Perfect Foodie Day in San Francisco?
It's our 10th wedding anniversary, and we can't leave the kids overnight, but we can leave them with grandparents for the day, so I'm looking for suggestions for the perfect, romantic? foodie day.
It's been 15 years since I lived in San Francisco, and we only come for brief visits now, so I don't really know what's new and good, and I'm not sure how to fit it all in. We're particularly looking for places that will be more enjoyable without the kids in tow (the Ferry Building is high on our list). I think lunch will be the major meal of the day.
I'm not really qualified to answer your question, since I'm not among the many Perfect Foodies around here, but can offer a suggestion. Since your adventure will be built around lunch it would help a lot to know if it will be a weekday or a weekend day, since the ambience (and the very availability) of restaurants will differ greatly between weekday and weekend in many parts of town.
If you are going to the Ferry Building go to Hog Island Oyster Company. Great views and the oysters are fantastic. It's not romantic, but it's good and you could have a mid-afternoon snack and a nice glass of wine.
For a romantic lunch, I'd recommend Bix. Ask for a booth upstairs.
assuming a saturday start, breakfast around 8:30 a.m. at primavera (back of the ferry terminal) should work just fine. later, grab a few snacks and walk up the filbert steps to coit tower. take the greenwich steps down (double secret stuff, very cool) back to the ferry terminal (wine merchants) for a pick-me-up. off to jardiniere for a wonderfully romantic dinner. maybe not perfect. but pretty damned close.
You could start at Swan Oyster Depot for some oysters, then hop on the California cable car to ride it up and over Nob Hill for great views.
While you're at the top of the hill, maybe you'll like to pop into the Ritz Carlton or The Big Four Bar at the Huntington Hotel for a cocktail?
From there, you could easily walk down into Union Square, North Beach, Chinatown, or continue on the cable car downtown. It'll end right near the Ferry Building where you can enjoy great views, great foodie diversions. Lunch at Boulevard strikes me as very romantic...
(hmm...I think I have to do this itinerary myself soon!)
1 Mission St., San Francisco, CA 94105
1075 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94108
The Terrace at the Ritz-Carlton
600 Stockton St, San Francisco, CA 94108
My favorite is sort of a combination of Steve and Absonot: Start at the Ferry Building. Then take the California line cable car to the top of Nob Hill. Have a drink at the Top of the Mark. Then walk down into Chinatown and graze along Stockton as far as Jackson and nip down Jackson to Grant and hit Golden Gate Bakery (egg custard tarts and coconut tarts and macaroons are my favorites). Continue along Grant across Broadway into North Beach. Stroll North Beach cafes and bakeries, maybe walk down Columbus to XOX truffles. Then head up Telegraph Hill and down the steps back to the Embarcadero. There are lots of options for lunch along the way, depending on whether you want a fancy sit-down lunch, something simple but delicious, or want to skip lunch per se entirely and just graze.