a little more San Francisco love

Justin Schwartz

Now for part-two of my San Francisco round-up. That’s me on Lombard Street with all the other tourists, wondering if my SF friends are going to laugh at me when they see this photo.  I know it’s a little cheesy, but it’s fun being a tourist for the day.  If this post and the last one seem long, you’d laugh if you knew how much more food than this we really ate. I not even mentioning Pagolac, Saigon Sandwich, Out the Door, Katana-Ya, Amber, and oops! Well, I’m not sharing photos from those places because, believe it or not, I do put my camera down sometimes. So just the highlights now…

Heaven's Dog, San Francisco

After an astounding meal at Amber with Shauna, Danny, Lu, Allison, Aran, Molly, Jennifer, Dianne, and Penny, Diane and Todd invited me and Jen to come out with them for cocktails and snacks over at Heaven’s Dog. The drinks were a treat, but getting to know White on Rice Couple in person was even better. I’m not even sure how it happened, but we ended up going with Diane and Todd again the next night, for more late cocktails and snacks at Absinthe. I’ve got so many great memories from those two nights. Why do they have to live so far away?

sf3Ferry Building Farmers Market, San Francisco
Ferry Building Farmers Market, San Francisco
Ferry Building Farmers Market, San Francisco
Ferry Building Farmers Market, San Francisco

Back to the food. This is all a bit of a blur now because I was also having fun at Blogher Food 2010, but on Saturday we ended up at the Farmers Market again.  Amazing produce, great people, artisanal foods, and more. I could spend all day here.

Namu, San Francisco

We made it back to the Namu booth. I guess you could say this was a Korean-inspired poutine, sans the gravy, with bulgogi and hot sauce on top. (Or was that meat more like galbi?) Either way, damn, that was tasty.

Tartine, San Francisco

Of course we visited Tartine, but what else can I say about it that I haven’t said before?Bakeries just don’t get much better than Tartine. I still gotta check out their new book.

Bi-Rite, San Francisco

Then I stopped by Bi-Rite to pick up a bag of those awesome 4505 chicarrones. Does anyone in NYC sell them?

Humphry Slocombe, San Francisco

How did I not visit Humphry Slocombe the last time I was in San Francisco? Definitely worth the hype. New Yorkers are pretty lucky when it comes to ice cream, but San Francisco really knows its stuff.

La Palma papitas fritas

Please tell me you’ve tried the potato chips from La Palma? I know they don’t always have them available for purchase because they sell out, but that’s no excuse for not visiting. So amazing.

The Jelly Donut, San Francisco

After that failed trip to Dynamo, we popped into The Jelly Donut. I always love old-fashioned style donuts like these, and the countergirl gets serious brownie points for giving me two free donuts because it was late in the day and they were closing soon. Seriously, two free donuts!

Little Bird Coffeehouse, San Francisco

No joke, I don’t even like coffee. Maybe it’s because I don’t have a Little Bird Coffeehouse nearby me, because this was dreamy. And could the people working there be any nicer? No, I don’t think it’s possible.

Bob's Donuts, San Francisco

Umm, OMG! Bob’s Donuts!!! Seriously, I’ve been to San Francisco a fair number of times, like five or six, and no one has ever told me about Bob’s?! Tough call on this one, but it’s the only place I know of that can come even close to Donut Dip in West Springfield, Mass. If I ever move to San Francisco, I’ll need to live within a block of Bob’s.  P.S. That photo above is one of my favorites of all time.

In-N-Out Burger

I had to do the In-N-Out Burger thing again (only my second visit, ever) because this time I knew how to really order. I got these “animal style” and felt all cool saying that. Yeesh, I’m such a food dork.

XOX Truffles, San Francisco

XOX Truffles is probably a total tourist spot, right, with the cable cars rolling by? Eh, it didn’t bother me because these were such a treat. If it wasn’t so hot that day, I probably would have gotten a box to go.

Namu, San Francisco
Namu San Francisco
Namu, San Francisco

We decided to have our final meal of the trip at the actual Namu restaurant in Inner Richmond, since we’d had so much fun trying their food at the Farmers Market. What a great meal. Everything was so interesting. I guess it’s Korean-inspired, but they’ve got some distinctly Japanese dishes too. Don’t let the classification worry you though. This is a really nice spot for a romantic dinner. I’m guessing some locals will think this was a weird choice with all the legendary chefs in San Francisco, but we loved our meal. What a great night (even with the most obnoxious guy on Earth sitting so close by).

Union Square Park, San Francisco

And did I mention the warm weather? (Yes.) At least a couple of our nights were spent just strolling around and sitting in the park. (In New York City, most public parks are a little dicey after dark.)  Plus it’s well into Fall, so it was really nice being able to sit out at night and enjoy the city like that, without the usual crowds around Union Square. I’m told the weather was a bit of a fluke, so I’ll consider myself lucky to have been there for it. In fact by the time we left, I could have easily been wearing shorts and flip flops. I want that weather back. I want San Francisco back.


45 thoughts on “a little more San Francisco love

  1. Man that’s some good looking food. I’ve never had and In/Out Burger but know everyone loves them. I have a friend who lives near SF, I’m going to send her the link to see how many of these’s she’s tried. Great post.

  2. justin i really hate coming to your blog. i mean seriously these food photos are to die for bro. do you have any idea how long it’s been since i’ve had a real old-fashioned donut? man. so unfair.

  3. I love love love In-N-Out! Aside from gigantic burritos, it’s the one thing I miss eating out here in Paris. Next time you go, be sure to ask for the fries ‘extra crispy’ or double fried; though some people like them a bit softer/soggy.

  4. Hey Justin! I am so happy you stopped by my blog ’cause now I know all about yours. Wish we would have met at BlogHer Food. You did such a fun culinary tour of the city with some of the best folks I know 🙂 I actually stayed at that gorgeous Fairmont last year – they upgraded me to the presidential suite & it was very SWEET!!
    I grew up in NY & left in ’97. My folks are still there. Great memories & I must get back to the city for a visit. Hopefully next Spring. Take care!

  5. Justin, what a feast trip. The little goodies that u picked up looked fantastic! Memories and food just go hand in hand together sometimes don’t they? I am sure u will be back from the sounds of it!

  6. Justin,
    Glad you had such a fun time eating here! And that you had the animal style experience–as a native Midwesterner who used to live in NYC, In-n-Out is one of my favorite Cali features. If you like Korean tofu soup, try Pyung Chang in Oakland next time; not fusion like Namu but damn good. Did you have the secret breakfast at Humphrey?

  7. Thank you for providing me with an amazing food guide for SF – I am going to be spending a long weekend there soon and after reading your post I think I have the whole weekend mapped out (food wise)! Gotta love a bit of In-N-Out, however, I think their fries are awful!

  8. OMG. You went to all the major places INCLUDING some that I didn’t even know about! I really need to get out of my neighborhood more…I get so trapped and lazy since I’m a block away from BiRite and Tartine.

    Lately though, I’ve been lamenting the fact that SF doesn’t have decent donut shops (other than dynamo) and you go to two that I’ve never been to. The Jelly Donut and Bob’s Donuts! Dang. I think next time you come to SF, you’ll have to show ME around!

      1. LOL. Because I’m inherently a very lazy person and rarely venture outside my adjacent neighborhood (Mission, Castro, Noe Valley, Hayes Valley). Apparently that is no excuse for not going to The Jelly Donut though. That’s in the Mission. Now those two are on my list along with Grand Mission Donut. I think I might have to go on a donut spree now…

        1. from what I’ve seen of your desserts, you’re clearly not a lazy person. And if I lived where you lived, I’d probably never leave the neighborhood either. But Bob’s is worth the trip. The Jelly Donut is more like a place you’d stop by if you were in the area, but not really about making a trip. I’ll have to find out more about Grand Mission Donut before I go back to SF, because I’ve never heard of it.

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