friday afternoons; they way they should be…at RAGLAN

Synopsis of an awesome Friday afternoon:

With an invitation from Michael Soriano to check out his latest San Diego masterpiece (i’ll come back to this), Ivan & I headed over to Ocean Beach for a lunchtime pint.

Meeting Michael & his co-hort, Detroit import, radical thinker, passionate speaker James Denton (who teamed with Michael on RAGLAN PUBLIC HOUSE) & Jim Gabriel (Principal Architect of Architects Hanna Gabriel Wells), what turned out to be a simple ‘pint over lunch’ turned into a righteous meeting of some really cool minds as we were also joined by David McCullough of MLASD, Nathan Lee Colkitt  with Angela “this is my last day”, Leslee Schaffer (Exec. Director of the San Diego Architectural Foundation) & Jonathon Stevens from PUBLIC Architecture.

Discussing with Michael his approach on this project, his relationship with the clients & the journey taken to take their ideas & concept, weave them with his education into the New Zealand culture (yes, we went into a Kiwi bar) & his take on the very strong Ocean Beach culture was a super treat. It goes without saying, we all know Michael is a great designer. It seems often that his spaces have an ‘effortlessness’ about them, and that is why I refer to this as his latest ‘masterpiece’. Is it perfect? No. Is it 100% perhaps what he may have first envisaged? No, but that’s the beauty of it…it’s evolution. It’s collaboration from the initial documented space, to the spur of the moment, whimsical, location appropriate selections that make this bar just fit right. It feels good because it is meant to be there, it doesn’t try too hard, it acknowledges its community, embracing the flip-flop wearing, dog walking, easy-going location. With operable ‘garage door style’ windows, a weathered wood base palate, reclaimed materials & laid back nature, this local OB bar could easily be an implanted/transported bar from its New Zealand surfer town namesake.

Absolutely great to meet everyone, good times for all. Superb beer selection (even though it is full of Kiwi beers). My beverage of choice was the Black & Tan with a 70/30 mix of Murphy’s Stout with the Honey Blonde. Ivan sampled several of the NZ beers, all good, his favorite was the ‘Moa Methode’. The burgers are solid, the skate board rack is cool & the hints of All Black rugby is spot on. Super worth heading into OB to check out.

Not gonna lie, it doesn’t end there…after all, we can’t head into OB without stopping in for a quick Cafe Cubano at Azucar. With a quick revamp of lubricated design motivation, Ivan, David & I  sat in the afternoon sun for a few minutes to think to ourselves ‘this is what it’s like outside of our office’. A great afternoon, great friends, new friends, good times.

all photos were taken randomly from Google for the purpose of sharing some love for these awesome places & people.

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