The nose knows. Vote for the most creative florist, soothing aromatherapist, or other purveyor of ode-worthy odors.
Torryne Choate and Erin Rosenow Birch
Inspired by the Rolling Stones and music from the '70s, floral designer Torryne Choate painted Birch, her moody, artsy flower shop in Presidio Heights, black. Read More
Originally published on March 2, 2007
Petal to the Metal
Birch Flower Shop Opens
In this town, we’re well versed in the power of flowers. But wearing them in your hair is a bit hokey at this point.
Meet the new generation of flower children: Torryne Choate and Erin Rosenow are making flora fabulous again at their new store, Birch, opening today in Presidio Heights.
The intimate space has a European feel with chic black-on-black interior and weathered wood floors. Rock out to vintage Rolling Stones, Lily Allen, and Stan Getz while perusing the bold, single-palette arrangements.
Gorgeous hand-tied hostess bouquets displayed in Lucite floating trays are ready to grab and go. Instead of ho-hum glass vases, the gals use Finnish acrylic containers in clear, smoke, or black. As a final touch, all blooms are wrapped in sexy black paper with a fat black ribbon.
And they don’t push just petals. White porcelain vases by Andrew Dewitt, Cowshed products, and thick fashion tomes keep you lingering.
You may even be inspired to start a love-in.
Birch, 3263 Sacramento Street, between Presidio Avenue and Lyon Street (415-922-4724 or birchsf.com).
Flora Grubb Flora Grubb Gardens
With the opening of her botanical mecca and retail shop on Third Street, landscaping guru Flora Grubb created a not-so-secret garden for everyone to enjoy. Read More
Originally published on May 22, 2007
Sow and Sow
Flora Grubb Gardens
With some serious imagination and an assist from David Blaine, you could create a secret garden in your sixth-floor walk-up sans balcony.
Or you could just escape to the new location of Flora Grubb Gardens, a stunning 28,000-square-foot nursery and retail space in Bayview.
The focus is still on unusual plant species ideal for the Bay Area climate, but now you can also kick back on candy-colored patio furniture with a good gardening book and sip java among exotic botanicals and palm trees.
Organic potting soil, Burgon & Ball shears, and ergonomic tools by Radius Garden aid those with seeds to sow. Those without can take home FluffyCo tees and note cards, Urge to Adorn belts, and an eclectic array of home accessories.
Bring in a photo of your outdoor space and the staff of professional landscapers will help you plan a garden of your own.
Even if it’s just a nearly invisible window box.
Flora Grubb Gardens, 1634 Jerrold Avenue, at 3rd Street (415-626-7256 or floragrubb.com).
Caterina Mirabelli District
Italian-born Mirabelli sniffs out interesting and approachable flights and presents them at District, where she presides as wine director over the thirsty hordes. At 30, she is already a third-level sommelier. Read More
Originally published on February 16, 2007
The little guy has been winning hearts since David and Goliath. But big guys need love, too.
Which is why you’ll fall for District, a sleek new wine lounge (with plenty of elbow room) opening today in SoMa.
Dimmed candelabras and wood beams warm the industrial space. A huge horseshoe-shaped bar is prime real estate for people-watching. Spread out on plush couches. Or rest your Riedel on a high-top along the wall.
Sommelier Caterina Mirabelli is the bar’s secret weapon. She’ll help you navigate the wine list, expertly balanced between New and Old Worlds. Sample thoughtful flights (oak versus stainless, mountains to sea) or pop the cork on something unique (like the Movia pinot from Slovenia).
Hungry? Marinated olives, artisanal cheeses, and salumi are great for pecking. Small plates like goat cheese pesto pizzete and black PEI mussels with Pernod, cream, and sausage make a fine meal.
Literally speaking, it’s the next big thing.
District, 216 Townsend Street, between 3rd and 4th Streets (415-896-2120 or districtsf.com).