Readers' Poll

editors' picks BEST COMMUNITY EFFORT IN BLOOM Friends of Seaside Parks Association When Carol Mikkelsen moved to Seaside in 2004, Highland Otis Park in her neighborhood was just a patchy field with debris. She invited neighbors to a cleanup in 2010 and at their first gathering, 37 people showed up. The effort grew into a nonprofit, Friends of Seaside Parks Association (FOSPA), that coordinates with the City of Seaside to upkeep and improve popular local parks. These days, volunteers gather every Saturday to plant, weed, dig and beautify. With a grant from the Xerces Society in 2019, volunteers committed to pollinators and native species, and the fruits of their labor are paying off. Seaside’s parks are now thriving habitats for butterflies and bees. And dozens of volunteers gather weekly for family-friendly fun and service—a win-win for all. BEST COCKTAIL NAMED FOR A WRITER AT THE WEEKLY (NO NEED TO READ THE LISTING THAT FOLLOWS THIS ONE) No Elves Just Faries Bar Napoli Dolores and 7th, Carmel (831) 626-6335, Sometimes you want something smooth and sophisticated, but with a rustic familiarity and genial sweetness that speaks to afternoons on a sun drenched yacht in Monte Carlo during a Formula 1 weekend, a cigar at a venerable London club, fond reminiscence with old friends in a favorite dive or a stroll through the autumn leaves in the Tennessee mountains. Bartender Anthony Vitacca crafts this urbane, personable, one-of-a-kind, cocktail from two types of whiskey, two liqueurs and a dash of tobacco bitters—a well-traveled, yet forward-thinking combination. No way a cocktail of this magnitude would be named after, say, David Schmalz. BEST COCKTAIL NAMED AFTER A WRITER AT THE WEEKLY (IGNORE ANYTHING YOU MIGHT HAVE JUST READ) May the Schmalz be With You Vesuvio 6th and Junipero, Carmel (831) 625-1766, Imagine a cocktail of the people, for the people. It’s a cocktail that doesn’t lack sophistication, but prefers the company of those who live life daily. May the Schmalz be with You takes its cue from untamed nature—a combination of tequila, Aperol and Pavan, with a bite of lemon zest and a dollop of jam for sweetness. Yet this is a cocktail with a ready smile, one that is instantly comfortable. One can easily lounge with it on a football Sunday. This is bartender Anthony Vitacca at his best, a sip that could never stoop to the level of, say, Dave Faries. BEST PLACE TO SEE REGGIE JACKSON TRYING TO BUY A CAR OWNED BY KAREEM ABDUL-JABBAR Mecum Auctions during Car Week 1 Old Golf Course Road (behind the Hyatt Regency, on the Del Monte Golf Course John Steinbeck’s truck is parked in a prominent space in Salinas’ Steinbeck Museum. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s classic Packard, on the other hand, now belongs to someone who can choose to drive it—assuming they stand 7 feet tall. Abdul-Jabbar’s car was the focus of a bidding war between baseball legend (and certified car guy) Reggie Jackson and others during Mecum Auctions on the Del Monte Golf Course. Reggie struck out. But it’s that kind of bidding war that makes Mecum Actions so fun and approachable. There are multi-million dollar marques crossing the block, but also cars from every childhood. And unlike stuffier auctions, ticket-holders can grab a seat and watch the action, as well as stroll the grounds inspecting some 600 classic cars. BEST OF MONTEREY COUNTY® 2023 121 THANK YOU Weekly readers for keeping us on the top of your list once again! San Carlos St, Between 7th and Ocean Ave, Carmel (831) 626-3400 ’23 BEST SINGLES BAR BEST PLACE TO GO DANCING INTRODUCING BARMEL SUPPER CLUB, OUR CALIFORNIA GASTROPUB 2pm-late Tuesday-Sunday Check us out! Cheers to great drinks, great food, and lots of fun in the coming year! 5pm-11pm Tuesday-Sunday Congratulations! Enid Ryce Cinematic Arts and Technology College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences “Best Professor” in the 2023 Monterey County Weekly Readers’ Poll 1195875524 Best of Monterey - Best Professor 2.2x10.06v 23 02.indd 1 9/11/23 3:46 PM