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California Questionnaire: Ayesha Curry

California Questionnaire: Ayesha Curry

San Francisco chef and NBA wife Ayesha Curry shares her California favorites

When she’s not courtside at a Golden State Warriors game, cheering on her three-time NBA Champion husband Stephen at Chase Center in San Francisco, or looking after her three kids, Ayesha Curry is probably busy working on her multi-faceted career as a "food-lebrity" and "mom-preneur." She's a restaurateur, chef, and New York Times best-selling author. She also has her own magazine—Sweet Julynamed after her flagship lifestyle store in Oakland—and markets a dazzling array of products with her name on it: cookware, bedding, jewelry, meal kits, and textiles. Below, the lifestyle expert and mother dishes out some of her California favorites.

Where do you live? East Bay in San Francisco.

Why do you live in the Bay Area? Initially it was because Steph was drafted here in 2009. But if you were to ask us now, we don’t want to live anywhere else—we love it here. I love that I can go two hours in any direction and find the beach or the mountains or snow. It’s all there.

Who or what is your greatest California love? Wunderlich County Park in Woodside. It’s what I think of when I think of nature. It’s amazing.

What is the biggest misperception about Californians? That we all surf. I didn’t take lessons; I took lesson. Terrible. I’m going to try again.

What is the stereotype that most holds true? People think that we’re friendly. And I think another stereotype about California that holds true is that you don’t have to pay extra for avocados or guac. Go to the East Coast and it’s like $3 extra.

What is your favorite Golden State splurge? Dungeness crab. 

Time for a road trip—where are you going? The drive from the Bay Area to Los Angeles. Head south down U.S 101 to see all the cattle and pass by the cherry and peach farms. We did it once and took the top down and it was just such a special drive. Then we went to Malibu and drove up the Pacific Coast Highway to return home. I love just finding a random stopping point to watch the waves and sit on the rocks. This is going to be stereotypical: I love Nobu Malibu. The waves are so loud. The sunsets are beautiful. I can’t get enough. And I’d stay at any of the Proper Hotels. The Proper in Santa Monica is my favorite. That would be a fun, fun drive.

If you could decree an official state culinary experience, what would it be? California being a melting pot was the inspiration for my restaurant with Michael Mina, International Smoke. And the idea was to focus on his global grilling experience, where you could feel like you had your passport stamped in every country without ever leaving California. I would make that the official state culinary experience—have our Korean ribs, have our St. Louis ribs, have our California-style seafood platter.

What does sustainability mean to you? I love this planet and I want it to be here for my kids and my children’s children and their children. And I’m well aware of the global crisis that we're in right now, when it comes to making sure that we keep this earth a beautiful place. But the truth of the matter… is that it’s something that I’m still learning how to implement into my life. It’s a learning process. Taking one small step is doing your part, like using a recyclable straw. A small step like that, is, like, thank you for doing something.

Where would you go for the ultimate shopping spree? The McMullen Boutique in Oakland. Sherri McMullen has this premier boutique that offers luxury brands and very bespoke things. And—if I’m allowed to mention it—I have a boutique in Oakland called Sweet July and we have the most amazing coffee and bread pudding and homewares and self-care items.

Best California song? “Malibu” by Miley Cyrus. It’s a great driving song. It puts me in that zone, even if I’m not driving. I feel the wind in my hair. For some reason, I can now smell saltwater. That’s how it makes me feel. And it’s just a romantic song because California’s romantic.

How would your California dream day unfold? I think the perfect California day is waking up to the most beautiful sunshine in the morning. The whole family will stay in their pajamas later than we should, opening all the curtains and the windows, letting in the fresh air. Then we make the most perfect cast-iron pancakes and epic almond-milk latte. Then maybe we slow roll it to our nearest park and watch the kids play and have, you know, a cooler cup that has something other than water in it. Nobody has to know. These days it’s probably a gin and tonic. And then we will have a picnic lunch. Then I think we take it back home and make a nice dinner and eat it outside. That is what I love about living here: I can dine alfresco year-round.