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Local Start-Up Munchery Makes the Luxury of a Personal Chef Affordable

When you launch a company, timing can be everything, and in that respect the timing looks to be perfect for the geek team of three at Munchery, who launched their intriguing service in San Francisco on April 23rd. 

The idea behind this startup is to match you with your own personal chef.

It's even better than that. Because your own personal chef will turn out to be someone who's committed to using locally grown, sustainable, seasonal ingredients to turn out high-quality, nutritious meals delivered right to your door at a total cost around $20 per person per meal.

The New San Francisco Tech Boom is On (and Google Wants to Hire You)

Yesterday, Mozilla, the developer of the popular Firefox browser, became the latest tech sector star to announce that it will soon be opening an office in San Francisco.

So it's probably time to state the obvious, and that is that around here, the rush is on. Yep, we've got another full-fledged tech boom on our hands.

Over at CNET headquarters in Soma yesterday, I was marveling at the array of top-notch correspondents and bloggers they employ, which easily rivals Bloomberg TV's growing team down on The Embarcadero, which I profiled here recently.

The journalists at CNET, Bloomberg, and elsewhere I've spoken with all say that the pace of innovation occurring here in the city easily matches what they witnessed in the mid-90s during the original Internet boom, and that it may well soon surpass it.

Why?

Corn Dogs in San Francisco: Not Just Carnie Fare

Leave it to San Francisco to turn something as humble as a corn meal-batter-coated hot dog into an exercise in culinary wit. At its best, a corn dog should be hand-dipped and deep-fried to order—none of this pre-frozen business. At its purest, the meal should be eaten standing up, or while perched on a stool, al fresco, of course. But after asking around town, it's clear that corn dogs have broken free from their carnie stereotype, graduating onto many a San Francisco menu. Here goes our list, running the gamut from quick and dirty deliciousness to posh, dine-in "dogs."

Scenes of the City: Gardening in SF: Alemany Farm and Beyond

For this week's Scenes of the City we visited Alemany Farm on the southern slope of Bernal Heights and several other gardens in SF and checked out spring planting, cleaning and maintaining. Also check out details of the Alemany Farm Earth Day Celebration here (scheduled for April 23). Enjoy.

Pineapple Sage grows readily in the cool SF climate and smells like, you guessed it, a pungent pineapple.

From Umami to Nombe: Restaurants Step Up Tsunami Relief Efforts Across Town

A local posse of Bay Area restaurants are leaping to action to help Japan recover from Friday's earthquake, tsunami and devastating after effects. Twenty-seat La Lengua sushi spot, Ichi Sushi, was among the first to rally for the cause this past weekend, raising $550 for American Red Cross over the course of two nights. Now, a look at other San Francisco restaurants where you can help out by dining out.

As Startups Proliferate, SF Beta's Mixer Becomes One of the Hottest Tickets in Town

San Francisco is experiencing another explosion in startups, and one of the best ways to visualize that is at at the local tech community's hottest recurring event, which is the "startup mixer" held by SF Beta every other month at 111 Minna.

SF Beta is the brainchild of Christian Perry, now 26. He launched it when he first moved here from Chicago after finishing college back in 2006.  Perry notes that his meetups are attracting record crowds these days.

"There is a big spike this year, up to 650-700 attendees, or more than twice as many as in the past," says Perry.

Almost all of that growth, he says, is due to the rise of social networking companies like Twitter, mobile app developers, and new advertising startups, which have catapulted San Francisco into the new center of tech innovation -- more than anyplace else, including Silicon Valley.

Scenes of the City: Street Portraits in the Castro District

For this week's Scenes of the City, we went to the Castro District and captured a dozen or so street portraits of the people passing by near Castro and Market streets.

 

All photos and words by Joseph Schell

Rock the Vote: SF vs NYC

The war is on. Last week, Lonely Planet fueled the fire with a little friendly competition between SF and NYC. The two cities have always had a friendly rivalry, but this time you get to be the judge. So stop whatever it is you're doing—that report can wait a few minutes—and cast your votes ASAP.

Right now, it's neck and neck, and I have to admit, that as a former New Yorker, I had to choose the Big Apple on some of these (there is just something about The Strand that Green Apple can't match). But come on people—we can't let Central Park beat out the Golden Gate Bridge!

Scenes of the City: SF Gets Fit

For our second installment of "Scenes from the City," we documented the citywide New Year's fitness resolution craze.  Check out SF shaping up after the holidays, shedding those pounds and enjoying the outdoors. Here are photos from some of the city's favorite workout spots: Crissy Field, Golden Gate Park, Bad Joe's Body Shop, Planet Granite, and fit Bernal fit.

Enjoy.

All photos by Joseph Schell

Photos: Biz Markie @ TuneUp Media

Follow our music photographer, Misha Vladimirskiy, for free music downloads and chances to win show tickets http://twitter.com/mvladimirskiy

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