Story and Photos by Lee Daley. San Francisco’s Top of the Mark is now celebrating its reopening with new tasting experiences. The iconic 19th-floor penthouse lounge atop the Mark Hopkins Hotel has added a new “Vodka Expressions” curated tasting menu.
New too is the Friday evening live DJ music session from 4:30 to 9:30 PM. What hasn’t changed are the 360-degree views of the San Francisco skyline seen from every window. Returning patrons and new guests can still unwind in the elegant ambiance of the 19th-floor penthouse lounge.
The Views: Here is where patrons can channel their inner Ansel Adams with frame-worthy photos of views from every window. On a foggy afternoon or evening, you’ll want to capture the romance with naturally hued black and white images of San Francisco’s dramatic skyline as cloud tendrils caress the spire of the TransAmerica building.
Follow up with a toast as you sample the curated Vodka Expressions pairing flight. The indulgent sweet flight pairs with delicious treats from Kollar Chocolates. For the adventurous, the Hanson Habanero Vodka can be paired with Kollar’s Orange Grand Marnier Chocolate. Sweet and savory, the peppers come through strong on the nose and palate but are balanced by a hint of lemongrass on the finish. Choose from five flavors of Hanson Vodka – Original, Cucumber, Meyer Lemon, Mandarin, and Habanero. Each one lends itself to a unique pairing flight. Signature cocktails, wine, beer, and light bites are also on offer.
The staff advises that visitors may come across a few servicemen enjoying a “Squadron Shot,” in honor of a cherished tradition dating back to World War II. In 1941, when the United States entered World War II, Top of the Mark became a destination for soldiers bound for the Pacific to enjoy one last drink before shipping out. Here, they would toast the Golden Gate Bridge for luck. This led to traditions such as the “Squadron Bottle,” where servicemen who came to the Top of the Mark would sometimes leave a bottle with the bartender for when they returned safely. Any Squadron member who visited the bar was welcome to sign his name to the bottle and drink for free. But, should that be the last drink from the bottle, he was honor-bound to buy the next one. Even now, military personnel and veterans can enjoy a free “Squadron Shot.”
For a 3D VIRTUAL TOUR of Top of the Mark: https://bit.ly/3hJk8nn
Welcome Hours: Tuesday – Thursday 4:30 pm – 11:00 pm, Fridays & Saturdays 4:30 pm – 11:30 pm
(Appetizers offered 4:30 – 9:30 pm Daily) Closed Sunday & Monday.
InterContinental Mark Hopkins Hotel is a beloved landmark at the crest of celebrated Nob Hill. 999 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94108. Telephone: 415-392-3434
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