Home is where people live, and what makes a place feel like home is food, drink, warmth and most importantly, good company. Magnolia Pub and Brewery on Haight and Masonic has become this place for the locals of the area. The bar seems to never have a dull moment, constantly packed with customers. As I learned the warm smiles and endless conversations are easily welcoming to newcomers.
“I consider this place to be an extended living room for a lot of people in the neighborhood,” says Scott Mason, bartender at the pub. “People come here for the beer… for the food… for the ambiance.”
Mason continues stating that the Haight is a “supportive community,” and having such a “dynamic menu” from house-made sausage to cask ales, Magnolia caters to the culture.
Justin Williams, a familiar face to the Magnolia crowd, stops by the bar to treat himself to a celebratory birthday drink. He has just turned 25 and right away he greets the bartenders, exchanging handshakes and making small talk. He makes the rounds and orders his drink before taking a seat next to me.
“I live a walk up the hill…” Williams smiles pointing out the window and taking a brief pause holding his breath, “which is convenient and also terrible!” he bursts laughing.
He explains that he frequents the bar because he enjoys the micro brewed beer and of course, the good friends.
“It’s like the Cheers of Haight,” says Williams, referring to the old television comedy show. “It’s cool because it builds more of a sense of a community.”
It is definitely a bar with more of that homey feel to it, and not only do the locals love it, but visitors and shoppers do too.
Emily Kidd, and Matt Simanton stopped by the pub after spending some time in the Haight shopping.
“We are here because we like beer!” says Kidd jokingly as she explains that they decided to drop in and grab a drink because it reminded them of a place that they would go to back home in Chicago.
“I like this community table,” she says, referring to the bar-like table where we are seated.
I hadn’t noticed before, but now that Kidd pointed it out, I realized that the table really is like an extension of the bar. It has the same feel to it, as sitting at the bar. However there are seats all around the table, on either side.
I look around. It grows late, and the pub is now brightly lit. The golden hue illuminates the faces and you can hear the soothing sound, a sea of voices; their conversation calm, like rippling water and their vibrant laughter crashes like waves. This is a place where people come to feel at home, like one body, a family.
So let us raise our glasses, make a toast, to new friends and new memories, our home is yours! Cheers!