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Looking for thoughts on my "cheap eats" choices and possible ideas.

My mother and I are planning a trip to SF in January, and while we've already selected our pricey dinners, our cheap eats meals are subject to change. I would love to hear your thoughts on what we've chosen, as well as any ideas you might have! I came up with most of these from Chowhound reviews, so I figure they will be decent, but every little bit helps.

my list:
Saigon Sandwich Shop
Katanaya
Underdog
Gold Mountain
Bullitt
San Tung

Thank you so much for your time/thoughts!

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  1. Additional details: We will not have a car, so in San Francisco proper is likely a necessity. We like all kinds of food, so pickiness is not an issue. I'd prefer to keep it under ~20 a person, and the cheaper it is, so much the better! Area of the city is not terribly important, nor is atmosphere.

    4 Replies
    1. re: GirlyQ

      "the cheaper it is, so much the better! Area of the city is not terribly important, nor is atmosphere."
      Red's Java House, double cheese burger on hard roll. fries and coke $9. view of the bay, the Bay Bridge from patio. Conveniently located 3/4 miles from Ferry Building and boats to Sausalito.

      1. re: wolfe

        Oh, this sounds wonderful! The location is fabulous! Thank you so much.

        1. re: GirlyQ

          Red's is my all time favorite dive in The City. The burger is not the best choice though. The fish and chips for about $8, or the corned beef sandwich might be a better choice. I used to be a fan of the hash, but the last few times, the spuds were barely cooked. Depending on the weather, the open bar in back can be nice, but watch out for the seagulls, aka s**thawks.
          Also Yuet Lee at Stockton and Broadway for Chinese Seafood, esp. salt and pepper squid, San Francisco's answer to fried clams. Crab should also be plentiful in Jan. Enjoy!

          1. re: little big al

            Red's! That's a dive. My call at Red's is an egg sandwich with sausage, double egg, on sliced sourdough. I think that'll set you back about 4 big ones. Add a LOT of Tabasco. Great place though, view not to be beat.

            Next question: what do you think about schwarma, and do they have it good where you come from? My fav is Med Delite at the corner of 16th and Valencia, but I actually think there's a place two blocks south on Valencia that's better. The atmosphere at Med Delite is tops, although you're crammed in at two bar stools. The schwarma is only very good, so you might have better where you come from.

            Next for cheap eats would be Cafe Tartine. The sandwiches there are something else, and two people can split one. Not sure if it's open late enough.

            Another great dive in the heart of the mission: overlooked Sycamore. Feast on the pork belly doughnut holes and the lamb sliders, have a west coast beer, get out for $20.

    2. la Torta Gorda, 24th St. (directly east of the BART station on Mission) -- the huitlacoche quezadilla and chile en nogada are both quite good, and the huevos divorciados looked good too. the chicken mole we tried was one of the better versions we've sampled in SF, as was the champurrado. Mission Pie is on Mission a few minutes' walk from the station, as are a number of potentially interesting stops if you like panaderias, pupusas, tacos al pastor usw.

      1. Prime Dip Sandwiches (6.99up) comes with a choice of sides and dipping sauce.
        -choice of prime rib, roasted pork, pastrami, roasted turkey, corned beer.
        a block from saigon sandwich
        btw think gold mountain on broadway is closed.

        1 Reply
        1. re: shanghaikid

          Outerlands (on Judah in the Outer Avenues, not too far from Ocean Beach) is worth consideration.
          Excellent bread and open face sandwiches.
          Lunch: soup and sandwich, tea and tip should run about $20 per person.

          outerlandssf.com

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          Outerlands Cafe
          4001 Judah St, San Francisco, CA 94122

        2. Mission Pie
          Hotei
          Farmers markets
          American grilled cheese kitchen
          Little skillet
          Out the door
          Wichcraft
          The sentinel
          Park chow

          1. There's Taqueria Cancun and Pearl's Deluxe Burger at 6th and Market. Both inexpensive.