5 Stores on Cortland to Help You Cook a Divine New Year’s Dinner

What better way to ring in the New Year than pulling together an intimate dinner party at home with close friends. Sharing good food and creating that sense of community is a great way to toast to a healthy New Year.

There’s so much creativity that can happen in your kitchen with these specialty stores on Cortland. Bring friends together, invite the neighbors over for a drink and toast to the New Year with gratitude for the beautiful city and neighborhood you live in.

We’ve done a round-up of five places on Cortland Avenue that will up-level your New Year’s dinner, to make a feast your friends will never forget.

1) Avedano’s Meats: The Main Course

One of the few whole animal butchers in San Francisco, and they are still committed to serving sustainably grown meats. They have a variety of hard to find meats like guinea fowl, goose, and cornish hens. As well the standard favorites like prime rib, beef tenderloin, and pork chops. 

Did you know that pork is specifically known to bring good luck on New Year’s Day?


One reason has to do with the way pigs behave. There’s a theory that chickens and turkeys scratch backward but a pig buries his snout into the ground and moves forward—in the same direction you want to head in the New Year.

Eating pork (and cabbage) on New Year’s is an Eastern European tradition. You can find some inspiration on a pork tenderloin here.

2) Good Life Grocery: Sides and Salads

The neighborhood’s local natural foods store, Good Life Grocery has been on Cortland Avenue since 1991. It consistently offers quality conventional and organic produce They also have a great cheese section and a full deli to create some delicious appetizers and side dishes. 

You can get creative and make a champagne salad with this recipe. All you need are romaine leaves, breadsticks, and a creamy champagne dressing – and viola – you have a stylish side salad to celebrate with!

3) The Epicurean Trader: Whiskey Cocktails, Wine and Champagne

The small but mighty Bernal location carries some cultish food brands in a city that workshops food. In the two and a half short years they’ve been open on Cortland Avenue they’ve won Best of the Bay for spirits by San Francisco Magazine twice.

You’ve heard the saying, “All Bourbon is Whiskey, but not all Whiskey is Bourbon.” And they are not all created equal. They carry the cult phenomenon, Old Rip Van Winkle Whiskey. And also Koval makes organic specialty spirits from scratch.

4) Bernalese: Glassware, Cocktails Shakers and Handy Kitchen Gadgets

Bernalese is the latest addition to the shops on Cortland Avenue. It combines stylish, craftsman antique with contemporary kitchenware. If you need something at the last minute, you shouldn’t have to get in your car and leave the neighborhood. Whether it’s a pepper grinder or replacing wine glasses, there’s a place to find it locally.

And for those signature whiskey cocktails, you can pick up a shaker and some chic glasses to toast the New Year in style.

5) Black Jet Baking Co.: Dessert

Gillian Shaw Lungren isn’t new to the neighborhood. She and Head Baker, Max Newman met while working at the old Liberty Cafe. That’s where they honed their skills for the flaky and tasty pie crust that’s their specialty. It’ll take you right back to your childhood.

In Bernal Heights, you can cook a special feast and do all the shopping on Cortland Avenue. Within a five-block radius are some of the most desirable specialty food stores in San Francisco.

Link Love:

Avedano’s Meats: 235 Cortland Ave, (415) 285-6328

Good Life Grocery: 448 Cortland Ave, (415) 648-3221

The Epicurean Trader: 401 Cortland Avenue, (415) 872-9484

Bernalese: 307 Cortland Avenue, (415) 696-1634

Black Jet Baking Co.: 833 Cortland Avenue, (415) 829-3905

Jen Baxter is a content writer and strategist helping companies creatively craft the story of their business online. You can check out more of her work at JenBaxter.com or follow her on Instagram @JenBaxterSF