Courtesy of Niche

From the greenest board on the slopes to the perfect bite in San Francisco, here’s the Best of the West this week

Sunset Staff  – February 18, 2020

Is This the World’s First Zero-Waste Snowboard?

Is This the World’s First Zero-Waste Snowboard?

Courtesy of Niche

A good all-around board should handle whatever you throw at it. But the Maelstrom not only performed on double-black screamers and laid-back groomers during our testing, it offered something significant the other Big Guns cannot: zero waste. While other boards are stuffed in the garage or hung like trophies on the walls of kitschy shot-ski dive bars, this one will be reclaimed, recycled, and refashioned into a new product thanks to what Niche calls the “recyclamine” system. How? Because it’s made from a locally-sourced, sustainable wood core with non-toxic, solvent-free inks; recycled bases, sidewalls, and edges; and an unbeatable end-of-life policy. We’re now in a world with eco-friendly wax and recyclable base layers so why not bank on the future of the planet and the sport at the same time? —Matt Bean, editor in chief

Maelstrom Snowboard, $569 from Niche
   

The Tastiest Consolation Prize

Fried Olives at Locanda

Creative Commons photo by Chinkerfly is licensed under CC BY 2.0

My friends and I had a dinner reservation at Locanda during prime time last Saturday, and we couldn’t believe our good luck. For those who aren’t familiar, Locanda is the SF-based, Roman-themed sister restaurant of perennial favorite Delfina. Despite our reservation, we wound up having to wait close to an hour to get seated because of a large party whose birthday dinner ran long (um, waaaaay long), but to their credit, the restaurant staff doubled down on making good with us. Negronis and glasses of wine were flowing, and then out came some complimentary apps, one of which rendered all of us speechless: Fried Castelvetrano olives stuffed with thyme and fontina. Say it with me now: fried olives stuffed with melted cheese. The rest of the meal was fantastic, but those olives, though! I now know what my new happy-hour routine needs to involve. —Jessica Mordo, associate digital director

Zephaniah Has Died of Happiness

The Oregon Trail Handheld

Courtesy of the Minnesota Educational Computing Consortium

As I write this, it is Oregon’s birthday, and what better way to celebrate the Beaver State’s 161st trip around the sun than by dying of dysentery on The Oregon Trail? I played hours of this game as a child, on the Apple IIe in the school library; as sure as marionberries forge our flesh and milk runs through our veins, it is the birthright of all Oregonians to obliterate 8-bit deer with abandon and hemorrhage wagon axles on ill-advised shortcuts. REJOICE, for now you may carry typhoid and injured oxen in your very pocket with the handheld version of The Oregon Trail. If it’s sold out at the Target near you, you can pick it up on Amazon (bundled with two sets of the card games) but if you can’t wait for a delivery, you, too, can waste a nice hour playing the 1990 version for free on Archive.org. At one point this afternoon, my wagon fell apart while attempting to ford a river that was three feet deep (and in which my dude Obadiah drowned, evidently unable to simply stand up and avoid his fate), and after crashing my raft thrice on my adventure down the Mighty Columbia, I eventually arrived safely with two members of my party intact and a Greenhorn rating. —Heather Arndt Anderson, garden editor

Handheld Oregon Trail Game, $60 from Amazon
   

Service with a Smile (and a Plate of Shrimp)

Sometimes a server makes or breaks dinner for me. My friend Sara and I had a great time with Amir, our server at Piccalilli, the new Culver City restaurant that somehow combines Asian and Lowcountry influences and makes it work. Amir made our whole meal fun, guiding us toward whole head-on shrimp with Japanese curry salt and katsu with chicken fat and bird’s eye chiles. It’s an interesting restaurant—they use black lighting that’s aimed like a spotlight at your table, lighting up your food in a way that warm light can’t enhance. The lighting designer, John Barlow, worked with the chefs to ensure the food is plated especially for the lighting set-up. But let’s be real—we’re going back for Amir, and for those shrimp, and the scallion roti. —Dakota Kim, staff writer

A Taste of the West on the Rocks

A Taste of the West on the Rocks

Courtesy of Garrison Brothers Distillery

Sometimes, I learn about cool Western things just like you do: in the pages of Sunset magazine, or here on the website. One name that I’ve noticed coming up a lot—in print, on our site, and on editors’ lips—is Garrison Brothers bourbon. (Look for another mention in the upcoming March/April issue.) Over this past weekend, I decided to crack open a bottle of Garrison Brothers’ Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey to see what it was all about. It did not disappoint. My glass had all the vanilla and caramel notes I was hoping for, and it started smooth and finished with a pleasing hint of sweetness. Bonus: Each bottle comes with a hand-written pedigree on the side detailing the production year, bottle number, corn variety, and more. I’ve brought home pets whose backgrounds I know less about. It’s all part of the distillery’s commitment to being transparent, sustainable, and local—values we’ll gladly raise a glass to. —Nicole Clausing, digital producer