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Oct 6, 2010 04:38 AM

One Day in SF, barely.......Have a Plan, Help a Brother Out!

From about 1pm on a Saturday, I plan on something of a food tour. Unfortunately, leaving very early in the morning the next day. I will have a car.
My semi-formed plan includes,
1. Bakery/patisseries. Bread and sweets, it is a must. Based on limited time, perhaps I will only get to 2, possibly a 3rd. Much will be bought and kept for a day(let me worry about the quality holding up). Since I have never tried it, Tartine seems like a must(and because I hear about it from a former resident with similar tastes and 80% of the standards). Plan on ordering bread, picking up around 5pm from there. Others in consideration,

le bedaine
thorough bread pastry
la farine
patiss philippe
knead patisserie
la boulangerie

Thoughts, preferences, alternatives? Croissant and pastry quality, first off, since I will certainly acquire some bread at Tartine though I will take more if it is worth it.

2. Not sure if there will be lunch and/or dinner at a proper restaurant. Both would be mid-range, no fine dining. American/Euro cuisine, no Asian of any sort. Not sure I even want Italian but there are some in the list. Best food is the goal, here are some names that seem to fit the bill. Anything else, do tell.

flour + water
baker and banker
tadich grill

Note: I have a reservation for dinner at Canteen. A bit worried about the narrow menu for my mate. I have no issue cancelling for something better.

3. During the day, I would like to do some street food type grazing. Mexican(I will figure out which is best from the board), maybe a good kebab place(Zaki?, recos welcome), whatever else,hopefully, you get the idea. I think the Ferry building will be out of whatever the best prepared eats are there by the afternoon. No pizza, please. Sorry that I do not have this part of the day planned a bit better but I will.

Yes, a very greedy post(both for food and board space) but I hope to have a very specific plan with some assistance.
Those work out much better than roaming with limited time and a plethora of options.
My apologies if some/all of the above is poorly written and nonsensical.

Thank you very much in advance,


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  1. Eliminate everything that is not in San Francisco.

    1. Start your car engine at one o'clock on Saturday at the Ferry Building for grazing at Acme Bread, Cowgirl Creamery, Recchiuti Chocolates and more... Blue Bottle Coffee at the Ferry Building Marketplace has an espresso bar inside for New Orleans iced coffee (stop at their garage door kiosk on Linden for the Kyoto-style) or the affogato with scoops of Humphry Slocombe Secret Breakfast ice cream. Drive to the Civic Center/Tenderloin for beef and lamb pita or lavash sandwich at Eden Mediterranean at 552 Jones Street - south of Gearv Blvd. - and Saigon Sandwiches at 560 Larkin... read this -I like Thorough Bread for sweets... or, Baker and Banker Bakery at 1701 Octavia... on your way to pick-up your Tartine Bread order. or, after Tartine, stop at Four Barrel Coffee at 375 Valencia for coffee and Dynamo Donuts...or, go directly to Dynamo at 2760 - 24th Street (closes at 5 pm)... then, Old Jerusalem at 2976 Mission Street near 26th Street... before your dinner at Canteen - nothing's better than dinner at Canteen — Canteen's breakfast is divine - what time do you leave on Sunday morning?
      After dinner, drive to Green Chile Pies & Ice Cream at 601 Baker @ Fulton Street - closes at 9 pm - cash only. I hope you have a hollow leg?

      Acme Bread
      Ferry Slip, San Francisco, CA 94111

      Cowgirl Creamery
      80 4th St, Point Reyes Station, CA 94956

      Old Jerusalem
      2976 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

      1 Ferry Bldg # 30, San Francisco, CA

      Blue Bottle Cafe
      66 Mint St, San Francisco, CA 94103

      Four Barrel Coffee
      375 Valencia St, San Francisco, CA 94103

      8 Replies
      1. re: Cynsa

        Driving?... add Nightingale Breads to your Road Trip list — 6665 Front Street, Forestville CA 95436 in Sonoma County

        Nightingale Breads
        6665 Front St, Forestville, CA

        1. re: Cynsa

          Bovine Bakery in Petaluma is on the way. Ginormus scones and tasty bear claws.

          1. re: wolfe

            and there's also Wild Flour Bread Bakery in Freestone


            Wild Flour Bread
            140 Bohemian Hwy, Freestone, CA

            1. re: Cynsa

              First, I am told that going to Berkeley is too much time spent and now you have me on my way to Sonoma.
              Actually, I do wish I could get to some of these, the baking looks like it is possibly superior. Now, you can make me feel better by telling me that SF and E Bay spots are just as good.

              1. re: dietndesire

                I think that what Cynsa and I are saying is that with your time constraints you should really minimize your travel whether you have a car or not. My comment, at least, is sarcastic or is it ironic?

                1. re: dietndesire

                  Well, you obviously need to change your life and spend a couple of weeks touring around here instead of half of a day!

                  Some of those Sonoma spots are pretty special (Wildflour is a very worthy detour/destination) for your next visit.

                  A Berkeley tour could be: Berkeley Sat. Farmer's Market (unique pretzel croissants, Frog Hollow fruit pasties, and other specialty bread vendors ++) or Beehive Market (Primo's Parilla alfajores and empanadas and Scream Sorbet) - if you can get to either before closing at 2pm - the earlier the better for selection (or you could contact a vendor and request that they hold something for you). Then (or if it's late, start) on Solano for LaBedaine and Xocolotl (a block away), and its just over the hill, not far at all to Berkeley's famous old-school "gourmet ghetto" to check out the breads/pizza of the day at Cheeseboard, lovely Masse's pastries, maybe a snack at Gregoire or a meal at Chez Panisse cafe (reservations needed); Crixa bakery is just across to the other edge of downtown (not far but gridlock if it's a football game day at Cal) and it is a half-block from Crixa to Berkeley Bowl (not sure if the baked goods are super remarkable, but the market as a whole is great). If you have magically slow clock and there's still time (and two hollow-legs), a mile or two towards UCB campus is a new Italian bakery PIQ and around the corner from there is Gather, which is in the newest generation of the gourmet-ghetto legacy, for a drink and a snack, and a mile or two east is "Ici" with great ice cream and cookies/dragees (but you need extra time as Ici always has a line). That's gotta be a million-calorie, but delicious, day!

                  Berkeley Bowl
                  2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

                  Chez Panisse
                  1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

                  Scream Sorbet
                  5030 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA

                  The Beehive Market
                  1701 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, CA 94702

                  1. re: foodeye

                    Thanks foodeye I forgot about that Saturday football ball thing with increased traffic.

                2. re: Cynsa

                  I thought I was being cheeky with your cheekiness about all the far away bakeries.
                  Sorry that it was taken the wrong way.
                  Wild Flour does look noteworthy, though.
                  Good point about the game, foodeye. I will check the timing when it is announced.

          2. By La Boulangerie do you mean the Boulange on Bush that has several locations around the city? If so, don't bother. Most of the stuff they make is crap and comes out of a factory in South SF.

            1. Wolfe, will do when I look through further though I am willing to drive around a bit.
              I do not consider going to Oakland a problem for instance.

              Cynsa, no coffee for me, sorry. Don't really care for goods(as opposed to prepared foods) at Ferry. Acme does not impress me, cheese is the same though I might try Recchiuti. Seems all the prepped good bits have lines and run out early. The more I look around, the less the kebab thing seems worthwhile. Hoping to find other stop, pop and go type food spots, trucks, etc. And I lean away from falafel and hummus, more toward quality meat, grilled properly.
              Have put down Dynamo Donuts. Canteen is that good? Don' build anything up so much, it can only fall. Gone 7 or 8am on Sunday, so nothing can be done. Not so into pies and such but Green Chile will be put on the map.

              Rabaja, Xed off the list. Besides Thorough and Le Bedaine(original targets), the rest were cut and pasted, somewhat.

              Thanks to all so far.

              3 Replies
              1. re: dietndesire

                Oakland and Berkeley are fine but it's not the driving it's the time, of your limited time, you spend parked or hardly moving in bridge traffic. I happen to really like La Bedaine* but just don't think it's worth up to 25% of your visit.

                La Bedaine
                1585 Solano Ave, Berkeley, CA 94706

                1. re: dietndesire

                  I've gotten to the Ferry Building late and had plenty of good prepared foods -- they always still have food at Primavera then (though probably not everything), Downtown Bakery will still have pastries at their stall, Chiccarones will likely still have burgers etc.

                  I love Canteen, but you haven't really said what you're looking for, so it's hard to say what you should pick amongst that group.

                  The places in Oakland and Berkeley are great, but if you only have a day and you're having dinner in San Francisco, that will put you in the car for a lot of your ride.

                  1. re: dietndesire

                    >>"Canteen is that good? Don' build anything up so much, it can only fall."<<

                    Nah, it's nothing spectacular. There are plenty of places in town serve more exotic / innovative / impressive food. But it's still the place my wife and I try to go whenever we're in town. You shouldn't expect to be impressed, but can count on eating very well.

                  2. You might want to stop by Paulette's in Hayes valley and pick up some delicious macarons.

                    And if you like sake, True Sake is within 2 blocks of there, best Sake store on the planet, tons of stuff imported from Japan + helpful staff.

                    Even though you have a car, parking is a pain and walking is delightful.
                    Since you'll be at Tartine at 5, you might want to think what's close by at suppertime.

                    Close to tartine I believe you'll find Delfina, bi-rite (people love their ice cream, have not tried it myself), Frances (10-15 minute walk, worth it for dinner if you can snag a table and they also take walkins for the bar but that's risky given your schedule), Truly Mediterranean (I love love their shawerma), and Bar Bambino.