It wasn’t supposed to be this way. San Francisco Pride, the rainbow-swagged weekend that brings $33 million to the city’s bars and restaurants, will this year be a mostly virtual event, as the new coronavirus (COVID-19) makes its typical brunches, parties, and street fairs impossible.
However, many local spots are whipping up special Pride treats for smaller, at-home celebrations. After all, Pride is turning 50 this year, and the occasion still deserves to be marked. Just, remember, this is not the year to roam the Castro in search of a snack, its merchants association and Supervisor Rafael Mandelman say.
“We can’t stop social distancing or wearing masks,” they say via statement. “We have to be smart, stay home if we can, and save lives. In short, Pride 2020 cannot be a party, at least not in the traditional sense. Not on the Embarcadero. Not at Civic Center. Not in the Castro. ... This Pride weekend, please do not come to the Castro looking for a party. If you do come to the Castro and see a crowd gathering, please go home.”
Donna Sachet and Gary Virginia’s 22nd annual Pride brunch
Typically the Pride Saturday event in which the city’s biggest movers-and-shakers glad-hand between bites of pancakes, bagels, and eggs, this year’s Pride brunch has pivoted to a virtual fundraiser (for the Positive Resource Center, a group dedicated to helping people with HIV/AIDS, substance, or mental health issues) and kitchen cook-off — a competition to see who will be named Pride Brunch Top Chef. Tickets to the shindig start at $50, and the livestream runs from noon–1:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 27.
Pride-themed pastries from Kahnfections
Kahnfections, the sweet 20th Street bakery, has a tightly-edited selection of Pride-themed sweets, including this gorgeous box of rainbow macarons for $12. Place your order here for pickup, but be aware that while same-day orders are fine, Kahnfections does run out of its most popular items, so get on this early.
Rainbow pancakes from Jolene’s
Jolene’s, one of the city’s newest queer bars, was still finding its footing when the coronavirus crisis hit. Owner Jolene Linsangan tells Eater.com that her takeout brunch of rainbow pancakes is one way they’re staying afloat, and with all those colors, it looks like would be easy to whip up a trans-themed stack, as well. Jolene’s Sunday brunch runs from 12–4 p.m., and don’t forget to grab a cocktail like a Pride in Dolores Park (strawberry, mint, or a cucumber Pimm’s, which Linsangan suggests you “pair with a joint.” Call 415-913-7948 to order.
Charles Chocolates’ rainbow box
The San Francisco-based chocolatier’s limited edition Pride Fleur de Sel Caramel Collection is only available this June, they say, a way “to celebrate Pride at home.” The candies are 65 percent bittersweet chocolate and dark caramel, topped with an ombre rainbow. A box of 10 will run you $24, 20 goes for $44, and 10 percent of sales for the treats will go to “5 LGBTQ+ charities,” they say. Order here.
Super Duper Burgers Strawberry Shortcake Super Shake
Several locations of Super Duper, the local burger chain, are currently open for takeout, delivery, or outdoor dining, and all are participating in a Pride weekend campaign in which 50 percent of the proceeds from sales of their Strawberry Shortcake Super Shake will go to the Transgender Gender-Variant & Intersex Justice Project (TGIJP). You can order the treat as-is, with organic Straus Family Creamery vanilla soft serve. fresh baked shortcake crumbles and fresh strawberry puree — or you can get it spiked with tequila or whiskey liqueur for a little extra kick. Check their map to find a location near you.