Times are a-changin’, especially in the Hayes Valley/Upper Market area, which has gone from shady off-ramp to chic boutique-land in the past decade. Rents are high, and plenty of restaurants are opening in the relatively small ‘hood—no one has failed to notice the gentrification, especially the vandals who spray-painted slurs about Banana Republic and Anthropologie on Biergarten’s gate last month.

If you’re visiting the neighborhood, here are hounds’ recommendations on where to go and what to get:

Biergarten [Hayes Valley]
424 Octavia Street, San Francisco
No phone available

“Nice place if the weather’s cooperative,” said Robert Lauriston of the Suppenküche-owned open-air beer garden. But don’t bother going if it’s not, because according to Biergarten’s website, they’re closed when it rains. Expect long lines, a short menu of German bar bites like pretzels and brats, and, according to weshoke, great beers.

Boxing Room [Hayes Valley]
399 Grove Street, San Francisco

benv recommended the crispy boudin balls, deep-fried alligator, and étouffée cooked by a San Francisco Chronicle Rising Star chef who hails from Louisiana.

Two Sisters Bar and Books [Hayes Valley]
579 Hayes Street, San Francisco

The blanched Brussels sprout salad won a fan in a space that resembles a personal library as channeled by Wes Anderson. The room is small, but if you don’t mind the cozy quarters or a wait, you might enjoy a light bite and a drink in the warm, bookish space.

Gourmet & More [Hayes Valley]
141 Gough Street, San Francisco

This specialty shop won instant converts with its by-the-pound bread selection, its cheese cave that’s chock-full of raw-milk options, and the packaged goods imported from La France. It also sells “easily the best macarons in SF,” according to ladybugthepug.

Next neighborhood roundup: Outer Sunset. Sound off on your favorite eats, restaurants, or food shops on this thread.

Discuss: new + good in Hayes Valley
Biergarten opening tomorrow, Oct 19
Two Sisters Bar and Books, a new small-plates cafe, bar and library in Hayes Valley
Gourmet & More – Great new specialty store – Hayes Valley SF.

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