Skip to Navigation Skip to Content

Allie Pape

Lowering the Bar: 5 Places to Drink For Cheap (or Free) This Week

Each week, we bring you our top picks for the best places to booze on the cheap in SF.

1. Holiday Shopping Soiree: If you have a few cocoa hounds on your nice list, consider heading over to Leland Tea Company tonight to sample the wares of local providers Neo Cocoa, Clarine's Florentines, and Jade Chocolates, along with other, non-chocolate artisans. They'll have free sparkling wine and appetizers for attendees, and $1 of your $5 entry fee ($6 at the door) will support Larkin Street Youth Services. RSVP here. (Wednesday, November 17, at Leland Tea Company, 1417 Bush Street, Polk Gulch.)

Get Into the Holiday Spirit(s) at the Indy Expo

The word "Expo" doesn't usually have positive connotations: a failed Home Depot spinoff, a failed Canadian baseball team, and myriad obligatory corporate functions come to mind. This holiday season, however, there's one expo that everyone can get behind: the Indy Spirits Expo, which brings a host of independent liquor producers to SF for a night of sampling. This year's Expo is tomorrow (Wednesday), so grab a big meal and get ready to find some gifts to give (or receive) come December.

Sierra Nevada's 30th at Toronado Tonight

Break out the Celebration Ale: this year marks the 30th anniversary of Chico's Sierra Nevada brewery, which was founded in 1980 by Ken Grossman and is currently the nation's second-largest microbrewery (after Samuel Adams). To celebrate, Grossman has embarked on five beer collaborations in the past year, beginning with Life & Limb, produced in partnership with Dogfish Head (read more about it here). Life & Limb was followed by four specially designated Sierra 30 beers, released over the course of 2010.

Lowering the Bar: 5 Places to Drink for Cheap (or Free) This Week

Each week, we bring you our top picks for the best places to booze on the cheap in SF.

1. SFAQ Symposium: The San Francisco Arts Quarterly, described as a hybrid of a newspaper and an arts calendar, is releasing its latest issue with a celebration on Saturday. With a free wine tasting from 5-6, and an open bar from 7-10, the atmosphere should be very celebratory indeed. They'll also have talks, live music from the Birds & Batteries and Holy Shit, and snacks from Georges. (Saturday, November 13, 5-10 pm, at the San Francisco Art Institute, 800 Chestnut St., North Beach.)

Celebrate 14 Years of Firestone Walker at Toronado

Firestone Walker, the popular brewery based in Paso Robles, turns 14 this year. Since 2006 (their tenth anniversary), they've been brewing a barrel-aged beer each November, enlisting a group of vintners from the nearby Santa Ynez wine country to help them formulate the perfect blend. The 14th Anniversary edition was released at the brewery on November 6, and the celebration continues tonight at Toronado, with brewery representatives on hand.

Get Torched at the Barback Olympics

Bartenders and mixologists have reached new heights of acclaim over the past few years, with countless books and articles elevating the work of fancy cocktail-slingers and dive-bar beer-pourers alike. Yet one key component of a bar's operation remains unsung: the barback. These hardworking folks serve as the prep cooks to the bartender's chef, keeping them in limes, ice, and kegs during the busiest hours-- all while enduring the death stares of waiting patrons who don't realize that they're not allowed to serve them.

Get Out the Vote For Anchor in Wired's Beer Face-Off

Now that we've successfully defended our city's reputation on the baseball diamond, it's time to wage a similar campaign for our hometown beer. Wired magazine has been conducting a beer bracket pitting the nation's best brews against each other, and the sweet sixteen standings have SF-brewed Anchor Steam beer getting pummeled by Dogfish Head 60-Minute IPA, made in Delaware. At last viewing, Dogfish had 71 percent of the votes; Anchor received only 29.

Lowering the Bar: 5 Places to Drink for Cheap (or Free) This Week

Each week, we bring you our top picks for the best places to booze on the cheap in SF.

1. Prospect's Happy Hour: The hip new spot from the Boulevard team is now offering a happy hour-- a great way to sample the fare, as well as the concoctions of mixologist extraordinaire Brooke Arthur (formerly of Range). Sip a coca-tea-infused pisco sour, a glass of the draft wine, or a selected beer for $5, and nosh on bites like fried oysters and pig trotter "tots" with aioli for $4-5. (Monday-Friday, 4-6 pm, at Prospect, 300 Spear St., SOMA.)

Lowering the Bar: 5 Places to Drink for Cheap (or Free) This Week

Each week, we bring you our top picks for the best places to booze on the cheap in SF.

1. 7x7's Debaser Drink Deals: Get your Halloween weekend kicked off right at Debaser, the beloved early-90's dance party designed for those who weren't old enough to actually experience grunge. 7x7 is hosting this month, and we're bringing the happy hour power: $3 beers, $4 rum shots, and $5 Cuba Libres and Dark and Stormys. Come dressed as your favorite 90's icon, and skip the $5 cover that comes down after 11. (Friday, October 29th, 9 pm-2 am, at 111 Minna Gallery, 111 Minna St., SOMA.)

Glamour Shots: Two SF Bartenders' Harlem Concoctions

If you've been out and about in local bars of late, you've probably seen a bottle or two of Harlem, a liqueur manufactured by the Dutch distiller Nolet (best known in the States as the maker of Ketel One). Dark and herbal, with a hint of anise, the liqueur has both taste and consumption similarities with Jagermeister-- it's meant to be served ice-cold, in shot form. 

Daily Newsletters

Essential SF knowledge in your inbox

Sign up for our email newsletters to keep up on events, restaurants and SF haps.

Subscribe to 7x7
Renew
Give a Gift
FAQ's

Guides

The Big To-Do: 100 Things to Do In SF Before You Die

The Big Eat 2011: 100 Things to Try Before You Die

Pole Position: Our Subjective Guide to SF's Strip Clubs

Four Awesome Northern California Hot Springs

Refreshingly Unhip: SF's Old-School Pastrami Sandwiches

The 7 Best Carne Asada Burritos in San Francisco

The 10 Best Dishes Under $10 in Bernal Heights

The 10 Best Dishes Under $10 in the Lower Haight

The 10 Best Lunches in Union Square Under $10

The Path To Ramen Enlightenment

Secret Recipes: How to Make Some of the City's Best Dishes

Drink Up: SF's "Cocktail Movement" Bars

8 Solid First Date Ideas

Where to Learn An Instrument in SF

7 Local Musicians to Watch in 2011

The Best Wine Shops, Neighborhood by Neighborhood

The 7 Best San Francisco Albums of 2010

Refreshingly Unhip: The Best Glazed Dougnuts in SF

Tea: Our 7 Favorite Spots to Drink & Buy

Fireside Buzz: 7 Bars That'll Warm You Up

Beer Tasting Road Trip Itinerary of Sonoma & Mendocino Counties

Six Great Boots for Fall in San Francisco

Get A Room: Bars That Rent Private Spaces

The Best Phone Apps for the Food-Obsessed

9 Great San Francisco Football Bars

The Best Bowls of Soup (That Aren't Pho or Ramen) In SF

The 10 Best Burgers in San Francisco

Expert Advice on Parking in The City

Sonoma v. Napa: Which Does it Better?

Biking for Beginners: Routes to Take and Avoid

5 Ways to Get the Wine You Want in Restaurants

San Francisco's Best Dance Classes: 9 Places to Bust A Move

The Big Eat 2010: 100 Things to Try Before You Die

The Big Sweet 2010: 50 Treats to Try Before You Die