Here are the five coolest things to do in and around San Francisco this week. We publish a new list every Wednesday, covering Thursday through Wednesday. Stay tuned for insider updates on restaurant openings, festivals, exhibitions, shows, weekend escapes, and more.
August 20–23 | Food
Eat Drink SF
Presented by the Golden Gate Restaurant Association, Eat Drink SF is a culinary festival that spans restaurant tasting events and cooking classes. Try one of the two “grand tastings” at Fort Mason for an indulgent marathon of nibbles and sips from established and emerging local restaurants, including hot newcomers Belga, ICHI Kakiya, and Mourad. Classes available include learning the secrets of pairing grilled meats and beer, the art of a well-balanced cocktail, and a crash course in blind-tasting wine.
Times, venues & prices vary | website
August 21 | Storytelling
Do the Hustle: Stories of Keeping It Together by Any Means Necessary
Porchlight, a storytelling series created by Beth Lisick and Arline Klatte in 2002, has been running monthly at San Francisco’s Verdi Club for the past seven years. This month’s edition delves into a skill set that is crucial to surviving in present-day San Francisco. In Do the Hustle: Stories of Keeping it Together by Any Means Necessary, writers, editors, singers, and even a former judge will reveal how they make it work when times are lean. Warning: The results aren’t always pretty.
8 p.m. | The Verdi Club, 2424 Mariposa St., San Francisco | $15 | website
August 22 | Clubbing mashup
Bootie SF: Michael Jackson Mashup Night
The enduring catalog of hits and anthems by both Prince and Michael Jackson are particularly beloved in San Francisco, where DJ Dave Paul launched the nationally touring Prince and Michael Experience club night in 2002. This week, Paul will be playing upstairs at Bootie, the mashup/remix party that takes place every Saturday at DNA Lounge. The theme? “Michael Jackson Mashup Night,” of course! Expect a Jackson-themed drag show and lots of songs that sample his voice spinning late into the night.
9 p.m. | Bootie at DNA Lounge, 375 11th St., San Francisco | (415) 626-1409 | $15 | website
August 23 | Live podcast, comedy
Edumacation with Kevin Smith & Andy McElfresh – Live Podcast
Kevin Smith is best known as the screenwriter and director behind such hit cult films as Clerks and Chasing Amy (where he also played the character of Silent Bob), but he’s also quietly assumed a different role as an incredibly compelling podcaster. He has recorded more than 200 episodes of his current podcast; many are recorded and broadcast live inside comedy clubs like San Francisco’s Cobb’s. The last time he was here, the show was an emotional mix of funny and bittersweet stories about his life. This time round, the earlier Q&A has already sold out—but there are still tickets if you want to catch the podcast itself. Just don’t delay!
9:30 p.m. | Cobb’s Comedy Club, 915 Columbus Av., San Francisco | (415) 928-4320 | $35 | website
Weekend escape | Festival
Tequila & Taco Music Festival
Now in its second year, the Tequila & Taco Music Festival is taking over Santa Cruz the whole weekend of August 22–23, making it a good excuse for a day trip or overnighter. General admission tickets give you access to à la carte food vendors specializing in various international takes on tacos, plus beer stalls and live music. Other ticket types include six half-ounce samples of top shelf tequila on Saturday only. Sunday’s focus is more squarely on margaritas. Don’t forget the sunscreen!
11 a.m.–5 p.m. | San Lorenzo Park, 137 Dakota St., Santa Cruz | From $10 | website
Tamara Palmer is a daily news writer, rapper confidante, DJ and celebrity chef ghostwriter from San Francisco.
Planning a trip? Check out the AFAR guide to San Francisco.