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Visiting SF with 3 "food obsessed" daughters in May.

a
alhanson Apr 21, 2010 07:30 AM

Hi. I read the board and know that people ask this same question all the time, but hoped that it might be okay for me to present my question for more specifically targeted results.
My husband and I are bringing our 3 daughters (17, 19, and 21) to SF in early May. Our daughters are big fans of Food Network, have taken cooking courses, read food magazines, etc.
We live in Toronto, Canada, so they have been exposed to some interesting restaurants here.
Since we will only be in SF for 6 nights, I am hoping to arrive armed with a short list of "must try" places, as well as advice on whether we might need advance reservations.
My youngest daughter and I are vegetarians, so the restaurant should offer meatless options.
Otherwise -- everyone is open to just about anything. Mainly, I'm interested in having my daughters come away from this trip with the knowledge of SF's place in the world of food experiences. We're staying at a B&B on Union Street, but are happy to take a taxi anywhere that's not within walking distance. Are plan for the week is to walk most everywhere -- exploring neighbourhoods, crossing over the Golden Gate bridge, etc. Any suggestions you can offer on dining options for dinner or lunch (we generally won't do a heavy meal twice in one day, so light lunch options would be great -- or vice versa). I'm not necessarily looking for fine dining -- just interesting, wonderful dining experiences. Any help you can offer me will be greatly appreciated.
As the "mom", I'm always the one stuck with the research portion of any trip, and it would be heaven to have some tailor-made suggestions.

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  1. g
    Giselle RE: alhanson Apr 21, 2010 07:56 AM

    La Folie and I think you can even walk there from your B and B. Take a 6pm reservation. Your girls will be delighted. It is an experience and, like its name, very fun. I dont want to write any further about it so as to spoil the surprise.

    -----
    La Folie
    2316 Polk St., San Francisco, CA 94109

    1 Reply
    1. re: Giselle
      a
      alhanson RE: Giselle Apr 21, 2010 02:21 PM

      Thanks so much for your reply! The menu looks a bit intimidating for a vegetarian, but I understand they
      will prepare a vegetarian plate, so that's perfect. I appreciate your help.

    2. b
      bobpantzer RE: alhanson Apr 21, 2010 09:34 AM

      I think most restaurants in San Francisco offer vegetarian options these days, so that shouldn't be a problem. I also think that you should make advance reservations whenever you can. I've never been to Toronto, so don't know what kinds of cuisine are prevalent there, but I do believe you have a large Asian population, so assume you can get that there. For visitors, my suggestions would be:

      Tadich Grill--old San Francisco, primarily seafood and if you order wisely, can be good. I like the cioppino.
      SPQR - Italian on Fillmore, small, you can walk up the hill from Union or take the 22 Fillmore bus.
      La Mar - Peruvian, largely seafood, in a great bayside location.
      Range - tale a taxi to the Mission or take the 22 Fillmore bus.
      Perbacco - also Italian, next door to Tadich Grill
      Boulevard - very popular, great food.
      Aziza - take a taxi, Moroccan inspired.
      Zuni Cafe - very San Francisco
      Frascati, 1550 Hyde, Luella--all small neighborhood restaurants on the Hyde Street, cable car line.
      Dosa - Indian, two locations, the nearest on Fillmore just up the hill.

      I'm sure you'll get lots of other suggestions. If you're here on a Saturday, the Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market is a must. Hog Island Oysters would be a nice lunch venue there or try Slanted Door, which these days gets mixed reviews.

      -----
      Slanted Door
      Ferry Slip, San Francisco, CA 94111

      Zuni Cafe
      1658 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

      Perbacco
      230 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

      Tadich Grill
      240 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

      Frascati Restaurant
      1901 Hyde Street, San Francisco, CA 94109

      1550 Hyde
      1550 Hyde St, San Francisco, CA 94109

      SPQR
      1911 Fillmore Street, San Francisco, CA 94115

      1 Reply
      1. re: bobpantzer
        a
        alhanson RE: bobpantzer Apr 21, 2010 02:15 PM

        Thank you! You provided me with a wealth of information. I so appreciate your reply. Now -- how to narrow this list down ....

      2. w
        whiner RE: alhanson Apr 21, 2010 12:15 PM

        As a rather young person heavily into the food scene here...

        I would, as strongly as possible, recommend Perbacco and NOPA. Perbacco, imo, is just a spectacular restaurant, Italian, and amazingly well priced for what it is. Also, while food is straight up Italian, seems to have an SF vibe. NOPA is the epitome of SF -- it is fun, loud, the food is creative and terrific.

        Those would be my strong top 2 recommendations.

        Does 'vegetarian' leave out fish? If you and your youngest do eat fish, Ame should be your splurge. Meat for the meat eaters, but this restaurant really captures what SF food is all about and truly, it is excellent.

        Slanted Door is also great and a great SF experience but I think it is getting somewhat overpriced.

        La Folie is my favorite restaurant in town, but it is French (Provencal) -- As good as any French restaurant I've been to outside Michelin **/*** in France, but it is French, which I'm sure you have in Toronto. Vegetarian tasting menu. $$$$

        Go to the Mission and get burritos for lunch at some point. The most famous are La Taqueria (not certain if they have veggie) and Taqueria Can-Cun, though my favorite is Papalote.

        -----
        Slanted Door
        Ferry Slip, San Francisco, CA 94111

        Perbacco
        230 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

        La Folie
        2316 Polk St., San Francisco, CA 94109

        La Taqueria
        2889 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

        3 Replies
        1. re: whiner
          a
          alhanson RE: whiner Apr 21, 2010 02:19 PM

          Thank you so much for all your advice! I'm going to look into all your recommendations and plot out our
          eating adventure in SF! So many choices, so little time ....

          1. re: whiner
            r
            rln RE: whiner Apr 21, 2010 02:22 PM

            Along the Mission neighborhood lines, Tartine Bakery and Delfina Pizzeria, and Bi-Rite Creamery are all within a block of each other. If the food is not special to you being from Toronto, it's at least a show of a "food obessesed" neighborhood too. RE: Bi-Rite, I am a Mitchell's Ice Cream fan, but Bi-Rite is special!

            -----
            Tartine Bakery
            600 Guerrero St, San Francisco, CA 94110

            Mitchell's Ice Cream
            688 San Jose Ave, San Francisco, CA 94110

            Bi-Rite Creamery
            3692 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

            Delfina Restaurant
            3621 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

            1. re: rln
              a
              alhanson RE: rln Apr 21, 2010 02:39 PM

              Okay -- we are from Toronto but that doesn't mean we're not going to appreciate good food wherever we find it! We recently had the best meal at a run-down little Italian eatery in Scottsdale Arizona. It was cheap, cheerful, and allowed us to taste the best pasta we've ever had! We went back twice during our one week visit. So -- I'm blocking in a visit to the Mission neighbourhood! Thanks so much for your advice.

          2. Ruth Lafler RE: alhanson Apr 21, 2010 01:54 PM

            Canteen for brunch/lunch (hours of service vary day-to-day).

            If your girls are food obsessed they might enjoy exploring some food-rich areas (the Mission, Clement St., even Chinatown once you get off Grant St.) and making their own discoveries.

            -----
            Canteen
            817 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94109

            12 Replies
            1. re: Ruth Lafler
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              alhanson RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 21, 2010 02:24 PM

              Great -- a lunch place, and some food-rich areas to discover! Thanks so much for your help.

              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                r
                rln RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 21, 2010 02:24 PM

                If Clement makes the list, Burma Superstar may be of interest.

                -----
                Burma Superstar
                4721 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA

                1. re: rln
                  a
                  alhanson RE: rln Apr 21, 2010 02:30 PM

                  Thanks! I'm keeping notes of all these places as fast as I can! I'll be sure to look into Burma Superstar.

                  -----
                  Burma Superstar
                  4721 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA

                  1. re: alhanson
                    c
                    ceekskat RE: alhanson Apr 21, 2010 02:52 PM

                    Their samusa soup & their signature salads/noodle dishes are some the menus best veg. preparations. We've ordered some of the other dishes such as tofu tower (i believe) & the poodi and have been disappointed.

                    I also love, love Perbacco. Please be sure to tell the server you are vegetarian & to steer you accordingly. I recently had a pasta w/ wild mushroom dish which which was sooo good, I could have licked the plate clean; however, I suspected later it may have had a meat based sauce. I am not a vegetarian but am wary of such things as I often dine with vegetarians.

                    -----
                    Perbacco
                    230 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                    1. re: ceekskat
                      a
                      alhanson RE: ceekskat Apr 22, 2010 04:06 AM

                      Okay -- that's 3 recommendations for Perbacco, so it's a definite! Thank you for weighing in on this. Does anyone have a suggestion for a good restaurant on the other side of the Golden Gate bridge?
                      We'll probably walk across it one day (how touristy is that?), so would likely be looking for a place to
                      have lunch.

                      -----
                      Perbacco
                      230 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                      1. re: alhanson
                        s
                        SanJoseHound RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 06:50 AM

                        My husband & I went to Perbacco for dinner this past Saturday (4/17/10) and loved it. As mentioned, it has a hip, "buzzy" vibe but the food was excellent. Save room for dessert! Their menu is updated online, so it gives you a good idea of what to expect. Have fun!

                        -----
                        Perbacco
                        230 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                        1. re: alhanson
                          b
                          bobpantzer RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 09:13 AM

                          Murray Circle at Cavallo Point is a restaurant on the North side of the bridge, down beneath it. It might work for you. You could also walk into Sausalito, which is a bit of a hike but doable, where there are a number of choices. Then you could take the ferry back to San Francisco which is a beautiful ride on a nice day.

                          -----
                          Murray Circle
                          601 Murray Circle, Sausalito, CA 94965

                          Cavallo Point
                          601 Murray Circle, Sausalito, CA

                          1. re: alhanson
                            Ruth Lafler RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 12:11 PM

                            Just realize that it's a fairly long walk across the bridge (1.7 miles from south access point to north access point), and then you have to figure out how to get back. One thing to consider would be renting bicycles (there are places in the Wharf area -- here's one: http://www.blazingsaddles.com/maps-an...) and riding across and then into Sausalito, then taking the ferry back. Also, plan to do it mid-morning, when you're likely to get the optimal weather conditions.

                            1. re: alhanson
                              Robert Lauriston RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 02:26 PM

                              You can take the 28 SF Muni bus to the south end of the Golden Gate, from there it's three miles to Cavallo Point and another mile to Sausalito, where you can get the ferry or a Golden Gate Transit bus back to SF.

                              -----
                              Cavallo Point
                              601 Murray Circle, Sausalito, CA

                              1. re: alhanson
                                steve h. RE: alhanson Apr 25, 2010 04:05 PM

                                I've done the Golden Gate Bridge walk many times. I try to time things so I hit the middle at dawn. As others have pointed out, getting to the south side is pretty easy: you can bus there, cab there or walk. Sausalito, on the other side, is downhill and easy on the legs. A ferry ride home makes great sense.

                                I like FISH in Sausalito. We generally grab a picnic table there overlooking the marina. Food/drink is pretty good, cash only. It's very casual, great way to kill an afternoon. Not cheap. Hamburgers, on Bridgeway, can be pretty good but it's a meat thing.

                                Whatever your choice, enjoy the walk.

                          2. re: rln
                            Ruth Lafler RE: rln Apr 21, 2010 04:02 PM

                            I think Clement St. is good for a tourist because it's between two top tourist sites: the Golden Gate Bridge and Golden Gate Park.

                            I think visiting Berkeley is a great idea, too, especially with girls that age.

                            1. re: Ruth Lafler
                              a
                              alhanson RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 22, 2010 04:12 AM

                              Okay -- we'll have to rethink a visit to Berkely. The last time my husband and I went, we were both so impressed with the subway system -- I would like my daughters to see that (given that they HATE the subway in Toronto!)

                        2. JasmineG RE: alhanson Apr 21, 2010 02:24 PM

                          If your daughters are food obsessed, you should take them across the Bay to Berkeley -- take them to Chez Panisse for lunch or dinner (the cafe is probably better than the restaurant, and great for vegetarians), and spend some time wandering around the area. They'll have likely heard of it or Alice Waters, and it's fun for a teenager or young adult to go to a "famous" place. I second the recommendation for the Ferry Plaza Farmer's Market. An exploration of the Mission will definitely be fun, especially given their ages: Tartine Bakery, Bi-Rite Creamery, Humphrey Slocombe, a variety of taquerias and pizza places are all around there, and they'll hit things that they find fun and tasty.

                          -----
                          Tartine Bakery
                          600 Guerrero St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                          Bi-Rite Creamery
                          3692 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                          Chez Panisse
                          1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                          7 Replies
                          1. re: JasmineG
                            a
                            alhanson RE: JasmineG Apr 22, 2010 04:17 AM

                            Thanks for taking time to reply! Unfortunately, we won't be in SF on a Saturday, but I'm happy to see that there is a market on Tuesday and Thursday. Really -- we only have 5 full days :-( so I need to start narrowing down our plans for each day. I think the Mission district is a must (plus my husband and I never saw it last time), and the girls seem interested in Chinatown. Any shopping they can sneak in along the way will be a bonus!

                            1. re: alhanson
                              JasmineG RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 11:07 AM

                              The Ferry Building inside will be fun for them no matter what the day, so you should stop in there. The Tuesday and Thursday markets are much much smaller than the Saturday market, but they're still fun -- Tuesday is more produce oriented, so maybe do that one and then go inside for browsing. The Mission has some great shopping as well as great food, so your girls will love it.

                              1. re: alhanson
                                ckshen RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 01:40 PM

                                Chinatown has some places with decent mostly-cantonese food, but I think that if you are just there for the food, you can easily find comparable or better cantonese food in Markham/ Mississauga.

                                That said, the streets, especially on Stockton where all the produce/ meat markets are, are likely a little more colorful/ crowded and noisier than the chinatowns in Toronto and the big suburban chinese malls.

                              2. re: JasmineG
                                nicedragonboy RE: JasmineG Apr 22, 2010 04:57 PM

                                Yes, come to Berkeley. They'll enjoy the trifecta of Cheeseboard pizza, Love at first Bite cupcakes and Lush Gelato.

                                -----
                                Lush Gelato
                                1511 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                1. re: nicedragonboy
                                  JasmineG RE: nicedragonboy Apr 22, 2010 05:12 PM

                                  Well, I'd take the cupcakes out of that equation, I've never had a good cupcake from them. But the pizza and cheese from Cheeseboard and the Lush Gelato are all fantastic.

                                  -----
                                  Lush Gelato
                                  4184 Piedmont Ave, Oakland, CA

                                  1. re: JasmineG
                                    nicedragonboy RE: JasmineG Apr 22, 2010 08:50 PM

                                    yeah...my last cupcake there was kinda dry actually...but come on, at the risk of sounding sexist...but girls and cupcakes just go together.

                                  2. re: nicedragonboy
                                    m
                                    milklady RE: nicedragonboy Apr 25, 2010 07:26 PM

                                    Oh, if you're there, you HAVE to try out Masse's Pastries - share a small cake or tart, you won't be disappointed.

                                    -----
                                    Masse's Pastries
                                    1469 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                2. daveena RE: alhanson Apr 21, 2010 05:39 PM

                                  Your daughters might enjoy Incanto, too - if they watch a lot of Food Network, they'll recognize the chef, Chris Cosentino, who competed on The Next Iron Chef. The restaurant is best known for its meat dishes (offal in particular) but there are always quite a few veg- friendly appetizers, and at least one veg-friendly pasta.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: daveena
                                    a
                                    alhanson RE: daveena Apr 22, 2010 04:20 AM

                                    Great idea -- I'll ask them about that chef (they do watch that particular show!). Another show they LOVE is Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. We used some recommendations from that show to find amazing places in Scottsdale, Arizona during our visit there last December. They were little places -- one for breakfast, the other for dinner -- that you might generally drive right past. But they turned out to have the best food, and most friendly service. Perfect combination!

                                    1. re: daveena
                                      Robert Lauriston RE: daveena Apr 22, 2010 08:31 AM

                                      Cosentino is also the co-star of Chefs vs. City and was on Iron Chef America in "Battle Garlic" vs. Mario Batali, plus Anthony Bourdain filmed part of his SF "No Reservations" episode there. Incanto is a lot more affordable than Hubert Keller's Fleur de Lys.

                                      Here's a topic about places that have been featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives:

                                      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/683276

                                    2. v
                                      vis RE: alhanson Apr 21, 2010 05:54 PM

                                      Some good suggestions for you from others.
                                      On the more mellow side (at least compared to La Folie for example), I would check out:
                                      - Ferry Building...you guys can spend a few hours here for breakfast/lunch and go on the Saturday Farmer's Market. You can also check out Slanted Door which is one of the more popular restaurants in SF
                                      - Mama's in North Beach - good breakfast spot (lot's of folks like Dottie's - i've never been)
                                      - The House in North Beach - great Asian Fusion restaurant and you get a fun walkable neighborhood afterward. If your daughters have never been to SF, you might want to take them to Beach Blanket Babylon in North Beach which is a lot of fun after dinner.
                                      - A16 in the Marina
                                      - Pizzeria Delfina in Pacific Heights
                                      - Foreign Cinema in the Mission - it's a hip/fun place and the food is great
                                      - Kokkari - this place has gotten some mediocre reviews on this board recently but I have never had an unhappy visitor when taking them to this restaurant - another place that's very popular.

                                      In general, you will need to make reservations well ahead of time for dinners in SF.

                                      -----
                                      Slanted Door
                                      Ferry Slip, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                      A16
                                      2355 Chestnut St., San Francisco, CA 94123

                                      La Folie
                                      2316 Polk St., San Francisco, CA 94109

                                      Foreign Cinema
                                      2534 Mission St., San Francisco, CA 94110

                                      Pizzeria Delfina
                                      2406 California St, San Francisco, CA 94115

                                      Asian Fusion
                                      43543 Mission Blvd, Fremont, CA 94539

                                      27 Replies
                                      1. re: vis
                                        Ruth Lafler RE: vis Apr 21, 2010 06:42 PM

                                        To clarify, the big, famous farmers market is at the Ferry Building on Saturday mornings. There are smaller markets there on Tuesday and Thursday mid-day. The Tuesday market is mostly produce, with a few hot or prepared food vendors. The Thursday market has more hot food booths. So you could make that one of your "light lunch" stops during the week.

                                        1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                          k
                                          Kato RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 21, 2010 07:14 PM

                                          And if you do decide to go to the Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market on Saturday morning, just know that it starts getting very crowded by 10:30 -11. Early is better.

                                          I work on Saturday's now so can't go any more. I miss the shining fruits and vegetables, the view of the Bay, happy shoppers planning the meals they will be preparing, the musicians busking, and the colorful sweet peas. Have fun!

                                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                            a
                                            alhanson RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 22, 2010 04:28 AM

                                            We love markets! My middle daughter and I were in Paris recently, and spent hours and hours in a few different markets. I still dream about them! Unfortunately, we can't be there on Saturday, so we'll have to be content with what we're able to see on the Tuesday or Thursday. Thanks for your advice!

                                            1. re: alhanson
                                              Robert Lauriston RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 08:39 AM

                                              If you can't get to the market on Saturday, the Tuesday market in Berkeley and the Thursday and Sunday markets in San Rafael (Marin Civic Center) are worth a detour. Another good market that's easy to get to is the Heart of the City (United Nations Plaza, at the Civic Center BART station) on Wednesdays and Sundays.

                                              1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                JasmineG RE: Robert Lauriston Apr 22, 2010 11:10 AM

                                                Oh, Robert has a good idea, you might time your trip to Berkeley (if you go) so that you can hit the Tuesday Berkeley Farmer's Market.

                                                1. re: JasmineG
                                                  Caitlin McGrath RE: JasmineG Apr 22, 2010 04:12 PM

                                                  The Tuesday Berkeley market is bigger and better, but if alhanson and family are thinking of a jaunt to the Gourmet Ghetto for Chez Panisse and/or Cheeseboard and Cheeseboard pizza, Masse's, a stroll through Epicurious Garden, etc., a Thursday afternoon visit would make sense, as an easy walk from the downtown Berkeley BART station would get them to all that and the farmers' market, all within a few blocks.

                                                  -----
                                                  Chez Panisse
                                                  1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                  Epicurious Garden
                                                  1513 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                    a
                                                    alhanson RE: Caitlin McGrath Apr 23, 2010 08:25 AM

                                                    Okay -- I'm reconsidering Berkeley. So -- you think Thursday's the day to go? The Epicurious Garden sounds interesting ....
                                                    Thanks you!

                                                    -----
                                                    Epicurious Garden
                                                    1513 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                    1. re: alhanson
                                                      Caitlin McGrath RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 10:54 AM

                                                      If you decide on a trip to stroll and snack in the Gourmet Ghetto, including perhaps lunch or dinner at Chez Panisse Cafe, a Thursday visit would allow you to easily check out one of the area farmers' markets, as the market is right there (opens at 3 p.m.).

                                                      -----
                                                      Chez Panisse
                                                      1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                        Robert Lauriston RE: Caitlin McGrath Apr 23, 2010 11:25 AM

                                                        Berkeley's Thursday market has some great vendors but it's much smaller than the others.

                                                      2. re: alhanson
                                                        a
                                                        abstractpoet RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 11:49 AM

                                                        If you're walking, then Thursday would be more convenient, since the Tuesday market is a much farther walk from the BART station, and there isn't as much nearby, restaurant-wise. I do like the Tuesday market much better, though. The Thursday market is all organic, but the selection is much more limited (and, I believe, expensive).

                                                        The Gourmet Ghetto is the thing that you definitely shouldn't miss if you do make it out to Berkeley. The Epicurious Garden is only OK, but within it, Lush Gelato is a must-try. Best gelato I've had anywhere.

                                                        Other than that, the usual suspects would be Chez Panisse Cafe for a very veg-friendly lunch (as others have noted), a visit to the Cheeseboard to check out their amazing cheese selection (and the daily slice of pizza--always veg.-friendly--from their pizza shop next door).

                                                        I also like the house-made celery soda from Saul's Deli, across the street, which you could get to go. The food itself is not very good there.

                                                        -----
                                                        Chez Panisse
                                                        1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                        Saul's Deli
                                                        1475 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                        Epicurious Garden
                                                        1513 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                        Lush Gelato
                                                        4184 Piedmont Ave, Oakland, CA

                                                        1. re: abstractpoet
                                                          Robert Lauriston RE: abstractpoet Apr 23, 2010 12:57 PM

                                                          The Berkeley Tuesday market is five blocks from Ashby BART, and it's near Crixa, Berkeley Bowl, and Emilia's Pizza.

                                                          Reservations would be essential for Chez Panisse Cafe.

                                                          -----
                                                          Berkeley Bowl
                                                          2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

                                                          1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                            Ruth Lafler RE: Robert Lauriston Apr 23, 2010 01:39 PM

                                                            Probably the ideal thing would be to take BART to North Berkeley, visit the Gourmet Ghetto and have lunch, then grab a cab or the bus down to the area around Ashby BART and go back to the City from there.

                                                            1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                              a
                                                              abstractpoet RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 23, 2010 02:02 PM

                                                              Yeah, that would work--or just get back on the BART if you don't want to deal with a bus. Note that the Tuesday farmers market runs from 2:00 until 7:00, and as noted the Thursday one starts at 3:00. I actually dislike the Thursday market, so if the OP is willing to deal with the extra step in terms of transportation, then this would be the best plan.

                                                              If only choosing one area to visit, though, I think the Gourmet Ghetto is of more interest to a day visitor than Crixa, Berkeley Bowl, etc.--especially if Chez Panisse is part of the equation.

                                                              -----
                                                              Berkeley Bowl
                                                              2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

                                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                Caitlin McGrath RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 23, 2010 02:03 PM

                                                                It's a super-easy bus ride: the 18 will take you straight from Shattuck and either Vine or Cedar, post-Gourmet Ghetto, to Shattuck and Derby, a two-block walk from the Tuesday farmers' market. Only question is how much time the OP wants to devote to an East Bay jaunt.

                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                  Ruth Lafler RE: Caitlin McGrath Apr 23, 2010 02:09 PM

                                                                  Yeah, my only issue is that when your party is four or five people, a short cab ride is cheaper than bus fare.

                                                                2. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                  Robert Lauriston RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 23, 2010 02:58 PM

                                                                  Personally I'd walk. It's only a mile and a half from Cedar to Derby.

                                                    2. re: alhanson
                                                      s
                                                      SteveG RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 11:05 AM

                                                      You might consider combining the Tues farmer's market at the Ferry Plaza with Sausalito. Go to the market in the morning, eat a light breakfast from purchased pastries and other goodies in the Ferry Building and in the market around it, take the ferry to Sausalito, have lunch (Le Garage? Fish.?), then you can hike back across the Golden Gate. If you want to save time, take Robert L's suggestion of catching the muni bus from the south end of the bridge, which would limit it to a ~4 mile walk. If you hit the market by 9:30, you could probably be back in the city to relax a bit by 3 or 4. If you have the energy, you could still get down to the Mission by 5 to explore the neighborhood, grab bread at Tartine Bakery at 5 PM when it comes out of the ovens, picnic supplies at BiRite, and take your haul up the street to Dolores Park. From the top corner, the views of downtown and the bridge are unbeatable. Or, you could stick around in the mission for dinner at Range or a number of other restaurants.

                                                      From the SF-Sausalito ferry, you'll have excellent views of Alcatraz, the city, and many other parts of the prettiest section of San Francisco bay.

                                                      1. re: SteveG
                                                        Robert Lauriston RE: SteveG Apr 23, 2010 11:28 AM

                                                        Hiking from Sausalito to the bridge is a lot more work than the other direction since it's mostly uphill.

                                                        1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                          s
                                                          SteveG RE: Robert Lauriston Apr 23, 2010 11:48 AM

                                                          Burn more calories, eat more food ;)

                                                        2. re: SteveG
                                                          Ruth Lafler RE: SteveG Apr 23, 2010 12:52 PM

                                                          No, better to do it in reverse, since the Tuesday market doesn't start until, I think, 11.

                                                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                            a
                                                            alhanson RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 24, 2010 07:20 PM

                                                            Okay -- I'm starting to get confused with all the plans everyone has been making for our trip to Berkeley. Have we decided on Tuesday or Thursday? Do we take the BART? At what time? Where do we get off for the farmers' market? Then -- you suggest Chez Panisse for lunch? Since I only vaguely remember my trip 5 years ago -- taking the BART, getting off, walking around a bit, seeing a sort of market area where people were selling produce, walking around the university, then going to dinner at Chez Panisse, and returning by BART, I'm not really following other suggestions that mention different buses and areas, etc. What would constitute the simplest day plan, in your estimation?

                                                            While you're thinking about that --- since we arrive in SF at 12:30p.m. (3:30p.m. in our heads), we'll likely just want to check in to our B& B (The Union Street Inn), and head out around that neighbourhood, stopping somewhere for an early dinner. I have located some of the restaurants suggested so far, but really need to sit down and divide that out by neighbourhoods. Can anyone help by flagging a few that are withing a few blocks of our B&B?(2229 Union). Thanks -- everyone has be so amazingly helpful! I really appreciate all the help you've been giving me in planning this family visit to SF.

                                                            Anne

                                                            -----
                                                            Chez Panisse
                                                            1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                            1. re: alhanson
                                                              Ruth Lafler RE: alhanson Apr 24, 2010 08:38 PM

                                                              Well, we're only throwing out possibilities, you actually have to make your own plans :-). There are really two restaurants at Chez Panisse: the original "downstairs" which serves a fixed menu, dinner only. Upstairs is the Cafe, which serves lunch as well as dinner. I think your daughters would love it, and it's very veg friendly.

                                                              There are farmers markets in Berkeley on Tuesday (2-7) and Thursday (3-7), as well as Saturday. The Tuesday market is bigger; the Thursday market is small but is all organic. The Tuesday market is nearer Berkeley Bowl Marketplace/Crixa Bakery near the Ashby BART station; the Thursday market is nearer Chez Panisse/Gourmet Ghetto and the North Berkeley BART station. So basically, there are two main areas of interest in Berkeley that people are recommending, about a mile and a half apart on Shattuck Ave. People are suggesting you take BART to one, and then a bus or cab to the other. The day/order really depends on your schedule. I don't think you can go wrong whatever you choose.

                                                              Near your B&B A16 might be a good choice.

                                                              -----
                                                              Berkeley Bowl
                                                              2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

                                                              A16
                                                              2355 Chestnut St., San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                              Chez Panisse
                                                              1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                              1. re: alhanson
                                                                b
                                                                bobpantzer RE: alhanson Apr 25, 2010 09:15 AM

                                                                Here's a "getting acquainted with the neighborhood" plan for the afternoon you arrive and some suggestions for dinner that day. Your B&B is between Fillmore and Steiner. Leave the B&B, turn left onto Union and then right onto Steiner. Check out Terzo on Steiner across from Rose's Cafe which has the same owner. Terzo is Italian, with small plates. Continue down Steiner three blocks crossing Lombard. There are 12-15 restaurants on this block of Steiner and those that I recommend are Three Seasons - Vietnamese, Parma - Italian, Bistro Aix - French (request patio seating) and Isa - small plates (patio seating here, too). Turn left onto Chestnut and walk three blocks to Divisadero passing by Delarosa - Italian with great pizza, The Tipsy Pig - Gastropub (vegetarian may be a challenge here- great mac and cheese but it's got bacon in it), Mamacita - upscale Mexican (scallops with corn is my favorite), A16 - Italian, also excellent pizza and Mezes - Greek. There are others along there on both sides of the street but I have mentioned only my favorites. There are no more restaurants on Chestnut beyond Divisadero so turn right onto Divisadero and walk six blocks to the Marina, cross Marina Blvd, turn left and then at the end of the marina turn right and walk down to the bay then left along the shoreline enjoying great views of the GG Bridge, Marin Headlands, Sausalito and the Bay. Return to Chestnut via Baker Street passing by the Palace of Fine Arts and it's lagoon and pick out your restaurant. If you don't have dessert at the restaurant, Kara's Cupcakes is on Scott between Chestnut and Lombard, Tuttimelon yoghurt and gelato on Chestnut and, back near your hotel, Pacific Puffs at Union and Fillmore (cream puffs) are all options. You are in a great location for public transportation so check out www.sfmuni.com to learn about fares, vistors passes, etc. The 45 Union bus will take you to North Beach, Chinatown and Union Square. The 22 Fillmore, also on Union, will take you to upper Fillmore, Hayes Valley, the Castro area and the Mission. The 30 Stockton on Chestnut gets you to Fishermans' Wharf and all the same places the 45 goes. On Lombard, take the 28 to the GG Bridge parking lot. Explore Union Street where there are lots of dining options, as well, including my favorites Osha Thai, Nettie's Crab Shack, Betelnut and Capaninna (Italian

                                                                )

                                                                -----
                                                                A16
                                                                2355 Chestnut St., San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Betelnut
                                                                2030 Union Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Mamacita
                                                                2317 Chestnut St, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Osha Thai
                                                                819 Valencia St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                                Mezes
                                                                2373 Chestnut Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Three Seasons
                                                                3317 Steiner Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Bistro Aix
                                                                3340 Steiner St, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Nettie's Crab Shack
                                                                2032 Union Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Tipsy Pig
                                                                2231 Chestnut Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Terzo
                                                                3011 Steiner St., San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                Delarosa
                                                                2175 Chestnut St, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                1. re: alhanson
                                                                  Robert Lauriston RE: alhanson Apr 25, 2010 11:24 AM

                                                                  Good vegetarian-friendly places near your B&B include A16 (reservations essential), Capannina, Mezes, and Helmand Palace.

                                                                  If the weather's nice it's a lovely nice walk from Chez Panisse to the Tuesday market if you go down, say, Grant.

                                                                  -----
                                                                  A16
                                                                  2355 Chestnut St., San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                  Helmand Palace
                                                                  2424 Van Ness Ave, San Francisco, CA 94109

                                                                  Mezes
                                                                  2373 Chestnut Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                  Capannina
                                                                  1809 Union St, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                  1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                    b
                                                                    bobpantzer RE: Robert Lauriston Apr 25, 2010 11:31 AM

                                                                    Robert, I think you meant Mezes A Taste of Greece on Chestnut in San Francisco and not Mezze on Lakeshore in Oakland, the link included in your post.

                                                                    -----
                                                                    Mezes
                                                                    2373 Chestnut Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                    1. re: bobpantzer
                                                                      Robert Lauriston RE: bobpantzer Apr 25, 2010 11:37 AM

                                                                      Yep.

                                                        3. re: vis
                                                          w
                                                          waldrons RE: vis Apr 22, 2010 05:28 PM

                                                          Just be aware that Beach Blanket Babylon is only for ages 21+ (because of the alcohol served), except on Sundays.

                                                          Susan

                                                        4. c
                                                          cakebaker RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 01:06 PM

                                                          For lunch, one of my favorites is in the Mission...Ti Couz. They serve Breton crepes..both buckwheat savory and white flour for sweet. They are amazing and they make them in front (just like in Paris) and they are wonderful. The best part however are their salads...organic greens with a choice of tiny vegetables or my fave..seafood..grilled tuna,scallops, shrimp. I think they make one of the best salads around and it's in the Mission on the (almost) corner of 16th st./Valencia. You could then walk over to Tartine at 18th/Guerrero (not to be missed) and explore that street. Bi-rite food shop as well as their ice cream shop. While my favorite of any farmer's market is no question the Berkeley Tuesday market...for visitors you might like the Sunday Market in San Rafael at the Civic center. I think it is the largest market in the bay area and might work out with your crossing the Golden Gate although you might need a taxi or car unless you try public transportation after crossing the bridge.

                                                          1. m
                                                            ML8000 RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 01:48 PM

                                                            Definitely get a burrito which I'm guessing isn't a strong suit in Toronto. Just about every taqueria makes a veggie option and some are excellent. Taqueria Cancun gets high marks and they serve great carnivorous options too (al pastor burrito and quesadilla suiza). El Faralito, La Taqueria and way too many (there's hundreds in SF) to mention are good as well. Inexpensive to boot.

                                                            -----
                                                            Taqueria Cancun
                                                            2288 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                            La Taqueria
                                                            2889 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                            1. w
                                                              wanderlust21 RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 04:16 PM

                                                              Given that you are "not necessarily looking for fine dining - just interesting..." and your daughters' like Diner's Drive In's and Dives. I would reiterate the recommendation for walking around the Mission District, the Richmond District and making a stop at the Ferry Building on Thursday. Some suggestions for smaller neighborhood type restaurants: Poc Chuc - excellent Yucatecan food. On a Thursday night you can check out Mission Street Food a pop-up restaurant, the menu changes every week you can check it out online, a bargain for the sophisticated level of the food. La Taqueria is definitely my favorite among the taqueria's, but Taq Cancun has a very good veggie burrito. Must trys on a food stroll around the Mission would be Bi-Rite Creamery and Tartine. I also second the recommendation for NOPA - and they are open late.

                                                              You also mentioned getting your reservations ready. You'll need them at many of the places mentioned by others such as: NOPA, La Ciccia, Flour + Water, Frances, Delfina (not the Pizzeria), Foreign Cinema. If you are interested, you can go through my profile where there's a link with some more detailed info on specific restaurants around town. Have a great time!

                                                              -----
                                                              La Ciccia
                                                              291 30th Street, San Francisco, CA 94131

                                                              Bi-Rite Creamery
                                                              3692 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                              Delfina Restaurant
                                                              3621 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                              Foreign Cinema
                                                              2534 Mission St., San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                              La Taqueria
                                                              2889 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                              Poc Chuc
                                                              2886 16th St, San Francisco, CA 94103

                                                              Mission Chinese Food
                                                              2234 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                              11 Replies
                                                              1. re: wanderlust21
                                                                JasmineG RE: wanderlust21 Apr 22, 2010 05:16 PM

                                                                These are all great suggestions. For the places where you need reservations, I'd look on Open Table now to see what's available when (and if a place doesn't have something available, call the restaurant to check), because some of your schedule might be determined by when you can get in where (especially Flour + Water and Frances, two very hard to get reservations these days).

                                                                1. re: JasmineG
                                                                  a
                                                                  alhanson RE: JasmineG Apr 23, 2010 08:41 AM

                                                                  Great suggestion! Actually, I'm having an ongoing discussion with my husband about reservations. He would prefer to just amble along and decide where to go at the last minute. I'm more for saying -- okay -- we only have 5 days, so let's make the most of them.
                                                                  We've tentatively reached a compromise at making reservations for 2 nights, but leaving the others open. (But secretly, I'd prefer to not leave the others open)

                                                                  1. re: alhanson
                                                                    b
                                                                    bobpantzer RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 09:10 AM

                                                                    The restaurants being recommended here are probably the best and most popular in a City where locals dine out a lot. It would be a shame to have put all this effort into seeking recommendations and planning your trip and then not be able to get into one of the restaurants you really wanted to. Of course, if you don't mind eating very early or very late it might not be a problem. I'm with you, though, and if it were me I'd make reservations wherever they are available.

                                                                    1. re: alhanson
                                                                      Robert Lauriston RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 09:12 AM

                                                                      At the last minute, some places you won't be able to get into at all, and others may have an hour wait.

                                                                      1. re: alhanson
                                                                        JasmineG RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 10:07 AM

                                                                        You can always cancel a reservation, but you can often not make one at the last minute. If I were you, I'd make reservations for all of the nights but be low key about it, and if your family isn't in the mood, just keep the phone numbers handy so that you can cancel. Especially for a party of five, it'll be difficult to get a reservation and/or a long wait.

                                                                        1. re: JasmineG
                                                                          b
                                                                          bobpantzer RE: JasmineG Apr 23, 2010 10:38 AM

                                                                          Good suggestion.

                                                                    2. re: wanderlust21
                                                                      m
                                                                      ML8000 RE: wanderlust21 Apr 23, 2010 12:44 AM

                                                                      If TV is a factor, Taqueria La Cumbre and La Taqueria get on TV every so often but not DDD, I don't think. I heard my niece in SoCal got a kick out of seeing La Cumbre on Man vs. Food after eating there.

                                                                      -----
                                                                      La Taqueria
                                                                      2889 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                                      La Cumbre
                                                                      28 N B St, San Mateo, CA 94401

                                                                      1. re: wanderlust21
                                                                        bbulkow RE: wanderlust21 Apr 23, 2010 03:34 AM

                                                                        Given that 2 out of 4 are veg, how does Mission Street Food roll? Don't they do primarily single-menu, without a lot of options? Or does every chef include a full veg offering?

                                                                        -----
                                                                        Mission Chinese Food
                                                                        2234 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                                        1. re: bbulkow
                                                                          BernalKC RE: bbulkow Apr 23, 2010 07:57 AM

                                                                          MSF has had a number of vegetarian friendly menus in recent times, but you are right that the short, one-off menus can be (and more often than not, has been) problematic for vegetarians. But it would definitely be worth checking out the menu. The other problem is that the menu is not published more than one or two days ahead, which probably won't work for the OP.

                                                                          1. re: bbulkow
                                                                            JasmineG RE: bbulkow Apr 23, 2010 10:09 AM

                                                                            The times that I've been to MSF, there have always been a few vegetarian options (at least one in every category), but it definitely depends on the cook that night. It's definitely worth checking out the menu, and they can always wander by and see what the plan is that evening if it's one of the nights when they're playing it by ear.

                                                                            1. re: JasmineG
                                                                              Robert Lauriston RE: JasmineG Apr 23, 2010 10:34 AM

                                                                              MSF posts menus online. It varies with the guest chef, and they have done vegetarian menus, but often there's only one vegetarian dish, which is often more of a side than a main course.

                                                                              http://blog.missionstreetfood.com

                                                                        2. wolfe RE: alhanson Apr 22, 2010 04:45 PM

                                                                          If the young ladies want DDD food try Grubstake or Tee off and avoid Cable Car Burgers.
                                                                          http://www.sfgrubstake.com/
                                                                          http://www.teeoffbarandgrill.com/

                                                                          1. bbulkow RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 03:31 AM

                                                                            I will, perhaps alone, mention that eating with vegetarians in SF requires some advance prep.

                                                                            While "most" SF restaurants offer "a veg option", the implication is that quite a few offer only one or two, and the veg option is some rather sad mushroom and pasta plate, and few options to switch.

                                                                            Two frequently recommended that I'll call out as "Bad for Veg" are Zuni and Boulevard. At Boulevard once, my sister asked to combine two veg parts of two appetizers, and got a very small plate and charged for both. Unsatisfactory.

                                                                            At some restaurants, the point is missed by a vegetarian, and discomfort might occur. Incanto's in that category. No entrees, two pastas (likely good though?), and an offal heavy menu? I would not take a veg there.

                                                                            Within a category, such as mission burritos, La Cumbre is well known for their meat, and Cancun is well-known for their veg burrito. So go Cancun.

                                                                            As there are so many flavors of veg, you'd be well served to specify exactly which type. fish-ok gives you a massively broader spectrum, as do "don't ask don't tell" (I know one) and "I only eat tasty meat".

                                                                            -----
                                                                            Zuni Cafe
                                                                            1658 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                            1. re: bbulkow
                                                                              s
                                                                              sfbing RE: bbulkow Apr 23, 2010 08:05 AM

                                                                              Actually, Incanto is fairly vegetarian friendly. It is known for its offal dishes, but I think it is more a casual Italian cooking with California ingredients. Safe veggie dishes from a recent menu:
                                                                              House-marinated olives
                                                                              Italian lettuce mix, soft herbs & Meyer lemon
                                                                              Charred baby favas, mint & aioli (very good--should get two orders!)
                                                                              Shaved asparagus, radish & sorrel
                                                                              Mixed beets, tangelo, crème fraîche & poppy seeds
                                                                              Pasta:
                                                                              Strozzapreti, ramp pesto, potatoes & pine nuts (excellent)
                                                                              Green almond risotto & lemon thyme (I actually preferred this to the calf brain/bone marrow risotto)
                                                                              Sides:
                                                                              Creamy polenta & Reggiano 5
                                                                              Roasted asparagus & parmesan 6

                                                                              If the vegetarians are seafood eaters, that adds another 4 dishes from the menu, including an entree.

                                                                              1. re: bbulkow
                                                                                a
                                                                                alhanson RE: bbulkow Apr 23, 2010 08:51 AM

                                                                                Thanks for the heads-up! It's surprising to me that, so many restaurants will still only offer
                                                                                mediocre alternatives to vegetarians. My daughter and I are not vegans -- we will eat dairy products, but not meat or fish (much to the dismay of the other members of our family!)

                                                                                1. re: alhanson
                                                                                  w
                                                                                  whiner RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 10:54 AM

                                                                                  Hopefully the two places you have reservations are Perbacco and NOPA. Both are very veggie friendly, though there is only one veggie main on the menu at NOPA right now...

                                                                                  http://www.nopasf.com/menu/dinner/

                                                                                  -----
                                                                                  Perbacco
                                                                                  230 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                                  1. re: alhanson
                                                                                    m
                                                                                    Michael Rodriguez RE: alhanson Apr 24, 2010 09:07 PM

                                                                                    My daughter is a committed vegetarian. My wife and I have taken her to Chez Panisse several times over the last several years. The dishes she has been offered have never seemed inferior to what we (carnivores) have been offered. Often times the vegetarian dishes are quite similar to the carnivore's dishes, so she never feels she is being offered lesser food. (I'm talking about the restaurant, not the cafe.)

                                                                                    -----
                                                                                    Chez Panisse
                                                                                    1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                                                  2. re: bbulkow
                                                                                    Robert Lauriston RE: bbulkow Apr 23, 2010 09:16 AM

                                                                                    Incanto is great with vegetables. I took a vegetarian there and she said it was the best meal of her life (she's not a big foodie). Three of us ordered all the vegetarian dishes and shared tapas-style.

                                                                                    1. re: bbulkow
                                                                                      JasmineG RE: bbulkow Apr 23, 2010 10:43 AM

                                                                                      I agree with you; I did a stint as a vegetarian recently and was surprised at how many places had a skimpy vegetarian option, or none at all. That's one reason that I recommended going to Berkeley to go to Chez Panisse Cafe -- vegetarians get treated very well there.

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      Chez Panisse
                                                                                      1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                                                    2. s
                                                                                      salmotrutta79 RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 04:19 AM

                                                                                      Hey...get out your map and find Claude Lane, near Union Square. My wife and love going to Gitane for drinks there, then walking across the alleyway to Cafe Claude for dinner.

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      Cafe Claude
                                                                                      7 Claude Lane, San Francisco, CA 94108

                                                                                      Gitane Restaurant & Bar
                                                                                      6 Claude Lane, San Francisco, CA 94108

                                                                                      1. cafarmersmkts RE: alhanson Apr 23, 2010 04:27 PM

                                                                                        Best vegetarian meal I've ever had was at Greens Restaurant in Fort Mason Center. It's a bit pricy, but worth it. If you want a farmers' market within walking distance of Union Square, try the Crocker Galleria market on Thursdays from 11 - 3. It has some quality vendors, limited prepared food, but and great place to people watch the financial district on its lunch break. If you want to make the trip across the bay, Chez Panisse is another high quality restaurant (albeit quite pricy). Hope this helps.

                                                                                        -----
                                                                                        Chez Panisse
                                                                                        1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                                                        Crocker Galleria
                                                                                        360 Degree Gourmet Burrito, San Francisco, CA 94102

                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: cafarmersmkts
                                                                                          bbulkow RE: cafarmersmkts Apr 24, 2010 10:37 AM

                                                                                          OP: Read up on greens before making the trek. You might have to search back about 5 years. One always hopes for an upswing; none has been detailed.

                                                                                          1. re: cafarmersmkts
                                                                                            a
                                                                                            alhanson RE: cafarmersmkts Apr 24, 2010 07:23 PM

                                                                                            Thanks so much! I'll look into Greens and the Crocker Galleria. I'm already debating Chez Panisse and when to pay a visit to Berkeley.

                                                                                            -----
                                                                                            Chez Panisse
                                                                                            1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                                                                                            Crocker Galleria
                                                                                            360 Degree Gourmet Burrito, San Francisco, CA 94102

                                                                                            1. re: cafarmersmkts
                                                                                              Robert Lauriston RE: cafarmersmkts Apr 25, 2010 11:26 AM

                                                                                              They're staying in the Marina, not near Union Square. The Crocker Galleria specifically and the Financial District in general are not places I would recommend to tourists.

                                                                                            2. myst RE: alhanson Apr 25, 2010 12:34 PM

                                                                                              5 days: I would arrange into zones
                                                                                              Chinatown/Union Square/Fidi: Golden Gate Bakery for egg tarts/Dim Sum or other Chinese Lunch/Union Sq Shopping/Perabacco Dinner. You can also visit Ferry building. I walk from Union sq to Ferry building on regular basis.
                                                                                              Mission District/Tartine/Burrito/Bi-Rite ice Cream/Pizza Delfina (brocolli rabe pizza) Dolores Park. Weird shops on Valencia - Antiques etc.
                                                                                              Golden Gate Park/Clement Street- GG park daytime - BurmaStar Dinner. Put you name on waitlist have coffee/drinks while waiting across the street at Blue Danube. They will call your cell phone. Rainbow salad is a favorite here - you can make it veggie by holding the shrimp (dried shrimp).
                                                                                              Golden Gate Bridge: You could see it from the Ferry (nice!) and stroll around either Sausalito or Tiburon for your meals.
                                                                                              Marina/Fort Point/Chrissy Field- also great views of bridge. Union St (Betelnut) are is I think fun for girls your age - touristy but fun.

                                                                                              -----
                                                                                              Golden Gate Bakery
                                                                                              1029 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                                                                              Delfina Restaurant
                                                                                              3621 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                                                                                              Blue Danube
                                                                                              306 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118

                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                              1. re: myst
                                                                                                grayelf RE: myst Apr 25, 2010 08:52 PM

                                                                                                "Weird shops on Valencia - Antiques etc."

                                                                                                When you are too full to eat anymore, check out the Pirate Store and Paxton Coute on Valencia. The first is a store for pirates (seriously) and the second is a curiosity shop. Then head over to Ritual for a cup of coffee and some people watching till you have room for more of the food recommended above. Have a great time!

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