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Chef Owner of Hapa Ramen Richie Nakano Tells Us About the Outer Sunset

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The People's Guide is Curbed SF's tour o' the nabes, lead by our most loyal readers, favorite bloggers, and other luminaries of our choosing. Have a piece to say? We'll be happy to hand over the megaphone. This time around, we welcome Richie Nakano, chef owner of Hapa Ramen, part time writer, and full-time father of Colton and Merritt.

[Photo via Richie Nakano]

Neighborhood: Outer Sunset, although Apple Maps thinks I live in Parkside for some reason.

Tell us something we don't know about the Outer Sunset: There are whole days, sometimes in a row, where it isn't foggy out here!

Local customs of note: Parking at the laundromat on the corner of 39th & Taraval like you're in a SWAT team siege on a hostage standoff. Using the great highway like a park (biking, running, drinking) when it's closed due to sand buildup. Helping suburban kids coming down from their mushroom trip find their car after a concert in Golden Gate Park.

Hidden gems in the Outer Sunset: The Riptide on Taraval for cheap drinks and a really horrible bacon Bloody Mary. Marco Polo ice cream for some OG Polly Anna/Humphry Slocombe type treats. Kingdom of Dumpling for an affordable & tasty lunch. The Bike Nook for a quick & cheap tune up. Pizza Place on Noriega for wings, beer, and a meathead pizza.

Are your neighbors "Rotten Neighbor" worthy? If so, dish. If not? well, why not? For the most part no. The neighborhood is a strange mix of young and old...and the only thing that's been annoying is the influx of SF State students that stumble home late at night, yelling and screaming and occasionally puking. I've become that crazy person that runs outside in my pajamas shaking my fist and yelling at them to shut up.

And that dude that lets his dog shit in my front yard. I hate that guy.

Inflate the bubble or burst it: What's not-so-swell about your "perfect" neighborhood? It's getting more expensive. The beach is getting dirtier and every weekend during the summer there's something going on in the park that makes driving anywhere impossible. It's far away from everything so the odds of ever hosting anything at your house are low, and in the event that guests do come, be prepared for them to spend the night. And gophers. There's hella gophers.

The final word on the the Outer Sunset: It's basically in the same area code as the Farrallons, and between the lines at San Tung and Outerlands are looking a little Valencia-ish. But I get to live 5 minutes from the beach, 5 minutes from the park, a short bike ride from lake Merced, and having the zoo nearby means you're 60% more likely to become Beast Master in a post apocalyptic SF. For the cost of a studio in another neighborhood I get to live in a three bedroom house with a backyard, garage, and washer & dryer. There's room to play, nice people, and I'm pretty sure that by 2016 there will be a personal parklet for every single resident in the hood. I don't ever want to leave.

The Riptide Cocktails

3639 Taraval Street, San Francisco, CA 94116 Visit Website