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Restaurants & Bars 1

pleasant surprises downtown

david kaplan | Jun 9, 200412:08 AM

After posting a month ago asking about places near Market and 1st, the main response was that pickings are slim. Well, one month into our new digs I'm relieved to report on a few good nearby lunch options -- though I'm eagerly looking for more.

Cafe Madeleine: California and Battery. Pleased to find this location is as good as the one I used to frequent on O'Farrell near Grant. The Cobb salad is my favorite: generous toppings and quality bacon.

Yank Sing To Go: 49 Stevenson. Take-out dim sum can only be so good, but it works for a quick lunch. The shrimp dumplings remained firm but moist even after bringing them back up to my office. And the chicken salad (lettuce with bits of chicken) comes with a sharp mustard dressing I like.

Palapas: Good-enough burritos.

Specialties: While their sandwiches are mostly variations of four-fats-on-bread (blue cheese / bacon / avocado / mayo sandwich, anyone? it's their Cobb sandwich and it's gross), and their scones are awful, their semisweet cookies must be among the best chocolate chip cookies I've ever had.

And, of course, the Ferry Building. I give thumbs up to Delica and to the Italian deli (the Molinari-spinoff); big thumbs down to Lulu's Petite for their pre-made $8 sandwiches with the dried out fillings and the soggy bread.

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