Tea for Two
For those who love eating and drinking as much as they love the one they’re with, try this date on for size. It’s not exactly the always popular white-tablecloth-candlelight-champagne triumvirate, but sometimes the most impressive dates are a little grittier, a little less suavé, but equally compelling. For this, I’d recommend a three-part date, all within one block of the Mission. First, of course, you must start with a drink at Dalva, particularly if you can get into the very dark and very private little room up the creaky stairs. (It’s not always open early on, so maybe this is a drink that should be more of a nightcap than an amuse.)
Then, you must take your foodie-lover to All In This Tea, a documentary playing right now, next door at the Roxie. Directed by Les Blank, the famous East Bay–based documentarian who also directed Garlic is As Good as Ten Mothers featuring Alice Waters back in the day, All In This Tea is about David Hoffman, an incredibly eccentric, Marin-based tea importer who I wrote about for 7x7 back in the day (hey, I get to have back-in-the-day status now, considering I’ve been working at the magazine going on seven years). Hoffman, who used to own Silk Road Teas, which is sold everywhere from the Slanted Door to Whole Foods, is truly a pioneer—the kind with plenty of personality you actually want to see a feature film about.
Hold hands as you walk just a few doors down at the Monk’s Kettle and try some beer out for size. I know, a shocking concept in this wine-centric town. Opened by some Seattle transplants, the brand new beer and wine tavern focuses on craft beers, with 24 draughts and 100 in the bottle. Not to mention, they have a nice little menu, which includes housemade pretzels with mustard and Cheddar-ale sauce and Niman Ranch burgers.
Romance, of a different sort, is yours to be had.