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May 5, 1999 01:59 PM

Best of San Francisco

  • n

I moved back to New York from San Francisco three years ago and the one thing I sorely miss are the excellent food resources. These are some of my faves.

The best cup of coffee in San Francisco is made by SPINELLI. Spinelli was around way before Starbucks and is leagues ahead in terms of quality. They also roast the best-tasting beans I've ever had. They do mail order if you're interested: (800) 421-JAVA.

Every Saturday at the foot of Market Street and the Embarcadero is an amazing farmer's market. Two of my favorite vendors are MARSHALL'S FARM and BURTON & COMPANY. Marshall's, at (800) 624-4637, makes honey from local wild flowers and from fruit tree buds. Have you ever tasted honey that actually tastes like the flower? Mmm. Burton & Company, at (510) 652-0101, makes exquisite citrus fruit curds that kick the butt of anything I've tried from England.

Finally there's MASHUGA NUTS, at (415) 491-1889, a sweet, nutty praliney kind of confection.

Speaking of Mashuga Nuts, MITCHELL'S ICE CREAM in the Mission District sometimes makes Mashuga Nuts ice cream as well as some terrific other flavors, including lots of tropical fruit flavors.

Speaking of the Mission District, a trip there wouldn't be complete without eating a burrito. I think the best are at La Tacqueria at 25th Street and Mission. Small but meaty and tasty. They also have great fruit drinks, a mixture of mashed fruit, watermelon, tangerine, canteloupe, water and sugar.

That's all for now.

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  1. They're tearing up the Embarcadero right now, so the
    Saturday Farmer's Market has moved a few blocks north--
    I think it's at Green and The Embarcadero. Not sure
    if it's permanent or not.

    My own coffee preference is for Peet's, another
    hometown company (well, Berkeley anyway), but they're
    definitely a love/hate phenomenon--some people are
    fanatically devoted to them (myself included), and
    some think their beans are over-roasted. I do like
    Spinelli as well. Royal Ground earns honorable
    mention for two reasons: their coffee is pretty good;
    and the one near me used to have a chalkboard message
    reading: "We brew our coffee to MAXIMUM STRENGTH!!!"
    I admire that.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Tom Hilton

      Spinelli has been bought by Tully's, a giant chain
      from Seattle, so I'm not sur eif the coffee will stay
      the same.