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Are restaurants open late in the Bay Area? What time do most places to res until?

o
OliverB Dec 13, 2011 01:53 PM

I will be staying on McAllister St. in Alamo Sq. for two weeks (Jan. 20 - Feb 03) and am in town primarily for the Noir City film festival which is taking place at the Castro Theatre between Jan. 20th and 29th.

The schedule for the films has not been released yet, but a SF native friend just informed me that the screenings typically kick off between 7pm and 8pm nightly, depending on the day of the week, and as they are double-features with a long intermission, the nights only wrap up around 11-12pm.

This has me concerned, as I had a long list of restaurants that I was hoping to make it out to, and fear our dinner plans might be compormised by this schedule. We'll either have to eat at 5-5:30 nightly, which I don't really want to do (especially since I was hoping to do 3 proper meals a day) and with the distance between destinations, it will just be tough.

I'm not sure if kitchens run on similar hours as they do here in Montreal, but save for a few after-11 specials, it's rare to get a good sit-down meal here in the city. Is the same true for San Francisco? Would it be unheard of to make dinner reservations at 11:30 for a nice restaurant in the city?

Thanks for your help!

  1. h
    hyperbowler Dec 13, 2011 02:01 PM

    Here's a recent post about cheap eats in the Castro, but note that several places mentioned close by 10PM (e.g. Thai House Express)

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/821588

    1. m
      marysf Dec 13, 2011 02:13 PM

      You can get a great, late sit-down meal at Nopa (http://nopasf.com/). They are open until 1am.

      1. Robert Lauriston Dec 13, 2011 02:30 PM

        Here are the after-11s from the list of late-night places I keep on my phone, I haven't updated it in a few months so the hours might not be current:

        Bar Bambino, midnight Fri.-Sat., 10pm Mon.-Thurs.
        Comstock, 1am daily
        Criolla Kitchen, 2am daily
        Flour + Water, midnight Fri.-Sat., 11pm Sun.-Thurs.
        Heaven's Dog, 1am Mon.-Sat., 9pm Sun.
        Hog & Rocks, kitchen midnight daily
        Lers Ros, midnight daily
        Nopa, 1am daily
        Oola, 1am Tues.-Sat., midnight Sun.-Mon.
        Scala's Bistro, midnight Thurs.-Sat., 11pm Sun.-Wed.
        Thai House Express on Larkin, midnight daily
        Yuet Lee, 3am Wed.-Mon. (closed Tues.)
        Zuni, midnight Fri.-Sat., 11pm Sun. & Tues.-Thurs. (closed Mon.)

        1 Reply
        1. re: Robert Lauriston
          Cynsa Mar 30, 2012 04:55 PM

          My late night go-to is still Grubsteak for an order of the Caldo Verde soup to satisfy my hunger. Open to 4 am. http://sfgrubstake.com/portugesecorne...

        2. n
          nocharge Dec 13, 2011 03:03 PM

          A restaurant where you can eat at 11:30 would be the exception rather than the rule. Here is a recent thread about late-night restaurants.
          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/791700

          1. o
            OliverB Dec 13, 2011 03:08 PM

            Thanks for all the help!

            Nopa is already on my list and I think Zuni too, so that's great to know... I guess I'll be scheduling some early dinners though because I don't want to be restricted to any one neighborhood or part of town nor do I want to be limited only to late-night eats. I don't want to have to compromise great meals that I've been looking forward to for months, so I'll just have to schedule some early 5:30pm dinners.

            Thanks for all the help!

            1. tpc Dec 13, 2011 08:47 PM

              I don't understand this sentence from your title: "What time do most places to res until?"

              2 Replies
              1. re: tpc
                o
                OliverB Dec 14, 2011 04:35 AM

                tpc,

                It was a typo.

                I meant to say - "what time do most places take res until?" - as in, until what time do they accept reservations (ie. 10/11pm etc?)

                1. re: OliverB
                  t
                  tjinsf Dec 15, 2011 06:42 PM

                  most places only take res to 10, 10:30. Places close even earlier than in Montreal and there are less casual place open late. many place will have kitchens open an hour later on the weekends.

              2. b
                bigwheel042 Dec 14, 2011 12:48 AM

                Unclear to me whether Criolla Kitchen really serves that late right now - I know they are planning to do something like the old Baghdad Cafe hours, but I was starving in the Castro this past Saturday around 1am and saw that their Yelp page lists 2am. No dice. They looked like they'd been closed for at least an hour. (Didn't see any posted hours on the door.)

                1 Reply
                1. re: bigwheel042
                  Robert Lauriston Dec 14, 2011 06:55 AM

                  Restaurants that keep late hours have a tendency to change with no notice if things are too slow.

                2. h
                  hyperbowler Dec 14, 2011 09:30 AM

                  It sounds like you'll need to take a cab for dinner if you're seeking the city's best food at night. How about:

                  Alembic open til 1AM (bar, no reservations, but you'll be fine)
                  Beretta open til 1AM (Italian, phone reservations)
                  Monk's Kettle open til 1AM (gastropub, can be crowded, no reservations)
                  Club Deluxe (bar, Tues-Sunday, no reservations, serves excellent Neapolitan pizza and "til late" so might be a risk)

                  My favorite late night cheap eats: El Farolito (1:30AM) & La Oaxaqueña (4AM).

                  Also, If you're not familiar with it already, check out opentable.com and search for restaurants open at 11:30PM (click the "11:30PM Only" option to further restrict the results). Sort by ratings.

                  1. o
                    OliverB Dec 15, 2011 05:35 AM

                    Thanks for all the helpful advice everyone!

                    I'm working out my itinerary now and so far so good. My only other question is how long a typical multi-course dinner meal would run at most upscale restaurants like say, Serpentine/Canteen/Commis/Lazy Bear/Nopa/Delfina/Ame/Jai Yun/etc, for instance?

                    Is dinner a drawn out affair at many restaurants in the city, or is it possible to dine at any of these nicer establishments and be in-and-out within an hour?

                    Thanks!

                    12 Replies
                    1. re: OliverB
                      Robert Lauriston Dec 15, 2011 10:55 AM

                      I'd expect two hours tops for those places.

                      1. re: Robert Lauriston
                        o
                        OliverB Dec 15, 2011 11:13 AM

                        Thanks Robert,

                        Looks like I'll have to rearrange our nightly schedules then.

                        So it's min. 2 hours for all the upscale eateries like Canteen, Serpentine, Commis, Zumi, Nopa, Delfina, BaoNecci, Ame, etc?

                        What about lesser-key places like Tadich, Sam's Grill, Lers Ros Thai, Limon Rotisserie, PPQ, etc? Is it still a 2-hour affair?

                        Can I do sushi at Ino in Japantown in roughly that timeframe or same deal?

                        Thanks so much, this is all very helpful!

                        1. re: OliverB
                          Robert Lauriston Dec 15, 2011 12:04 PM

                          I said *maximum* two hours for a leisurely, multi-course meal, not counting camping out over coffee or after-dinner drinks.

                          Tadich, no reservations, often long waits, you can get in and out fast if you go before the dinner rush. I prefer Sam's but they're both more about the whole retro experience, for top-quailty seafood you'd do better at say Bar Crudo or a Hong Kong or Vietnamese place.

                          BaoNecci is not upscale at all, it's a converted bakery, funky cafe-type setup.

                          1. re: Robert Lauriston
                            o
                            OliverB Dec 15, 2011 06:02 PM

                            Thanks Robert!

                            If we don't have time to do the leisurely thing, do you suppose it's do-able to make res. for 5pm at the above examples, and cab to the Castro for 6:30ish nightly? Ie. in-and-out in an hour and approx. 15mins for taxi-rush to the Castro? Is this realistic or no way?

                            Thanks again for all of your help!

                            1. re: OliverB
                              n
                              nocharge Dec 15, 2011 06:36 PM

                              While you can eat at 5pm at some restaurants, like Tadich and Zuni, it's more common that dinner service starts at 5:30 (or even 6 at some places). If so, you'd look at maybe 45 minutes for dinner. It might work if you eat fast and skip dessert, but it will probably feel a little rushed and not as enjoyable as if you had plenty of time.

                              1. re: OliverB
                                Windy Dec 25, 2011 12:07 PM

                                Cabs are slow, not fast (and are generally dispatched by phone).

                                From downtown to the Castro, take the underground MUNI streetcars.

                            2. re: OliverB
                              w
                              walker Dec 15, 2011 06:14 PM

                              I really love Tadich for really fresh seafood (other stuff on the menu for those who don't want seafood). Since they do not close in between lunch and dinner, there's no wait (probably) between 2 pm and 6 pm. (Closed on Sunday.) It takes roughly an hour to dine there.

                              Zuni, too, does not close in between lunch and dinner and that is a great (quiet!) time to go there.

                              1. re: OliverB
                                t
                                tjinsf Dec 15, 2011 06:51 PM

                                you can eat at Lers Ros Thai, Limon Rotisserie, PPQ all in under 2 hours.

                                you can sushi at Ino under 2hours but it depends on when you go.

                                Lazy Bear is event dining and only at certain time/nights and is more than 2 hours.

                                If you are just doing entree and a starter or you let them know you have a concert many places you can do in around an hour if you have a res.

                                SF is much smaller than Montreal and it should take you long to cab it from most restaurants to the Castro.

                                The Mission is the neighborhood next to the Castro and has lots of fine and casual dining choices.

                                1. re: OliverB
                                  bbulkow Dec 17, 2011 10:45 AM

                                  All of those places you listed have different speeds. Serpentine, which I'm a fan of, can be eaten quickly. It's generally a two-course neighborhood place, or can be, if you mention you have a show to catch. Commis, Ame are real multicourse places, built for a certain lingering. As long as the place isn't a big multicourse show, and you're on the early side so the kitchen isn't slammed, you'll do fine. Plum is flexible, and the waitstaff is good at reading one's mood.

                                  I ate at Jardinere before a show, at the bar. The place was mobbed, but we asked what we could order and finish in 30 minutes. I figured a quick salad and we'd hit someplace on the late side afterward. The waiter consulted, came back with "anything", so we ordered 4 different duck dishes. They were served with breakneck speed, and cleared with aplomb, which suited us, and we made the symphony exactly on time. Sizable tip. Jardinere is used to that kind of thing, but so should Zuni, Absinthe.

                                  Living on the peninsula, we often do a dinner-and-performance, and the trick is hitting the restaurant fairly precisely between 5:30 and 6, knowing how to park, and informing the waitstaff. I would not try this with commis, ami, coi.

                                  1. re: bbulkow
                                    wolfe Dec 17, 2011 01:56 PM

                                    You were lucky it was cleared with aplomb. What if it had been a nectarine?
                                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/549112

                                    1. re: bbulkow
                                      Windy Dec 25, 2011 12:08 PM

                                      Serpentine is not easy to get to from the Castro without changing MUNI trains. The Slow Club (also owned by Serpentine) is considerably closer and easier.

                                2. re: OliverB
                                  w
                                  waldrons Dec 16, 2011 11:46 PM

                                  I personaly think fine dining and theatre/performances don't meld well together on the same night. Unless you eat un-naturally early, you end up rushing dinner. I'm not sure of the point of going to a multi-course, fine-dining experience like Commis and then trying to make it through in an hour.

                                  Having said that, however, many of the restaurants on your list are not terribly upscale/fine-dining restaurants. They offer great food, but in a faster, more casual format. Canteen is not conducive to lingering, an an example, plus they have an early seating.

                                3. o
                                  OliverB Dec 17, 2011 02:15 PM

                                  Thanks everyone... I think I've figured it all out!

                                  I apologize if this seems a bit out of place for CH but since I've been concerned about timing and reservations, I'm going to post my itinerary below and hope to get feedback on both the food choices and how realistic it might seem. I apologize for any personal details that may be in there (friends parties or shows or whatever) - I tried to be as meticulous as possible so as not to compromise the eatin! I'm not really this OCD haha. Hopefully this will let me finalize details though. PS - would you swap AME for any one meal listed below, and if so, which one???

                                  Copied & pasted from notepad file...

                                  SAN FRANCISCO ITINERARY

                                  FRI, JAN. 20
                                  ------------

                                  • 03:30 PM - Rental Check-in

                                  • 04:00 PM - Shower and Change

                                  • 05:15 PM - Dinner at Tadich Grill in The Financial District

                                  • 06:30 PM - Dark Passage at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:30 PM - The House On Telegraph Hill at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 12:00 AM - Latenight Cocktails at 15 Romolo in North Beach (OR) Kaleidoscope at House of Shields in SOMA

                                  SAT, JAN. 21
                                  ------------

                                  • 10:00 AM - Brunch at St. Francis Fountain in The Mission

                                  • 11:00 AM - Walk around the Mission

                                  • 11:45 AM - BART to Union Square

                                  • 12:00 PM - Shopping at Brooks Brothers

                                  • 12:45 PM - Afternoon Pints at Tommy's Joynt and Lefty O'Douls

                                  • 02:30 PM - Walk to The Alden Shop in The Financial District

                                  • 03:00 PM - Relax at Home

                                  • 05:00 PM - Dinner at Balboa Cafe in Cow Hollow

                                  • 06:20 PM - The Killers at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:45 PM - Point Blank at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 12:00 AM - Latenight Whiskies at Bourbon & Branch Downtown

                                  SUN, JAN. 22
                                  ------------

                                  • 10:00 AM - Breakfast at Cafe Trieste in North Beach/Telegraph Hill

                                  • 11:00 AM - Golden Gate Park: Conservatory of Flowers, Japanese Tea Garden, Botanical Garden, Kezar Stadium

                                  • 02:30 PM - Lunch at Nick's Crispy Taco's in Nob Hill (OR) Taqueria Guadalajara + Bi-Rite Creamery in the Mission

                                  • 03:30 PM - Afternoon Drinks at Vesuvio in Nob Hill (OR) Four Barrel Coffee in the Mission

                                  • 04:45 PM - Relax at Home!

                                  • 06:30 PM - Laura at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 08:30 PM - Dinner at Jai Yun

                                  • 11:45 PM - Latenight Cocktails at Li Po Cocktail Lounge in Chinatown

                                  MON, JAN. 23
                                  ------------

                                  • 09:00 AM - Curry Beef, Char Siu Pork, Taro Mooncakes, and Dahn Taht Egg Custard Tarts at Golden Gate Bakery in Chinatown

                                  • 09:15 AM - Jeen Dui Sesame Balls, Peanut Jong, Red Bean Buns, and Char Siu Cheung Fun at Yong Kee in Chinatown

                                  • 09:30 AM - Flat Fortune Cookies at Golden Gate Fortune Cookies in Chinatown

                                  • 09:45 AM - Low Por Bang Wife Cakes, Bo Lo Bau Pineapple Buns, Dou Sa Bo Low Bau, and Giant Alond Cookies from Garden Bakery in Chinatown

                                  • 10:00 AM - Red Bean Buns and Bo Lo Bau Buns at Napoleon Super Bakery in Chinatown

                                  • 10:15 AM - Walk/Eat through Chinatown

                                  • 11:00 AM - Cable Car Museum

                                  • 11:45 AM - Walk up Mason and California St. to Grace Cathedral near Huntington Park

                                  • 12:30 PM - BART to Amoeba Music in Haight-Ashbury

                                  • 01:00 PM - Walk around the Haight, Vintage Shopping, etc.

                                  • 02:00 PM - Late-Afternoon Oysters, Chowder and Cocktails at Swan Oyster Depot in Nob Hill

                                  • 03:00 PM - Relax at Home!

                                  • 04:30 PM - Dean's Birthday at Smuggler's Cove in NOPA

                                  • 07:00 PM - Gilda at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:30 PM - Dinner at PPQ Dungeness Island in Outer Richmond

                                  • 11:00 PM - Cocktails at The Big 4 Bar in the Huntington Hotel and Top of The Mark in Nob Hill

                                  • 01:00 AM - Latin Fever at Casanova Lounge in the Mission

                                  TUE, JAN. 24
                                  ------------

                                  • 09:45 AM - De La Paz Coffee in SOMA

                                  • 10:30 AM - Tour of AT&T Park

                                  • 12:45 PM - Lunch at The Golden West in the Financial District

                                  • 02:00 PM - Dessert/Coffee at Tartine Bakery in the Mission

                                  • 03:00 PM - Relax at Home!

                                  • 05:30 PM - Dinner at Delfina in The Mission

                                  • 06:30 PM - Unfaithfully Yours at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:15 PM - The Good Humor Man at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 11:30 PM - Latenight Burritos + Lost & Found at Delirium Cocktails in the Mission

                                  WED, JAN. 25 - (Getaround Rental Car)
                                  ------------

                                  • 09:00 AM - Filbert Steps

                                  • 09:45 AM - Breakfast at Mama's on Washington Square in North Beach/Telegraph Hill

                                  • 09:45 AM - Scenic Drive through the Golden Gate National Recreation Area to Point Bonita Lighthouse

                                  • 12:00 PM - Muir Woods National Monument: Hike the 3 mile loop up Ocean View Trail, down Lost Trail and back along Fern Creek Trail

                                  • 02:30 PM - Light Lunch at Deli Board in SOMA

                                  • 03:15 PM - Relax at Home!

                                  • 06:00 PM - Dinner at Shanghai Dumpling King in Outer Richmond

                                  • 07:00 PM - House Of Bamboo at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:20 PM - Underworld USA at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 12:00 AM - Latenight Cocktails at Tosca Café in North Beach (OR) 1964 at Edinburgh Castle in the Tenderloin

                                  THU, JAN. 26 - (Getaround Rental Car)
                                  ------------

                                  • 10:15 AM - Breakfast at Mo's Grill in North Beach/Telegraph Hill

                                  • 11:00 AM - The Beat Museum

                                  • 11:20 AM - Browse through City Lights Bookstore

                                  • 12:00 PM - Walk down Columbus Ave. to Graffeo Coffee Roasting Company

                                  • 12:15 PM - Walk up to Coit Tower in Pioneer Park: Elevator to the Observation Deck

                                  • 01:00 PM - Drive down Lombard Street and through Telegraph Hill

                                  • 01:30 PM - Hike Lands End Trail from Point Lobos to Eagles' Point: Ocean Beach, Sutro Baths Ruins, Cliff House, Camera Obscura, Sutro Heights Park

                                  • 03:45 PM - Cocktails on Balcony Lounge overlooking Seal Rocks at Cliff House

                                  • 04:45 PM - Relax at Home!

                                  • 05:45 PM - Dinner at Ino Sushi in Japantown

                                  • 07:00 PM - Naked Alibi at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:30 PM - International Flight Lounge at Forbidden Island in Alameda

                                  • 12:30 AM - Web Of Sound at The Makeout Room in the Mission

                                  FRI, JAN. 27
                                  ------------

                                  • 10:00 AM - Breakfast at Farm : Table in the Tenderloin-Downtown

                                  • 11:30 AM - The Presidio: Fort Point, Presidio Habitats, Trails and Scenic Overlooks, Inspiration Point, San Francisco National Cemetery, etc.

                                  • 02:45 PM - Picnic in the Palace of Fine Arts - (Takeout from John Campbell's Irish Bakery, Lou's Cafe, and New World Market in Outer Richmond)

                                  • 03:30 PM - The Walt Disney Family Museum

                                  • 04:45 PM - Relax at Home - Free Afternoon!

                                  • 07:00 PM - Thieves' Highway at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:30 PM - The Breaking Point at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 11:30 PM - Dinner at NOPA near Alamo Square

                                  • 12:30 AM - Teenage Dance Craze at The Make-Out Room in the Mission

                                  SAT, JAN. 28
                                  ------------

                                  • 08:45 AM - Breakfast at Ferry Plaza Farmers Market + Takeaway from Frog Hollow Farm Bakery

                                  • 10:00 AM - Walk along Embarcadero to Fisherman's Wharf: Aquarium of the Bay, Pier 39, Musée Mécanique, Hyde Street Pier, Maritime National Historical Park & Museum, Fort Mason, Sightseeing, Shopping, etc.

                                  • 01:00 PM - Three Strangers at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 03:00 PM - Lunch at Taqueria Cancún (OR) El Farolito in the Mission District

                                  • 03:30 PM - Walk around the Mission

                                  • 04:15 PM - Mission San Francisco de Asis, Mission Dolores

                                  • 05:00 PM - Relax at Home!

                                  • 06:30 PM - The Great Gatsby at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:15 PM - Prix-Fixe Dinner at Canteen in Lower Nob Hill (OR) Lazy Bear in the Mission

                                  • 11:00 PM - The Noir City Nightclub at The Swedish American Hall (OR) Nightbeat at Edinburgh Castle in the Tenderloin

                                  SUN, JAN. 29
                                  ------------

                                  • 12:15 PM - Brunch at Foreign Cinema in the Mission

                                  • 01:00 PM - Free Afternoon - San Francisco Zoo (?)

                                  • 03:00 PM - Relax at Home (OR) City Streets Matinée at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 05:15 PM - Dinner at Sam's Grill in The Financial District

                                  • 06:30 PM - The Glass Key at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 09:00 PM - The Maltese Falcon at The Castro Theatre

                                  • 12:00 AM - Cocktail / Bar Crawl

                                  MON, JAN. 30
                                  ------------

                                  • 09:45 AM - Breakfast at Dottie's True Blue Cafe in the Tenderloin

                                  • 11:00 AM - California Academy of Sciences: Steinhart Aquarium, Planetarium, Natural History Museum

                                  • 02:45 PM - Relax at Home!

                                  • 03:30 PM - Late-Afternoon Beer and Chowder on Pier 39 in Fisherman's Wharf

                                  • 04:20 PM - Alcatraz Night Tour: Departs from Pier 33

                                  • 08:00 PM - Dinner at Serpentine in the Dogpatch

                                  • 10:00 PM - Tropical Rum Cocktails at Smuggler's Cove in NOPA

                                  TUE, JAN. 31
                                  ------------

                                  • 11:00 AM - Dim Sum at Koi Palace in Daly City

                                  • 01:00 PM - de Young Fine Arts Museum

                                  • 03:30 PM - Legion of Honor Fine Arts Museum

                                  • 05:15 PM - Relax at Home / Afternoon in Alamo Square Park

                                  • 08:15 PM - Dinner at Caffé BaoNecci in North Beach/Telegraph Hill

                                  • 09:30 PM - Dessert at Swensen's Ice Cream in Nob Hill

                                  • 10:00 PM - Cable Car to Fisherman's Wharf - Walk along Piers

                                  • 10:45 PM - Irish Coffee at The Buena Vista Cafe by Ghirardelli Square

                                  WED, FEB. 01 - (Getaround Rental Car)
                                  ------------

                                  • 11:30 AM - Brunch at Zuni Cafe in the Tenderloin

                                  • 01:00 PM - Mid Century Modern Eichler Architectural Tour of Diamond Heights, Terra Linda and Lucas Valley-Marinwood

                                  • 04:30 PM - Free Afternoon

                                  • 08:00 PM - Dinner at Lers Ros Thai in the Tenderloin

                                  • 09:45 PM - Tropical Rum Cocktails at The Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar in the Fairmont San Francisco Hotel

                                  THU, FEB. 02 - (Getaround Rental Car)
                                  ------------

                                  • 10:00 AM - Morning in Alamo Square Park

                                  • 12:00 PM - Lunch at 4505 Meats in the back corner of the San Francisco Ferry Building Farmer's Market

                                  • 01:00 PM - SFMOMA

                                  • 04:00 PM - Rooftop Garden and Coffee Bar at the SFMOMA

                                  • 05:00 PM - Sunset Drive along the Great Hwy

                                  • 06:00 PM - Relax at Home!

                                  • 08:00 PM - Dinner at Commis in Oakland

                                  FRI, FEB. 03
                                  ------------

                                  • 07:00 AM - Golden Gate Bridge at Dawn and Sunrise at Fort Point

                                  • 09:00 AM - Brunch at Farmer Brown's Little Skillet (OR) Haltun Mayan Cuisine in the Mission

                                  • 11:00 AM - SFO Airport for 1:10 PM Departure

                                  =========================================================================================================================
                                  =========================================================================================================================

                                  •• Alternate Dinner - Ame

                                  •• Take-Home Food - Molinari Delicatessen in North Beach/Telegraph Hill + The Sentinel in SOMA

                                  • Chairman Bao Bun Truck: Schedule - http://sharp-fire-2992.herokuapp.com/

                                  • Liba Falafel Truck: Schedule - http://libasf.com/locate.html

                                  • 3-SUM EATS Food Truck: Schedule - http://www.3-sumeats.com/

                                  • Curry Up Now: Schedule - http://www.curryupnow.com/blog/schedule/

                                  • JapaCurry Truck: Schedule - http://www.japacurry.com/

                                  •• Road Trip to Val's Burgers in Hayward - (?)

                                  51 Replies
                                  1. re: OliverB
                                    o
                                    OliverB Dec 17, 2011 02:18 PM

                                    And here's my ENTIRE FOODIE LIST for SF (I've edited out all the touristy sights and activities and record/dance nights to keep it food/drink focused) -- anything that should be swapped out with the above itinerary??

                                    Thanks so much for your help and suggestions!!!

                                    BREAKFAST:

                                    - Dottie's True Blue Cafe
                                    - Sears Fine Foods ~ (Tourist Trap)
                                    - Mama's on Washington Square
                                    - Manor Coffee House

                                    LUNCH:

                                    - Ferry Building Farmers Market
                                    - St. Francis Fountain
                                    - Eddie Rickenbacker's
                                    - Val's Burgers (Hayward)
                                    - Mo's Grill
                                    - Ike's Place
                                    - Chez Maman
                                    - Barney's Gourmet Hamburgers
                                    - Burger Joint / Burgermeister / Slider's Diner
                                    - Inkas Restaurant
                                    - Poc Chuc
                                    - Taqueria San Jose
                                    - El Farolito
                                    - Taqueria La Cumbre
                                    - Taqueria Cancun
                                    - Taqueria Vallarta
                                    - Nick's Crispy Taco's
                                    - Haltun Mayan Cuisine
                                    - Cesare's Chicken
                                    - Sneaky's BBQ
                                    - Deli Board
                                    - Lou's Cafe
                                    - Submarine Center
                                    - The Sentinel
                                    - The Golden West
                                    - Foreign Cinema
                                    - Grégoire
                                    - Epicurious Garden
                                    - Contigo
                                    - Caffé BaoNecci
                                    - Little Star Pizza
                                    - Delfina Pizzeria
                                    - Tony's Pizza Napoletana / Flour + Water
                                    - Serpentine
                                    - House of Nanking
                                    - Koi Palace (Daly City)
                                    - Dol Ho Restaurant
                                    - HK Saigon Seafood Harbor Restaurant
                                    - The Slanted Door
                                    - Turtle Tower Restaurant
                                    - Tu Lan - (Greasy Hole in the Wall - Cheap Bún Thit Nuong and Imperial Rolls)
                                    - Saigon Sandwich
                                    - Irving Cafe & Deli
                                    - Little Vietnam Cafe
                                    - Santouka
                                    - Orenchi Ramen
                                    - Izakaya Sozai
                                    - Chotto

                                    INBETWEENS:

                                    - Swan Oyster Depot
                                    - Molinari Delicatessen
                                    - M & L Market
                                    - Casper's Hot Dogs
                                    - St. Francis Fountain
                                    - Bi-Rite Creamery
                                    - Swensen's Ice Cream
                                    - Frog Hollow Farm
                                    - Tartine Bakery
                                    - John Campbell's Irish Bakery
                                    - Vesuvio Cafe
                                    - Cafe Trieste
                                    - Golden Gate Bakery
                                    - Golden Gate Fortune Cookies
                                    - Yong Kee
                                    - Napoleon Super Bakery
                                    - Hopkins Street Bakery (North Berkeley)
                                    - Sweet Adeline (South Berkeley)
                                    - The Cheeseboard
                                    - Top of the Mark
                                    - S & S Grocery (Corner Store)

                                    FOOD TRUCKS AND STALLS:

                                    - Chairman Bao Bun
                                    - 4505 Meats
                                    - 3-SUM EATS
                                    - El Toyanense
                                    - Chaac Mool
                                    - The Taco Guys
                                    - Liba Falafel
                                    - Roli Roti Gourmet Rotisserie
                                    - Curry Up Now
                                    - Eat on Monday
                                    - JapaCurry Truck
                                    - TomKat
                                    - Tru Gourmet
                                    - OMiNinjaSJ
                                    - Sanguchon Peruvian Food Truck
                                    - The Southern Sandwich Co.
                                    - Fivetenburger
                                    - Brass Knuckle
                                    - Da Beef
                                    - Gorilla Pete's Hot Dogs
                                    - PizzaHacker
                                    - Sexy Soup Cart
                                    - Peter's Kettle Corn
                                    - Pie Tisserie

                                    DINNER:

                                    - Balboa Cafe
                                    - Memphis Minnie's
                                    - Farmer Brown
                                    - Lers Ros Thai
                                    - Shanghai Dumpling King / Shanghai House / Bund Shanghai
                                    - Great Eastern Restaurant
                                    - Jai Yun
                                    - PPQ Dungeness Island
                                    - Tadich Grill
                                    - Sam's Grill
                                    - Delfina Restaurant
                                    - Perbacco
                                    - La Ciccia
                                    - Commis (Oakland)
                                    - Lazy Bear
                                    - Canteen
                                    - NOPA
                                    - Chez Panisse
                                    - Zuni Cafe
                                    - Frances
                                    - The House
                                    - Ame
                                    - Sakae Sushi (Burlingame)
                                    - Ino Sushi
                                    - Limon Rotisserie

                                    FINE DINING:

                                    - Gary Danko
                                    - The Dining Room at The Ritz-Carlton
                                    - La Folie

                                    COCKTAILS AND ALES:

                                    - Smuggler's Cove
                                    - Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge (Alameda)
                                    - The Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar
                                    - 15 Romolo
                                    - Bourbon & Branch
                                    - Rye Bar
                                    - The Buena Vista
                                    - Li Po Cocktail Lounge
                                    - Lefty O'Douls
                                    - Tommy's Joynt
                                    - Specs' Twelve Adler Museum Cafe
                                    - Tosca Café
                                    - Vesuvio
                                    - Gitane
                                    - Big 4 Restaurant
                                    - The Vortex Room
                                    - House of Shields
                                    - Café du Nord
                                    - Heinold's First And Last Chance Saloon (Oakland)

                                    WINE SHOPS:

                                    - Castro Village Wine Co.
                                    - K & L Wine Merchants
                                    - Arlequin Wine Merchant
                                    - Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant
                                    - San Francisco Wine Trading Company

                                    COFFEE:

                                    - Four Barrel Coffee
                                    - Graffeo Coffee Roasting Co.
                                    - De La Paz Coffee
                                    - Farm:Table
                                    - Philz Coffee
                                    - Ritual Coffee Roasters
                                    - Brown Owl Coffee
                                    - Blue Bottle Coffee (Chain)

                                    WEEKEND MARKETS:

                                    - Frog Hollow Farm Market
                                    - Ferry Building Farmers Market
                                    - 99 Ranch Market

                                    1. re: OliverB
                                      s
                                      sfbing Dec 18, 2011 10:57 AM

                                      You seem to be doing a lot of travelling back and forth (breakfast in N. Beach, Golden Gate Park, lunch in the mission, drinks at Nob Hill). You might want to group some of these places together on the same day to cut down on travel time. Just looking for parking is probably going to suck up a lot of time. Also, keep a phone number for a taxi company handy and be aware that even if you call, you might have to wait, depending on how busy it is and where you are.

                                      Some off the cuff suggestions:

                                      SInce you are wandering around in the Mission on Saturday, Jan. 21, why don't you do a food crawl instead of or in addition to St. Francis Fountain? I'm thinking, grab a pastry and coffee at tartine or 4 barrel for breakfast, tacos, then bi-rite for ice cream.

                                      I'd probably nix Balboa Cafe as another poster suggests since it is so far and not particularly interesting. Limon Rotisserie is fast and conveniently in the Mission. Other possibilities: Delfina Pizzeria, Zuni, Frances, Ike's Place (those are pretty messy sandwiches to be smuggling in to a theater, though).

                                      For Sunday 1/22:
                                      Get to Hong Kong Lounge at 9.45 (to beat the lines) and dim sum brunch at 10 before heading to the park which is very close by. If you get there early, you can check out John Cambell's and get some pastries and coffee for the wait in line. After the park, the Nick of Nick's Crispy Taco's is really at Nick's at Underdog's in the sunset near the park and no longer in Nob Hill. Although if it were me, I'd probably go someplace else for lunch.

                                      For Monday: I like the old wife cakes at Golden Gate Bakery as well as their egg tarts, but be aware that they may not be open. Yong Kee is pretty hard to find. It doesn't really have a sign. If you are in the mood for something savory and old SF, grab a bowl of won ton noodles at Hun's Won tun house.

                                      Tuesday, January 24:
                                      Old SF: Walk along the embarcadero and have breakfast at Red's Java House before your at&t tour. If you want to eat something fancier: Have breakfast at Butler and the Chef, which is very close to the ballpark. I probably wouldn't travel all the way to tartine, have coffee, go back home, and then turn around to have dinner at Delfina before a movie. They're on the same block--you could probably cruise by tartine (if you haven't already) right before dinner at delfina.

                                      Wed: When you're at Mama's (I'm not a fan, but it is an institution with a long line and people in SF seem to love waiting to eat breakfast), go across the street and pick up some pizza foccacia at Liguria Bakery which is really old SF. Actually, just pack a picnic for your hike: foccacia at Liguria, sandwiches at Molinari's or Mario's, some cannoli, or sacripantina at Stella's.
                                      You should probably go a little earlier if you want to eat at SDK for dinner (I prefer Shanghai House). In either case, it is a long schlep from the outer Richmond to the castro. Or you could put Ino Sushi in this dinner slot and save...

                                      Thurday dinner for Off the Grid in the Haight, since you seem very taken with the idea of food trucks.

                                      I would pick Canteen over Lazy Bear. Also, you could put Ame where Serpentine and Bao Necci are. Although I would go with Saison or Coi over Ame.

                                      Finally, I don't think you can eat brunch at 9 at either little skillet or haltun.
                                      If you still had a car, that's where I would put Koi Palace.

                                      1. re: sfbing
                                        wolfe Dec 20, 2011 07:10 AM

                                        Wasn't there a shot of Lee Marvin passing in front of Red's in Point Blank?

                                        http://www.movie-locations.com/movies...

                                        Burritt Alley, where Miles Archer was shot, is only a short distance from Sam's Grill.

                                    2. re: OliverB
                                      wolfe Dec 17, 2011 02:20 PM

                                      Scrub Val's as in "to cancel or postpone (a space flight or part of a mission): Ground control scrubbed the spacewalk. "
                                      Definition included so your OCD doesn't have you washing down the diner.

                                      1. re: wolfe
                                        o
                                        OliverB Dec 17, 2011 02:27 PM

                                        Thanks... I probably wasn't gonna trek all the way out for a burger anyways, but I always like to try the "best" burgers/roadfood/old diners/haunts in every new city I visit. Is there a must-try hamburger in the Bay Area proper (no gourmet truffle oil aioli etc please) that is worth adding or swapping out anything above for?

                                        1. re: OliverB
                                          wolfe Dec 17, 2011 02:35 PM

                                          Please don't get us started.
                                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/776932
                                          Also at the Ferry building Gott's and a new entry American Eatery.
                                          http://prmeatco.com/american-eatery/m...

                                          1. re: wolfe
                                            o
                                            OliverB Dec 17, 2011 02:51 PM

                                            I think every city-forum has that same thread, haha.

                                            I didn't mean to ask what the best burger in San Fran is... but whether there's anything truly exceptional that's worth adding to my itinerary or would merit suggesting to an to an out-of-towner as a destination spot. There are great burgers all over, and I'd rather eat mexican and asian and other ethnic foods when I'm down there. I'll check the links though..

                                            How far in advance should I call for res at Balboa, Commis, NOPA, Ino, Delfina, PPQ, Sam's Grill, and Lers Ros?

                                            I made res at all other dinner restaurants through OpenTable (including brunch at Foreign Cinema! - not used to being able to make Sunday brunch res here!) but Commis and NOPA wouldn't take my res this far in advance. Is 2 weeks before okay or will they book quickly?

                                            Also, is it worth doing any of the truly fine dining places like G. Danko?
                                            And what's the concensus on Ame -- should I add it in somewhere or replace anything already included with it?

                                            I'm really hoping I can get a res at Lazy Bear if they do a dinner on one of the Saturdays..

                                            1. re: OliverB
                                              Ruth Lafler Dec 17, 2011 06:48 PM

                                              What's your interest in Balboa Cafe? I ask because 05:00 PM - Dinner at Balboa Cafe in Cow Hollow -- 06:20 PM - The Killers at The Castro Theatre seems like tight timing and Balboa Cafe doesn't strike me as a destination-type restaurant.

                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                o
                                                OliverB Dec 18, 2011 01:32 AM

                                                I was mostly going by the excellent Yelp reviews (it was in the top-rated for New American) and looking for a place that was very much "local".

                                                While the menu itself didn't seem particularly interesting... the fact that it's open for dinner at 4pm was one of the bigger draws and appeals, as we need to eat early and dinner before 5:30pm at most restaurants seems rare.

                                                I also really happen to like the look/feel which seemed distinctly San Francisco (and timewarp SF at that; since 1913)... but I may be completely wrong. It just looked like a fun upscale watering hole - y'know, crabs and burgers and great cocktails, etc. I really like to try and find old haunts in each city to visit and with it's vintage neon green sign and interior with long wooden bar and planked floors seemed like a fun and lively atmosphere to eat at before watching a bunch of cool '60s proto-noirs at the historic Castro. Every statement I've read about it seemed to emphasize the energetic atmosphere and described it as a destination type of place so I figured it's a must. As mentioned, I really like to visit historic pubs, diners, etc. but usually compromise with the food - this one seemed a great balance!

                                                Would you suggest something else in place? What could we reasonably swap this one for given the list I posted above of places of interest? We're obviously not looking to go the fine dining route on this particular night. It's going to be packed at the Castro because Angie Dickinson will be introducing the screenings and so I planned to get there earlier than usual for seating. I'd really like to try to keep to the 6:20pm schedule on this particular night. I think showtime is at 7pm... but we can always sneak off to the mezzanine for drinks after scoring seats.

                                                Limon Rotisserie in the Mission seems to be open from lunch until closing - would you recommend this in place for a quick 1hr meal with no lingering? It's also a bit closer to the Castro than the Marina district...

                                                Thanks so much for your help!

                                              2. re: OliverB
                                                Atomica Dec 18, 2011 07:42 AM

                                                Super Duper Burger on Market in the Castro uses excellent ingredients and the food is really good. It's order-at-the-counter, but I think it's quite pleasant. Just a block or so from Castro Theater. Another place in the Castro we go all the time is Woodhouse Fish Co.

                                                1. re: Atomica
                                                  t
                                                  tjinsf Dec 18, 2011 09:10 PM

                                                  the dungeness crab right now at WFC in the Castro is really good. Other places in the Castro that are worth it are Bisou for dessert and drinks after your movies and Frances for dinner.

                                                  One thing BART does not go to the Haight as you have in your schedule. Going from outer Richmond to the Castro is one of the longer transit times so I would give yourself more time than you have down.

                                                  1. re: Atomica
                                                    Windy Dec 25, 2011 12:11 PM

                                                    Chow, which I ordinarily wouldn't rec a visitor bother with, also makes good burgers. More interesting is Chilango, the Mexican restaurant next door.

                                                    All walking distance to the Castro Theater.

                                                    -----
                                                    Chilango
                                                    235 Church St, San Francisco, CA 94114

                                          2. re: OliverB
                                            Robert Lauriston Dec 17, 2011 07:12 PM

                                            Your timing seems wildly optimistic on the pre-movie dinners.

                                            1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                              o
                                              OliverB Dec 18, 2011 01:25 AM

                                              Could you please be specific; which ones in particular?

                                              1hr for Tadich or Balboa? ~50 mins for Delfina? 1hr for Ino? approx. 45-50 mins for Shanghai Dumpling? 1hr for Sam's Grill?

                                              I specifically chose restaurants on these nights that I figured were more "in-and-out" places or quicker meals. Are these not do-able if we explain in advance to the servers/kitchen that we're rushing to catch a movie?

                                              We'd be catching cabs directly from these dinners to the theatre, and I've planned and scheduled to arrive 30 mins before "show time" each night for seating so there's still 10-15 mins. leeway at worst on these evenings.

                                              Thanks!

                                              1. re: OliverB
                                                w
                                                walker Dec 18, 2011 04:08 AM

                                                Great that you're going to Academy of Sciences.

                                                I'd skip Sam's. You say dinner at Tadich at 5:15 and Castro Theater at 6:30. That's really rushing it. You need an hour to order and eat and it takes at least 15 minutes to get there and you cannot count on a taxi being available the minute you walk out onto the street. I'd cut the shower shorter and get to Tadich by 5.

                                                You can't take BART to Amoeba -- take a cab.

                                                No cocktails at Swan, only beer and wine. It's casual, just stools and counter seating.

                                                I really like Betelnut and Yank Sing (101 Spear location, near Ferry Bldg.)

                                                I don't know how you have the energy to do all this; I'm exhausted just reading about it.

                                                1. re: walker
                                                  o
                                                  OliverB Dec 18, 2011 04:27 AM

                                                  Thanks, this is great help!!

                                                  I like to do the ol' San Fran heritage spots and Sam's just seemed like an institution... it also seemed fitting for a quicker early dinner before a night of vintage golden-age noir flicks. Is the food not good or nothing particularly special?

                                                  1. re: walker
                                                    w
                                                    walker Dec 18, 2011 04:28 AM

                                                    Oh yes, even though I've never eaten there, the ONE PLACE I'd really like to try is La Folie. From all the comments on CH and comments from people who've eaten there, I think it'd be great and truly good value.

                                                    1. re: walker
                                                      o
                                                      OliverB Dec 18, 2011 05:01 AM

                                                      I'm sure it's not fair to judge as La Folie is obviously of much higher caliber than anything we're likely to have in Quebec, but I would rather not do French food in SF as it's the one thing that is done (perhaps at a different level/scale and price point) really well in Montreal. I was considering one really spectacular fine dining option though like G. Danko or the Ritz. I just don't think there's enough time. Is Danko worth making time for if we're only gonna do one really exceptional fine dining meal?

                                                      1. re: OliverB
                                                        n
                                                        nocharge Dec 18, 2011 01:44 PM

                                                        The Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton is gone. It's been replaced by a more casual restaurant called Parallel 37. Same chef, though, and the food is excellent.

                                                        If you are going to do fine dining, I would suggest avoiding a totally generic place like Danko given that SF has a whole bunch of places that are a little bit more unique. Ame, Benu, Crenn, Coi, Saison, etc.

                                                  2. re: OliverB
                                                    Robert Lauriston Dec 18, 2011 09:30 AM

                                                    I didn't realize your schedule has you arriving half an hour before showtime. That should be fine.

                                                    1. re: OliverB
                                                      pamf Dec 18, 2011 11:23 AM

                                                      SF does not have a great number of cabs cruising around like other cities. You can hail a cab in some areas downtown or catch them waiting outside the big hotels. In most neighborhoods though, you will have to call for one and wait for it to arrive.

                                                      1. re: pamf
                                                        Robert Lauriston Dec 18, 2011 11:26 AM

                                                        Restaurants can call you a cab. They often have special numbers that get quicker service.

                                                    2. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                      Atomica Dec 18, 2011 07:48 AM

                                                      I completely agree. And where is the spontaneity? You are going to spontaneously not be able to get to a movie or three on time, I'm very sure. Is it fun to gulp down your food every night in anticipation that it's not going fast enough? Heck, I'd rather sneak a really good sandwich into the movie with me (Rhea's Deli in the Mission, OMG). Traffic happens, and progress through the city can be slow at 5:00/6:00. It's a city of a very dense population, millions of stop signs, and no-left-turns.

                                                      1. re: Atomica
                                                        o
                                                        OliverB Dec 18, 2011 08:05 AM

                                                        Again, please be specific... what isn't going to work out here?

                                                        I'd like to plan realistically. The times I posted for the Castro are actually 30 mins before the movie starts to allow for 10-15 mins. leeway with re. to traffic and meals plus scoring decent seats.

                                                        I've made adjustments already based on the advice and feedback posted in this thread so far, so if you could please cite specific dinners that are too tight, then I can make necessary changes. Thanks!

                                                    3. re: OliverB
                                                      Robert Lauriston Dec 18, 2011 09:38 AM

                                                      It's possible to eat well or badly at Tadich, it's coasting on its reputation, and there might be a line. Sam's has pretty much the same menu and style but I think its new owner is trying harder to make the food good.

                                                      Your list is kind of long on places of more historical than culinary interest.

                                                      1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                        o
                                                        OliverB Dec 18, 2011 10:48 AM

                                                        Thanks Robert,

                                                        Other than Tadich and Sam's, could you please give me some other examples from my list (or itinerary rather) where the focus is not specifically on culinary excellence? I though those were the only two and I'd be willing to make some more adjustments as there are still plenty of places I'd like to try that I was unable to fit in... thanks again!!

                                                        1. re: OliverB
                                                          Robert Lauriston Dec 18, 2011 11:15 AM

                                                          I like some of these places, but if I were making a list of where to eat and drink the best that SF has to offer, they wouldn't come close to making the cut.

                                                          • 05:15 PM - Dinner at Tadich Grill in The Financial District
                                                          • 12:45 PM - Afternoon Pints at Tommy's Joynt and Lefty O'Douls
                                                          • 05:00 PM - Dinner at Balboa Cafe in Cow Hollow
                                                          • 11:45 PM - Latenight Cocktails at Li Po Cocktail Lounge in Chinatown
                                                          • 02:00 PM - Late-Afternoon Oysters, Chowder and Cocktails at Swan Oyster Depot in Nob Hill
                                                          • 09:45 AM - Breakfast at Mama's on Washington Square in North Beach/Telegraph Hill
                                                          • 12:00 AM - Latenight Cocktails at Tosca Café in North Beach (OR) 1964 at Edinburgh Castle in the Tenderloin
                                                          • 03:45 PM - Cocktails on Balcony Lounge overlooking Seal Rocks at Cliff House
                                                          • 05:15 PM - Dinner at Sam's Grill in The Financial District
                                                          • 09:45 AM - Breakfast at Dottie's True Blue Cafe in the Tenderloin
                                                          • 09:30 PM - Dessert at Swensen's Ice Cream in Nob Hill
                                                          • 10:45 PM - Irish Coffee at The Buena Vista Cafe by Ghirardelli Square
                                                          • 09:45 PM - Tropical Rum Cocktails at The Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar in the Fairmont San Francisco Hotel
                                                          •• Take-Home Food - Molinari Delicatessen

                                                          1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                            o
                                                            OliverB Dec 18, 2011 12:23 PM

                                                            Thanks for that... With the exception of the 3 dinner choices, many of those places are not in fact destinations but I added them because we'll be in their area.

                                                            I know the Tonga Room supposedly sucks but I'm a tiki nut and can't possibly spend 2 whole weeks in the city without at least checking it out... if just for the timewarp fifties kitsch. A lot of the bars (save the record nights where friends are DJing) were just time fillers and chosen for latenight atmosphere after the screenings. I plan on doing great cocktails as well at Smuggler's Cove, Bourbon & Branch, Bix, Rye, etc. Li Po Cocktail Lounge is a must because it's so foreign to me... my dream in Montreal is to have some latenight cocktail lounge in Chinatown with an old guy with a fu manchu moustache serving drinks at the bar, haha. I have to at least stop in, and I think we're swinging by after House of Bamboo which makes it all the more fun. I don't expect exceptional drinks or anything like that. I tried to mix greta food and drink with just fun places that have lotsa local flavor. Same goes for the two pubs (Tommys and Leftys) - we'll be in the area and jetlagged so I figured it's a safe time killer. They look like a fun place to kill 40 mins. Truthfully, some of that stuff is filler and expendable... we'll decide when we're in town and see what we feel like doing. It won't be as exact as the above but I just wanted to get down some really precise scheduling for the main daily sightseeing & activities, nightly screenings and dinners. Buena Vista looks like a great spot by the bay though, I can't imagine it not being worth a visit. Would you at least agree that the places I mentioned in this post are at least worth visiting once, from an out-of-towners perspective? Or are they truthfully all touristy wastes of time?

                                                            Mucho thanks for all of the help, it's truly appreciated!

                                                            1. re: OliverB
                                                              Robert Lauriston Dec 18, 2011 12:44 PM

                                                              Your list looks to me a little too much like it was planned with a 1970 Frommer's guide. I don't think you'd be missing anything important by skipping all of them. Swan is still a local favorite but if they were opening today they'd probably have to up their game a lot to survive. Same goes fro Sam's or Tadich, though it's definitely worth hitting one of them given how long you're going to be here.

                                                              Pier 39 is a pure tourist trap, built as one, a trashy plastic mall on piers. It's as much of a must-see as the Ripley's museum.

                                                              If you're a tiki nut, definitely don't miss Smugger's Cove. Best of the breed.

                                                              1. re: OliverB
                                                                Atomica Dec 19, 2011 08:26 PM

                                                                I'm also a tiki nut, so I'm glad to hear you are one too. So please don't call it "kitsch." You should check out the beautiful Trader Vic's in Emeryville.

                                                        2. re: OliverB
                                                          Robert Lauriston Dec 18, 2011 11:30 AM

                                                          Koi Palace is very inconvenient on public transit and the wait can be long. Personally I think the food at Yank Sing is better and they take reservations.

                                                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7321...

                                                          1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                            o
                                                            OliverB Dec 18, 2011 12:25 PM

                                                            I think we'll have a car that day.

                                                            We're gonna use the super convenient Getaround service - I'm surprised nothing like that exists here in Canada!

                                                            Distance and logistics aside, would you still suggest Yank Sing over Koi Palace for **dim sum** regardless?

                                                            Thanks!

                                                            1. re: OliverB
                                                              Robert Lauriston Dec 18, 2011 12:47 PM

                                                              Yank Sing's my favorite. There were two other places I ranked about the same but they both closed.

                                                              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5843...

                                                          2. re: OliverB
                                                            h
                                                            hyperbowler Dec 18, 2011 01:07 PM

                                                            This is a packed itinerary, and one I am bookmarking for future use. Reminds me of the time I hit the Toronto film festival and managed to balance 46 films with great eats.

                                                            St. Francis Fountain certainly has "local charm," but just realize that the food is standard diner fare. A good hangover nursing place...

                                                            For a great view of the city, head to the roof (5th floor) of the Vallejo St. garage in North Beach, day or night.

                                                            Vesuvio is in North Beach. Check out it's 2nd floor.

                                                            In January, search for Golden Gate Bakery on Chowhound, and sort by recent. There's usually a thread listing when they're on vacation... they are now.

                                                            GG Fortune cookies is fun. If you're near it, an additional fortune cookie place is Mee Mee Bakery.

                                                            BART doesn't run to the Haight. If leaving Grace Cathedral, you can take the MUNI from Powell or some kind of bus. Expect 40 minutes each way, plus waiting. In other words, move the Haight to another day. If you happen to be near Burritt Alley, check out the film noir related plaque.

                                                            Gilda is about two hours. Expect to cab it from Castro Theater to PPQ Dungeness Island to get there by 9:30-- 40 minute public transportation. Chowhound consensus seems to be only to get the crab there. You don't have any Burmese on your itinerary. You could also consider Mandalay that night, but you're right in wanting Dungenous crab on your trip.

                                                            Sentinel and Golden West are owned by the same people, and Sentinel has a broader menu. You should call in an order ahead of time.

                                                            I 2nd the recommendation to stop in Liguria Bakery. They sell out quick, but you'll be fine by 10AM.

                                                            Expect an hour wait to get seated at Mama's.

                                                            Deli Board sounds like a shlep after heading to Marin. Saigon Sandwiches is an alternative, though not exactly light.

                                                            Driving down the twisty bit of Lombard is traffic hell. Walking is much nicer.

                                                            When you're at Telegraph Hill, head down the Filbert steps all the way to Sansome, and back up the Greenwich steps. Hopefully you'll see parrots. 1360 Montgomery Street near the Filbert Steps was a filming location for Dark Passage. Beautiful deco artistry on the outside walls. There's a Bogart cardboard cutout in the window :-)

                                                            Dottie's True Blue is moving, or so I've read on CH

                                                            Drive up to Twin Peaks one day. Great view, maybe on way to Koi Palace.

                                                            On imdb, check out the filming locations of the movies you're seeing. You may want to integrate or highlight them on your tour.

                                                            On Friday the 27th, pick up a Tartine bread and sneak it into the theater. Call 3 days ahead to reserve it.

                                                            If you have an option for bread at any restaurants, try dutch crunch. It's not a local creation, but it's not common to see elsewhere.

                                                            1. re: hyperbowler
                                                              h
                                                              hyperbowler Dec 18, 2011 11:11 PM

                                                              FYI: it took me exactly one hour to do Kearny & Broadway -> Filbert Steps -> Sansome -> Greenwich Steps -> quick walk around Coit tower (skipped inside) -> Mama's

                                                              Cafe Trieste is fine for coffee, but I wouldn't make it a destination stop for breakfast. On the 22nd (or the 30th), consider Zazie in Cole Valley for breakfast. It's not that far from Golden Gate Park, and it'll take you into a new neighborhood.

                                                              1. re: hyperbowler
                                                                o
                                                                OliverB Dec 19, 2011 05:19 AM

                                                                Thanks SO much hyperbowler, this is the best response yet and extremely helpful!!

                                                                I will definitely check out 1360 Montgomery and have made several adjustments to the itinerary based on all of your feedback!

                                                                Would you say it's better to do the Twin Peaks lookout point in the daytime or evening? I imagine it'd be nicer to see the entire city lit up at night or sunset (though we probably won't have time to fit it in at that hour)

                                                                I was considering doing the SF movie tour but I don't really want to spend an entire afternoon in a bus or van with other tourists. I'm sure we could probably have a more enjoyable time driving around on our own. Have you ever done it before out of curiosity, and if so, was it worthwhile?

                                                                Do we really have to call 3 days ahead for Tartine? What's available to buy at their bakery on walk-in?

                                                                Thanks again for such a detailed and informative post with so many great tips!!

                                                                1. re: OliverB
                                                                  h
                                                                  hyperbowler Dec 19, 2011 08:42 AM

                                                                  I've never been there at sunset. But day or night, getting a view from Twin Peaks depends on the lack of fog!

                                                                  Yeah, a bus tour does sound like hell and doesn't really work with your food oriented motives. Google "san francisco filming locations" and you'll find lots of cool stuff, noir or not. You could always use some of these places as picnic spots.

                                                                  You can get pastries and sandwiches and everything else at Tartine anytime. These things are definitely worth it. However, their bread is sold fresh starting at 5PM, and must be reserved 3 days ahead. It's good enough that I would make it a destination priority.

                                                                  bbulkow's tip to spend more time in the Mission is probably far from your hotel (Nob Hill?), but I agree with their orientation, and several of their picks. Note that Dalva has a cool back room that serves cocktails and feels a little speakeasyish... not sure their hours. Zeitgeist is hip and fun. I think they mean Truly Mediteranean for shawerma.

                                                                  You seem focussed more on cocktails, but if you like beer, see this thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/693216

                                                                  1. re: hyperbowler
                                                                    o
                                                                    OliverB Dec 19, 2011 10:13 AM

                                                                    Thanks!

                                                                    We're actually staying in Alamo Sq. on McAllister Street in one of the Victorian row houses. We plan to spend plenty of time in and around the Missiont hough. We'll have a few days where we'll spend a couple of hours walking around, eating, shopping, drinking, etc. We'll probably end up in the Mission most latenights for the bar scene, I imagine.

                                                                    I will definitely reserve a loaf from Tartine in advance, and I'll have a look at Dalka on yelp now and see what it's all about!

                                                                    Thanks again!

                                                                    1. re: OliverB
                                                                      h
                                                                      hyperbowler Dec 19, 2011 05:13 PM

                                                                      Oh..... in that case, definitely heed other's advice about not jumping around the city too much. Also:
                                                                      Zazie breakfast on the 25th to keep you on the west part of the city (Walk up to Coit tower on the 26th obviates the need for Filbert steps and waiting at Mama's can kill your day). Check their menu--- might be too close to what you can get back home
                                                                      Sentinel and Gold West are essentially windows, so picnic at Privately Owned Public Open Spaces (google: "sf popos map")
                                                                      Stop in at Cafe Trieste for Coffee on the 26th
                                                                      Magnolia Brewery weekend brunch on the 22nd
                                                                      Wed the 25th, cocktails at both Vesuvio and Tosca to avoid another shlep to North Beach, or do one after Caffe Baonecci
                                                                      Get picnic supplies (e.g., local cheeses) at Bi-Rite in the Mission or Falletti Foods not too far from your apt.
                                                                      Echoing RL, Bar Crudo is right near where you're staying. So is Little Star chicago style pizza if you need to pre-order by phone some food that'll be ready when you return near home
                                                                      Molinari's is closed on Sundays

                                                                      1. re: hyperbowler
                                                                        o
                                                                        OliverB Dec 20, 2011 06:58 AM

                                                                        Thanks once again hyperbowler!

                                                                        Zazie's looks really great and we'll probably end up here instead... would you say that wait notwithstanding, does the food at Mama's justify the long lines or is it just a 'scene'?

                                                                        Why would Coit Tower obviate the Filbert Steps... is it just too much walking or redundant in regards to location and scenery? It's difficult to get an accurate sense of the neighborhood and route from looking at a flat map on screen, considering it's all steep hills.

                                                                        So Trieste instead of Graffeo on the 26th you think?

                                                                        And Magnolia Pub & Brewery is in the Haight... you'd suggest it for brunch instead of breakfast at Trieste on the 22nd?

                                                                        I'll only do Vesuvio on the 22nd if we end up at Nick's Tacos for lunch... I'm definitely not making it a destination!

                                                                        Is Bar Crudo worth swapping out another dinner for, location aside - maybe in place of Balboa that others were so critical of? It does look great!

                                                                        Thanks again for all the helpful tips!

                                                                        1. re: OliverB
                                                                          h
                                                                          hyperbowler Dec 20, 2011 08:37 AM

                                                                          I've only been to mamas once, and didn't think it was worth the wait, especially if you're spending the time to cut across the city. It's in all the tour guides so expect
                                                                          Tremendous waits. Others and the board may have had better experience than I did. Two
                                                                          Zazie tips--- the seats outside are first come first serve and when there's a line people don't often realize that anyone can grab them! Also, if
                                                                          It's packed and you're in a rush, la Boulanger is a local chain that's pretty good and just a few doors down.

                                                                          The filbert steps, the interesting part of which is from coit to Montgomery and Montgomery to Sansome is fantastic, but it's not going to take so long that it's worth a separate trip back up to coit. Combine coit and steps

                                                                          Graffeo is a cool stop to see their equipment, but they don't serve coffee. They sell bags of roasted coffee.

                                                                          I've never seen anything at Trieste that could rival the bakeries throughout the city. He advantage of magnolia is that they're closer to you, have a good weekend brunch, have smaller crowds than lesser places in the area, and have beer too.

                                                                          1. re: hyperbowler
                                                                            o
                                                                            OliverB Dec 20, 2011 08:54 AM

                                                                            Great, thanks again!

                                                                            How do I 'combine' the Steps and Coit? Do the steps lead right up to Coit? They seemed to be quite a distance on the map, unless Goggle isn't recognizing their exact location accurately. Coit is situated in Pioneer Park and the steps show at the Lincoln HWY and Filbert cross. Is this correct?

                                                                            If so, and following your suggestions of going down to Sansome and back up the Greenwich Steps, how would I work Coit tower into that without a second trip?

                                                                            Or are you just suggesting that I should get it all done on the same morning?

                                                                            I only considered the Filbert Steps that morning because of it's proximity to Mama's and figured it'd be good exercise before a hearty early-morning meal. I figured that if we're going to be eating there anyways (not sure if that's the case anymore!) then it'd be a good start to the day.

                                                                            If we're going to be around Telegraph Hill for the morning of the 26th (Mo's, City Lights, Beat Museum, Liguria, etc) then we'll be right around the corner from Pioneer Park, won't we? Do you suggest that we do the Filbert Steps ont his day instead? I kind of figured it'd be too much walking since we're gonna be doing the Lands End Trail also and as optimistic as all fo this is, we'll probably be a bit hungover from all the latenights. Is Filbert Steps a tough climb if we're going all the way to Coit Tower and following your suggested route above?

                                                                            Thanks for the info on Graffeo, I thought they were a cafe as well... guess I can scratch that one off the list (unless we have a coffee machine at the rental)

                                                                            Btw, somewhat off-topic fromt he food-talk, but should we expect a lot of rain next month? I hope that won't impact our plans too much... will temps be in the low 60s/70s range most days (button downs and harrington weather)?

                                                                            Thanks!

                                                                            1. re: OliverB
                                                                              Robert Lauriston Dec 20, 2011 09:02 AM

                                                                              The Filbert Steps are between Montgomery and Sansome. Google Maps won't find them but if you zoom in they're marked correctly. Last time I snooped in the stairway of 1360 Montgomery they still had the ice delivery thingies.

                                                                              At the bottom of the steps you're near Piperade. If you do a loop via Broadway you could eat at Naked Lunch.

                                                                              -----
                                                                              Piperade
                                                                              1015 Battery St., San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                              2. re: OliverB
                                                                bbulkow Dec 19, 2011 01:22 AM

                                                                That is an astonishing list. Your Monday list is a classic, I especially like the Big 4 -> Cassanova transition.

                                                                • 12:45 PM - Afternoon Pints at Tommy's Joynt and Lefty O'Douls
                                                                --------- nooooooooooo, but when I check my favorite haunts, they aren't open that early. Best shot might be Irish Bank, it's closer and it's less of a chain. If you're willing to go all the way to Tommy's Joynt, go to Zeitgeist instead. An SF classic on a saturday afternoon, with the freshest in west coast beers.

                                                                Latenight Burritos + Lost & Found at Delirium Cocktails in the Mission
                                                                Let's assume that's Pancho Villa for the burritos, I would consider Dalva or the Albion afterward. There are 4 good bars right in there - Delirium, Dalva, Albion, Kilowatt, Jack's Elixer - just walk west from Pancho and drink where you like. I'm also a fan of the El Faralito -> Attic pairing. If you're sick of tacos, then hit the schwarma stand right at 16th and Valencie - it's very, very good.

                                                                Friday 5:30 - Tadich to Castro - that can be a 45 minute cab ride on a friday in that direction. No fooling. This must be the MUNI run to be even plausible, so make sure you have your clipper card and have a feel for the time. Why not just grab an opening 5:30 seat at the bar at frances?

                                                                Instead of doing the Make-out room twice, I would recommend checking out the Elbo or Mighty or Amnesia. Given your list, Amnesia might be a great fit - they are eclectic to a fault, very old room. They don't have a full bar, but their belgian list is not inconsiderable. It's a very classic SF place - exactly 20 feet wide, bar on the left, stage in the back.

                                                                Given your interest in an afternoon pint, you're avoiding some of the classic SF pint shops. The toranado. One possible post-castro is check out the du nord's schedule that week. Du Nord has one of the most beautiful old bars in the city - in the top 10, and with a speakeasy speaking tube. Drinks are very good, and there's some "hang space" tucked away under the stairs where you can relax on couches and sip a drink. If they're serving food, they punch way above their weight. Lucky 13, in the same block, is a perfect SF dive known for their beer selection. For late night quick bite, mark BurgerMeister, or just keep drinking.

                                                                Dessert at Swensen's Ice Cream in Nob Hill
                                                                *Swensen's*? Really? When you could be eating at the La Folie lounge? The best part about SF is everyone is so casual. Make use of it; hit a good michelin 1 star for desert.

                                                                Saturday, between shows, you should certainly walk down to the mission, but don't be overly distracted by tacos. You should find the Golden Hydrant, and in dolores park, you should look for street vendors and trucks. Especially look for a sonoran hot dog. If you get through the park with even a shred of appetite left, hit bi-rite creamery. Then tartine. OMG, tartine. Consider a small pie at Delfina. There's no way you'll make it to El Faralito with stomach room remaining if you follow your nose. Zero chance.

                                                                Golden Hydrant
                                                                http://www.naalarm.com/bill/golden.htm

                                                                Background on Sonoran Dogs
                                                                http://tucsoncitizen.com/tucsontales/...

                                                                1. re: bbulkow
                                                                  Robert Lauriston Dec 19, 2011 08:59 AM

                                                                  Schwerma stand = Truly Mediterranean, the schwerma wrap is great but they close at 10 except on weekends.

                                                                  -----
                                                                  Truly Mediterranean
                                                                  3109 16th St, San Francisco, CA 94103

                                                                2. re: OliverB
                                                                  w
                                                                  waldrons Dec 19, 2011 02:16 AM

                                                                  In order for this to work, every single element has to happen like clockwork... from the speed of dinner service, to the availability of taxis, to traffic. And if it rains, double all the times.

                                                                  As an example, on the first day, you'll have to call a cab around 4:15 to get it around 4:30 pm, to get to Tadich around 5 pm to get seated around 5:15 pm. Then you'll need to have the restaurant call a cab around 6 pm to get it around 6:15 to get to the Castro around 6:30 pm. Giving you a whopping 45 minutes to order, be served and inhale your dinner.

                                                                  There's also a few technical problems... like Lefty O'Doul's and Tommy's Joynt aren't really near each other.

                                                                  I echo the comment to focus on a specific neighborhood for a longer time -- all morning, or even all day, rather than hopping back and forth between neighborhoods. I'd also probably not return to the apartment quite so much, as you're chewing up a lot of time. I know SF is compact, but even in a taxi, it takes about 10 minutes to drive a mile in the downtown area. Add in time (LOTS of it) to find parking when you're driving yourself.

                                                                  I wonder if you've had training writing tour brochures -- your comments about "Free afternoon" and "relax at home" at 5:45 pm or when you have to be somewhere else in 2 hours or less sound like some tours I've been on!!

                                                                  1. re: waldrons
                                                                    Robert Lauriston Dec 19, 2011 09:01 AM

                                                                    On Friday evening, the Muni subway might get from downtown to Castro St. faster than a taxi.

                                                                    1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                      o
                                                                      OliverB Dec 19, 2011 10:10 AM

                                                                      Thanks... is traffic really that bad in the city?

                                                                      1. re: OliverB
                                                                        Robert Lauriston Dec 19, 2011 10:20 AM

                                                                        Certain streets back up a rush hour.

                                                                        1. re: OliverB
                                                                          s
                                                                          sfbing Dec 19, 2011 11:24 AM

                                                                          The Wednesday night farmers market in the Castro can clog up traffic in the area significantly.

                                                                          1. re: OliverB
                                                                            Atomica Dec 19, 2011 08:35 PM

                                                                            VERY, VERY DENSELY POPULATED. A lot of people crammed into a small-ish city. Giant amount of stop signs. Giant amount of no left turns. An actual rush hour (or more). That is San Francisco. Everyone is one stacked on top of one another like cordwood. I sometimes take my family out to early (5:00) dinner on Fridays after picking up husband at work at Hunter's Point. It can easily take me an hour to drive 5 miles over to the Richmond.

                                                                    2. o
                                                                      OliverB Dec 20, 2011 07:19 AM

                                                                      Here's the somewhat updated itinerary, thanks to all of your feedback:

                                                                      FRI, JAN. 20
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 03:30 PM - Rental Check-in

                                                                      • 04:00 PM - Shower and Change

                                                                      • 05:00 PM - Dinner at Tadich Grill in The Financial District

                                                                      • 06:30 PM - Dark Passage at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:30 PM - The House On Telegraph Hill at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 12:00 AM - Latenight Cocktails at 15 Romolo in North Beach (OR) Kaleidoscope at House of Shields in SOMA

                                                                      SAT, JAN. 21
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 10:00 AM - Brunch at St. Francis Fountain in The Mission

                                                                      • 11:00 AM - Walk around the Mission

                                                                      • 11:45 AM - BART to Union Square

                                                                      • 12:00 PM - Shopping at Brooks Brothers

                                                                      • 12:45 PM - Afternoon Pints at Tommy's Joynt and Lefty O'Douls

                                                                      • 02:30 PM - Walk to The Alden Shop in The Financial District (OR) Afraid To Talk at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 03:00 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 05:00 PM - Dinner at Balboa Cafe in Cow Hollow (OR) Bar Crudo in NOPA (OR) Limon Rotisserie in the Mission

                                                                      • 06:20 PM - The Killers at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:45 PM - Point Blank at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 12:00 AM - Latenight Whiskies at Bourbon & Branch Downtown

                                                                      SUN, JAN. 22
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 10:00 AM - Brunch at Magnolia Pub & Brewery in Haight-Ashbury

                                                                      • 11:00 AM - Golden Gate Park: Conservatory of Flowers, Japanese Tea Garden, Botanical Garden, Kezar Stadium

                                                                      • 02:30 PM - Lunch at Nick's Crispy Taco's in Nob Hill (OR) Taqueria Guadalajara + Bi-Rite Creamery in the Mission

                                                                      • 03:30 PM - Afternoon Drinks at Vesuvio in Nob Hill (OR) Four Barrel Coffee in the Mission

                                                                      • 04:45 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 06:30 PM - Laura at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 08:30 PM - Dinner at Jai Yun

                                                                      • 11:45 PM - Latenight Cocktails at Li Po Cocktail Lounge in Chinatown

                                                                      MON, JAN. 23
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 09:00 AM - Curry Beef, Char Siu Pork, Taro Mooncakes, and Dahn Taht Egg Custard Tarts at Golden Gate Bakery in Chinatown

                                                                      • 09:15 AM - Jeen Dui Sesame Balls, Peanut Jong, Red Bean Buns, and Char Siu Cheung Fun at Yong Kee in Chinatown

                                                                      • 09:30 AM - Flat Fortune Cookies at Golden Gate Fortune Cookies in Chinatown

                                                                      • 09:45 AM - Low Por Bang Wife Cakes, Bo Lo Bau Pineapple Buns, Dou Sa Bo Low Bau, and Giant Alond Cookies from Garden Bakery in Chinatown

                                                                      • 10:00 AM - Red Bean Buns and Bo Lo Bau Buns at Napoleon Super Bakery in Chinatown

                                                                      • 10:15 AM - Walk/Eat through Chinatown

                                                                      • 11:00 AM - Cable Car Museum

                                                                      • 11:45 AM - Walk up Mason and California St. to Grace Cathedral near Huntington Park

                                                                      • 12:30 PM - Cab to Amoeba Music in Haight-Ashbury

                                                                      • 12:45 PM - Walk around the Haight, Vintage Shopping, etc.

                                                                      • 01:45 PM - Late-Afternoon Oysters, Chowder and Beer at Swan Oyster Depot in Nob Hill

                                                                      • 02:45 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 04:30 PM - Dean's Birthday at Smuggler's Cove in NOPA

                                                                      • 07:00 PM - Gilda at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:45 PM - Dinner at PPQ Dungeness Island in Outer Richmond - (Dungeness Crab ONLY!)

                                                                      • 11:15 PM - Cocktails at The Big 4 Bar in the Huntington Hotel and Top of The Mark in Nob Hill

                                                                      • 01:00 AM - Latin Fever at Casanova Lounge in the Mission

                                                                      TUE, JAN. 24
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 09:45 AM - De La Paz Coffee in SOMA

                                                                      • 10:30 AM - Tour of AT&T Park

                                                                      • 12:45 PM - Take-Out Lunch at The Golden West in the Financial District: Picnic in SFPOPOS

                                                                      • 02:00 PM - Dessert/Coffee at Tartine Bakery in the Mission: Pre-Order (3-Days) Bread Loaf!

                                                                      • 03:00 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 05:30 PM - Dinner at Delfina in The Mission

                                                                      • 06:30 PM - Unfaithfully Yours at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:15 PM - The Good Humor Man at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 11:30 PM - Latenight Tacos/Burritos (Taqueria San Jose) + Lost & Found at Delirium Cocktails in the Mission (OR) El Zocalo Seafood in Bernal Heights

                                                                      WED, JAN. 25 - (Getaround Rental Car)
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 09:00 AM - Filbert Steps - (Down to Sansome and back up the Greenwich Steps)

                                                                      • 10:00 AM - Breakfast at Mama's on Washington Square in North Beach/Telegraph Hill (OR) Zazie in Cole Valley

                                                                      • 11:00 AM - Scenic Drive through the Golden Gate National Recreation Area to Point Bonita Lighthouse

                                                                      • 12:15 PM - Muir Woods National Monument: Hike the 3 mile loop up Ocean View Trail, down Lost Trail and back along Fern Creek Trail

                                                                      • 03:15 PM - Light Lunch at Deli Board in SOMA (OR) Saigon Sandwich in the Tenderloin

                                                                      • 03:45 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 05:45 PM - Dinner at Shanghai Dumpling King in Outer Richmond

                                                                      • 07:00 PM - House Of Bamboo at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:20 PM - Underworld USA at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 12:00 AM - Latenight Cocktails at Tosca Café + Vesuvio in North Beach (OR) 1964 at Edinburgh Castle in the Tenderloin

                                                                      THU, JAN. 26 - (Getaround Rental Car)
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 10:15 AM - Breakfast at Mo's Grill in North Beach/Telegraph Hill

                                                                      • 11:00 AM - Take-Out Focaccio (Afternoon Snack) from Liguria Bakery

                                                                      • 11:15 AM - The Beat Museum

                                                                      • 11:35 AM - Browse through City Lights Bookstore

                                                                      • 12:15 PM - Walk down Columbus Ave. to Graffeo Coffee Roasting Company

                                                                      • 12:30 PM - Walk up to Coit Tower in Pioneer Park: Elevator to the Observation Deck

                                                                      • 01:15 PM - Deco Artistry of 1360 Montgomery Street - (Dark Passage Film Location)

                                                                      • 01:30 PM - Drive down Lombard Street and through Telegraph Hill

                                                                      • 02:00 PM - Hike Lands End Trail from Point Lobos to Eagles' Point: Ocean Beach, Sutro Baths Ruins, Cliff House, Camera Obscura, Sutro Heights Park

                                                                      • 04:15 PM - Cocktails on Balcony Lounge overlooking Seal Rocks at Cliff House

                                                                      • 04:45 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 05:45 PM - Dinner at Ino Sushi in Japantown

                                                                      • 07:00 PM - Naked Alibi at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:30 PM - International Flight Lounge at Forbidden Island in Alameda

                                                                      • 12:30 AM - Web Of Sound at The Makeout Room in the Mission

                                                                      FRI, JAN. 27
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 10:00 AM - Breakfast at Farm : Table in the Tenderloin-Downtown

                                                                      • 11:30 AM - The Presidio: Fort Point, Presidio Habitats, Trails and Scenic Overlooks, Inspiration Point, San Francisco National Cemetery, etc.

                                                                      • 02:45 PM - Picnic in the Palace of Fine Arts - (Takeout from John Campbell's Irish Bakery, Lou's Cafe, and New World Market in Outer Richmond)

                                                                      • 03:30 PM - The Walt Disney Family Museum

                                                                      • 04:45 PM - Sweets at Toy Boat Dessert Café in Inner Richmond

                                                                      • 05:30 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 07:00 PM - Thieves' Highway at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:30 PM - The Breaking Point at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 11:30 PM - Dinner at NOPA near Alamo Square

                                                                      • 12:30 AM - Teenage Dance Craze at The Make-Out Room in the Mission

                                                                      SAT, JAN. 28
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 08:45 AM - Breakfast at Ferry Plaza Farmers Market + Takeaway from Frog Hollow Farm Bakery

                                                                      • 10:00 AM - Walk along Embarcadero to Fisherman's Wharf: Aquarium of the Bay, Pier 39, Musée Mécanique, Hyde Street Pier, Maritime National Historical Park & Museum, Fort Mason, Sightseeing, Shopping, etc.

                                                                      • 01:00 PM - Three Strangers at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 03:00 PM - Lunch at Taqueria Cancún (OR) El Farolito in the Mission District

                                                                      • 03:30 PM - Walk around the Mission

                                                                      • 04:15 PM - Mission San Francisco de Asis, Mission Dolores

                                                                      • 05:00 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 06:30 PM - The Great Gatsby at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:15 PM - Prix-Fixe Dinner at Canteen in Lower Nob Hill (OR) Lazy Bear in the Mission

                                                                      • 11:00 PM - The Noir City Nightclub at The Swedish American Hall (OR) Nightbeat at Edinburgh Castle in the Tenderloin (OR) Record Swap at The Knockout

                                                                      {OR}

                                                                      • 02:00 PM - Roadtrip to Burbank!

                                                                      • 09:00 PM - Real Boss Hoss Garage & Rock n Roll Party with The Teutonics, The Chuckleberries, Thee Tee Pees, etc! at Viva Cantina

                                                                      SUN, JAN. 29
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 12:15 PM - Brunch at Foreign Cinema in the Mission

                                                                      • 01:00 PM - Free Afternoon - San Francisco Zoo (?) / Caffe Trieste in SOMA

                                                                      • 03:00 PM - Relax at Home (OR) City Streets Matinée at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 05:15 PM - Dinner at Sam's Grill in The Financial District

                                                                      • 06:30 PM - The Glass Key at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 09:00 PM - The Maltese Falcon at The Castro Theatre

                                                                      • 12:00 AM - Bar Crawl - (Cocktails at BIX in the Financial District, Basil Gimlets at Rye in the Tenderloin)

                                                                      MON, JAN. 30
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 09:45 AM - Breakfast at Dottie's True Blue Cafe in the Tenderloin

                                                                      • 11:00 AM - California Academy of Sciences: Steinhart Aquarium, Planetarium, Natural History Museum

                                                                      • 02:45 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 03:30 PM - Late-Afternoon Beer and Chowder on Pier 39 in Fisherman's Wharf

                                                                      • 04:20 PM - Alcatraz Night Tour: Departs from Pier 33

                                                                      • 08:00 PM - Dinner at Serpentine in the Dogpatch

                                                                      • 10:00 PM - Tropical Rum Cocktails at Smuggler's Cove in NOPA

                                                                      TUE, JAN. 31
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 11:00 AM - Dim Sum at Koi Palace in Daly City (OR) Yank Sing in SOMA

                                                                      • 01:00 PM - de Young Fine Arts Museum

                                                                      • 03:30 PM - Legion of Honor Fine Arts Museum

                                                                      • 05:15 PM - Relax at Home / Afternoon in Alamo Square Park

                                                                      • 08:15 PM - Dinner at Caffé BaoNecci in North Beach/Telegraph Hill

                                                                      • 09:30 PM - Dessert at Swensen's Ice Cream in Nob Hill

                                                                      • 10:00 PM - Cable Car to Fisherman's Wharf - Walk along Piers

                                                                      • 10:45 PM - Irish Coffee at The Buena Vista Cafe by Ghirardelli Square

                                                                      WED, FEB. 01 - (Getaround Rental Car)
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 11:30 AM - Brunch at Zuni Cafe in the Tenderloin

                                                                      • 01:00 PM - Mid Century Modern Eichler Architectural Tour of Diamond Heights, Terra Linda and Lucas Valley-Marinwood

                                                                      • 04:30 PM - Free Afternoon - (Shopping at Unionmade in the Castro?)

                                                                      • 08:00 PM - Dinner at Lers Ros Thai in the Tenderloin

                                                                      • 09:45 PM - Tropical Rum Cocktails at The Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar in the Fairmont San Francisco Hotel

                                                                      • 12:00 AM - Twin Peaks Look-Out Point

                                                                      THU, FEB. 02 - (Getaround Rental Car)
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 10:00 AM - Morning in Alamo Square Park

                                                                      • 12:00 PM - Lunch at 4505 Meats in the back corner of the San Francisco Ferry Building Farmer's Market

                                                                      • 01:00 PM - SFMOMA

                                                                      • 04:00 PM - Rooftop Garden and Coffee Bar at the SFMOMA

                                                                      • 05:00 PM - Sunset Drive along the Great Hwy

                                                                      • 06:00 PM - Relax at Home!

                                                                      • 08:00 PM - Dinner at Commis in Oakland

                                                                      • 10:00 PM - Tequilas at Tommy's Mexican Restaurant in Outer Richmond

                                                                      FRI, FEB. 03
                                                                      -----------------

                                                                      • 07:00 AM - Golden Gate Bridge at Dawn and Sunrise at Fort Point

                                                                      • 09:00 AM - Brunch at Farmer Brown's Little Skillet (OR) Haltun Mayan Cuisine in the Mission

                                                                      • 11:00 AM - SFO Airport for 1:10 PM Departure

                                                                      15 Replies
                                                                      1. re: OliverB
                                                                        Robert Lauriston Dec 20, 2011 09:10 AM

                                                                        Go to Liguria first, they could sell out by 11.

                                                                        Don't do both Sam's and Tadich. The menus are pretty much the same and neither has the city's best seafood. You'd eat better at Alamo Square Seafood.

                                                                        1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                          o
                                                                          OliverB Dec 20, 2011 10:37 AM

                                                                          Thanks!

                                                                          What about the raw seafood bar in Alamo Sq. that was mentioned above; how does that fare?

                                                                          1. re: OliverB
                                                                            Robert Lauriston Dec 20, 2011 10:43 AM

                                                                            You mean Bar Crudo? It's one of the best places for non-Asian seafood in the city.

                                                                            -----
                                                                            Bar Crudo
                                                                            655 Divisadero Street, San Francisco, CA 94117

                                                                            1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                              o
                                                                              OliverB Dec 20, 2011 12:09 PM

                                                                              Okay great, thanks!

                                                                              I think this might replace Sam's in that case and maybe just stop in for a drink and a few oysters one afternoon instead of a full-on dinner.

                                                                              1. re: OliverB
                                                                                Robert Lauriston Dec 20, 2011 12:31 PM

                                                                                You'd be better off doing it the other way around, having a drink and oysters at Tadich and a meal at Bar Crudo.

                                                                                Maybe your priority is nostalgia / cinematic tie-ins, which is fine, but be aware that you're planning to eat little of the best of SF in culinary terms.

                                                                                1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                                  o
                                                                                  OliverB Dec 20, 2011 03:26 PM

                                                                                  Miscommunication: I meant skip Sam's for dinner and do a proper meal at Cudo instead, and possibly have a drink/oysters at Sam's one aft.

                                                                                  Tadich I'd like to try even if it's not the absolute utmost. I think there's room for a few divey local eats to contrast the higher end stuff we're doing the rest of the time.

                                                                          2. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                            h
                                                                            hyperbowler Dec 20, 2011 03:40 PM

                                                                            Have Liguria slice it for you-- they cut them into 8 pieces. Don't get the pizza focaccia--- it's too messy for a picnic.
                                                                            Also, you seem to like breakfast/brunch a lot. That's a lot of eggs, pancakes, etc. Dottie's is moving, and they may not be around when you're here. You might consider swapping in Brenda's French Soul Food for a slight deviation on the breakfast theme. Brenda's has plenty of egg dishes, as well as beignets, excellent biscuits, and some seafood dishes. According to another recent post on CH, the wait isn't much longer than at Dottie's.

                                                                            1. re: hyperbowler
                                                                              o
                                                                              OliverB Dec 20, 2011 04:36 PM

                                                                              What should I get at Liguria then?

                                                                              And wow, Brenda's looks fantastic!! I will definitely work that in somehow, probably in place of Dottie's. Is Dottie's worth trying if it's still around next month or nothing special in comparisson?

                                                                              1. re: OliverB
                                                                                h
                                                                                hyperbowler Dec 20, 2011 05:51 PM

                                                                                My favorite is the mushroom, which gives you a sense of the quality of the bread without overpowering it. I've tried and enjoyed the plain, onion, raisin, and rosemary. Lots of people swear by the pizza, but I find the tomato/scallion sauce pasty and nowhere near as tasty as the fresh tomato and caper at Berkeley's Cheeseboard.

                                                                                I've never had much interest in Dottie's. After waiting 90 minutes in line at Mama's (plus getting a parking ticket), I decided the difference between a 9/10 for french toast, pancakes, waffles, and eggs and an 8/10 isn't worth a 90 minute to 2 hour wait anywhere for breakfast. Plus, I didn't think anything there approached a 9/10, or what I could have cooked in the same allotted time. Anyway, Brenda's can have a wait, but the novelty of the menu and the quality of the food are worth it. You seem to be set on Sunday brunch, but for other (Sunday) brunch options that allow reservations!: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/807247

                                                                          3. re: OliverB
                                                                            h
                                                                            hyperbowler Dec 20, 2011 11:03 AM

                                                                            Tartine bread pickup is after 5PM.
                                                                            Sunday alternative is the Taco Shop at Underdog's in the Sunset, right near GG Park. To the best of my knowledge, they're the same at Nick's Crispy Taco's, but the atmosphere isn't as cool.

                                                                            1. re: hyperbowler
                                                                              Melanie Wong Dec 20, 2011 11:14 AM

                                                                              There's also Nick's new place, Tacko, in Cow Hollow. Haven't been there yet to see if the fish taco is executed the same.
                                                                              http://articles.sfgate.com/2011-11-03...

                                                                              -----
                                                                              Nick's Crispy Tacos
                                                                              1500 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94109

                                                                              The Taco Shop at Underdog Sports Bar & Grill
                                                                              1824 Irving St, San Francisco, CA

                                                                              TACKO
                                                                              3115 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                                              1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                                                Melanie Wong Dec 25, 2011 11:46 AM

                                                                                And a copycat "greengo" style, Nico's Tacos in North Beach
                                                                                http://www.nicostacossf.com/menu

                                                                                -----
                                                                                Nico's Tacos
                                                                                1310 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                                                                1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                                                  t
                                                                                  tjinsf Dec 25, 2011 10:18 PM

                                                                                  "greengo" style

                                                                                  love this, was trying to describe tacolicious and tacko to French people and this is it perfectly.

                                                                                  1. re: tjinsf
                                                                                    Melanie Wong Dec 25, 2011 10:35 PM

                                                                                    That's Nico's Tacos own term lifted from its website to describe the crispy tortilla inside the soft one spread with guacamole. And it's copied from "Nick's Way" of the original Nick's Crispy Tacos.

                                                                            2. re: OliverB
                                                                              bbulkow Jan 2, 2012 08:22 AM

                                                                              You still have "pints at Tommy's Joynt / Lefty O Doul's" even though they aren't near each other. Tommy's has a lousy beer list on draft, and you'd be better off *anywhere* else. See my recommendations for beer.

                                                                              Leave earlier for Shanghai Dumpling King.

                                                                            3. o
                                                                              OliverB Jan 1, 2012 03:27 PM

                                                                              Another diversion from the topic of food in this thread, but hoping someone could offer helpful advice:

                                                                              Is SuperShuttle the most convenient/economic/pleasant means of routing from SFO to our pad in the Alamo Square district and what is the approx. transit time with them, knowing that they will be dropping other passengers off as well? Would I be better spending an extra $25 to cab direct?

                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                              1. re: OliverB
                                                                                Tripeler Jan 2, 2012 05:55 AM

                                                                                It depends on how worn out you expect to be after your flight. Consider the driving around and dropping off a short tour of the city and you may even enjoy it. On the other hand, if $25 is not so much for you, you may want to go directly by cab. A fast and economical way (by comparison) would be to take BART into the city to the Civic Center, then hail a cab up to Alamo Square.

                                                                                1. re: OliverB
                                                                                  bbulkow Jan 2, 2012 08:26 AM

                                                                                  Supershuttle is like is is anywhere. Could be winding around all over the place, could be not.

                                                                                  The way SFO works, the best way is to not make a reservation and present yourself at the shuttle kiosk. All the independents work together and they'll put you in a van that's not driving all over - they're in radio contact with the other terminals, too. You'll still wait 10 minutes for a van to fill.

                                                                                  BART is slower. According to google, driving is 24 minutes. Just the bart segment is 27 minutes. If you hit the train spot-on. Then you have to deal with the taxi on the far side. With luggage. The only way you can claim bart is faster is traffic, which usually isn't bad going into the city that time of day.

                                                                                  For $25 more, I'd do the taxi.

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