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Aug 13, 2009 09:54 AM

What should I explore next in the Haight?

Looking for a breakfast/brunch spot in the Haight, in my ongoing attempt to explore some neighborhoods that I don't visit very often.

Criteria: casual, cheap, sit down spot that won't have lines out the door on a Sunday around 1pm. Savory breakfast or lunch items would be ideal (read: biscuits and gravy, juicy hot sandwiches or sausages). I'm not really in the mood for Ethiopian or Thai.

I've been to and liked Kate's Kitchen and Memphis Minnie's--what's next?

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  1. I dunno about lines on Sunday, but the food at Magnolia is good, and they serve brunch till 2:30. Crispy pork belly with fried egg and black-eyed peas? Fried chicken sandwich with bacon, avocado, and blue cheese?

    Magnolia Pub & Brewery
    1398 Haight St, San Francisco, CA 94117

    2 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston

      The Grind is decent, but there's no line at Kate's Kitchen at 1pm, and Kate's serves similar food, but better.

      Bistro St. Germain just opened for brunch; I've only been there for dinner but their savory items are good. Obviously a little pricier.

      I hear good things about Pork Store.

      1. re: vulber

        Bistro St. Germain is drawing a pleasant crowd :D

        Bistro St. Germain
        518 Haight St, San Francisco, CA

    2. The Pork Store Cafe fits your bill. Not gourmet by any means, but good, stick-to-your-ribs food:

      Pork Store Cafe
      1451 Haight St, San Francisco, CA 94117

      1. Thanks, everyone! Magnolia and Pork Store definitely fit the bill. Am I right to assume Magnolia is a little more polished in terms of ambiance and food style, but Pork Store might be a little cheaper and down home?

        5 Replies
        1. re: Pei

          I've actually never been to Magnolia for brunch, but the quality of their food seems to recently have gone down; and supposedly they offer less of their homebrews now (which is the #1 reason to go there).

          Magnolia does have great outdoor seating though.

          1. re: vulber

            I actually think the quality of their food has gone up, at least compared to a couple years ago! (Though, I also have never had brunch there.)

            I've always found their beers decent, nothing standout, and I don't think that's changed. They always have a couple beers on cask, that's always something interesting to try and not something you find most places. I do find they bring in more guest brews now, but I consider that a good thing, especially if it's something uncommon.

          2. re: Pei

            I cant speak for Magnolia, but the Pork Store is definitely down-home cheap-eats.

            1. re: Pei

              Magnolia's pretty laid-back. Nice neighborhood diner sort of atmosphere.

              Outdoor seating? On the sidewalk or where?

              1. re: Robert Lauriston

                yup, there are about 4 tables on the Haight sidewalk

            2. also, if you don't mind doing a little walking, 2223 Restaurant on Market @ Sanchez has brunch, which I've heard many good things about, and I do know for a fact that their dinners are amazing.

              1. Reporting back:

                I tried a plate of biscuits and gravy at Pork Store Cafe for $3.50. Can't beat that price, and I got a generous pour of sausage gravy over two very fluffy biscuits. However, to my surprise, the gravy had crushed peanuts in it! Is this normal for PSC, or was it something they were trying out? I couldn't get over how odd it was. And even though I like crushed peanuts in some savory dishes, in sausage gravy it just made me feel like I had peanut butter in my breakfast. Everyone else's food looked and smelled great though, so I'll be back at PSC to try something a little more traditional.

                6 Replies
                1. re: Pei

                  I haven't been to Pork Store on Haigh since I lived there, but I have been to the PSC on 16th a few times since and had the biscuits and gravy. I remember nothing about peanuts being in the gravy and I think that is something that really would have stuck with me. I actually thought the B&G there was very good. And peanut butter free. Maybe someone knows more about the Haight location.

                  1. re: Meredith

                    Interesting...the plot thickens. I don't know what was wrong with me that morning, it's not like I'm usually shy around servers. I should have asked what was up with the gravy. Maybe some peanuts accidentally fell into the vat where it's stored.

                    1. re: Pei

                      Certainly worth knowing if there are peanuts in a dish for safety sake.

                      1. re: wolfe

                        I was thinking that too. Sausage gravy is precisely the kind of thing most people would take a bite of without even asking about peanuts. Even someone with peanut allergies might not think to ask!

                      2. re: Pei

                        Maybe the cook got into the wrong batch of 'shrooms and mistook crushed peanuts for bacon bits...

                        1. re: Civil Bear

                          Now you're just going to make me cry. Peanuts instead of BACON? What a tragic mistake.

                          Has anyone ever seen bacon bits in the Pork Store gravy?