Well now, where to begin? The San Francisco Bay Area has an insane food scene. We were moving too fast while we were there to get to enjoy more than the faintest tip of the iceberg. I suppose San Francisco is best known for Rice A Roni, Ghirardelli Chocolate, and sourdough bread. I can’t say I saw a single grain of Rice A Roni while I was in town and I also (very much to my disappointment) didn’t visit Ghirardelli Square. I did however drag my boyfriend to Boudin Sourdough down at the Fisherman’s Wharf. I LOVE sourdough…apparently more than chocolate if I skipped Ghirardelli, who knew?! Boudin Sourdough if I’m not mistaken is the original (please correct me if I’m wrong). We ate lunch in their cafe and it was simple yet delicious. Remembering the smell alone brings a smile to my face.
Another great lunch spot has it’s original location in Napa Valley, Gott’s Roadside. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. They serve huge, juicy, scrumptious burgers. The menu offers a wide selection of other items from chicken to seafood to salad, don’t forget the fries! But who can get past the burgers? That is what Gott’s is best known for and they do it with classic Americana flair. Whatever you choose, you can wash it down with your choice of soft drink, beer, wine, or thick creamy milkshake.
For a nice dinner out and a great view of San Francisco, head across the Bay to Sausalito and find Angelino. I’m pretty sure my boyfriend and I were the only people in the place who didn’t know at least a little Italian which to me meant we were in the right place for good, authentic cuisine. I’m sorry I don’t remember exactly what I ate, I didn’t have my journal with me at the time. All I remember is that every bite was fresh, clean, and included lots of seafood, olive oil, smoked meats, and homemade pasta. A place called Scoma’s is right across the street. This restaurant came highly recommended from some friends who have visited the area but when we were on the plane out we met a local who said it was a tourist trap…then she recommended Angelino. What I did remember to write down in my journal when we returned to our room was “seafood+great view=two thumbs up.”
We had hoped to visit Swan Oyster Depot as recommended by an Anthony Bourdain No Reservations episode and just about every review I could find online, but unfortunately we missed out on this trip. I suggest not missing out on your trip and I think we’ll be sure not to miss out when we venture to the Bay Area the next time. They don’t have a website but if you do a simple Google search you’ll find their address and tons of reviews. It appears the only downside is a potentially long wait for incredible food.
Instead of fantastic seafood at Swan’s we found ourselves searching for late night fare due to poor time management on our part. Oh well, these things happen from time and time and what we stumbled upon was pretty freaking tasty. Escape from New York Pizza. They currently have 6 locations and we found the one located on Polk near Broadway. They offer pizza by the slice or a whole pie. Delivery, pick up, or eat in…though I use the term eat in lightly. There were maybe 6 bar stools in a very cramped U shaped space so maybe not a great destination eatery but great to take back to your hotel room or a park. The service was lightning fast and friendly, the crust was thin and crispy (in a good way of course).
One thing that is hard to find in San Francisco, a fast food chain. They do exist but they aren’t on every other corner like they are in so many other cities around the country. Most of the restaurants pride themselves on fresh, preservative free, hormone free ingredients. The rest of the country should perhaps take a page from their foodie book.
And now I have worked up quite an appetite…Bon Appetit!