I’m back from California and am once again trying to somehow make sense of 300+ pictures and tell a little story for you guys. You know my stories – they usually star lots of food. That’s how we do it in the Healthy and Sane family
Btw, before we begin, I just wanted to remind you to please VOTE for my second challenge post so that I could advance to level 3 of Project Food Blog. I cooked the chili crab the night before our vacation, scouting out the crabs and then facing my fears (all while being sick) … and then blogged about it while in San Francisco. That’s dedication, don’t you think? This week I hope to have the chance to throw a dinner party – definitely a challenge given that we just got back, I’m still getting over my cold and I have plans for every night of the week. But I’m willing to do the hard work. I just need your votes to make it all worth it! Thanks again!!
All right, so San Francisco. I’m not going to lie - we flew there to eat. It’s known to be a foodie city and well, I love food. San Francisco climate also allows farmers to grow produce all-year round so the city is known for their local/seasonal movement. I was excited! I emailed everyone I knew has ever been to San Francisco, read lots of reviews and restaurant recommendations online and jotted down more restaurants than meals we could possibly fit in our 3 days there. It was really fun drooling just thinking about the upcoming trip. And then I got a cold the day before our flight. I woke up coughing my lungs out the morning of, and continued coughing and sniffling through the nearly 7-hour flight there (yes, unfortunately, I was one of those people)… and then in our cab. It was miserable. I just hoped that I could get better soon to actually enjoy the trip. I’ve been looking forward to it for nearly a year (since I was bombarded with a million Foodbuzz festival 2009 posts and fell in love).
After settling in in our hotel room (in a smoking room because that’s all they had before official check-in time and I couldn’t wait to get in), I sent Adam off to Walgreens. A nap, a shower, a “healthy” amount of drugs and a whole lot of will power got me through the rest of day 1. I could stomach not much more than 1/2 of this tomato soup in a bread bowl from Boudin (which is an institution in SF!! We went to the one in Fisherman’s Wharf – it was a gorgeous bakery with awesome edible goodies and cookware).
We did a bit more exploring that day. The HILLS were killer for this sick girl. The best part was that despite canceling all of our dinner reservations we found that every single random restaurant we checked had a sustainable/organic menu so I still got to sample lots of amazing food without compromising my standards. My favorite spot in day 1 (that went unpictured) was Farmer Brown – their iced tea was delicious (Adam enjoyed a beer, of course) and the pulled pork sliders were the best I’ve ever had! The vibe was phenomenal too. I knew the food would save this trip even if I had to fight that damn cold.
We checked into a new hotel which was smoke free and didn’t make me dread going back to the room for a quick nap here and there. [I totally want a window bench at home now!!]
A trip to the Ferry Building was not to be missed. We made sure to go when they also had their farmers market there. I brought my appetite this time. We walked through the building twice – there were so many options! Adam got pretty excited about the “Tasty Salty Pig Parts” at Boccalone.
I ended up with a roasted pork sandwich from Il Cane Rosso, which was phenomenal! The pork was so tender and juicy.
Since I had my camera out and all, I figured I’d take a few pictures of the inside for you
You probably can’t read the small print – it says “organic, of course.” That made me and Adam laugh, because after reading every menu in every restaurant and seeing that the restaurant was committed to sustainable practices and sourced organic food (locally, if possible) – we always said “of course.” It was seriously SO cool! I want this for Boston so bad!!!
They take the term “slow food” literally – I had to wait in line for my sandwich forever and then waited forever to get a cupcake… except changed my mind at the end. Sometimes a wait is good. Except I totally want one now More scenes from the FB….
I LOVED this ranch’s set up. They made vegetables and fruit look like art.
Look at the rhubarb in vases!!
Scenes outside the building…
SF’s “street food” was the fanciest I’ve ever seen. Again – all sustainable, local, fresh and amazingly creative.
[The juiciest plums I've ever tasted - I got one for dessert ]
Sorry, ladies – he’s taken
More walking around SF… and more eating of course.
[My sister and I used to LOVE beard papa's puffs. This little guy brought some good NY memories ]
Oh and of course I needed a (red velvet) cupcake to make up for the one I didn’t get before…
CRAZY awesome. The cream cheese frosting was so tasty. I also bought some cookies for a homeless woman and her dog and she seemed to like it (the dog was totally out and didn’t care for it though ).
Egg, goat cheese, spinach and mushroom sandwich on a housemade english muffin. Simple and delicious.
If I ever turned around and Adam was looking off into a completely different direction…
… there were probably some Ducatis parked or driving by. He was ready to move to SF just for that!
So we’ve been eating well so far, but what did I think of the city? To be honest, I thought it would be way cuter. The food scene was awesome. The Ferry Building was super cool (I really perked up when we got there despite having a fever ), the Mission District was full of amazing restaurants but definitely up and coming in that dirty but somewhat hip way (think: Brooklyn) … but the rest of the streets seemed too large, hilly and not that exciting. The fisherman’s wharf (except for the giant Boudin bakery) is my idea of a touristy nightmare. Anyways, I was SO happy when on our last day there, I finally found the San Francisco I imagined it would be. On Fillmore st! It was full of cute boutiques, small bustling restaurants and this gem that totally made me realize I could move to SF. Fraiche is my idea of heaven. I loved everything about it – the sleek, clean vibe, the creative (and organic, of course ) mix ins. I mean there was hand-shaven chocolate. I want to go back!!
[Vehrona chocolate frozen yogurt with raspberry syrup, almond chips and shaven chocolate]
Our walk over to Chestnut St and Union St (both cool too) provided a bit a calorie burn and spectacular views.
… and I decided that a cupcake was a respectable lunch. I make up the rules on vacation (especially when I’m sick and do not crave salads!!)
Our dinner plans were pretty special the last night. We met up with Lara and Matt for a few drinks and food. Lara was my very first commenter on Healthy and Sane (outside of family members) and we’ve kept in touch ever since. It was really cool to meet her in person! The food was definitely secondary (read: I didn’t care for it) but it was still a really fun night.
I’m so glad I was semi-healthy for this meet-up. This is one “reservation” I did not want to cancel. Lara, can I talk you into moving to Boston?
DAY 4 – the last morning
Sorry, I know this is getting looooooong (this is not even everything!). Last one, I promise. Before heading to Napa, we stopped by Yank Sing for some dim sum. Adam needed to try some and I was hoping to taste some sustainable Chinese food for the first time in my life. I don’t think it was, unfortunately (the only restaurant we saw that wasn’t!) so I stuck to the traditional steamed shrimp dumplings and the vegetarian offerings. All were delicious!
Pea shot dumplings
… and then it was time for Napa!!!
Sorry for the long post. Let me know if you want to see a few pictures from Napa. I can cover that tomorrow
Thanks again for reading my ramblings (and please don’t forget to vote!).
PS – Who’s going to the Foodbuzz festival this year? I’m considering flying over but need a roommate… or 10