LAist Eats the Long Weekend--San Francisco Edition
We had a very nice Memorial Day long weekend, thank you! We felt it was high time we took some time for ourselves, though, so we took ourself to beautiful San Francisco for a few days of fun, fine art, flora and fauna, and, of course, food. Before we dined, we did just a little research, making sure that, whenever possible, we had a restaurant in mind to fit our desires. There were a couple must-dos on the list, like sushi, big breakfast, and high tea, and we managed to get all that and more done. So, look out SFist--today we're going to put our toes in your tasting territory. Here's where we ate, and what we thought about it, in San Francisco. Come, travel with us after the jump!
One of our first dinners was at Blue. We were lured by the promise of comfort dishes served in a hip and cozy atmosphere (is it us, or is this motif the quiche of the new millennium?). The small eatery was pleasantly full, the waitstaff utterly charming, and the food quite tasty. The menu was brief, but full of tempting options, but we couldn't resist the Macaroni and cheese, served steaming hot and oozing with cheeses, and topped with crumbles and spices, in a generous bowl; our waiter hailed it as "the best in the city" and while we have no local comparison, as far as restaurant mac & cheese goes, this certainly was tops.
Blue 2337 Market Street (in The Castro) (415) 863-2583
For our sushi fix, we opted for Tsunami, after reading several reviews and becoming intrigued. The decor is truly Brady Bunch meets modern hipster, and the tiny place fills up fast. We sat at the bar, where our friendly bartender knew both his liquor and his fish, which is always a plus. We started with an neon colored cocktail, the Blue Tsunami, and then sampled some sushi from their menu. We weren't as enchanted with the selection of specialty rolls as we often are at celebrated sushi joints, but the quality far outshone the limitation of the selection. The Mama San roll is made with tempura shrimp and cucumber, with spicy tuna, ponzu sauce, and scallions on top. The shrimp was warm and tender, the roll petite but flavorful. We had some nigiri sushi: salmon, tuna, and saba (mackrel). The cuts were perfect in size, texture, and flavor. We sipped a Shogun Mint drink to round out the meal (thank you to our bartender Michael for that one!) and left, not stuffed, but quite satisfied.
Tsunami 1306 Fulton Street (415) 567-7664
Now, in general, we don't enjoy waiting in lines. This goes double for waiting in line to eat, and for waiting in line in undesirable parts of town. But the word on the street was that Dottie's True Blue Cafe was worth the wait in the somewhat smelly Tenderloin, even at 8 on a Sunday morning. Dottie's is tiny, and is virtually bursting at the seams with chattering crowds of diners. We were fortunate enough to get a seat at the counter, with a prime view of the one main chef in his tiny, hot, and frantic workspace. The two servers worked the room with a sort of laissez-faire charm, one of whom made my day for not just pouring me a cup of coffee, but for calling me "sweetie" and for keeping it coming. We bypassed the specials listed on the wipe board, and made our own omlette with cheddar cheese, bacon, and avocado, and got to watch it being made just a breath away, while the chef multitasked tending his skillets, answering the phone, chewing out the help, and making biting comments. Our food was delicious, and came with savory home fries and a thick wedge of homemade buttermilk dill bread. Dottie's is known for their baked goods, and makes them on the premises everyday, so we got a Butterscotch Apple roll that we lugged with us on the plane home, and enjoyed with relish later. We can see why the crowds come to Dottie's--it's just that good.
Dottie's True Blue Cafe 522 Jones Street (415) 885-2767
With airlines not serving meals, and flights leaving at dinnertime, we thought that a high tea mid-afternoon would solve the lunch-dinner-airplane problem. For this we selected Lovejoy's, an eclectic neighborhood spot at Church and Clipper. We fell in love with the antique filled room, and their mis-matched china. The ladies who work there are sweet and classically mannered, saying things like "perhaps" and keeping a mindful eye on our bottomless teapots. We had their High Tea selection, which gave us one hot scone with double devonshire cream (sinfully good) and jam, a spring greens salad, coleslaw, two flavors of tea sandwiches, and a shortbread biscuit (shaped like a teapot!). It was the perfect afternoon tea--leisurely, tasty, elegant. We had such a delightful time at Lovejoy's, and we can't wait to go back. We also like that they are right in front of a MUNI J-train stop, so we rode away with ease, through the beautiful city, full of house blend tea and cucumber sandwiches.
Lovejoy's 1351 Church Street (415) 648-5895