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San Francisco Food Trip:Need some feedback..


audball
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My husband and I will be in San Francisco next week from Thursday to Sunday. We are staying overnight in Sonoma on Friday evening. So far, here are the restaurants we plan to visit or have reservations for:

Thursday:

Lunch: Cafe Zuni - We are arriving at 10pm and we have a 11:45am reservation. We are cutting it close so should I just cancel and try my luck without a reservation at lunch time? Is it busy at that time? When does the lunch crowd dissapate?

Dinner: Choice of Masa's or Fifth Floor at 8:30pm. I really need help deciding on which one to try. I think both restaurants have great menus and the price is around the same so I need some feedback on which restaurant is better. We do not eat at fancy restaurants all the time but enjoy good food and wine. (I tried to get reservations at Danko's and Chez Panisse but they are booked solid.)

Friday:

Breakfast: Napa - stop by Bouchon Bakery for coffee and pastries

Lunch: Either Bouchon or the Fig and Girl - Fig and Girl fits our itinerary better but is Bouchon a "must try" or should we just skip it?

Dinner: The General's Daughter

Saturday: Since we have probably burned a hole through our wallets by then, we will be looking for cheaper, more reasonable places to eat on our return. We will probably go to the Ferry Market Building for brunch and for dinner, I was planning to check out Tommy's Mexican Restaurant. Can someone can recommend some good and reasonbly priced restaurants around Union Square?

Sunday: Maybe dimsum at Chinatown (we are from Vancouver so we are a bit spoiled when it comes to Chinese food) so we can catch the Chinese New Year Parade. Afternoon tea at Slanted Door, some more oysters from Hog Island (if they are open) and Sourdough bread from ACME to take home.

Thanks for the help everyone!

A

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Sounds like a great trip!

For the high end dinner that first night you might want to consider Michael Minna as well, though if I recall correctly it didn't get great reviews on this board, alas I have not been. One place I have been which I loved was Boulevard, highly recommended.

On Saturday at the Ferry Market building there are a ton of great food purveyors so you may want to just stroll and munch. here is a diner-ish burger place called Taylor's automatic refresher which is good as well, and also a few similar quick places if I remember correctly.

Have fun!

"A man's got to believe in something...I believe I'll have another drink." -W.C. Fields

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[...]

We will probably go to the Ferry Market Building for brunch and for dinner, I was planning to check out Tommy's Mexican Restaurant. Can someone can recommend some good and reasonbly priced restaurants around Union Square?

[...]

I'm wondering why you would make the trek out to Tommy's. Are you a tequila fan?

They do have an amazing assortment of tequilas and very good Margaritas.

However, Tommy's is waaaay out in the avenues.

The same folks own Tres Agaves downtown, which will be much closer to where you are staying.

Tres Agaves Website

I've never actually eaten anything aside from appetizers at either restaurant. I don't think the food is meant to be anything particularly spectacular.

I haven't actually been here; but, a Mexican restaurant downtown I have heard good things about is Colibri:

Colibri Mexican Bistro

---

Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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If you are staying in Sonoma on Friday, getting up early to drive all the way to Napa (really, Yountville) for just pastries seems a bit of a waste if you are considering Girl in the Fig for lunch (meaning you are driving BACK to Sonoma). Have you picked wineries you are considering for the area?

For breakfast pastries, I would offer Basque Boulangerie on the Sonoma square. Their Morning Bunz are equally as good as Bouchon and the "scene" is far more local and friendly. It really depends on what you are planning for your whole day - especially since you want to be back in Sonoma for dinner at The General's Daughter. Also, if you have pastries for breakfast, say lunch at Bouchon, you might be a bit full to have a respectable meal at TGD. Just thinking out loud here but staying close to Sonoma would give you more down-time to enjoy the area vs. driving back and forth. All that added into the driving you will have to be doing from San Francisco and back.

Regarding Dim Sum, the best isn't necessarily found in Chinatown (which is going to be a zoo with the parade) and I would suggest Yank Sing.

And as far as Union Square is concerned, there really isn't anything overwhelmingly exciting that is inexpensive in that neighborhood. You aren't far from Belden Place which is a charming alley way of French and Spanish restaurants.

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...

Regarding Dim Sum, the best isn't necessarily found in Chinatown (which is going to be a zoo with the parade) and I would suggest Yank Sing.

...

I agree with Carolyn. Chinatown is not my first choice for Dim Sum. Yank Sing definitely delivers on the dim sum, especially mid-week. It's also just down the street from Tommy's, so maybe you can combine the two into a gut-busting eat-a-thon. However, on the weekends, for Dim Sum, I prefer to go to the Koi Palace in nearby Daly City. It's only a short drive south of San Francisco and it is definitely worth it. It sounds like you'll have a car, so I would recommend taking the trip.

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For breakfast pastries, I would offer Basque Boulangerie on the Sonoma square. Their Morning Bunz are equally as good as Bouchon and the "scene" is far more local and friendly. It really depends on what you are planning for your whole day - especially since you want to be back in Sonoma for dinner at The General's Daughter. Also, if you have pastries for breakfast, say lunch at Bouchon, you might be a bit full to have a respectable meal at TGD. Just thinking out loud here but staying close to Sonoma would give you more down-time to enjoy the area vs. driving back and forth. All that added into the driving you will have to be doing from San Francisco and back.

Amen to that. Bouchon is fine if not great but it's too long a drive, especially if you're having dinner (wisely) at the General's Daughter. that is unless you really are itching to see Napa Valley. I'd explore Sonoma more.

Visit beautiful Rancho Gordo!

Twitter @RanchoGordo

"How do you say 'Yum-o' in Swedish? Or is it Swiss? What do they speak in Switzerland?"- Rachel Ray

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I agree with Carolyn. Chinatown is not my first choice for Dim Sum. Yank Sing definitely delivers on the dim sum, especially mid-week. It's also just down the street from Tommy's, so maybe you can combine the two into a gut-busting eat-a-thon.

[...]

Maybe you mean Ton Kiang, which is down the street from Tommy's?

Both of the Yank Sings are downtown. At 101 Spear Street and 49 Stevenson Street.

---

Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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I'll chime in here with a vote for Yank Sing. That's where I always go. The Stevenson St restaurant is smaller, quieter, and (I think) more pleasant than

Rincon Center.

The freshest, biggest selection of dim sum seem to come out of the kitchen at noon, then again at 1PM, so time your reservation accordingly. And yes--do make reservations.

I wouldn't go here later than 1:30PM. Only a couple times I've done that, but I found the dim sum selection limited, and even a little soggy from sitting on the steam tables.

Another restaurant with a good dim sum reputation, though I haven't been there in awhile: Ton Kiang, out on the avenues, not downtown. http://www.tonkiang.net/Ton%20Kiang.html Anybody else been there lately?

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Sunday: Maybe dimsum at Chinatown (we are from Vancouver so we are a bit spoiled when it comes to Chinese food) so we can catch the Chinese New Year Parade.

Hmmmm... :blink:

From what I understand the CNY parade in San Francisco is on March 3.

http://www.sanfranciscochinatown.com/event...yearparade.html

Edited by hzrt8w (log)
W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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...Saturday: Since we have probably burned a hole through our wallets by then, we will be looking for cheaper, more reasonable places to eat on our return. We will probably go to the Ferry Market Building for brunch and for dinner, I was planning to check out Tommy's Mexican Restaurant. Can someone can recommend some good and reasonbly priced restaurants around Union Square?...

re: Ferry Building. Go early on a Saturday to enjoy the farmer's market and the vendors. Go to Taylor's Refresher instead of the Slanted Door. You'd definitely get a tasty meal there. Or you could go to Mijita and get a wonderful fried fish taco. Just stick with the fish taco. Go to Miette and the chocolate shop down the way from Miette. And get a sausage on a stick at Golden Gate. With the dijonaise. Yum...

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Thanks everyone!

For the "fancy" Thursday dinner, we are now choosing between Fifth Floor, Fleur De Lys, or La Folie. I'm leaning towards La Folie because it we would prefer want something less stuffy and formal.

As for Napa and Sonoma, we were planning to take the Bay bridge to get to Napa and check out one or two wineries there, I considered driving the Napa first because I'm kinda wanted to hit the Napa Outlet in the morning.. :hmmm: However we need to be in Sonoma by 1:30pm because we may be meeting someone for lunch so I think we will head straight to Sonoma and just check out the local scene there.

As for dimsum, we are from Vancouver and I think we have some of the best Chinese restaurants (and dimsum) in North America so we will probably skip the dimsum in San Francisco.

Thanks for the Mexican restaurant suggestions. We love Mexican food but have no good Mex restaurants in Vancouver so I'm hoping to have at least one good meal in San Fran. I might get my fill at the Ferry Market...

Anyways, appreciate all the comments and feedback..keep them coming

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Thanks everyone!

For the "fancy" Thursday dinner, we are now choosing between Fifth Floor, Fleur De Lys, or La Folie. I'm leaning towards La Folie because it we would prefer want something less stuffy and formal.

As for Napa and Sonoma, we were planning to take the Bay bridge to get to Napa and check out one or two wineries there, I considered driving the Napa first because I'm kinda wanted to hit the Napa Outlet in the morning.. :hmmm: However we need to be in Sonoma by 1:30pm because we may be meeting someone for lunch so I think we will head straight to Sonoma and just check out the local scene there.

As for dimsum, we are from Vancouver and I think we have some of the best Chinese restaurants (and dimsum) in North America so we will probably skip the dimsum in San Francisco.

Thanks for the Mexican restaurant suggestions. We love Mexican food but have no good Mex restaurants in Vancouver so I'm hoping to have at least one good meal in San Fran. I might get my fill at the Ferry Market...

Anyways, appreciate all the comments and feedback..keep them coming

well i hope you will pop your head in the kitchen to see me , and please introduce yourselves to my wife who works the door and floor, , if there is anything we can help with food or wine related please ask , and we will do our best, looking forward to meeting you

preston and nichole dishman

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I considered driving the Napa first because I'm kinda wanted to hit the Napa Outlet in the morning.. :hmmm:

Seriously not worth the time or effort... Stick with wineries and if you have to be in Sonoma by 1:30, you'll be cutting your winery time down considerably as many wineries don't open until 10:00 or 11:00 and then you'll have a 30-minute (at least) drive to Sonoma.

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well i hope you will pop your head in the kitchen to see me , and please introduce yourselves to my wife who works the door and floor, , if there is anything we can help with food or wine related please ask , and we will do our best, looking forward to meeting you

preston and nichole dishman

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Wow..thanks for the personal invite. We will definitely introduce ourselves when we have dinner at your restaurant. To be honest, I am actually most looking forward to the meal there because we not only like good food but we also like having it in a more casual, "down to eart"h atmosphere, which usually makes the meal even better. We look forward to meeting you!

HINT: Be sure to order any of the dishes that feature beans!!!!

Visit beautiful Rancho Gordo!

Twitter @RanchoGordo

"How do you say 'Yum-o' in Swedish? Or is it Swiss? What do they speak in Switzerland?"- Rachel Ray

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TGD is a great place for dinner. i was there back in nov 06. some many dishes try and the food is definately good =) you make me wish to go back now =) have fun & enjoy your trip

preston & nicole i wish i had the chance to meet you guys on my visit there. btw the meal was FAB! i hoep to meet you two on my next visit there.

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We were in SF last May on a Saturday, the Ferry Building Marketplace was great fun to stroll through before our lunch at the Ritz Carlton. We enjoyed a very nice meal at Boulevard that evening. I would love to hear about your experiences in SF when you return, we are considering Gary Danko for a special occasion in May.

The General's Daughter is very good, we dined there last March when we stayed in Sonoma at the Sonoma Mission Inn. the girl and the fig is a very nice choice for lunch, it's the first place we hit when we visit Sonoma. I love their lavender-infused Creme Brulee, but last time we were there it wasn't on the menu. :(

Enjoy your culinary journey! Domaine Carneros in Napa is a very nice place to wine taste. A stunning building with beautiful views of the surrounding area from the top of the steps there. :cool:

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