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March 31, 2008

A Fool and His Yelps Are Soon Parted


Starting April 1, 2008, Yelp is proud to announce that every time you “yelp,” an angel gets its wings. Oh, we’re also in talks to purchase the Brooklyn Bridge.

To paraphrase old Samuel Clemens, today is the day upon which we are reminded of what we are on the other three-hundred and sixty four.

March 28, 2008

Whether Naughty or Nice, Lists Are Now Search-able

Posted by Audrey Tsang

Searchlists_4 Yelpers have been listing everything from great hole-in-the-walls in San Francisco to fabulous boutiques in NYC. Now, you can do a quick and easy search for any-list and every-list that might itemize your fancy.

Bookstores in Boston, chowing down Chicago-style, auditory delight in Austin, Seafood in Seattle--you'll find it all.  But enough with the alliteration, it actually doesn't make for the greatest search terms.  Here are a couple more lists I found with the new List Search that I know I'll be using soon.  Korean BBQ in LA, life's a beach in San Diego, cheesey cheese steaks in Philly.  It's lists-of-lists-mania!

From the Welcome page, you'll see the most recently updated lists near you.  Clicking on the "More" button next to those will bring you to the list search box.  Take a gander, search around, you never know what list-y treasures you might find.  And if you don't find it, it's never too late to make a list yourself!

March 27, 2008

Silicon Valley's Marathon Elite Event

Posted by Connie Chang

Redir The 26th Annual Asian American Film Festival (SFIAAFF) was in full swing last week, and Elite yelpers and guests made their way to Downtown San Jose this past Saturday afternoon to be a part of the movie magic. Yelpers including Gloria H, Jaye C, James G and Randy F arrived at Camera 12 Cinemas for Part One of the afternoon Elite event and were greeted by the "Cinema Sensei" as they walked through the theater doors. Half of the group had a smashing time watching the laugh-out-loud comedy "Ping Pong Playa," while the other half enjoyed the manga-based Japanese thriller "Death Note."

After the movies, guests were led over to the after-party celebration at Fahrenheit Ultra Lounge & Restaurant. The entertainment and fun continued at Part Two of the Elite Event, where guests noshed on chicken drumettes, samosas, crab cakes, chicken & beef satay, tuna tartare and mini desserts. Props to John-Michael C and Ed H who were among the wild group of yelpers who ordered bottle service at 5pm, did shots with the owner and stayed 6 more hours after the event was over!

Special thanks to Elite yelper Vicky L who brought ping pong balls and movie posters autographed by writer and star Jimmy Tsai of "Ping Pong Playa" which were taken home by lucky trivia winners.

A huge thanks to fellow Elite member LeRoid D (Marketing Coordinator of the film festival), as well as Assistant Festival Director Taro Gato, and Fahrenheit owners Danny Chu and Eric Haraga for working with us to make the event possible!

To see the marathon event, check out photos snapped by our very own Richard T, and the awesome "manga" designed by Ron Jeremy R!


March 26, 2008

Boston's Tipple Magic

Posted by Ligaya T

On a bright March evening, Yelp elites old and new flocked to Great Bay for an indulgent happy hour of spectacular hors d'oeuvres and delightful Beija cocktails. Guests were greeted by charming servers holding plates teeming with incredible nibbles from the sea: oysters with lobster, tuna tacos, cod cakes and shrimp and scallop ceviche (as captured delightfully by Kara S below). Who knew how wonderful seafood tasted with rum?!

Eatsatgb After sampling each of the three concoctions invented just for us by master mixologists, yelpers were to vote on their favorite, the winner of which would make it's grand debut on the spring drink list. The bartenders happily took to the challenge with gumption and pulled out all the stops, using unusual flavors and ingredients like Baerenjaeger honey liquor, Pimm's and Campari to create smashing cocktails that brought out the flavors of the Brazilian cachaca. Anastasia R was a fan of the Bee Keeper, while Liz D "obliterated my last strands of charm and social graces somewhere around Brazilian #6."

Everyone was in the finest of spirits by the end of the night; Susan N was chatting away like she's known everyone for ages, another yelper divulged that her current obsession is hairy Indian men - oh the things you'll learn at Elite events!

ENORMOUS thank yous to the wonderful, generous and lovely staff at Great Bay, you all made the evening so enjoyable and delicious! And of course the Beija guys for bringing in the tipple magic!

Get the rundown and find out which cocktail triumphed straight from yelpers' mouths (or tell us what you thought) here and peep these shots of revelry from Jeffrey H and Shannon B (click).

Cheers & S.Y.O.Y.,
Ligaya T

P.S. Want an invite next time?   This has got all the answers.

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Yelp's March Equinox in the Nation's Capital


To celebrate the start of spring and the re-opening of Equinox Restaurant’s atrium, the Yelp Elite Squad gathered last night for Yelp’s March Equinox.

Elite yelpers sampled items from Chef Todd Gray’s inventive menu including upside down onion soup with house bacon and gruyere, crispy fluke with black orzo and preserved lemon and raviolini of organic local veal with lentil ragout and shaved pecorino. Cookies from Equinox’s pastry chef, Melanie Parker, quickly disappeared once spotted.

Libby F, Laura V, Meredith M and others could be found sipping tea cocktails affectionately re-named “The Yelper” for the evening. The man behind the cocktails, Equinox’s master mixologist, Simo Amhandi was recently nominated “Restaurant employee of the year” by the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington (RAMW). Winners won’t be announced until the Rammy Restaurant Awards gala next month, but yelpers have a clear favorite!

At the end of the night, DC’s lucky elites went home with their hot new '08 hoodies. What can we say? These days, it's all about being Elite!

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March 25, 2008

Buh-Bye Winter, Hello Spring!

Posted by Deanna Jue

Picture_4 A serious good-bye to winter happened on a lovely Wednesday before the first day of spring. Those spring showers almost came a day too early, as thunderstorms loomed for most of the morning, but all was clear in the evening. Thank goodness, as Atlanta yelpers could've all won 'best dressed!' The Food Studio, located in the historic King Plow Arts Center, let us take over the top loft and certainly left us wined and dined!

Michael of the Food Studio staff guided us all to the perfect drink to wet our whistles - there was the yelping dog, beer, red and white vino and even sangria. And there was even an appearance by the chef himself. (It turns out Kit F really does know everybody, including the chef!) Speaking of the chef, we nibbled on grilled beef hanger steak, orange, roasted beats and grapefruit, wild mushroom fritters and more!

We all felt David K's new haircut and Joel C doled out some serious "Snap & Bend" advice. Especially exciting to see some Elites out for the first time including the likes of Michelle C, Melissa B, Alicia W and Rebecca K. Also the mysterious Dio S and his awesome candid picture taking plus one Christina C. Also very exciting to see Carlos C and Christine C out and about! Picture_5

Yelp representation from cities from afar! We were lucky to have Miriam W from DC, and visiting yelpers Hen A and Holly T representing the West Coast from San Francisco and Los Angeles, respectively. Many a yelper had a newfound respect once they found out Holly and company walked all the way from Midtown!

Oh - and did we mention the Elite 2008 hoodies? The inaugural release! Much scrambling for the size with the perfect fit, and then a bit of modeling to make sure.

Big yelp love goes out to Stephanie M and Michael E for hosting us at the Food Studio! They also held a raffle for some simply faaaabulous prizes - big roller gift cards to dine again and the biggest bottle of wine this side of the Mississippi. Bellies full of all those tastes, we were all about to have one last night of hibernation before awaking the next morning to Spring 2008!



March 20, 2008

Yelp Gets Sassy at the Oakland Museum

Posted by Jessica T

The Yelp Photo Booth, manned by Yelp's very own photo extraordinaire Richard T, with Joshua L ("Ms J") as the Creative Director of the evening, made a special appearance at Night School at the Oakland Museum of California last Thursday.College students and recent grads from all over the Bay Area made it out to the Oakland Museum to check out the Artist's of Invention exhibit, grab a cold Lagunitas beer, and listen to the rockin beats of Amoeba, Live 105 Radio, and local favorites Hottub and Fred Odell.

The highlight of the night was all of the amazing East Bay yelpers who came out to represent!  Yelpers like Tina R, Maya SSeong P, Patrick M, and Faithy L, dazzled the camera with their striking poses, trendy wear, and winning smiles. Mr. Winkle even struck some of his own adorable poses.

Judging by many of the hot shots, America's Next Top Model has some steep competition!

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Yelp CreativiTEA rocks Chicago's Argo Tea!

Argo Tea, normally an oasis of calm in the rush of downtown, was transformed into a quaint performance space on March 19, 2008 for Yelp Chicago's premier coffeehouse (ok, teahouse) event, Yelp CreativiTEA!

All the Chicago Yelp elite squad needed was a microphone, a bit of space and one fine MC (Kevin N from Austin, TX) to make this event a smashing success. Ok, and the stellar tea/vodka drinks courtesy of Argo Tea and VOX Vodka helped a bit, too. The Mojitea, Ice Pom Tea and Hibiscus Chillers spiked with VOX served up just the right kick to make this event memorable.

The crowd was serenaded by George R, who bravely sung not one, but two reviews to the cheers of the audience! Melek L and Kathleen O both showed off their acting skills, and Matt L and Katie H beat the jitters (with help from VOX Vodka) to read their hilarious reviews! Almost 25 reviews were read to the roar of the audience. Many kudos to the lovely Yelp crowd for cheering on the brave readers and enjoying the show...

Special thanks to Kari and the crew at Argo Tea for hosting the Yelp entourage, and providing the delicious tea drinks, snacks and desserts and to VOX Vodka for providing the "oomph." Much appreciated!

Looking forward to the next party!

Andrea W & Colleen C



March 18, 2008

Phoenix Yelpers Celebrate St Paddy's Day in style at Roka Akor!


Rokakellyb What a classy evening... A good time was had by all who attended the Elite Event at Roka Akor on Monday night!  The special menu created just for us included green apple shu in honor of Saint Patrick's Day.  Yelpers were also treated to glass maze and wine, as well as a fine selection of food - oh the food!  Yum!  From crispy fried squid with chili and lime; softshell crab, cucumber, kim chi and chilli mayonnaise;  butterfish tataki, white asparagus with yuzu shallot dressing; pork and golden scallop dumplings; and chicken skewers - there was something for everyone!

Elite yelpers and guests mixed, mingled,and made new friends during the two hour event... it flew by!  We can't wait until the next one!  The parting gift was a special surprise for the lucky Elites and several even modeled their hoodies for the camera...

Special thanks to Jeff, Karen, and Carson from Roka Akor - we all felt like VIPs for the evening; you went above and beyond!  Thank you also to Andrew from FilmingArizona.com, our photographer for the evening.

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Until next time, SYOY!


Gabi K.

Lights, Camera, Action, Yelp! at the Tiburon International Film Festival

Posted by Jessica T

This past Satuday, the Yelp Elite descended on upon the picturesque patio of Guaymas in celebration of the Tiburon International Film Festival for our first North Bay Yelp Elite event. Some came by ferry, others by car and some even walked over, but no matter how each yelper found their way -- everyone was ready to party! 

Despite forecasts of rain, the weather held up and yelpers like Phil H, Tyler W, Tinna H and Andi T were able to enjoy the warmth of the heat-lamps beneath a picture-perfect sky.  As the night progressed, yelpers like Joshua L and Ted B headed on inside Guaymas to strike star poses with their new Yelp Elite hoodies. Others found their place in line, eager to sample Guaymas' salsa, cheese quesadillas and famous tacos. Throughout the night, yelpers enjoyed beautiful flamenco dancing, brimming cups of Barefoot Champagne and wine and kickin' La Pinta pomegranate tequila cockatils.

Once 9:30 p.m. rolled around, it was time to head on over to the Yelp-sponsored movie of the festival -- American Fork. Not only were yelpers able to get a sneak preview of the touching comedy, but join in an enlightening Q&A with producer Jeremy Coon. As the night came to a close, many yelpers made their way over to the Yelp shuttle for a special Candice D tour of San Francisco. Other Yelp Elites grabbed their Festival guides, eager to come back and use their complimentary ticket vouchers to explore more of the amazing films the Tiburon International Film Festival has to offer.

A big thank you to Edson and the rest of the staff at Guaymas for the beautiful space and delicious food. An especially big thank you to Siamak S (the Associate Director of the festival) and Rachel C for helping to put the event together and introduce the Yelp Elite to such a cool film fest!

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March 07, 2008

Austin Yelpers Kick off SXSW!

You hadta have your back stage passes ready, people, cause here on SXSW's doorstep, Austin Yelpers tore things up from the floor up at the Yelp Elite Squad's Event at the Molotov Lounge. The stakes were high, as the best costume took home a SXSW wristband, and in an evening with heavy duty competition (not one but *two* Freddie Mercurys, Amy Winehouse, Janet Jackson, Bret Michaels, groupies, guitarists *with* guitars, mohawked paparazzi and mohawked Grammy musicians...and our winner...Ozzy), things got out of hand early, in a good way. Some top shelf samples from Casserole Queens, brew from Left Hand, and a helping hand from Colleen from Chicago had us cranking things up in the best way possible!

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Boston's Sommelier Smackdown - Part II

Posted by Ligaya T

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It was a fateful Wednesday when Elite yelpers and guests new and old filled the walls of Gordon's Culinary Center to determine the winner of the 2008 Sommelier Smackdown! Contestants Michael Meager of Sel de la Terre and reigning champion Erin O'Shea of Eastern Standard scoured the vast racks in search of perfect spirits to compliment the lovely four-course meal as prepared Louis DiBiccari and Ian Grossman of Sel de la Terre.

The evening began with smoked sturgeon on a bed of cucumbers with grapefruit and shimeji mushrooms which was a Devon W favorite, while Cara P enjoyed the more rich pork belly and duck torte with rosemary apple compote. Damon I cleared his cheese plate and generously allowed me to devour half his fig and mascarpone dessert (yelp elite status forever)! As he noted: "It was a rare glimpse into the art of experts who've inspired me to drink more."

And inspired we were indeed! Anastasia R and Kelly G discovered white port courtesy of Erin, and many a yelper picked up a bottle of the Ridge 2005 Zinfandel as paired by Michael. Folks remarked that Erin's soft palate leaned towards the sweeter, more subtle wines while Michael chose more bold, generally drier sorts (picks here). The decision was tough but it turned out Erin pulled through and was named Champion of 2008!

Many, many thanks to Lindsay and David at Gordon's for hosting us in their beautiful facilities and creating such a unique, interesting experience! And of course chefs extrordinaire Louis and Ian, and Erin and Michael, cheers!

Get the play-by-play action or add your own two cents here! For shots of the delectable eats and sniffing and swirling, check out our Flickr set as seen through the eyes of Jeffrey H and the shots of bodacious Shannon B.

So many fun things on the horizon... Keep your eyes peeled!

Enjoy & SYOY,
Ligaya T


March 06, 2008

Philadelphia Elite Get The Royal Treatment at the Palace at the Ben

Posted by Carrie Estok

Oh, it's on. And it's been brought. The very first Philadelphia Elite event was held on March 5, and, needless to say, it was a smashing success (luckily, nothing was actually smashed in the process - everyone was on their best behavior). We were also joined by the lovely Stephy H, Yelp's National Marketing Director, who brought her superpowers directly from the San Francisco HQ to cheer us on and crack us up.

The swanky, sexy Palace at the Ben played host to an amazing crowd of veteran yelpers and new enthusiasts alike, and it couldn't have been a better mix of people. Appetizers were consumed (you haven't lived until you've experienced one of their samosas) and the drink of the night, the lovely Img_5361_2Img_5347pink-hued Yelp Rangpur Rose, was flowing freely. Big thanks to Tanqueray, who was the alcohol sponsor for the evening - who knew gin, ginger, pomegranate liqueur and rose water could be so darn delicious?

The evening also featured the beautiful henna body art of Jumana Bootwala, who adorned yelpers and their guests with the signature Yelp burst and other traditional designs as well as the paparazzi-like skills of our very own Dave H. Check out the photos to see such yelpers as Bill M, Chad T, Lakara B, Pearl L and a whole roomful of my new favorite people.

Img_5285Img_5252Everyone left happy, full and cozy, thanks to the awesome new Elite hoodies that were handed out (thanks Michael E for working your magic at check in and check out!). Thanks to our up and coming community for coming out and showing the love, and major hugs and kisses to Ryan and the entire staff of the Palace at the Ben - these folks sure know how to Img_5333show a group of passionate Philadelphians an amazing time.

So buckle your seatbelts, kids, and keep on yelping so you can snag an invite to the regular elite events...judging by the buzz over on the talk threads and all the great photos, the Yelp parties will soon become the stuff of legends.

Carrie E
Philadelphia Community Manager and Pal to All

March 02, 2008

Yelpers Strike Back!

Posted by Connie Chang

Redir Adventure and excitement. Our Silicon Valley Elites crave it! And on Tuesday night, the Elite Event at Strike Cupertino was filled with it!

Yelpers and their guests arrived early to get their game on. Hard core bowlers like Arnold G and Dave K even came ready with their own lucky bowling balls. Once inside, the 200 guests became like kids on a playground. The Strike crew provided guests with stylin' bowling shoes and $5 arcade game cards, and in minutes the 34 lanes, arcade, pool tables and air hockey tables were occupied with competitive yelpers!

2298895896_61a9bfc4c7 Between frames, Elite bowlers including Luis M, Gene A and Shari D enjoyed refreshing complimentary Wasabe Vodka lemonade cocktails and appletinis that were flowing all night, and the Trumer Pils that went great with all the wonderful food! Plates were piled high with yummy coconut shrimp, spanakopita and spinach artichoke dip. When the delicious apps were gobbled up, petit fours, cheesecake bites and cookies were brought out to satisfy everyone's sweet cravings.

2298887382_8eac31a09c_2 The 2-hour event seemed to fly right by, but several yelpers including Smiley W kept on rockin' and rollin' that bowling ball way after the lanes cleared, and Carole G and Serbelle I kept winning tickets, leaving with some Hello Kitty cute prizes. The best parting gift? Elite yelpers scored with the rockin' 2008 hoodies! They'll be sporting them proudly!

By the looks of the rave reviews and striking photos, Elite yelpers had the perfect game night!Img_1150_5

Special thanks to the amazing staff at Strike, including Steve, Danielle and Jessica -- we couldn't have asked for better hosts!

Game on & SYOY!
Connie C


March 01, 2008

Quad Annual YELP Elite Leap Year Party!

San Diego Yelpers certainly have a reputation for throwing down like no other, and last night was no exception. The Quad Annual Yelp Elite Leap Year Party at Anthology was a resounding success...and as of 11:13 a.m. on Saturday morning, it looks like everyone avoided jail-time or misdemeanor charges. However, Steven L (pictured center) somehow managed to lose his pants by the end of the evening...I won't event ask!Leap4_re

The night began with a bang as Veev Acai Spirits hooked us up with complimentary drinks beginning at 6:00 p.m. Veev was flowing like water around these parts.Leap8_re Leap7_re

Shannon Silva and the rest of the Anthology staff definitely delivered the goods, with passed and display appetizers 'o plenty! Tuna tartare, Kobe beef sliders, dungeness crab cakes and MANY more delicious treats filled the bellies of everyone in attendance.Leap3_re

As we ate and drank the night away, the retro sounds of Tom Scott filled the club with nifty grooves. Yelpers of all ages couldn't help but shake their tailfeathers as we watched day become night from the 3rd level Fireside Lounge.

After all was said and done, we were all invited to stick around and check out one of San Diego's favorite bands, Cash'd Out! As always, they slayed it. If you closed your eyes, you'd have thought the great Johnny Cash was crooning the night away on the main stage. They played for a full 3 hours!

Big up's to Molly Kirby for shooting some amazing photos, Anthology for hosting such a killer event, Cash'd Out for letting us sing along, Aunny D for driving down from LA, Christina V for kicking ass and taking names and of course, Veev Acai Spirits for gettin' us saucy. Click here for more photos from the event!