The SF Chroncile also publishes its annual list of the 'TOP BARGAIN BITES' in the City.
Be sure to check out the year's Top SF Bargain Bites
Print their list out and you'll never go hungry in any neighborhood when you travel to this beautiful city!
Hard To Get To Places:
Saigon Sandwiches --Awarded the "Best Bargain In The City"-- 560 Larkin (at Eddy), 3-4 blocks up from Civic Center. Get the $2.25 roasted pork sandwich, made on a fresh crusty roll, filled with shaved carrots, cilantro, peppers, sauce, and mayo. (Ask for "no spicy" if you have a low tolerance for hot food.) There's a long line at times, but it moves fast because their menu of items is small! Sandwiches are heated, wrapped in paper and a thin rubber band. Standing room only. Your friends will ask you, "How did you find this great deal?"
Rosamunde Sausage Grill, 545 Haight (at Fillmore). Get the burger, available only once a week, on Tuesday from 11:30 a.m. "until the meat runs out". Take it next door to the Toronado pub & wash it down with a beer. Includes lettuce, tomato, mustard, ketchup, pickles, grilled onions, and cheese on a puffy bakery bun. Worth it!
Falooda at Bombay Ice Cream and Chaat, 552 Valencia (at 16th Street). Great shake with your choice of several homemade ice creams (e.g. saffron pistachio, cardamom, and mango!), layered with translucent chewy noodles, crunchy basil seeds, and fragrant rose syrup.
Tommy's Joynt, 1101 Geary (at Van Ness). Freshly roasted turkey on a sourdough roll. There are two kinds of mustard on each table, plus sliced pickles in a barrel at the end of the steam tables. Have it with one of the bar's 100 beers from around the world.
Frisco is the U.S. city that has the largest Asian community outside of Japan/China.
Once I read a sign in Florida Keys, on I-95 (where weird billboards start popping up): 'All Nude Clubs! GREAT FOOD!'
Some of you might think: 'Pretty disgusting', right? The two ideas don't exactly go together -- but think about it: what could be more appetizing than a naked person? (I guess it depends on the person, huh?) ROFL
In Japan, sushi is not just a meal - it is an experience that involves selecting the fish that you want (sometimes from a pool right in front of you), watching the chef prepare it for you, and then enjoying it as fresh as you possibly can. And some sushi restaurants have gone even farther by adding an entertainment component - a young woman would lie naked and her body is used as a table. As the chef decorates her body with fresh sushi, you can pick pieces from wherever you like. Bring a big wallet when you try these places though.
Ok, so I know this sounds weird for some, but if you like sushi... and are up for 'different' you gotta try one of these restaurants. The one I've been to is 'Nyotaimori' in Frisco. The japanese gal lies very still, naked (well, or almost) on a table while you serve yourselves sushi off of her with chopsticks. And then you might wanna keep the newly discovered way of sushi eating at home, but instead use mouth directly, and maybe eliminate all clothing! and get creative with where 'wasabi' will go, etc ;-) Just a tought ('ve you done it Frank?)
MMMMMMMM, I'm craving some yellow tail tuna or some unagi (eel)!
Favorite Dish: More Info:
To accompany your sushi, they'll probably offer you one of three options:
* Green Tea:
Which is served throughout the meal and removes aftertastes and freshens the mouth for the next serving of sushi.
Sapporo, Kirin, or Asahi.
* Sake (Japanese Rice Wine):
It's made from fermented rice, and it's served warm and is drunk before eating, not during or after. Some would say that the drink is obligatory, while others would say it is redundant because (like the sushi) it is made from rice. Drinking sake during the meal is certainly akin to ordering bread with a sandwich. But it's tradition, so cope. Or!!!! may I suggest you do 'Japanese bombers'!!!! (stick the little porcelain cup w/sake into a bigger glass w/beer, let it sink to bottom, and drink whole thing at once!) just as if tequila shots... ;-)
Every year the SF Chroncile publishes its' list of the 'TOP 100 RESTAURANTS'.
CLICK HERE: TOP 100 RESTAURANTS
Loosen your belts and open your wallet, click above for "the List".
Plus see my other entries in this Restaurant section.
Restaurants in San Francisco are expensive, but if you are looking for something cheap and delicious, definitely go to Chinatown. This is just a general tip on restaurants in Chinatown: You will be able to find anything you like from dim sum to excellent seafood, at a relatively good price.
All over Fisherman's wharf. You have to rough it and eat outside but it's the entire experience that's interesting.
I fed some of the bread to the pidgeons after lunch.
Favorite Dish: Fabulous clam chowder and whole crabs at Fisherman's wharf. The clam chowder is served in sourdough bowls for about $5. Very tasty and inexpensive. The whole crabs are about $12 each. The chowder and crabs are the best deal in the area for lunch. Shrimp and crab cocktails can run you $13 for a medium sized portion.
Around Fisherman's Wharf you will find several of these restaurants with seating outside. They all offer clam chowder, often served in a sourdough bread bowl, shrimp cocktail, and crabs-freshly steamed and ready to eat. The whole area is a tourist trap to be sure, and pricy for what you get, but if you do it once it's OK, and the ambience is a traditional San Francisco experience.
In general I wasn't too impressed by the restuarants on Pier 39, but you can have a good lunch/snack by buying a chowder with sourdough bread from one of the stalls along the harbourfront. If the weather is on the cold side this is also a good meal for warming yourself up again.
Despite the name, there are no beaches now at North Beach. They have long since been buried by land fill but there are some great restaurants there now. You will find a little bit of everything in North Beach, from sidewalk cafés to fancy restaurants, from Italian delicatessens to French bakeries, and from jazz clubs to strip joints. North Beach's cafes, restaurants and parks evoke a feeling of romantic Italy. I was taken to a lovely little Italian restaurant when I was there, I just wish I could remember the name of it. I remember a woman at the next table staring at me for most of the night. It was probably my different accent, or maybe the large Koala on my sweater. Either way, it was a special night.
Favorite Dish: Anchor is a great local brew and gives a good name to American beers. While not as famous as Czech, Belgian, German and other famous beermaking countries, the US does have some good breweries. Anchor beers are virtually all handmade and come in seven varieties. Check out the website for details.
There are so many good restaurants in San Francisco, I hesitate to name one. Besides, they change to often that a place I went to a few weeks ago may not be there any more. I sugest not having sea food at Fisherman's Wharf. It's overpriced and there are much better places out in the neighborhoods.
San Francisco is a gurman's heaven. It has hundreds and hundreds of good restaurants with every type of food you can imagine. My best advice is to explore and try as many as you can.
The best tip I can give is to just notice the people in the restaurants. Avoid the ones full of tourists, as they tend to be of lower quality.
One thing I must warn you about is Chinatown. That place is packed with cheap little Chinese restaurants, but nearly all of them look rather "hygenically challenged" if you know what I mean. I love Chinese food, but that was too much. Supposedly, there are a few exceptions, but I don't know any.
In China Town you can try all kinds of Chinese dishes (from Kantonese to Czechuan-kitchen). Take a delicious Dim Sum lunch or eat your heart out on an exquisit dinner. For every budget there's a restaurant and this way you also enjoy the specific (choatic) life in China Town.
Do take the time to explore the many herb shops and food markets. Both Chinese and Caucasians come to Chinatown to shop for everything from fresh meat, fish to handmade noodles to exotic herbs and spices, often at bargain prices.
Any of the little resaturants in China Town!
You get a generous helping and it rarely costs over $5US. Very Yummy!
Favorite Dish: You can often get deals on several different items. Personally I like crispy duck and sweet and sour pork!
If there's one thing SF is full of it's my favorite restaurants. It would be very difficult to name just one.I do have love one particular Russian bakery in the Richmond district.
Favorite Dish: They have the most obscene quantities of goodies pilled all around you like something out of 'Willy Wonka'. But it's the potato piroshkis that make the trip worth it for me.