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David Clancy

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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by David Clancy » Fri Jun 05, 2009 9:55 am

Nimbus Couzin wrote:I didn't see the watering hole comment.

Zeitgeist is my favorite place in town (and I'm a former brewer). I think they have a full bar, but not sure. It is a biker bar, but funny, because it is mostly non-motorized bikers (i.e. bicycles). Great huge outdoor seating area with picnic table. Great urban feel. Fantastic beer selection.

Jealous......
"warm beer...cold women" Yes!! I second Zeitgeist.
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Ryan B

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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Ryan B » Fri Jun 05, 2009 10:10 am

You are a lucky man. There are sooo many great places to eat in San Francisco no matter your budget. I lived there prior to moving to Louisville and totally miss the ease at which I could satisfy any craving I had. There are a bunch of great recommendations already listed but I'll throw in a few that weren't mentioned. Whatever you do, get out of the touristy areas and spend some times in the neighborhoods - that's where many of the gems hide and most are easily accessible via public trans.

If you are a beer fan you must visit the Toronado. With repsect to all our great local watering holes, the Toronado's selection is incomparable. The staff can have a bit of an attitude but its worth suffering through for the beer. Also, if you get hungry you can go next store to the Rosamunde sausage grill and marvel at their selection of encased meat. They'll cook it to order then you can bring it back to the tornado while you try another beer. If sausage is not your thing - there is a great Mediterranean place about a block down called Ali Babba's Cave. Their falafel sandwich is huge, delicious, and cheap.

If you aren't into bringing your food to your beer and would prefer to have someone wait on you. Head up the hill to Magnolia on the corner of Haight and Masonic. This place is a great brew pub with a solid focus on sustainable local food. A great version of a gastro pub. The owner of this place also has a great bar a little further down the street called the Alembic - more of a whiskey focus than beer. I'm pretty sure they have a decent food menu too.

The quintessential SF quick food is the burrito. You can't find one like it around here. As mentioned earlier, the mission is full of choices and there is great debate about which is finest. My personal nod goes to Taqueria Pancho Villa on 16th and Valencia. Especially good after a night of debauchery in the hipster mission bars.

A great out of the way Japanese place, check out Taraval Okazu Ya in Parkside. It's a bit of a haul from downtown but worth it. Seems like a hole in the wall kind of place but the sushi is really fresh and the kitchen puts out really tasty hot food.

Fine dining options are practically endless. In addition to some mentioned above, I've had great meals at:
Delfina
Quince
Boulevard
Jardiniere
Fifth Floor

All these memories are making me think that I might need to book a trip out there myself. Have fun. I'm looking forward to hearing what you choose...

Oh and I'll "third" Zeitgeist - especially if the sun is out.
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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Jeff U » Sat Jun 06, 2009 8:59 am

Just saw the post as I have been travelling (including SF). One of the posts hit two of my suggestions off the top of my head:

Suppenkuche-cheap with huge steins of real german beer
Slanted Door-in the Ferry Plaza-Vietnamese with superb wine list, walking distance from The Palace

I would also suggest

Tres Agave (fantastic tequila selection)
Berreta (best high end and unusual cocktails I have had)
Monks Kettle

I have been recommended but have not been:
Toranado (Lower Haight and Filmore)
Blowfish for sushi
Lingba
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Nora Boyle

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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Nora Boyle » Sat Jun 06, 2009 9:08 am

Mario's in northbeach has great lunch on the cheap
Globe is on Pacific and serves very late. It's also where all the restaurant servers go after work to eat. People in the know get the mac n chz (all pasta made there) or tuna tar tar.
Also, Taddich grill is OLD school and right around the union square area. They look like the kind of place that the rat pack would walk into.
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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Brad Keeton » Mon Jun 08, 2009 11:41 am

WOW. I neglected to check Hotbytes over the weekend, and sheesh. I'm not sure the 10 days we're going to be there is going to be enough.

Thanks to everyone for the great suggestions.

It looks like for sure we're going to eat at the Slanted Door (my father-in-law's favorite in San Fran), and likely A16.

Kim, we leave this coming Thursday and return the following Sunday.
"I don't eat vegans. They're too bony."
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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Joel Halbleib » Mon Jun 08, 2009 1:55 pm

I will second Tornados and the sausage place next door (they will bring your sausage to your table in Tornados). I was there a month ago both are fantastic. You can not pass up Fisherman's Wharf either. Not exacly upscale but fine seafood for sure.
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Jess T

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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Jess T » Mon Jun 08, 2009 5:10 pm

Buena Vista Cafe has the best corned beef hash!
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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Harry Dennery » Mon Jun 08, 2009 9:01 pm

Some of my favorite places over the years.

Acquerello Sacramento St. Small Pasta made fresh. Great Italian
Some others mentioned favorites including Kuleto's and Boulevard. Gary Danko is expensive but a great meal.
Masa's is highly rated in Zagat listings as well
To try something different at night Google Beach Blanket Babylon for great political sattire.

Do not miss Buena Vista

A great French Bistro is Le Central.
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Robin Garr

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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Robin Garr » Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:03 am

Brad Keeton wrote:Sorry to post this here--I posted in the travel forum a few days ago, but only got one response (thanks, John Greenup). Our trip is coming up rather soon, so I moved it over here in hopes of getting some suggestions.

Let us know when you go, Brad, and at that point I'll move this back to Travel Forum for archival purposes.
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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Brad Keeton » Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:33 am

Robin Garr wrote:
Brad Keeton wrote:Sorry to post this here--I posted in the travel forum a few days ago, but only got one response (thanks, John Greenup). Our trip is coming up rather soon, so I moved it over here in hopes of getting some suggestions.

Let us know when you go, Brad, and at that point I'll move this back to Travel Forum for archival purposes.


Robin--I leave Thursday, so perhaps Thursday morning you can move it back?

Thanks for letting this remain here. I knew the community would have some great ideas.
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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Brad Keeton » Wed Jun 10, 2009 10:28 am

Thanks again to everyone for the plethora of recommendations and suggestions. As far as the planning in advance goes, we have reservations at the Slanted Door, Boulevard, and also at A16 for lunch. I'm sure we'll run down other ideas from here as well.

French Laundry looked spectacular, but a bit our of out budget at the moment. Heh.

Thanks again, and I'll be sure to post a report when we return.
"I don't eat vegans. They're too bony."
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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Ann K » Sun Jun 14, 2009 10:29 pm

We were there in January--add my vote for The Slanted Door. They also have a breakfast/lunch counter that we didn't have a chance to try. http://www.slanteddoor.com/

If you're at the Ferry Landing during the farmers' market, look for the yogurt vendor out front--she sells sheeps' (or maybe goats') milk yogurt with fresh fruit that's unlike anything I've ever tasted. Try the strawberry.


Bocadillos--we ate there for breakfast and loved it.

Town Hall was stunning, even though they'd run out of fried chicken. . .

We had tapas at Zarzuela for our last dinner, and it was perfect.

Have fun!!
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Nimbus Couzin

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Re: San Francisco Recommendations

by Nimbus Couzin » Mon Jun 15, 2009 4:38 am

Ryan B wrote:You are a lucky man. There are sooo many great places to eat in San Francisco no matter your budget. I lived there prior to moving to Louisville and totally miss the ease at which I could satisfy any craving I had. There are a bunch of great recommendations already listed but I'll throw in a few that weren't mentioned. Whatever you do, get out of the touristy areas and spend some times in the neighborhoods - that's where many of the gems hide and most are easily accessible via public trans.

If you are a beer fan you must visit the Toronado. With repsect to all our great local watering holes, the Toronado's selection is incomparable. The staff can have a bit of an attitude but its worth suffering through for the beer. Also, if you get hungry you can go next store to the Rosamunde sausage grill and marvel at their selection of encased meat. They'll cook it to order then you can bring it back to the tornado while you try another beer. If sausage is not your thing - there is a great Mediterranean place about a block down called Ali Babba's Cave. Their falafel sandwich is huge, delicious, and cheap.

If you aren't into bringing your food to your beer and would prefer to have someone wait on you. Head up the hill to Magnolia on the corner of Haight and Masonic. This place is a great brew pub with a solid focus on sustainable local food. A great version of a gastro pub. The owner of this place also has a great bar a little further down the street called the Alembic - more of a whiskey focus than beer. I'm pretty sure they have a decent food menu too.

The quintessential SF quick food is the burrito. You can't find one like it around here. As mentioned earlier, the mission is full of choices and there is great debate about which is finest. My personal nod goes to Taqueria Pancho Villa on 16th and Valencia. Especially good after a night of debauchery in the hipster mission bars.

A great out of the way Japanese place, check out Taraval Okazu Ya in Parkside. It's a bit of a haul from downtown but worth it. Seems like a hole in the wall kind of place but the sushi is really fresh and the kitchen puts out really tasty hot food.

Fine dining options are practically endless. In addition to some mentioned above, I've had great meals at:
Delfina
Quince
Boulevard
Jardiniere
Fifth Floor

All these memories are making me think that I might need to book a trip out there myself. Have fun. I'm looking forward to hearing what you choose...

Oh and I'll "third" Zeitgeist - especially if the sun is out.


Yeah! Ali Babba's Cave is the name of the falafel place I always have a hard time remembering! Highly recommended. I think there are at least two in town (three?). I'm glad others know of Zeitgeist too.
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