Monday, October 10, 2005

Dining Alfresco

Californians love to dine outside. It makes total sense in Southern CA but it can be a bit of a stretch here in San Francisco. This is a shot of the new Cafe @ the Beach Chalet at Ocean Beach. Its a bit like a small-scale version of the Bryant Park Cafe behind the Public Library in NYC. The interior is casual but well designed and the cafe opens up onto the yard behand the chalet. Service was very slow but had it been warm, we wouldn't have minded. But we had biked there in shorts and as the sun ducked behind the building, it started to feel more like the Ski Chalet.

Like many other SF restaurants, they roll out the portable heaters as the sun goes down which softens the chill slightly. The cold was total deja-vu since we had dined outside just the night before at the wedding of a good friend in Napa. The location and table settings were absolutely beautiful but as the sun went down, the chill came. As the night wore on, the men got more dressy and the women donned shawls if the had them. A few who were more prepared walked around in evening dresses with serious winter coats over the top. I guess it is one of our time-honored traditions... like watching 4th of July Fireworks through the fog. Beautiful in their own way (just make sure you're properly dressed).

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