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Jun 15, 2011 07:45 AM

sf for 2.5 days- both foodies - lunch/dinner suggestions - ??? help !!

Hi - daughter and i are travelling to sf for 2.5 days and then to napa for 2.5 days - we are both sincere foodies and would like some solid suggestions for lunch and dinner - our hotel is in union square in sf - and we are open to most cuisines!!! thank you - all....

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  1. You might do better to research the board a little as yours' is a very standard question that is asked over and over and over... San Francisco is barely 7 miles from end-to-end so everything is accessible fairly easily but others don't like the idea of public transportation, walking or cabs. Giving us information on how far you are traveling and what else you are doing with your itinerary would also help.

    Price ranges? Cuisines you are interested in? Any constraints? Foods you can't stand?

    6 Replies
    1. re: CarrieWas218

      carrie - appreciate your helpful words - we are from east coast - bos and nyc - and staying w/o car in union square and def are walkers and will use pub trans -we are open to most cuisines and really want to experience sf's finedining reputation -( we are off to napa after sf for 3 days and are all set with our itinerary/car/wineries/food-etc) - and then back to sf for a day before we fly home.... love asian food, italian, french, spanish, mexican, seafood - not meat/beef eaters - and since i'm the mom and trip is on my card -its ok to go a little overboard $$$wise for my girl!! lol..... tyvm again for your help on this...

      1. re: spiffmom

        Many places to choose from here are a few of my favorites:
        Lunch: Cotogna(Italian), Lers Ros (Thai), Nopalito (Mexican), Limon Rotissarie (peruvian), Zuni Cafe

        Dinner: Aziza (Moroccan), Chez Papa Resto(French) A-16(Italian)

        Aziza, and A-16 are the only ones that are dinner only.
        Depending on whar kind of walker you are I would say Aziza,Nopalito,Limon and perhaps A-16 are the only ones you would probably want a taxi.

        Zuni Cafe
        1658 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

        Chez Papa
        1401 18th St., San Francisco, CA 94107

        Limon Restaurant
        524 Valencia St, San Francisco, CA 94110

        1. re: mick

          tyvm mick - i appreciate your suggestions - i am assuming that reservations are a must at these restos???? -

          1. re: spiffmom

            Of Mick's list, Cotogna, Aziza, Zuni, and A-16 would need reservations. The others not.

            Zuni Cafe
            1658 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

            490 Pacific Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

      2. re: CarrieWas218

        Yes, if you look at the bottom of this page, you'll see links to similar threads suggested. Or search on "itinerary."

        My main advice is to get out into the neighborhoods where people live and away from Union Square especially.

        1. re: Windy

          thank you wendy !!! just finished reading a 5 day itinerary that gave me a lot of good ideas - and i agree with your suggestion.... tyvm!!!

      3. i recently had a delightful lunch at the slanted door - great food and a perfect view for a visitor (as i was)

        Slanted Door
        Ferry Slip, San Francisco, CA 94111

        2 Replies
        1. re: thew

          I would give Bar Agricole a try for lunch or dinner. It's Modern American farm to table that is so good. The drinks are outstanding and the space is definitely something to be seen. Get reservations though for dinner.

          Bar Agricole
          355 11th Street, San Francisco, CA 94103

          1. re: Alsama

            Note that Bar Agricole does not serve lunch though it is open for coffee until 3pm and has a Sunday brunch.

            Bar Agricole
            355 11th Street, San Francisco, CA 94103

        2. What a great Mom and Daughter trip. If the weather is fine consider a ferry ride to Sausalito-you'll have lovely views of the city, the golden gate bridge and the hills surrounding the bay from the boat. Over in Sausalito there is a charming hole in the wall French bistro called Le Garage that you can walk to from the ferry landing. Also nearby is the Bay Model which is a to scale model guessed it, the bay-which is neat in that it gives you a sense of the geography of the region you are visiting. Sausalito is a bit touristy but in a nice way.

          Le Garage
          85 Liberty Ship Way Ste 109, Sausalito, CA

          1 Reply
          1. re: artychokeasana

            thank you so much for the great recs.... am so anxious to begin our trip!!!

          2. If Mother Nature is in a good mood, try the Ferry Building in SF for lunch - so many yummy spots to explore - and sit outside. If you are renting a car and drive to Marin for a hike or to wander, the Dipsea Cafe in Mill Valley is lovely and delicious.

            Dinners: Great recs above. In addition, some of my faves are NOPA, Flour + Water, Delfina, Fresca and Marlowe.

            Not sure if you need recs up in the Napa area, but if so, I adore girl & the fig (Sonoma) and Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen (St. Helena).

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

            3945 24th Street, San Francisco, CA 94114

            1 Reply
            1. re: MeredithR

              thank you for the great recs - have heard excellent reviews of the restos you mentioned - thank you!!!

            2. spiffmom,

              Based upon your location and eating habits, let me strongly, STRONGLY, reccomend Ame and Perbacco for dinner. Ame is going to be on the more expensive side, but worth every penny. It is Japanese/Italian fusion with a hint of French. Very unique, very good. Perbacco is simply the best Italian food I've had outside of Italy. In terms of protein, it is known more for its braised red meats and game red meats than for its fish, I'm afraid -- but its pastas are surreal and worth the trip to be sure. Both Ame and Perbacco are an easy walk from Union Square.

              For lunch you might want to go to The Mission and get burritos. The two more "authentic" "Mission style" burrito places I like are La Taqueria and Taqueria Cancun. *HOWEVER*, while less authentic to the "Mission Style", easily my favorite burritos in SF can be found at Papalote.

              Links to the current dinner menus at Ame and Perbacco:


     (the base website is


              A third dinner choice would be Nopa which is a very good, but very casual New American restaurant... but that would probably involve a cab ride.

              230 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

              Taqueria Cancun
              2288 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

              560 Divisadero St, San Francisco, CA 94117

              La Taqueria
              2889 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

              1 Reply
              1. re: whiner

                thank you for the wonderful recs and great descriptions - i have heard great reviews of perbacco especially - this week i think we will set down our plans for the sf portion of the trip - thanks to your good information..... tyvm