The Weekly “Avocado”

February 23, 2012 § Leave a comment

Urban Hike. One of our favorite CARROTS shoppers, Alma, came in Saturday and was telling us about how she was going on an “urban” hike this weekend. I had to ask what that was exactly… she explained its a hike (or walk) anywhere in the city. Pick a neighborhood & explore. Alma and her girlfriends take turns choosing the location and they walk around and eat, shop, and wander through a neighborhood in the city! I loved this idea, so fun!

I want to start doing this with my girlfriends and thought I’d come up with the first location: the mission. Here are a few ideas.

Start @ Four Barrel Coffee for a latte… mmm, so good. I love sitting in there and just smelling the wonderful aroma.

Then you could stop next door @ Taylor Stitch and pick out one of their handmade shirts for your hubby, brother or someone cool…  cause they’re great!

Now that you’ve had a little coffee in your system, you can head over to Dolores Park and “hike” around for a bit. Such a beautiful place to wander around on a sunny day.

After that I’m sure your appetite will be in full swing, so head down to Pizzeria Delfina (my all-time favorite pizza) and enjoy a lovely and delicious lunch. The broccoli rabe pizza is amazing.

Then wander down the street to Paxton Gate… this shop is so fun, you can spend hours there.

Also, when your walking down Valencia be sure to check out some of the cool antique and vintage shops along the way.

You should definitely circle back to 18th street and head into Bi-rite Market for some goodies to take home. Love going to the grocery.

And end off the afternoon with a scoop or two of homemade ice cream from Bi-rite Creamery…. heaven.

Sounds like a pretty good day to me, thanks for the idea Alma xx

The Weekly “Avocado”

February 2, 2012 § 1 Comment

To spice things up, this week I asked our dear friend Caitlin Dentino to guest blog for our weekly avocado. Many of you are familiar with Caitlin and her naturally creative abilities. Whether its cooking, entertaining friends, decorating her apartment or just being crafty she always has her hands (literally) in something!

One of our favorite things to do is cook together, we love to start the morning at the farmers market and then spend an evening listening to some music, drinking a little vino and cooking a great meal with friends. Caitlin always has a interesting new menu idea, that always turns out de-lish! I thought she should share some of her secrets with you… enjoy! Speaking of… what are you doing this weekend Cate?  xx

Chicken is an easy dinner staple around here, and while there are more than enough ways to prepare it – we can always use more good ones!  So here are two – one weekend version (decadent and a bit more labor intensive) and one ready for any night of the week.

As much as I love fried chicken, I had never made it at home – so dinner with friends last week seemed like the perfect opportunity.  I used the recipe from Tyler Florence, given that I love his version at Wayfare Tavern here in San Francisco, and have to say it was pretty out of this world! (Note – I did take some liberties from the Ad Hoc at Home version and dressed up the brine a bit).

And don’t forget the fried herbs – they really make it … well that, and the copious amounts of white wine that we may have washed it down with.

As for the weeknight version – buttermilk roasted chicken – it comes from an old favorite, Smitten Kitchen.  A simple buttermilk brine (which was a perfect use for the leftover buttermilk from the fried chicken) spiced with paprika and garlic and left to sit for at least a day – it might be tied with my favorite roast chicken for easiest yet delectable dinner.

Suffice it to say – they are both now part of the regular rotation!

Images:   1. Caitlin Dentino     2. Smitten Kitchen

New Years Resolution Battle

January 23, 2012 § 1 Comment

Do you make them, or not? I feel this is the constant topic of conversation this month… some people have a list a mile long and then others are totally against the whole idea of it. Personally, I feel the “new years resolution” hype is setting oneself up for failure or disappointment. Maybe if you word it differently, it sounds a little better, like “new years goals” or “self improvement” seems to come across less daunting as the word resolution, which I find so final & forever… “never again can you drink a soda, smoke a cig, eat bread, blah blah boring…”


So, why not take the opportunity in this new year to focus on something positive and try to remember to embrace life, appreciate those you love, let go a little and try to just keep it all in moderation. Here are a few things that might help you jumpstart your 2012 “goals”… new year, new possibilities… be good to yourself.


Laugh a little. Cobbs Comedy Club

Have a bloody mary & the butter basted farm eggs with a girlfriend next Saturday at Nopa

Slow down & just breathe. My favorite yoga teacher, Allison Hodge.

Read Party of the Century, its just fun.

Be nice to your body and nourish it with local, organic, & thoughtful foods. Try Michelle & Brian’s amazing varieties of juice that rejuvenate your soul. Or if you need a bit of help with a home-cooked week night meal, order from the amazing Three Stone Hearth… its like Mom came over and whipped up some sheppards pie for you!

Be brave & try something new: like wearing these red lips or tights. Love both.

Have friends over and make this… looks fun!

Actually READ this blog, love her.


Okay, that’s all I have for now. Enjoy xx

Best Chef: Michael Tusk

May 11, 2011 § 1 Comment

Congratulations to our neighbor and friend, Michael Tusk of Qunice & Cotogna Restaurants, the winner of the 2011 James Beard Award for Best Chef! We are thrilled for Michael, he has truly exceeded expectations with his Italian cooking skills. If you haven’t yet been to both Qunice and Cotogna, let me tell you… it will become a regular for locals and those of you visiting, trust us you will not be disappointed… its a treat. Cotogna has a rustic, casual vibe and Quince is the ultimate Italian fine dinning experience words can’t describe. Congrats Michael!

Fremont Diner in Sonoma

November 16, 2010 § Leave a comment

So worth the trip.  Perfect on a sunny afternoon for some serious southern home cooking & the inspiring vintage setting. Go for the “whole hog”.

2660 Fremont Drive, Sonoma CA 95476


November 4, 2010 § Leave a comment

Our lovely neighbors over at Quince opened their more casual corner cafe today, Cotogna (quince in italian) and we couldn’t be happier across the street here at CARROTS!

We stopped by last night for their opening and had the pleasure to taste some of the delicious food Michael was preparing… pizzas from their wood burning oven (to die for!), lamb from their insanely cool rotisserie, meatballs, risotto fritters, fabulous wines (the Vermentino was divine) and some wonderful whiskey cocktail. Everything was incredibly delicious, we will certainly be regulars.

Opening tonight for dinner and Nov. 15th for lunch… trust us, you will love it.

Cotogna 490 Pacific Street (at Montgomery) San Francisco, 94133 415.775.8508

we snagged a quick pic of Michael Tusk (chef/owner) busy at work… sorry for the blurry shot, we didn’t want to distract him while he was hard at work!

Fashion Illustrated

November 1, 2010 § Leave a comment

I love seeing inside the homes of people, getting that personal glimpse of who they are, especially someone as fascinating as Vanessa Traina. This month’s issue of Harpers Bazaar exposes a multi page spread of Traina’s ultra chic apartment in downtown Manhattan offering a glimpse into her life of style, sophistication and intrigue.

Allow her to inspire your home, wardrobe and fashion sense.

Check out the full article here.

San Francisco Guide

October 27, 2010 § Leave a comment

For the foodies, style seekers, drinkers and those who like to indulge…. here is CARROTS inside guide to this spectacular city.


Bix – classic, SF staple. Order a manhattan (with brandied cherries, of course!) and the brioche crab rolls.  Just around the corner from CARROTS!

Nopalito – mexican fare. Clean, simple, delicious.  The Carnitas are not to be missed.

Rose’s Cafe – local neighborhood favorite. Italian fare, great for dinner or Sunday brunch (breakfast pizza, enough said).

Frances – absolutely amazing food, new on the radar, try the house-made wine.  Recently received a Michelin Star!

Spruce – chic spot for a special occasion.  Love the bar for a cocktail and the delightful burger.

Dosa – best indian in the city. We especially love the Mission location.

Quince – Italian food, as good (if not better) than in Italy, a dressier affair – great for a special occasion.

Pizzeria Delfina – we are THE pizza aficionado’s, trust us… its scrumptious. Broccoli Rabe is the fan favorite around here.

Sebo – some of the best sushi in the city, states, world…. at least according to Travel & Leisure.

Bi-Rite Creamery – salted carmel ice cream, along with every other creative, seasonal flavor… lavender honey… mmm! Killer combo = dinner at Pizzeria Delfina (Mission location) and dessert at Bi-Rite.

Bourbon and Branch – prohibition-era vibe, no name on the door, password required, perfect cocktails. Get booked online.

Wayfare Tavern – Tyler Florence’s new SF venture.  Rustic American cuisine and Victorian-era cocktails.

Beretta – all kinds of mixing madness happening here. Definitely go for the Anejo Sour…. goes great with the Burrata Pizza.


Archive – men’s apparel, cutting-edge designers from all over Europe and Japan.

Japonesque – a Japanese art gallery across the street, worth a stop after your CARROTS visit!

Harputs Market – conveniently located downtown, hip men’s and women’s collections.  Be sure to check out their private label!

Downtown – chic, edgy boutique in Union Square. Very unique pieces from around the world.

Sue Fisher King – a carefully curated selection of home design.  Beautiful linens, tabletop and they carry our favorite ceremics collection by Astier De Villlatte.


Sen Spa – a little slice of heaven in the presidio. Go for a quiet, relaxing, afternoon to pamper yourself with an amazing facial, massage, steam and rejuvination.

Bamboo – the perfect manicure & pedicure.  It’s the perfect stop after a leisurely brunch at Rose’s Cafe.

These are some of our favorites, we’ll do our best to keep you updated on what’s new… let us know what you think!

An evening Downtown

October 6, 2010 § Leave a comment

A new women’s boutique, appropriately called DOWNTOWN, has recently joined the San Francisco fashion scene.  Catie and I were honored to attend the opening festivities, which included an intimate sit down dinner.  Everyone looked fabulous and we thought you’d enjoy seeing some of the pictures.  Be sure to check out DOWNTOWN soon!

Photography courtesy of Drew Altizer

Alice Waters comes to CARROTS

July 14, 2010 § 1 Comment

Last wednesday, we welcomed Alice Waters to the store for a signing of her new book, In the Green Kitchen.” San Francisco’s fashionably-green crowd came out to celebrate an evening in honor of Alice, and of course, get her signature on their new books. Everyone sipped on Summer Negroni’s and snacked on pickled veggie’s thanks to BIX.  Proceeds from the event will benefit the Chez Panisse Foundation.

Catie Grimm, Alice Waters, Melissa Grimm

Catie Grimm, Alice Waters and Melissa Grimm

Daniel Lurie, Jen Pitts, Zach Prowda, Becca Prowda

Michael and Treva Harris

Lindsay Tusk and Susan Magley

Emily Griesedieck, Kelly DeHart, Trisha Jones

Alma and Grace Gaoaen

Doug Biederbeck and Elliot Sutro

Barbara Grimm Marshall, Shaina Robbins, Francesca Vietor, Marcia Guerrero

Jimmy Gardiner and Colin Spooner

Photography provided by Drew Altizer.

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