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Mobile Marketing

Making the most of WWDC with @jonbarbero

Robi Ganguly  //  June 7, 2012  //  4 min read

(This is part of an email interview series we’re sharing this week in advance of WWDC. Since so many people come in from out of town to attend the conference, we thought it would be helpful and fun to get some advice from long-time attendees and SF residents about how to make the most of your trip to the Bay Area)

We pinged long time Apple employee Jonathan Barbero (@jonbarbero) for his thoughts on the topic. As a long-time WWDC attendee and a San Franciscan, Jonathan knows how to make the most of the week.

Are you going stay near the Moscone Center when you’re in town for WWDC?

Nope! I live in the Upper Haight, which is full of various treasures and bilge.

What ONE place would you say WWDC attendees from outside of the Bay Area have to go?

Speaking of treasures, one cannot truly experience San Francisco without paying a visit to Smuggler’s Cove, the smaller and more cozy of the two tiki bars in SF. The cocktails at the more widely known (and overpriced) Tonga Room pale in comparison to the rum soaked, gourmet drinks at Smuggler’s:  http://smugglerscovesf.com/trapdoor/

What is your favorite place to grab a drink and run into random WWDCers?

Near the Moscone Center, I highly recommend Oola for food and drinks. They do terrific cocktails and the cilantro, ginger and soy glazed ribs rank among the best in the city. There are also $1 local oysters during happy hour (Monday thru Thursday 5-7, Friday 4-7). http://www.oola-sf.com

If you could lead a field trip for 15 WWDC attendees where would you take them?

Grab your sunscreen (but don’t forget a jacket) and head down to Crissy Field for stunning views of the Golden Gate Bridge as well as the iconic Palace of Fine Arts. If you are feeling energetic, hope over to the House of Air and check out the newly built indoor trampoline park! The House of Air also resides next to Planet Granite which has fantastic indoor rock climbing

Where is the best beer in San Francisco?

Most visitors make a pilgrimage to the Toronado’s Pub in the Lower Haight which has around 50 foreign beers on tap. It’s hard to beat, just don’t forget to take a cab! However for more local SF brews stop by at Magnolia in the Upper Haight and grab a porter or stout. You won’t be disappointed. The food here is also excellent.

What’s the best meal you’ve had in San Francisco and where did you have it?

Two places worth taking a cab to:
  1. Pizzetta 211 in the Outer Richmond has stunning, affordable pizzas that change every week.
  2. Umi Sushi in Bernal Heights is the best freaking fish I’ve had in SF. They also have an epic selection of sake.

What’s the most fun thing you can do in San Francisco that you’d recommend to visitors?

  1. Get to Smuggler’s Cove when they open at 5pm (and before the crowds show up) and proceed to get plastered in peace and quiet. Well mostly quiet. One has to account for the pirate music, blenders, and merriment.
  2. For the non-drinking crowd, I also recommend visiting the recently opened $500 million Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate park. They have a series of unbelievable, multi-level aquariums as well as an indoor rainforest and planetarium. Plan on spending 3-4 hours here.

What’s the most unique thing you can do in San Francisco that you’d recommend to visitors?

In terms of quirky San Francisco, you can’t go wrong with seeing the wild buffalo in Golden Gate park. There are also two recently remodeled Dutch windmills near the buffalo paddock worth visiting:

http://www.golden-gate-park.com/buffalo-paddock.html
http://www.golden-gate-park.com/windmills.html

What one thing do you bring home from SF every time you visit?

The chocolate truffles at Christopher Elbow in Hayes Valley are stunningly delicious works of art that make excellent gifts.

If you are or know an espresso drinker, the Blue Bottle kiosk is generally accepted as the reference point for best espresso and beans in SF. They are just around the corner from Christopher Elbow (above).

Blue Bottle also has a location close to the Moscone Center!
http://www.bluebottlecoffee.net/locations/mint-cafe/

Thanks for sharing Jonathan!

Want to see advice from other friends of ours? Check out tips from:

Ash Ponders

Ryan Nielsen

Andrew Wooster

Buzz Andersen

Justin Williams

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About Robi Ganguly

Robi Ganguly is the Co-founder and CEO at Apptentive. He is passionate about giving customers a voice via mobile. Follow Robi on Twitter @rganguly.
View all posts by Robi Ganguly >

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