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December 20, 2007

Houston, We Have a Yelpy Hour!

Posted by Fayza E.

2109725636_a836e2f6e9Tired sloganeering aside, make no mistake about it - Yelp Houston is alive and kickin' deep in the heart of Texas!  On December 12th, brave Houston yelpers bore the uncharacteristically brisk evening, clawed their way through the (unfortunately) typical rush hour traffic, and scoured the area snapping up scarce parking spots to make their way to The Tasting Room Lounge in Midtown for the inaugural Yelp Houston Happy Hour.

2109723772_4e6e81ed8dIn a classy, lovely, yet entirely touchable space such as the one provided by our gracious hosts, a mix of brand-spankin' new yelpers mingled with veteran yelpers to create a warm and toasty atmosphere for chatting the evening away, despite the frightful weather outdoors. 

2108948385_289be4368c_5 Booked schedules didn't seem to keep Shao-Tai W., Dolph W., and Jeff R. from sharing a glass of spirits with the lot before bustling along to their vicious evening commitmentsSarah P. slowly but surely conquered her nerves, and soon joined Mello M., Josh to the S., and Jolyn R. in entertaining the ladies and gentlemen in the "Fun Corridor" with their hilarious antics. 

2109065178_7daa2cfab4 More seasoned yelpers Cory O. and Lisa A. quickly discovered the Mediterranean-themed appetizer spread and the irresistible Malbec while playing social butterflies to newcomers like Armando O., Cindy L., Tatiana S., Jared L., and Melissa C.  Of course, any Yelp-related evening would not have been complete without the late yet notable cameo appearances of Adam O., Rolando R., Neil S., and Brooke M.

2108950077_8f4ce0d3cfWhile the Malbec certainly proved to be more than the sleeper hit of the evening, the clear-cut winners were the yelpers themselves.  Armed with Yelp goody bags full of Yelpstick, Yelp nail files, Yelp koozies, and much, much more, the end of the evening saw an energized group a little lighter in its step, and a great deal heavier with the myriad of new friends acquired in a mere two hours.

December 19, 2007

Yelp Boston Experiences the After Life!

Posted by Ligaya T

Gl_ladies Last night Elite and guests trudged through the icy cobblestone streets of Downtown Crossing to the After Life Lounge with promises of signature Hammer & Sickle vodka cocktails, tasty nosh, the sweet sounds of local music collective, Tuesday Night Squabble, and of course shenanigans with the whole Yelp cast of characters! 

GldistanceWe were thrilled to see Margaret (NanoMags) L, Laura M and Aretha W bursting in long before the clock struck 8pm. The room was abuzz when Craig C and his lovely wife joined the festivities for his Elite debut! After having been badged for months, Daniel S finally made it out to his first Elite event and tore it up on the dancefloor alongside Beth E, Amanda H and Flavia O.

Gl_chloeArmed with poker chips and BuyYourFriendADrink cards folks clamored for Yelptastic cocktails.Gl_byfad 'Flagged as Inappropriate'  was a big hit, as was the pomegranate tinged 'Yelptini.' The debauchery that ensued was testament to the incredible power of a quality vodka. There was much groping, sacrifices to the broken glass gods, even candy cane powder snorting. Oh yeah, we're hard core here in Beantown. See talk for the full story and Flickr for Trish the Dish's (here), Shannon B's (here) and Jeffrey H's shots.

Kowtows to BYFAD, Jeffrey H (helper Yelper extraordinaire), Yumiko F and the Good/After Life crew - a spectacular success! And of course, to my beloved Elite squad for bringing down the house at the last event of 2007!

ZipRealty is now using the Yelp API


ZipRealty just announced the launch of a Yelp API implementation that allows their users to easily access Yelp ratings and reviews.

People searching for homes on ZipRealty can now check out photos and ratings of the local businesses and parks that are close to the home they are thinking of buying. We had real estate sites in mind when we created the Yelp API and it's cool to see ZipRealty sharing the knowledge of the Yelp community with potential home buyers.

You can gain access to Yelp data using the Yelp API that is available for free from our Yelp for Developers website.

December 18, 2007

Pulling The R.U.G. Out From Under Yelp!

Posted by Meg McLean

L_f79bd1b6f0ad67b8088e9c802ae0b738 If you've lived in San Diego for long enough, you've probably heard of Ruggy. He travels across the airwaves of the Brand X Morning show at 91X, spins tunes as "DJ Notorious R.U.G.," was invited to "Come On Down!" as contestant #1 on the "Price Is Right" showcase showdown and sang for his supper on the American Idol audition show! SD Yelp's own Meg M had the chance to ask "Ruggy J" a few questions about our fine city for our Weekly Yelp and his answers were so great that we just had to highlight his responses here!

Meg: What's your idea of a perfect 24 hours in San Diego?
:  A perfect 24 hours would be on a Sunday. Sleeping in from raging on Saturday night, grabbing some coffee and breakfast at Mission Cafe in Mission Beach or Cafe 976 in Pacific Beach. Then, tailgate before a San Diego Chargers game at Qualcomm Stadium. Then rip to McGregor's for a celebration shot after a Chargers WIN! From there, head to the beach to catch the sunset. Later in the night, checking out a cool show at the Casbah...then ending the night at Rudford's or Commonwealth Cafe for a late-night snack.             

Meg: What makes San Diego unique?
Ruggy: San Diego is RAD. The best place you could ever live. Where else can you be at the beach, drive 1 hour east and be in the desert...and drive 2 hours north and be skiing or snowboarding in Big Bear? That's what makes SD special. Plus, it's December and while the Midwest is under ice, San Diegans are enjoying clear skies and temp's in the 60's.

Meg: With the holidays approaching, where might we see Mr. Ruggy J. shopping for friends and family?
There's a great spot downtown for hip, affordable "boutique" clothes called Luigi Vera. It's right by CoExist, kinda near the library. Really cool, unique stuff for the fashionista in your life! Also, I'm probably the only person in town that will admit to LOVING the mall around the holidays. I dig the hustle and bustle of the season. Downtown La Jolla is also a cool spot for a little Christmas shopping.

Meg: What do you think San Diego's signature dish is?
Ruggy: Fish tacos, fish tacos, fish tacos. This isn't a revelation by any means...but God bless Rubio's and Wahoo's fish tacos!

Meg: So when you're trying to impress the ladies... what's your favorite date place?
Ruggy: I really like going on dates in the DAY. I mean, COME ON...it's San Diego! We get paid in sunshine, might as well indulge, ya dig? It's kinda different, because everyone does the typical dinner/movie bore-fest. When I'm trying to impress on a date, a stroll around the Cove in La Jolla coupled with lunch on the deck at George's is pretty powerful. A day of frisbee golfing with a tall boy is kinda fun as well...on the low key tip.

Meg: What's your guilty pleasure food and where is your favorite place to get it?
Ruggy: Probably pizza. I've just LOVED pizza since I was a wee beeb. It's easy and ALWAYS good...even the crappiest pizza tastes pretty darn good. I dig on Bronx Pizza in Mission Hills, Lefty's Pizza in North Park, Ciro's in the Gaslamp and Basic in East Village! This question made me hungry...might hit up Basic right now!

Meg: It looks like keeping fit is a priority for you. What's your regimen and where do you work out?
I work out at Iron Core in Pacific Beach. I'm a certified Russian Kettlebell Fitness instructor, so my workout of choice is Kettlebells, for sure. This workout is the next big thing, but nobody has heard of it yet. You basically swing around big balls of iron with a handle. They range from 12-88 pounds. It's a kick-ass cardio/flexibility/strength workout that tons of athletes and celeb's are using! I even saw Ladanian Tomlinson working out with Kettlebells on 60 Minutes on Sunday! If he uses them, you should too!

Meg: Where are some of your favorite places to take out of town guests?
Ruggy: That kinda depends on the person. My parents-Something safe, like the San Diego Zoo , Sunset Cliffs or Blacks Beach (from the top, not on nudie-level). A friend from school-Casbah, Hash House , Chargers game, Deja Vu, Lou's Records.

Meg: Where is your favorite hidden gem (your favorite place or service) you would like to keep undiscovered but can't resist telling people about?
Ruggy: Spread the Restaurant in North Park. The most INSANE nut-butters you'll ever taste (nut butter sounds a bit gross, doesn't it?). Gourmet peanut, almond and macadamia butters in numerous different flavors. I think they have like, 200 different flavors! The white chocolate and pretzel is far-and-away my favorite. GREAT as a gift around the holidays!

Meg: What are some of your favorite dinner spots for: A special occasion? Dinner with friends? To impress a client? To eat at alone? To people watch?
Ruggy: Favorite spot for a special occasion-Gotta be Sushi. Sushi is SO sexy, I love it. It's such an event, so it goes hand-in-hand with a special celebration. I usually hit up Ono in Hillcrest, Zensi in North Park...and now, NOBU at the Hard Rock Hotel. Hot damn, that place is awesome! Dinner with friends-La Pinata in Old Town. Authentic, homemade mexican food and awesome margaritas! Turf Club is also a winner. To impress a client- Indigo Grill in Little Italy. They have the BEST mojitos in town, and when trying to impress a big-wig, alcohol is never a bad idea! To eat alone-This is gonna sound crazy, but the Nordstrom Cafe in the Fashion Valley Mall has the BEST tomato/basil soup I've ever had in my life! Plus, their mixed berry salad is pretty insane as well. I'll hit that place up solo everytime I'm in the area. People watching-Ra Sushi on any night is pretty good for people watching. Ton's of different styles collide at this spot in the gaslamp. Hipsters inside, homeless people outside. It's quite the melting pot.

Meg: Have a favorite cocktail, where is it poured?
Ruggy: A dirty martini with Blue Ice potato vodka from The Tractor Room in Hillcrest. Honestly, if I had to pick one drink to consume for the rest of my life, it'd be this! Make sure to rock the blue-cheese stuffed olives...aaaaaaaagggggggghhhhhhh, delicious!

Meg: Have any favorite hotels?
Ruggy: This one's easy. The Layfayette Hotel on El Cajon Blvd. It's oozing with history and the pool is amazing! I go there almost every single day in the summer as it's open to the public! They have a bar right next to the pool, so you can indulge in all sorts of alcoholic bliss while chowing down on food from the BBQ during the weekends.  I threw a rager there last Christmas in a HUGE room with a ginormous balcony for practically NOTHING. Best Christmas party ever! I served nogasake (3 parts eggnog, 1 part SAKE).

Meg: Any places that you see both tourists and locals interacting in perfect harmony?
Ruggy: I'm a total hipocrate, because I love checking out new spots, but tourist's bug the bejesus out of me! I lived in Mission Beach for 2 years and it was the worst during the summer. Spend some time living in Mission around a bunch of kooks and barneys in their vacation rentals and Chevy Suburbans, and you'll be jaded too :)

Meg: Working in radio and as a DJ you must have a favorite music venue? 
Ruggy: For sound, you can't beat the House of Blues. I know the get knocked for being associated w/ a huge corporation, but I love seeing shows there because the production crew is ON IT! I also love the Casbah and a place in TJ called Il Foro. It used to be a jai alai place back in the day...now, it's used to melt faces!

Meg: Best shows you've seen there?
Ruggy: HOB-Justin Timberlake (I know, I know...)
Casbah-Yo Majesty. Spittin' hot fire topless? Word, son!
Il Foro-Cafe Tacuba. Probably the best show I've EVER seen, period.

2119445771_de4edd4d79 Meg: Thank you so much for taking the time to speak with us Ruggy! It's been a pleasure!
Ruggy: Ain't  no thang but a chicken wang. Live long and prosper...and hold onto your butts.

December 14, 2007

Yelp's Gonna Knock You Out!

Posted by Connie Chang

The SF Yelp Elite Squad threw their last punch of the year during Wednesday night's event at Titanium Training Center. Yelpers came out in their gym kicks and got a ringside view of the four matches lined up for the evening, including the main event between Miguel Lopez and Malloy. The highlight of the night was when Yelp's very own Jaena G. and Aspasia S. put on their I Love Yelp tank tops and boxing gloves and duked it out over 3 rounds. Yelper ring boy Joshua L. got the crowd all pumped up!

While watching the boxers sock each other, yelpers were quenched by bottles of sake2me and Vitamin Water. The ravenous guests went through SF's newly opened Local restaurant's tasty bites and Victor's Pizza. Two winners from the raffle received a one-month membership to the gym and a 6-week boxing bootcamp class. We expect to see 6-pack abs on both of them soon!

Afterwards yelpers, including Tinna H. and Adam W., headed over to Vertigo where party animal Mr. Winkle got on the decks during his first night out with the Yelp Elite.

Thanks to incredible yelper Jason K. for capturing lots of great action shots throughout the evening, and a huge thanks to Simon and Paul, and the rest of the amazing staff at Titanium for providing us with a smashing time! We look forward to ringing in the new year with all of you!
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December 12, 2007

LA Yelp Celebrates the Holidays, Block Party Style!

It happened upon one city block in Santa Monica, on a lazy Sunday afternoon, LA yelpers swept in from far and wide to celebrate the 2nd Annual Holiday Party in style. That style was provided by the lovely ladies (and gentlemen) of Studio DNA in Santa Monica, where some very lucky yelpers were handpicked to receive complimentary hair styling sessions throughout the day.

The sexy factor was kicked up a notch thanks to the Angel City Derby Girls who came out in full effect to rep LA Yelp to the fullest, rockin' their red hot 'Make Me Yelp' hot shorts! Oh my!

We kicked off this fun-filled day with LA Yelp's very first "spoken review" sesh where our yelpiest yelpers performed while their audience enjoyed rare coffees and teas carefully blended by Funnel Mill, as well as a super chic Happy Hour hosted down the block at Bodega Wine Bar.

One lucky yelper even walked away with a super cool N series phone provided by our peeps at Nokia, along with other prize packages from Studio DNA, Funnel Mill and Bodega Wine Bar. Check out all the fun here!

It's been an amazing year for LA Yelp in '07, and there is so much more fun in store for '08. We hope to see ya at the next Elite party at the beginning of the year. For more info on how to become Elite, click here.


Happy Holidays & SYOY!

    ~Stephy S + Aunny D

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December 11, 2007

Yelp's 3rd Annual Holiday Party

It came and it has gone but yelpers are still talking about itYelp's 3rd Annual Holiday Party, which took place at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, was chock full of festive cheer: aside from a full open bar and kegs and kegs of Firestone Beer, guests were treated to tasty bites from such local favorites as Fish & Farm, Destino and Lingba Lounge amongst others.

Dance performances from Double Vision, The Hoop Girl All-Stars and The Fire Flies kept the night energized, and for some relative serenity the amazing exhibits with YBCA provided much introspection and wonder.

With all of this going on yelpers still found the time to donate over $10,000 to the YBCA by bidding on silent auction prizes that included a Gama-Go giclee, a "makeover" from The Archive & Nice Collective, and an opportunity to be a Bix bartender!

At the end of the night, yelpers were "zipped" to their next destinations, thanks to designated driver rides from our friends at Zipcar

Want to see more? Witness some of the happenings that took place, thanks to camera happy guests Patrick M, Andrew M, Paula W, Jason K and Mitch A, as well as the Nokia Nseries Photobooth and the A-List! This Talk thread also rallies some of the best shots of the night, woot!

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December 10, 2007

Seattle's Got Good Karma!

Posted by Michelle B

Karma_dj The Seattle Yelp Elite Squad was seen shaking it at Karma Martini Lounge in Belltown!

Maia J, Katie S, and Mel R got the dance floor warmed up so Shaun K and Bryan K could get out there and bust a move or two, or three. All of this dance floor fun was fueled by bottles of Tiger Beer and a few different Kismet Cocktails.

Kama_jon_2 The crowd was delighted (read: tormented) when Ian K and Anastasia B were given biters in the shape of Monkeys and Bison! Hilarity, bruises and a few lawsuits ensued.

Freshly arrived from LA Jessi M had a bit too much of a good time, and Quani C really partied it up at her last elite event in Seattle before she leaves for Austin. With Michael O missing in action John C quickly stepped up to the plate to be the official name tag holder of the evening.

Karma_kaitlyn Until the next round of scandalous pictures and hilarious stories.
Michelle B

Austin Yelpers Sound Off at Dominican Joe!

Jack Kerouac may be long gone, but the Beats had nothing on Austin yelpers recently at Dominican Joe. 

Because maybe the only thing as interesting as a great review is hearing the additional backstory that helped create it, Austin yelpers came together to share a favorite review of their own, as well as one written by someone else.  And what did we learn?  Lots, namely, that meat comas can be dangerous, that Colby B's dad is a riot to watch in retail stores, that Liz W has more courage than most, that Jefe R looks like someone's brother.  We heard all about Camron R's Myspace date, about Steve B's falling out with Whataburger, about why Tim League from the Alamo Drafthouse (our special guest) got a kick out of one reviewer suggesting yelpers check out "Homeless Wednesdays" at the new Alamo downtown locale.

And throughout it all, we fed off of the energy of one another.  From the silly to the sublime, it was an evening few of us will soon forget!

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December 08, 2007

Yelping around the Globe!

Posted by Deanna Jue

2092591021_79b8f6ef81_7 Yelping Around the Globe, the final Elite Squad party of 2007, turned out to be a night filled with amazing food, a fabulous looking crowd and strong (and tasty!) cocktails. 

Yelp2092598379_be131bb9a3ers munched on everything from risotto cakes to to duck tartine, and the staff kept 2093370940_f3ac8f4556drinks in hand. Much appreciated to those that brought canned goods for the Atlanta Community Food Bank on behalf of Cans for a Cause, too!


Night owl yelpers stayed for the Globe's afterdark DJ, shared a couple of meals, dance moves and toasts to a great year for Atlanta Yelp 2007.  Thanks to yelper Jessica T for workin' her fab photography skills, and a big thank you to incredible staff at the Globe for having us for a beautiful evening!

December 05, 2007

Yelp Chicago's 2nd Annual Holiday Bash!

It takes more than a blizzard to keep yelpers away from Yelp Chicago‚Äôs 2nd Annual Holiday Bash! The Yelp Elite Squad lined up in the snow to get inside Mrs. Murphy and Sons Irish Bistro for some bacon wrapped shrimp, crab cakes, other tasty appetizers, and Toasted Head Wine! Stephy S of LA Yelp, Fayza E of Houston Yelp, and Kevin N of Austin Yelp were at the door spreading Yelp holiday cheer! We welcomed new Elite Squad members, such as Mike O, while catching up with old timers (Matthew A and Katie H to name a few).  We even said ba-bye to Julia W, who will soon be leaving us for St. Louis. Sniff sniff.


When the rest of yelpland arrived for the main bash the party was in full swing!  Many yelpers, such as Kori M, spent half the night taking pictures in the fab photo booth while others were shaking their booty (Jackie P among others) on the dance floor. And a big thanks to our talented DJ, Nikki C, for getting the dance party started! The music was so good that we could barely tear ourselves away for the impressive chocolate foundation downstairs. The Yelp elves were there to catch all the impressive dance moves on Polaroid film and Santa even stopped in for some fun (& a little too much Toasted Head Wine).  Santa


Thanks to Jaime J and the rest of the staff at Mrs. Murphy and Sons Irish Bistro for making this the best holiday party!  Pic_6And a big thank you to our friends at Toasted Head Wine for making sure we had hangovers at work the next morning. To view pictures from Dan Gin Photography, click here. And if you lost your photo booth picture after too much wine you can check it out online in the Photo Booth Express event gallery (password: yelp)



Happy Holidays!

Andrea W & Elizabeth N

Your Yelp Community Managers

It's official. San Francisco loves Yelp.

No, really... we were recently notified that Mayor Gavin Newsom has signed a proclamation naming December 5, 2007 Yelp Day in San Francisco.

Who knew that old school Yelp Eliter A P. had so much pull in the Mayor's office? What an awesome surprise this is!

Sing with us..."Can you feel the love tonight...?"