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my Bay Area Weekend -- long

TNC | Jun 3, 200401:11 PM

I was in the Bay Area for the weekend and ate my way through the city. First, THANK YOU to all the chowhounds out there for making it a wonderful food experience.

First stop was the ferry terminal building. Had a nectarine tart-type thing(that wasn't the name, but it was a big pie looking thing that they cut a slice of) from somewhere in the middle of the building on the N or E side. It was good, with some great tart feeling in the base of the jaw combined with the sweetness on the tongue. The crust was light and flaky, and a the faintest chewiness kept it from being great....not that I noticed it at the time, but we walked to....

The Golden Gate Bakery was everything and more. Stopped by a tea shop/juice stand just a few doors down to get a Lychee to wait with. Haven't had a drink with those little balls of whatever in them(does anyone know what they are?) OR Lychee since the last time in SE Asia(Feb) so it was great. As my S.O. was there with me I decided to get four tarts and a dozen macaroons, not wanting to overdo it....we hadn't had lunch yet. I don't enjoy egg custard filling, but as I felt I was strolling down a street on the other side of the world I was compelled to order it. The crust made my day....and then I popped a macaroon in my mouth. Ever feel like there should be a choir singing in the background when you bite into something? My girl saw a bean paste puff that she had to have; too sweet and "fried" for me but she loved it. The chicken curry puff had excellent pastry outside, and an interesting inside. First time I had had corn and carrots together in a "curry" puff. Very good once I got over my prejudice about what a curry puff should contain.

Also, passed a grocer that had fresh durian out on the sidewalk. Have never seen this delicacy in Denver(hometown), so thought it was worth mentioning. It is out of season, but does anyone know if they have started growing it in the states? Could not partake with the wedding and girl(when you sweat that great stench leaks out your pours) but would like to try and get some shipped here.

At the wedding itself we followed an Indian tradition(groom's heritage) of having food and drinks immediately following the (Lutheran)ceremony. I'm trying to find out where the samosa's came from; they were some of the best I've ever had. Just spicy enough with a fantastic mint chutney. I'll find out who catered the wedding and follow up with a post.

Monday was wine country. Bought a picnic at Whole Foods and took it with us, then hit some tasting rooms. The people at Conn Creek were very nice and helpful, plus you can taste all you want for $5. They called over to Rutherford Hill(the place they suggested for a tour and picnic) and found out it was closed for the holiday. They then told us to try Frank Family vineyards, and this might have been the highlight of Napa for us. They greet you with two kinds of champagne to taste, then pass the group you are with off to the wine tasting room. The chardonnay was one of the best I've ever had, but every wine we tried was in the good to 'wow, that might be worth the price they're charging' category. We bought a bottle of wine to go with the food, and had a great picnic lunch on their tables out front of the room. Good shade trees helped us enjoy the lunch on a fairly warm day.

Mon night we met up with a friend in SF and had sushi. We insisted that our host choose, as he lived in Japan for several years and is a sushi lover. Went to a place a couple blocks west of the Kabuki Theatre on the s side of the street(what I think is the Japantown district). The sushi was better than anything I can get here, but was not well cut. The pieces of fish were oversized and took two bites to finish. Not necessarily a bad thing from the value side of it, but mildly disappointing to me all the same.

Well, I warned you. If you got to this point, thanks again for all the great info on your board. It makes a trip to the bay area not quite as overwhelming. The variety and quality you enjoy every day living there makes me jealous, but I'm thankful to have enjoyed it. I'll be back.


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