255 Columbus Avenue

   mantranim.gif A charming, historic North Beach haunt, Vesuvio`s has displayed the works of local artists since its opening in the late 40`s.
Vesuvio was opened in 1949 by Henri Lenoir, who came to San Francisco from Switzerland in the early 1930s and was
quite an original piece of work himself. By the early 1950s, Vesuvio became a beat hangout under the battle cry: "Don't envy Beatniks--Be One!"

Lenoir also managed the dank Spec's, across the street from Vesuvio and down the alley at 12 Adler Ct. (415-421-4112).
Late San Francisco newspaper columnist Herb Caen was inspired to coin the term "beat" at Spec's in 1957.
He was talking to regulars about Kerouac's On the Road and the Russian's Sputnik launch. Caen later wrote both were "far out" and "beatnik."

Francis Ford Coppola penned portions of "The Godfather "at the club. Welsh poet Dylan Thomas loved to drink there. As did Jack Kerouac. Paul Kantner of the Jefferson Airplane still goes there to enjoy the bohemian atmosphere. And there is plenty of that. They have poetry reading there also and lots of cool  memorabilia of the beatnik times. thankfully still cool as ever.

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