Best Sandwich in the Bay Area: Morucci’s

One of my favorite lunch time eateries in Walnut Creek is Morucci’s. They have great sandwiches, soups and salads. My personal favorite is the #1: Roasted Turkey.


One of the best aspects of this deli is their creative menu, which lists their sandwiches from 1-17 (with some items being fractions, too!). It is always fresh and tasty and has my vote as the best deli in the area.


Some of the most popular sandwiches are the 6 3/4, which is a delicious combination of caprese salad-style tomato and mozzarella, turkey, lettuce, roasted bell peppers, and balsamic dressing, all on a perfectly-toasted ciabatta; and the #5 (California club – fully loaded with turkey, swiss, bacon and veggies).


For the vegetarians the Caprese is also tasty. I can truly say that every concoction they make at Morucci’s is awesome, and apparently everyone agrees – just check out the line at lunch time! Try to get there in off-hours, though. The secret got out a few years back and now East Bay residents from high schoolers to retirees form lines around the block on any given day at lunch to nab one of these famous sandwiches.


Consistently voted one of Walnut Creek’s best, Morucci’s is a must-try if you are living in or visiting the area. From their sandwiches, to fresh Italian salads, Morucci’s definitely earns their rave Yelp reviews.

Which sandwich at Morucci’s is your favorite?  Please let me know.

East Bay Booze Boom!

The Bay area is leading the nation in innovation, and not just in the tech sector. A new industry on the rise in the East Bay is the alcoholic beverage market!

75e4cb_70530afefa2c4ac597c7198da59bd280With the craft brewing industry on the rise, many local entrepreneurs have hopped (get it?) on the bandwagon, starting many new breweries in Oakland, San Francisco, and even Concord! Many of these East Bay brewers are really pushing the envelope by making unusual beers, like sours, rare varietals, and other creative concoctions.

One such brewery in the sour beer market is Rare Barrel in Berkeley. They go the extra mile by aging their beer in oak barrels for about a year to develop the lovely tart flavors in their brews. Some other notable East Bay breweries are Linden Street Brewery and Pacific Coast Brewery in Oakland, Jupiter and Pyramid Brewery in Berkeley, and EJ Phair in Concord. Don’t sleep on 21st Amendment Brewery, famous for their Hell or High Watermelon beer, which just opened a huge new brewery in San Leandro. Or the popular Calicraft Brewing Co. based right here in Walnut Creek which is my favorite; I love their Buzzerkeley champagne beer.


Beer is not the only game in town, however. The wine and liquor industries in the area have also been growing in popularity. St. George Sprits in Alameda has become well-known for their brand, and Hangar One vodka is named after the old World War II-era hangar where the distillery is based. Although they recently sold the brand to be produced next door, the distillery is excited to have more space to focus on new experiments in distillation. Some of their more creative liquors include Green Chili Vodka, Absinthe Verde (I know this one from personal experience and it was not a good one), Agricole Rum, and several Fruit Brandies. They have a great guided tour for $15, which includes a tasting of six spirits! They even have a small outdoor seating area where you can hang out with a drink after your tour and check out the San Francisco skyline from the other side of the Bay.


Many wineries have also begun to spring up throughout the East Bay. Although this may seem like a new development, the East Bay, especially the Walnut Creek area, was actually one of the main wine-grape growing regions until prohibition in 1920. One such winery making a revival in the area is Urban Legend Cellars in Oakland. They source grapes from other local regions, and use various blending and oaking techniques to produce unique and delicious wines.

Walnut Creek has also been put back on the map with Shadowbrook Winery. This vineyard grows Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Syrah, right on the foothills of Mount Diablo. Mark Lavezzoli, the Winemaker there, combines traditional and innovative techniques to create some very tasty vino. The entire team there is very excited about Walnut Creek’s potential to produce a first-class wine.

With so many great beverages to try right here in the East Bay, it’s hard to find a reason to leave and another great reason to own a home in this amazing area.

Have you been to any of these places? Please share your thoughts – we would love to hear from you!

Main Street Kitchen


I recently tried the new restaurant on Main Street, creatively named Main Street Kitchen.  Luckily the menu was much more interesting than the name.  The restaurant features farm to table, local ingredients, and seasonal menus.



To start, I had  the Grilled peach salad with Point Reyes bleu cheese, bacon, and mixed greens.  It was very tasty and refreshing on this warm evening. For my main course, I chose the fish of the day, which happened to be swordfish.  The dish came with a seasonal vegetable salad, consisting of kale, corn, roasted squash, blue lake beans, cranberry beans, and saffron pistachio pesto.  It was delicious and filling, without being overly heavy.  For desert, I nudged in a peach crisp with almond streusel topping, and house made ice cream.  This was my favorite part of the meal, especially the home made ice cream.  Yum!


I went there again for breakfast recently, and was able to enjoy the peaceful patio.  I had 3 duck eggs, with toast and fresh tomatoes.  I have never had duck eggs before, but
they sure were yummy

With its eclectic variety of California cuisine, made with fresh and local ingredients, Main Street Kitchen definitely earned my repeat business.  I definitely recommend you check out this great new eatery in town.

CaliCraft Brewing in Walnut Creek


When we say “taste local” we mean it! Calicraft a micro brewer is opening a taproom in the Shadelands area of Walnut Creek by 2016. Perfect timing as the entire corder of Ygnacio & Oak Grove is under construction for the new Safeway Development.   To get a head start on the tastings visit your local Whole Foods (Nugget, Andronicos, Berkeley Bowl or favorite independent market) and pick up their newly announced consumer packaged items. Best known for their Cali Coast, it’s now available in 12oz 6pack cans! Thus making it safe and easy for the beach and summer outings.


Also now available in a 4 pack 12 oz bottles is Buzzerkeley – my favorite, a unique combination of sparkling ale fermented with champagne yeast and star thistle honey – can you say hmmmm.  This beer is unique and tasty, when champagne is not available (shout out to Dawn Stom), it is one of my absolute favorites, a definite stable in my fridge, except my son tends to drink all my beer!

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Look forward to seeing you there!  If you have any other microbrew recommendations, post them here.  I know Alameda, Oakland  & Emeryville have many tasting rooms popping up.

2014 Gold Award Winner

insignia_GOLD_2014_Outline-012014 was a successful and fun year. I was honored at our annual Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate awards ceremony. Receiving a Gold Award distinguishes my efforts as a top performing agent in our organization. I have been fortunate to receive a top producer award since 2007. I love what I do and how rewarding it can be to help someone sell or buy possibly the biggest investment in their life.

A snapshot from the awards luncheon in San Francisco, followed by a Giants game with my son.


Here at my office in Walnut Creek,  I find myself surrounded by an excellent and experienced manager along with other great agents and friends whom also are recognized for their performance in our organization.


Coffee Shop Hangout

My new found hang out! unnamed-3A few weeks ago with my friend Veronica after an early morning spin class we were meandering around Walnut Creek and she wanted to get a coffee. We stopped by Starbucks, when I remembered I had two letters to drop in the mailbox, which is still in front of the old post office. That’s when I spotted, Coffee Shop across the street on Locust. I wanted to go in check it out and decided to get a coffee, Veronica hesitantly came in with her Starbucks in hand and mentioned to Eric, our order taker, she was uncomfortable. He said he would happily buy her a new coffee and thus the evil empire corporate coffee moniker was tossed in the waste basket. unnamedI ordered the slow bar coffee, Cafe Grumpy, the coffee took a while to make and similarly to drink, transporting me back to a street side European Cafe when life was less rushed. Truly a coffee lovers paradise.

I came back on Mother’s Day to hang out on a much cherished day off, hoping to make it in time for a breakfast sandwich that smelled delicious on my first visit. I was a little late, so opted for the Pepper Jack cheese, spinach tomato grilled sandwich and added bacon. unnamed-4To complement the sandwich I ordered the orange, coconut iced latte (not always noted on the menu), delicious and sweet. Their bread is from Mint 54, just down the street, another Walnut Creek gem.

The Coffee Shop offers free wifi, password named after their coffee machine, the bright yellow one, Slayer, it’s the Porsche Carrera of coffee makers!

Give it a try! Another great place to enjoy in Walnut Creek, what do you love about the area?

Coffee Shop – 1325 Locust Street Walnut Creek

St. Patty’s Day in the East Bay

ShamrockSt. Patrick’s Day falls annually on the 17th of March and has always been considered a “party” day for Americans. Historically this Christian, Irish holiday dates back to the seventeenth century and has traditionally been a festival to celebrate the patron saint of Ireland. The 17th of March is a day for parades, festivals, wearing green and lifted restrictions on food and alcohol consumption for lent.

For those looking for fun this St. Patrick’s Day, the East Bay has plenty of activities. Closest to home make your reservations at Salvatore Ristorante for Tuesday March 17, where they’ll have their regular menu along with a special pre-fix 3 course of beer and Irish themed foods. (925) 932-2828

guided-pub-crawl Not too far from Walnut Creek you can visit Benicia to the north to be one of only 300  people on Saturday March 14 for a St. Patty’s Day Beer Crawl pouring samplings of craft  beers. Make sure to purchase your ticket for the 1:30 start. (707) 745-9791

Just down 680 from Walnut Creek check out Revel Kitchen and Bar along with Faction  Brewing Company who will entertain you on Sunday March 15th for a St. Patty’s Day celebration of beer braised BBQ style foods. Make sure to reserve early. (925) 208-1758

For those wanting to travel a bit further down 680 into Dublin, there will be quite a few festivities for the Irish Holiday. Saturday March 14, starts with the annual pancake breakfast (7am-10am), followed by the Lion’s Club St. Patrick’s Day Parade at 9:30am. Continue the party into Sunday with the Shamrock 5K Run/Walk. Visit for information.

If none of these suit your fancy, take BART into San Francisco and attend the 164th annual 2015 San Francisco St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Festivities run 10am – 5pm with the parade at 11:30 starting on the corner of Market and 2nd.

Pot of Gold LeprechaunWhatever you choose to do this St. Patrick’s Day make sure it’s festive, fun and green! Have a great holiday.

For more information check out Diablo Magazine, St. Patrick’s Day in the East Bay.

Free Thursday night fun?

FREE MOVIE NIGHT at the Orinda Theatre
 second Thursday of each month at 7 pm

 Coming March 12th (especially for those of us fond of the 80s):

The Breakfast Club

Relive this blast from the past with Molly Ringwald, Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall, Judd Nelson & Ally Sheedy in this cult classic of high school detention.
Given 90% by Rotten Tomatoes.BreakfastClub_sm


The Orchards

the orchards

At Oak Grove Blvd & Ygnacio Valley Road in the Shadelands Business Park. Safeway is finally building on their lot that has sat empty for so long – the last of what was once real orchards.  Safeway’s new store will replace its smaller Encina Grande location across the street, where Whole Foods will move in.

The Orchards will include a Stein Mart, Crunch Fitness & Petco along with specialty shops, restaurants, 200 units of senior housing, green space, play area and jogging trails.  This area has been languishing from a business perspective and the city has been trying to figure out how to reinvigorate it to be more like a Bishop Ranch.  The problem is the commute – there is no easy access from Bart, thus people have to drive so many of the business once housed in the Shadelands have moved.

Hall Equities Group will be transforming the building Contra Costa Times occupied in a Recreational Sports Facility and will become the regional go to place for youth basketball, soccer, lacrosse, etc. – this is sorely needed in our area as field space is a premium – now parents will be able to drop off the kids to warm up and walk over to grab a coffee or do their shopping.  It will be interesting to see if it attracts actual business vs. retail.
“Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beate.” G. K. Chesterton

Wanna Cozy Up Your Home?

So, Reclaimed Wood is Totally In!!!

From Horizontal Gardens to your Bedroom wall, it’s just the right way to go when the idea is to add a stylish and yet ‘Home Sweet Home’ feel to a room.

It creates a warm environment with an unique and unsettling sophistication to wherever it’s installed. There are vendors at the Alameda Antique Fair who create furniture from reclaimed redwood that is absolutely gorgeous.

Check some of these Great Ideas:

Horizontal Garden

painel madeira de demolicao

Garden Pathways

pathway madeira de demolicao

Bedroom Walls

quarto madeira de demolicao

Living Room Wall Panel Style

sala madeira de demolicao

Did You Absolutely Love it?? So, dive deeper into the subject by checking this great Houzz post!