisp bacon, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, guacamole, ketchup, and Cholula hot sauce. For the less hungry but still ambitious, use one burger. For the less hungry and ambitious, eliminate the hot sauce, onions, and mushrooms. Swiss cheese, when available, is also highly recommended.