$9.63 a gallon: She sells the country’s most expensive gas and doesn’t ‘give a diddle’

Chevron station has become Mendocino’s latest tourist attraction

The cliffside town of Mendocino has long been known for its rugged coastline and quaint bed and breakfasts drawing sightseers from around the country. But lately, tourists are flocking to a new attraction in the seaside hamlet north of San Francisco for something you won’t find on the chamber of commerce’s can’t-miss list.

“We’re live in Mendocino, California, and we’re at the station that has the highest gas in America,” Ernest Walker, visiting from Texas on Thursday, told his friends on a Facebook livestream after pulling up to the pump at Judy Schlafer’s Chevron station on Main Street — not to fill up but to snap a photo of the price tag.

“That’s right guys,” he said while pointing his phone at the ticker for premium gas. “Bam! $9.94 per gallon.”

A gallon of regular is only 31 cents cheaper.

Dubious notoriety is growing for the only gas station in town, one that is earning scorn from locals in the tight-knit community and guffaws from out-of-state looky-loos. As gas prices across the country climb to near daily records and drivers are crushed by $100 fill-ups, Mendocino’s fuel depot has become a lightning rod for outraged drivers who say they have no clue if the local station is setting a fair price or gouging them for an essential good.

“I don’t give a diddle what the next guy down the streets thinks,” said Schlafer, the station’s 71-year-old proprietor who is fielding calls from fed-up drivers across the country. “I’ve gotten really hard.”