Forgive me in advance if this post gets a little long but I have lots of questions and don't really know where to begin. I will be visiting California at the end of August for 8 nights and will be in San Fran for about half that time. I would greatly appreciate any recommendations or suggestions that SF hounds feel are appropriate for the following categories.
Mexican: cheap to moderate taquerias, roadside stands, etc.
Chinese: dim sum, I have read mixed reviews of the food in chinatown, is it all touristy or are there some really great spots.
Seafood: oysters, dungeness crab, looking to the west coast equivalent of a New England seafood shack.
San Fran/Bay area originals: any kind of food that is local to the area and not something I could easily get in Massachusetts. Looking for both budget and mid range choices here.
Fine Dining: I am going to be on somewhat of a limited budget but will probably break the bank for one meal. I can't afford French Laundry levels, but anything I could do for $300 or so for two people all inclusive. Is Manresa doable for that price? I know it has multiple menus, how do they compare value wise?
Specialty stores: anywhere with great or unusual cheeses, olive oils, wines, local produce, etc.
and finally a couple of really cool or interesting bars/lounges with good cocktails and happening scenes.
Sorry again for the long post and thanks in advance for any and all suggestions, I will reciprocate for Boston/New England visitors if I can. Thanks hounds.