Photo Credit: Plumpjack
When it comes to San Francisco’s top female presidents one person who is not talked about enough is Hilary Newsom Callan. The incredibly personable force behind the Plumpjack Group (which includes wineries Odette and Cade, The Plumpjack Inn at Squaw Valley, and the Balboa Cafe) and younger sister to the ex-mayor and current Lieutenant Governor, Gavin Newsom, is a prime example of the modern Californian woman. She seamlessly heads from discussions of Plumpjack’s newest project in SOMA to her tween daughter’s soccer games all the while sporting a chic pair of fashionable wedges and a sleek blonde blowout. Since we are huge fans of Callan’s serious, yet nurturing leadership style and admire her extreme charitable tendencies (her annual fundraiser has raised over $2 million for breast cancer awareness), we asked her to share her favorite Bay Area spots. Here, in her own words, is where Hilary Newsom Callan enjoys hanging out.
Birthplace: San Francisco
Years in SF: 4th generation!
Hood you call home: While I live in Kentfield, the Marina is where we have a place and will always call home!
Favorite restaurant: Balboa Cafe, of course! The chicken paillard on Wednesday nights is not to be missed.
Best sushi: Robata Sushi in Marin is really great for take out, and convenient since I grab it on my way home from work.
Best Italian: Trattoria Fresco in Ross – everything he makes is excellent.
Best dessert: The chocolate cake at Ambrosia Pizza and Pasta in Kentfield. Mark, the owner, makes it himself and it is divine!
Best place for a romantic date: Farm restaurant at The Carneros Inn. The lobster risotto is sooooo good.
Best Sunday brunch: Balboa Mill Valley has amazing Huevos Rancheros, and my husband likes the Bal-Burrito at the SF location.
Best steakhouse: I don’t eat red meat, so I can only judge by the creamed spinach! Last time I checked, Izzy’s was still delicious.
Best pizza: Ambrosia’s Pizza is amazing, or the deep dish at Paxti’s if you want to go for it!
Best lunch: The Rotunda at Neiman Marcus – but do I ever really get past the popovers?
Best place for cocktails: The Big Four
Hotel you recommend to visiting out-of-towners: St Regis – the indoor pool is so much fun, especially if like me, you have kids.
Favorite shopping venue/boutique: Marin Country Mart- not sure I can leave there without something from Calypso or James Perse.
Best Spa: If I am lucky enough to make the time, I have a facial from Kristin at The Carneros Inn.
Best Salon: Archer Salon, Gari is hands down the best for color and his team, everything else!
Favorite Charity Event: PlumpJack/Link Golf Classic. We are entering our 16th year (May 4th, 2015) and it is in memory of my mother who passed away of breast cancer and in honor of my mother in law Barbara Callan. We support the Cancer Prevention Institute of California.
Favorite Cultural Event: We love going to see Cirque de Soleil when it comes to town! And Beach Blanket Babylon gets more and more hilarious every year!
Best Gym/Athletic Facility: Bay Club Ross Valley and Olympic Club
Best Limousine/Driving Service: Bauer limousine. Gary is great and his cars are always impeccable.
Best Museum/Exhibit: Currently it’s the Rosicrucian Museum- Egyptian Museum and Planetarium in San Jose, because our 6th grader is studying Egypt!
Favorite park: Moscone Park in the Marina, and the turtle is still there and has been since I was 5!
Best place to enjoy a view of city: Marin headlands is a magnificent view as is the top of the Lyon Street steps – after a quick jaunt to the top in my wedges!
Favorite touristy place: The Exploratorium is a wonderful adventure for all ages, and what views!
Place where you always take visitors: Japanese Tea Garden, in Golden Gate Park the oldest Japanese-style garden in the United States. My dad’s uncle Samuel Newsom designed the water fall area in the Japanese Tea Garden.
Favorite weekend getaway, within driving distance: The Carneros Inn is first on our list, but Cavallo Point is another wonderful location just over the bridge.
All-around favorite locale in San Francisco, whether a neighborhood, restaurant, venue, or other: I love the Marina. Crissy Field, The Palace of Fine Arts, the Marina Green, Fillmore, Chestnut and Union streets -It is a wonderful area to walk and eat and enjoy!
Best aspect of living in SF: It is a great walking city and every neighborhood has wonderful gifts, amazing shopping, delicious dining and beautiful architecture!
Photo Credit: Rob Bulzi