Firstly thank you sooo much to CHounds in helping is know where to dine, what to wear etc during our 6 days eating and eating more in SF recently. Before the food what we loved the most about the city was:
- the incredibly pleasant people
- the great public transport
- fantastic views and walks
- the galleries (De Young is amazing)
- the pedestrian friendly traffic
- great food (almost) everywhere
- where we stayed (5 nights at the lovely Parsonage cnr Haight and Laguna) and last night at the Ritz C
We did freak at first at the street folk during our first morning's walk along some of Mkt St but got used to it and had no hassles. We can't wait to be back.
Restaurants comments - almost in order.
- Flour & Water (not in order) was our favourite and we went back a second time. Fresh, friendly and overly-edible. My wife is not a giblets eater and even she could not resist. If you love food you will love it (and them) here.
- Absinthe - great cocktails and pretty good food (started with crab, salad, onto pork chop with jalapeno grits etc) with fantastic cocktail matches (who needs wine if the cocktails work so well - maybe someone should do the food / cocktail match as a 'thing') but terrible desserts
- Wexlers (lunch) great smokey chilli to start, nice flounder Po Boy (see my other post re Scallop Po Boys) and brisket in a bun with fat and flavour to kill even Mr Bourdain
- Foreign Correspondent - nice but not great. Maybe being seated inside was the problem.
- Commonwealth - great food, great prices, well priced wine and much promise of going far. We booked a table, phoned saying we were running a little late but they gave our table away (less than 15 mins late). They apologised - sat us at the bar right in front of the kitchen. How could we leave - the art and then the flavours. A must of the 'up and coming' places with mostly (really) great dishes.
- Wayfare Tavern - we had booked an upstairs table but they first tried to squeeze us in at the bar. Once we got seated upstairs we got great service and food. This was another 'traditional' dining moment sharing marrow then deviled eggs and steak tartare (needed more zip) followed by 1.5 main lobsters and mac and cheese all for under $120. If i lived in SF then once a week I would lunch here - and then die of a heart attack.
- Coi - overrated with many good but few great dishes and some less than average ones. Well matched wine but for over $700 it was not what we hoped for - go to Flour and Water for 3+ times instead for the same price. Also too many people taking photos of their dishes rather than eating - the table next to us spending 10+ minutes on 'shooting' each dish. Also no short blacks etc after dinner - only filter. Can this be a 2*?
- Yank Sing (for yum char) - nothing special and the same as most good (but not great) places in most cities.
- The farmers mkt at the Ferry Building - well, how couldn't we. Corn dogs (4505), oyster po boys, tamales, namu tacos...
Thank you all to your help in planning a great food trip. We will be back.
One question - what's with SF coffee? Even Blue Bottle is watery, bitter and lacking depth (in our opinion). Nothing like the Alpress we have down under.
49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105
Blue Bottle Cafe
66 Mint St, San Francisco, CA 94103
Flour + Water
2401 Harrison Street, San Francisco, CA 94110
558 Sacramento Street, San Francisco, CA 94111