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Critique my SF Trip so far...

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Hi Everybody,
My hubby and I are coming for a trip 3 nights in SF, one in Sausalito, (3 in Sonoma but we're pretty sure we've got that covered). We've done a bit of research both on the CH board and thru our friends who live in Sonoma. We're staying at the Westin Market St. We don't mind spending $$ on vacation, but blanched when we checked out the prices at French Laundry for the wine country part of our trip. So, here's where we're at so far...

Saturday -arrive around 12 noon -
- lunch - sushi...can't seem to get a consensus from the CH boards on this topic. Can anyone suggest a great one for lunch? We live in South Florida, so get pretty good sushi, but would love to have GREAT San Francisco sushi that we always hear about.
- dinner - North Beach Restaurant - Italian

Sunday -
- breakfast - ??
- lunch - Mission district burritos - Deciding between El Toro and Farolito, unless there are other recs. This also seemed to have little consensus on the boards.
- dinner - Slanted Door

Monday
- breakfast - Mama's
- lunch and dinner - deciding between B44, Plouf, Michael Mina, Tommy Toy's - what do you recommend when? We definitely want to do a chinese option. Any others that are better?

Tuesday - Sausalito - staying at The Inn Above the Tides
lunch - possibly Sushi Ran? any good? we may just wander and eat lunch wherever
dinner - Christophe or Cacciucco.

We like many kinds of food, except not too crazy about Indian. We'll be doing a fair amount of American in Sonoma, so thought we'd do the more ethnic stuff in SF. What do you think of any or all of the above?

Thanks....

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  1. Sounds like you've given this a lot of thought! I would suggest that you go to Aziza for your dinner on Monday - it is Morrocan with a decidedly California twist. The atmosphere is very nice and they have great cocktails and great food. Michael Mina is very expensive and gets mixed reviews. I've been to both and think you would find Aziza to be both enjoyable and different from anything else you have on your agenda. You can reserve through Open Table. For lunch on Monday, I'd recommend Plouf above B44 - particularly if you enjoy mussels. If you want something that is more of the old-time traditional SF, Sam's is on the corner of Belden Alley. Sam's is very much like Tadich Grill. Enjoy your visit!

    1 Reply
    1. I'm not positive, but I don't think Mama's is open on Monday morning. You can join the queue at Dottie's True Blue Cafe, a Tenderloin (read: sketchy neighborhood) favorite with great breakfast.

      1 Reply
      1. re: pane

        It's a sketchy neighborhood but pretty shut down in the morning and Dottie's is very good. On the weekends the line can get ridiculous so it's nice to be able to go on a weekday.

      2. Man ... I was just going to pass on this but the ... North Beach restaurant ... no, no, no. That cduld NOT have come from Chowhound but a place like Zagat.

        Sunday - breakfast - Town's End on the Embarcadero near the ballpark. Wonderful house-baked muffin breakfast basket with fresh seasonal fruit butter.

        Tommy Toy's - Zagat again? If you must go there, take the prix-fixe menu which I've heard is the most decent of a bad, over-priced lot.

        I'd prefer The Dining Room at the Ritz over any of the other selections.

        Sausalito - Fish ... Fish ... Fish ... that's the name of the joint. I'd do that for lunch and sushi Ran for dinner.

        7 Replies
        1. re: rworange

          Town's End has always been one of my favorites for breakfast--I loved that basket of breads and muffins. I'm glad to hear it's still great. http://www.townsend-restaurant.com/

          EDIT: Another option, if you want "upscale" Chinese, why not do Yank Sing in Rincon Center (neat old building with WPA era murals) for dim sum for your Sunday "breakfast"? http://www.yanksing.com/

          ~TDQ

          1. re: The Dairy Queen

            Tthe even improved. The mimosa is now organic as are a lot of their dishes. Let's say for dinner they were serving Berkshire pork which you could get as part of a three-course prix-fixe for $20. Had a great grapefruit organic raspberry scone there last week and some wonderful fresh-squeezed lemonade.

            1. re: rworange

              Sounds fantastic--I don't recall if they were doing the organic focus back when I was a regular a couple of years ago, but it's possible they were and, since that wasn't MY focus then, I didn't notice. I'm glad they are doing that. Is that three-course prix-fixe dinner the thing they're doing on Tuesday nights now? I recall they were doing something along those lines a couple of years ago.

              ~TDQ

            2. re: The Dairy Queen

              Good call, if not Yank Sing, dim sum lunch somewhere is a must.

              1. re: The Dairy Queen

                I've checked out Yank Sing but DH isn't that into Dim Sum. I'm going to keep trying to convince him for breakfast. :)

              2. re: rworange

                Actually, NB Italian and Tommy Toy's were recommended by people who have lived in and/or traveled a lot in SF. I knew they were a tad touristy which is why I came to chowhound to find out.

                1. re: rworange

                  Please, for the love of god, do not go to North Beach Restaurant.

                  That is all.

                2. Yeah, if you want Italian on Saturday night, there are many many many good places in San Francisco to choose from that aren't North Beach Restaurant. I agree with the idea of Aziza for dinner on Monday, and Plouf is a nice place for lunch.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: JasmineG

                    Concur on Aziza. Also, bear in mind that Slanted Door's menu is the same for lunch as it is for dinner, but most of the best sushi restaurants are only open for dinner. If you flip around some of your desires, do Slanted Door for lunch and sushi for dinner.

                    My favorite Italian in North Beach is Rose Pistola. My favorite sushi is Kiss.

                    Again, consider Aziza (which prefer over Slanted Door anyway - but that is like comparing Apples and Oranges).

                    1. re: Carrie 218

                      Have you been to Rose Pistola in the last few months? I didn't mention it because of recent mixed and negative reports:

                      http://www.chow.com/topics/407529

                  2. Definitely not North Beach Restaurant. If you want Italian in North Beach, L'Osteria for cheap, Ideale for moderate.

                    If you want the best Italian in SF, A16, Incanto, or La Ciccia.

                    Chinese, Jai Yun. Nothing like it anywhere else.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: Robert Lauriston

                      Oh yeah, I love Ideale. Also for top-class Asian fusion, you might consider The House, just down the street from Ideale.

                        1. re: PulledPork

                          Perbacco's good but I rank it a notch down from the three I mentioned. Some reports here suggest they're inconsistent when the place (huge) is full.

                          1. re: Robert Lauriston

                            Fair enough. Well I absolutely love the three that you mentioned. I've just been shocked each visit to Perbacco (been once for lunch and once for dinner) that the quality of the pasta, the cured meats, and the entrees have stood up to those top tier Italian joints but I can't really speak to their consistency.

                            Great call on Jai Yun by the way - love the BYOB aspect. We'll roll in there with 4 bottles of wine and make a night out of it.