I’m not going to lie, one of the best parts of being in San Francisco earlier this month was the food. I’m a sucker for hand-rolled pasta, seared ahi, vegan donuts, imported chocolates, stellar sushi, and a somewhat-healthy but uber-delicious burger. San Francisco had no shortage of food offerings of all shapes and sizes.
Here are some of our favorite restaurants in San Francisco that you must try out when you’re up in the City.
TO PLAY TOURIST
Like every newcomer to SF, Pier 39 is usually one of the first stops to fulfill your souvenir buying desires and indulge in some authentic clam chowder. Head over to Fog Harbor Fish House for a sourdough bread bowl full of steaming chowder to warm your belly from the city’s fog and wind. I’d also make sure to ask for some of their famous blue cheese garlic bread as the perfect accoutrement.
TO FEED YOUR SOUL
One of my favorite new places to dine in SF is Source, located near the design district. Their philosophy centers around kindness, respect and compassion for all life forms and each baker, chef, and restaurant employee puts passion and love into the dining experience. The eating experience can only be described as vibrational and multidimensional and the menu exudes an exploratory take on traditional comfort foods and beyond.
Start off with an elixir consisting of fresh-pressed herbal infusions and juices designed to lift your mood and senses. I tried the Love Sanctuary elixir which was a beautiful blend of lavender and a bit of citrus to serve my heart chakra. I highly suggest the Truffle Macaroni & Cheese with four kinds of cheeses topped with truffle oil and agave bread crumbs and heated in a brick oven resembling a dragon’s face. (You’ll just have to go visit the restaurant to see for yourself.) The Peking Quack Spring Roll with Miso Plum Sauce is an excellent starter and the Magic Mushroom Pizza offers some of the best pizza crust and tomato sauce I’ve ever experienced. The goat cheese and mozzarella toppings made for the best blend of flavors. The Cluck Avocado Club sandwich was also another favorite at our table and the assorted mushrooms, Swiss cheese and vegan chicken was beyond delicious. You must also save room for dessert and try out their Peanut Butter & Jelly cookie and their assorted Snowballs.
TO TREAT YOURSELF
If you’re looking for impressive views of the Bay Bridge and a magnetic atmosphere, head over to the Embarcadero to CHAYA Brasserie. Blending Japanese hospitality with French influences, CHAYA offers an impressive menu of sushi offerings and European dishes. I suggest you start off with the Ahi Tuna & Hamachi Tartare with avocado, picked wasabi, Tobiko fish roe, Arare a type of Japanese cracker that offers a bit of crunch to your tastebuds, and jalapeño sweet soy sauce. My Lychee Soju ‘Tini paired perfectly with my appetizer before heading into the best sushi roll I’ve ever had, the Seared Kobe Beef Roll. There are almost no words to explain the sushi experience other than imagining thinly sliced seared Kobe beef drizzled with a bit of spicy aioli over a sushi roll with shrimp tempura, crab and avocado inside. The simple roll was just out of this world and I’ve already made plans to visit CHAYA’s other locations in Beverly Hills, Venice and Downtown Los Angeles for round two. CHAYA is perfect for a power lunch or a romantic dinner for two.
We have plenty more restaurant recommendations for the best dining in San Francisco. Stay tuned for more restaurant recommendations later this month.