THIS MONTH’S FOOD PICKS IN SAN FRANCISCO

The thing I’ve quickly learnt about San Francisco is that for a city that’s only 7×7 miles, it has an endless list of dining and cuisine choices and if you find yourself looking to indulge in SF anytime soon, below are a few of my picks from the past few weeks. A quick word of warning – some of these are very much on the ‘treat’ side, which I justified simply by being a “tourist” in America! You’ll find the obligatory In n Out; a famous bakery, to the award winning Tony’s Pizza situated in the heart of Little Italy. There’s also a few (I say this loosely) popular spots on the healthier side if that’s more up your street!

Foreign Cinema

Situated in the middle of Hipsterville on Mission St is the semi-hidden Foreign Cinema. I’ve previously written about this restaurant in a one of my first ever SF posts and this time we were back whilst my friend visited from London because it really is that good. Opening over 15+ years ago, this spot is known for it’s incredible food – a mix of mediterranean dishes with a Californian twist, whilst it also boasts a menu of over 20 varieties of oysters (in fact I tried oysters for the first time here!) Food aside, the interior features an open-air courtyard where classic foreign films are screened via a projector on the back wall. The whole courtyard is covered with heaters and strings of fairy lights that creates an atmospheric dining environment. The other thing worth noting is that you can bring your own wine – of course you’ll have to pay a corkage fee of around $25 but it still actually works out to be a cheaper way of doing it. If you go; I absolutely recommend the chicken: “sesame seed curry fried chicken, spiced thumbelina carrots, chickpea humous, salad & ras honey” – divine!

#Mission #$$$ #BYOB #SpecialOccasion #BookInAdvance 

Tsubasa Sushi

There are so many great sushi places in the city but I’ve chosen to talk about Tsubasa Sushi because it’s in our neighbourhood, it’s delicious and affordable. The best seats are at the sushi bar where you can watch the chefs at work but also where you’ll be presented with a generous selection of fresh fish in front of you. The attention to detail and quality can be seen in every dish that’s presented to you; the staff are super friendly and there’s a lot of different Sake to choose from – just don’t pour it yourself as it’s bad luck! Finish with homemade mochi.

#HayesValley #$$ #WalkIn #Fresh #Friendly

Tartine Bakery (left) Jane’s on Fillmore (right)

Tartine: Herd behaviour; something I’ve witnessed plenty of times in SF. What I mean by this is that locals and no doubt tourists love to queue in this city – ice cream parlours, frozen yogurt and fancy bakeries alike; you’ll see frequent queues round the block but surely a croissant is a croissant? Well, Tartine Bakery is one of these popular spots with a daily line outside and on a quieter week day we headed in to check it out as I’d read reviews of it having the best bread in the country! We shared the croque monsieur, seasonal salad & the morning bun – which was truly amazing. Sandwiches, cakes, cookies, scones, tarts, organic breads and all kind of lunch options. It’s’ fair to say there’s plenty to choose from if you’re there in the morning. It’s pretty small inside so you’ll be lucky to get a seat but it’s cute, tasty and perhaps worth a short wait!
#Mission #$ #FamousBakery #GreatBuns

Jane’s: coffee, juices, breakfast and lunch – with an emphasis on healthy options; this is why you come to Jane’s.  This is a cute spot on Fillmore and you’ll see plenty of Apple mac’s lined up in here, likely to be bloggers with their picture perfect coffee’s to Instagram! There’s plenty of choice on the menu, I kind of wanted to order everything! I’ll definitely be back here.
#Fillmore #$ #PacificHeights #CuteCafe #Healthy

Nopalito 

Nopalito is a vibrant Mexican restaurant from the sister of Nopa (another great restaurant!) I feel like it’s slightly fancier than your own standard Mexican but everything tastes amazing. I was too busy eating to take more pictures, fail. We shared the Tacos de Pascado, Quesadilla de Puerco and Gorditas de Campechanas! Without photos you’ll have to go for yourself to see what these things are! 🙂 Inc tip & tax $98 for two people. Call ahead and put your name on the list.

#Nopa #$$$ #MexicanFusion

In N Out

It goes without saying that there’s a lot of hype around the West Coast based fast-food chain ‘In-N-Out’; you could even go as far to say it has it’s own cult following! So as a tourist, I felt needed to see what all the fuss is about. As many folk know, In-N-Out has it’s not-so-secret menu serving Animal Fries, Animal cheeseburger amongst other things but it’s actually menu is pretty straight forward. The most interesting fact I found out about this chain is that it’s owned by America’s youngest female billionaire; lucky lady! Back to the food; as fast-food goes, sure it was good but I’d say on par with (or slightly behind) other chains such as Shake Shake and Five Guys. Hype – over rated perhaps? But if you’re in the rare minority like I was who were yet to try it – you have to try it! Another things for sure, I needed a lie down after this! 

#Embarcadero #$ #Cheatday #FastFood

Tony’s Pizza

It’s so great! Can I just write that? Ha! OK, in Little Italy it’s easy to feel slightly overwhelmed by sheer volume of Italian restaurants on offer. So when we were recommended a good spot; we followed and were not disappointed. You can expect a fairly long wait in peak times but put your name down and head to a nearby bar beforehand. I’m only sad that this picture might not be good enough to actually entice you! But you’ll find this place written about in most books, food websites and of course it’s won a heap of pizza awards. You have to go here.

#LittleItaly #NorthBeach #AnotherCheatDay #BestPizza #$$ (that’s with a bottle of Red and a few starters..)

Kitchen Story

This place surprised me as for some reason, I hadn’t expected it to be quite as good as it was. Kitchen Story serves Californian food but with an Asian influence resulting in innovative choices such as Sexy Aloha, Burgah Boy, Open Face, Pacific Pad Thai and Pumpkin Fries to name a few! The brunch also looks amazing! Highly recommend it. 

#Mission #$$ #ALittleFunky