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Best of the Bay Area 2012

Living in the innovation capital of the United States is a double-edged sword: On the one hand, there’s so much cool new stuff; on the other, there’s too much cool new stuff! What you see before you is our attempt to compartmentalize this blessing-curse—an exhaustively compiled compendium of the best new eats, drinks, parties, apps, wild spaces, arts scenes, and all-female arm-wrestling competitions that the Bay Area has to offer. While there’s no shortage of success stories —ideas and trends that have germinated into bustling businesses and full fledged local obsessions—there are instances when even seemingly inspired ideas go off the deep end, hence our short list of so-bad-they’re good arrivals we’re calling “Best In Theory.”

And in this year's Best of the Bay Poll we asked for readers' favorite San Francisco standbys. In each section we reveal the winners according to 799 respondents.

Best of the Bay Area 2012

Socializing

Food + Drink

Recreation

The Life Fixers

Style + Design

Culture