Another good place for conventional, eggs / breakfast in North Beach.
A little more upscale and expensive than Curly's.
You stand in line and order from the cooks, then sit and eat. Really good food.
NOTE: CASH ONLY, no credit cards.
Not as cheap as Curly's either, but very good food.
Favorite Dish: Excellent omelets.
Best Of: BrunchWow. I have come here on several of my trips to San Francisco. There is almost always a line as this place is small and very popular but Trust me; it's worth the wait. The worst part about this place is they show you the menu outside and you are all set but before you order the line moves past the kitchen area and you see all these great foods coming out and end up changing you mind 15 times. I am always impressed with the food here. On city search it is rated at a 9.3 which is another indicator of the great food here.
My most recent visit here was for brunch with my wife during our November 2010 trip. The line was a bit long and we waited a half of a hour before getting inside. The food was definitely worth the wait as I loved my eggs benedict and the hash browns. The hot chocolate here is vey good and a nice large serving topped with whipped cream. Liz loved her pancakes but was a bit dissapointed by their less than authentic maple syrup but her delcious Bellini made up for the dissapointment.
Please note. The entire restaurant is CASH ONLY or DEBIT CARD.
Favorite Dish: Anything here is good.
We went to Mama's on the recommendation of a friend, and were not disappointed. We were told there would be a line and there certainly was, which was kind of a pain since we were parked at a meter around the corner and were low on change. But the staff was super friendly and kept changing my dollars for quarters whenever I needed it. After the long wait outside, you order at the counter where you also pay, then you're seated. Be sure you have cash as they don't accept cards (there is an ATM across the street in a convenience store). We ordered the crab and avocado omelette, which we shared, and fresh orange juice, and both were delicious! The portions are very large so splitting was a great option and left room for trying another restaurant at lunch. The staff was overwhelmingly friendly, and the atmosphere slightly crowded, but also cozy and nice.
Also, there was a lot of open meter parking in the area! Very convenient, but be sure to bring lots of coins!
Favorite Dish: Crab and Avocado Omelette with Sour Cream
My hostess and I ended up going to Mama's twice during my trip since I forgot to take photos of my food the first time, and my hostess didn't need much encouragement for a trip to Mama's. In fact, the waiters seemed to know her pretty well even though she hasn't been in SF that long.
I loved the cozy feel of this place. The waitstaff are smiley and courteous not only to customers but to each other, I notice that sort of thing. Mama's intimate and very popular with locals and tourists alike, I think there are maybe 10 tables total. So get there early and beat the tourist rush (during the week, we got there before 10 and we didn't even attempt eating there on weekends).
A couple of important tips: Mama's is cash only. And she's closed on Mondays.
Sorry the exterior photo's a bit blurry. Proof you cannot balance a camera in one hand a chocolate chai in another. When I took the first two photos, my friend, having suffered through my attempts at foodie blogging all week, finally snapped, "Stop modeling your food!" :-D
Favorite Dish: The first time I got the chocolate cinnamon French toast, which was perfectly prepared. I love the taste of French toast, but I can't stand the mushy middle (it's a texture thing, leave me alone). And here, there was no mush. I could have used more chocolate, but I have that kind of sweet tooth. But for someone going for a more subtle taste, this would be perfect.
The second time, my hostess and I shared an omelette - the name was somethign like the North Beach omelette. She'd been raving about this all week, and it lived up to the hype. I wish I could remember exactly all the ingredients since it's been a couple of weeks since I at there, but it had locally cultivated Italian sausage and I want to say guyere cheese and it was perfect and filling and almost felt healthy. As you can see, we also shared a piece of chocolate crumb coffee cake, which was divine.
The restaurant is located right in Lakeside Village, one block from a MUNI station. I've been here several times before and not once has the food disappointed me. Service is consistently quick and hospitable. Best deal: the early bird special from 5-7 P.M. Entrees come with a delicious salad. Wide variety of food to choose from. I highly recommend it.
Favorite Dish: Grilled breast of chicken, with mashed potatoes and vegetables. Pretty standard kind of entree, but it never disappoints, and anyone who's ever had it in my party has also enjoyed it.
Mamas is my favorite breakfast spot in the city. It's in N. Beach at Washington square. It's really good. Watch out for the crowds though. I've waited (really rerally hungry) in an hour line wrapped around the outside of the restaurant to get in. It's that good. Not into line waiting? Go on a weekday afternoon.
Favorite Dish: In my meat eating days I'd order the Monte Cristo. It's turkey and ham with provolone slapped between 2 pieces of bread and soaked in some magical batter, then fried to a golden brown deliciousness and sprinkled with powdered sugar. Once it's in front of your face feel free to dip it in the homemade raspberry jam provided to you at each table.
I have'nt been there since I stopped eating meat but if I went I'd throw all health and guilt issues in the gutter for an hour and feast on this obviously heaven created dish.
They also have banana nut french toast which is... I mean, who has banana nut french toast?!