All posts by staciwilt

Neptune’s Net: Malibu, CA

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Ahhhh. Neptune’s Net. You’ve probably heard about it if you’ve been in the motorcycle world for more than five minutes. Located right along the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, it’s an ideal biker destination for lunch and scenic views along the coast.

What’s even better? Neptune’s backs up to some insane, twisty, canyon roads in the Santa Monica Mountains. Pro tip: Take the scenic route to the ‘net. It’s worth the extra couple of hours if you enjoy hairpins and switchback mountain roads.

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Motorcycles are abundant out front and line the streets on the weekends when the restaurant is busy. Inside, or on the patio (since that’s a much more accurate description) you’ll find tables to handle most group sizes. It’s first come, first serve. So, if you’ve got a big group rolling in, learn to socialize and ask to share with some folks sitting at one of the picnic tables.

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Prices, in my opinion, are a little on the steep side for what you get. I paid about $21 bucks for a “world famous” Neptune’s Clam Chowder Bread bowl and a Fried Calamari basket, which was filled mores with French fries than fried baby octopi. However, would I eat it again? Hell yeah! I can definitely get behind the “world famous” label on the chowder.

There’s plenty of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drink options available in the coolers along the back wall when you walk in to the restaurant to order your food.

Before you jump back on your bike, be sure to walk across the street and enjoy the ocean views. You’ll usually be able to find some surf rats waiting on a solid set of waves, and if you’re lucky, a comfy couch to sit on while you watch.

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Address: 42505 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA 90265

Hours of Operation: 
Sunday: 10AM-7PM
Monday: 10:30AM-7PM
Tuesday: 10:30AM-7PM
Wednesday: 10:30AM-7PM
Thursday: 10:30AM-7PM
Friday: 10:30AM-8PM
Saturday: 10AM-7PM

GD Bros Burgers: Signal Hill, CA

GD BROS BURGERS
1798 E. Willow St. Signal Hill, CA 90755

Hours: 11am-9pm 7 days a week

Price: $$

What started out as a food truck is now a brick and mortar food joint, with two locations: Santa Ana and Signal Hill. A burger spot is a burger spot, although I would definitely place this one a grade above California’s beloved In-N-Out burger chain.

I took a stab at the Bojangoals: a fried chicken sandwich with Sriracha honey and coleslaw, with a fried egg and pepper jack cheese added. The menu is a-la-carte, so if you want some fries, you’ll be adding it to your order. Pro tip: get the parmesan truffle fries.

Be sure to ask about their milkshakes! Flavors are constantly rotating. We tried out the Oreo and Red Velvet shakes. Both were bomb.

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Juanitas Taco Shop

Everybody loves tacos. How can you not?!

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This is a true mom and pop taco shop right off the scenic PCH in Encinitas that’s a bit of a hidden gem, unless you’re a local.  The menu isn’t extravagant, however whatever you order you won’t be disappointed. Straight up homestyle Baja Mexican food. One of these day’s I’ll branch out side of my comfort zone and get something other than Fish Tacos. I hear the carnitas are pretty bomb…as well as the horchata.

 

2016 Bell Race Star Review

Head protection is at the top of my priority list when riding a motorcycle. I might ride in questionable items such as shorts and tube socks, but it’s rare you’ll see me out and about without a helmet on, much less a full face. While I was living in Arizona, my roommate graciously let me test out her Bell Star Carbon, the predecessor of the Race Star. I was immediately hooked and after riding around Phoenix for a few days with it, I was sold. Unfortunately for me, the 2016 model release was on back order and I had to join the wait list.

Finally, around mid September, I was able to get my hands on the Race Star. In the last month and a half I’ve put about 10,000 miles on my bike and this helmet has lived on my head the entire time.

FITMENT
During the 2016 COTA MotoGP Races I had my noggin custom fitted for a Star Helmet. After learning and understanding the changes Bell made to the fitment, I wanted to be sure I got the right size. For 2016, Bell swapped from a 3-shell to a 5-shell & 6 EPS system. Each size has its own shell, which makes it critical to have your size figured out before ordering online, since most companies don’t allow you to return helmets orders.

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I had Bell look up my fitment scan in their computers and according to their records I was a Medium. What? No way. I’ve never been close to wearing a medium in my life. Plus, the previous Star Carbon model I tried on that fit me oh-so-perfectly was an XS. So here I go, off to Hobby Lobby to borrow a measuring tape to have my head measured. Sure enough, Bell’s records were right. My head measured in right at 22 1/4″ which is the lower end of a Medium. Being paranoid about the helmet breaking in too much and fitting loose after the break-in period, I ordered a Small.

There’s an added top pad which velcros to the roof of the helmet. Personally, I like my helmet to sit a little lower on my head, so I took mine out. However for others, this might be an added bonus.

BREAK-IN PERIOD
If there’s anything I can say about the quality of the padding, it’s that it definitely doesn’t lose its form for a while–on top of being extremely comfy and soft compared to lower end helmets I’ve worn. It took a solid 2,000 miles for this helmet to finally form to the shape of my head. I would have been safe with a Medium after all, however since I prefer my helmets to be extra snug post-break-in period, I don’t regret ordering a Small. Just a fair warning–as with any extra snug helmet, you’ll probably get a headache after a while if you’re on a road trip. Luckily, my helmet fits like a glove now and headaches are non existent. But for those first 2,000 miles…oof. Snug as bug.

If the pads break in too much, or you need smaller or larger ones, Bell does offer different sizes, and are a snap to switch out. The cheekpads are magnetized and come out with a slight pull. Being a girl, I get makeup all over mine. So it’s convenient to be able to pull them and wash them and have them sit back in the helmet easily.

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WEIGHT & AERODYNAMICS
I’ve heard a few people complain that the new Star Model is still heavier than some of it’s competitors. My Small is extremely lightweight and I can’t even begin to complain about it hurting my head from wind drag or weight issues–as in I can’t recall a single time either has occurred. This is easily the most aerodynamic helmet I’ve ever worn. I’ve already done an iron butt ride (1,000 miles in under 24 hours) with this helmet on and have had zero issues on the long haul.

The ventilation system on these lids is superb. With or without a fairing, I’ve gotten plenty of airflow through my helmet to keep me cool in the 90+ degree desert temps. And on the other end, the option to close and add the optional vent cover (which comes standard in the helmet) during cold weather months keeps me a little more toasty during the chilly temps. I’ve had zero issues with my helmet fogging up while I ride, which is another pro.

NOISE
For me, personally, this helmet is quiet. However, I’ve had a few people voice that they think its a bit noisy. I listen to music while I ride, and with headphones in I have zero clue whats going on in the world outside my helmet. Its me, the road, and Taylor Swift’s 1989 album blasting at 90mph. Even without headphones in, I feel that the Race Star has an appropriate amount of noise-cancellation to still hear your bike and focus on the road. Maybe I have extremely selective hearing, or maybe I don’t get annoyed easily by the ability to hear the world around me when I choose to.

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VISIBILITY
The new “Panovision” shield design is intended to increase the riders’ field of vision. I’ve had zero issues finding people in my blind spots and checking for fellow riding buddies or cars out of the corner of my eye.

FEATURES

  • 3K Carbon Shell
  • Eyewear Compatible
  • Flex Impact Liner
  • Magnefusion™ Removable Magnetic Cheekpads
  • Raceview Orientation
  • Virus Cool Jade Power mesh Liner
WEIGHT: 1500 Grams

CERTIFICATION:

  • DOT
  • ECE 22.05
  • Snell M201

 

IN CONCLUSION…
Bell Powersports has done it again! I’m completely sold on the Star Series, and have absolutely zero negative things to say about it. There’s been zero issues with the quality and build of the helmet, and zero issues performance-wise.

10/10 I would recommend this to a friend, family, or foe.