504 Broadway

All Hail Honeybees decides to dine fully clothed but ultimately with naked foods. This narrow restaurant with a counter and one table is located right on the edge of North Beach and the name of the restaurant, Naked Lunch, is based off the book Naked Lunch written by William S. Burroughs. William S. Burroughs was a writer that filled the pages of his books while exploring an intense drug trip. There are no drugs tucked in the food but it is so good you may imagine yourself slipping away to a better place, jokes of course… but is it that good!

My sister and I decided to take a day off to enjoy fun in the sun and catch a quick lunch since we were lucky enough to know one of the head chefs. The menu is small and changes everyday so we decided to sample almost everything, seeing as we couldn’t make our minds up. First up was a chilled English cucumber gazpacho with tarragon and creme fraiche and the last two cups full of cinnamon sweet tea.

The second course was a salad to share made of mixed greens, pea shoots, avocado mousse, grapefruit wedges with a lemon vinaigrette and toasted almonds on top.

By now we were getting full but the best was yet to come. I sampled the grilled asparagus sandwich with roasted carrots, fennel compote, mint, radishes and pea shoots!! My oh my this was absolutely amazing!! A close second, in my opinion, was my sisters Trumer braised short rib sandwich with oven dried tomatoes, basil, crispy onions and arugula.

The only thing we did not sample was a foie gras torchon and duck proscutto sandwich with tomatoes, butter lettuce and black truffle salt. This sandwich cost close to everything else we ate combined so we decided to take our chances and wait for it to reappear on the menu another day.

Unfortunately we did not make it to this corner of heaven until close to the end of my stay in San Francisco so we were only able to experience the true skill of the cooks once, but mark my words I am dreaming about my return.

Bon appetit.

All Hail Darn Good Bread.

As a foodie my one weakness tends to be good bread. In my family we are aware we tend to be snobs when it comes to bread, orange juice and chocolate. There are some other things we are picky about but that is only because we plain and simply love good food.

Upon deciding to spend the summer hanging out in SF I looked into some options of working with food. After getting an email from my favorite foodie website, Tasting Table, I read about Josey Baker, a cool guy that was doing what he loves, baking GREAT bread! I contacted him in hopes of helping him out but my summer in SF ended up being a few weeks, so we will save that adventure for when I live on the California Coast. This, however, didn’t stop me from sampling his raved about bread.

From what I understand, his whole approach to baking bread started as word of mouth from his friends and others who fell in love with his talent of crafting amazing breads. He now has a blog, http://joseybakerbread.blogspot.com/, that supports his CSB, Community Supported Bread! He sells the bread fresh and hot in various locations around the city and when it is gone, it’s gone. Wednesdays and Thursdays the bread arrives at Bi-Rite Market at 5pm and usually lasts until 7pm, if you’re lucky! Bi-Rite is a quick ride from Cow Hollow, so last Thursday my sister and I decided to venture out for good, hot bread, and that is exactly what we returned with.

Bi-Rite is a narrow grocery store filled with exquisite foods including a deli, bakery, organic and local produce, as well as all jams, jellies and spreads you could imagine. Their chocolate section was also mouth-watering as you are waiting in a line as long as the store itself. Upon arrival at approximately 5:15pm there were three different kinds of Josey’s bread piping hot and ready to be purchased. We choose the recommended walnut bread which was a great decision. As a kid I never liked sourdough breads and always opted for the stained white “french” bread that is not always the healthiest choice. This sourdough however, was addicting and had us both at its mercy the whole way home where we arrived with only half a loaf, oopsy!

The next morning we toasted the bread and smothered it in our favorite spreads like Peach Butter or Fig Preserve with Ginger from the California staple, Arcangeli Grocery Co. in Pescadero. Unfortunately and embarrassingly this loaf only lasted us two days after adding it to all of our meals. Wednesday is only two days away and I know where I will be when 5pm rolls around!

Bon appetit to darn good bread!

Tacos and Ice Cream!

Since the San Francisco fog was staying far away I decided to hop around the city and hit some of my favorites for lunch. First up was Nick’s Crispy Tacos on Polk. Nick knows his tacos and anytime your there for their signature crispy tacos the music is playing and the line is long. They come with two and you can choose to mix and match between Pollo, Carne Asada, Pesce y mas. I choose one chicken and one steak made the way Nick got famous with one crispy corn tortilla held by another soft tortilla. The meat is juicy and grilled to perfection but any taco you order is amazing. The fish taco is my absolute favorite with the wow of cilantro and other outstanding flavors. Other than tacos I have not sampled anything else, besides the guacamole, but I am sure whatever your favorite Mexican dish is Nick will serve it up just right.

  

Next up was a stop at Swensen’s because what goes better with tacos than ice cream, nada! Swensen’s was first open in 1948 by Earle Swenson himself in order to change the world with his creamy and adventurous ice cream flavors. I used to go here with my dad when we visited the city and it hasn’t changed a bit over the years. Once you walk in your are bombarded with a wall full of flavors to choose from and sample. After trying the Almond Chocolate Malt, Black Raspberry Marble, Bittersweet Chocolate, and Green Tea I ended up with Swiss Orange Chip!! This flavor has the rich dark chocolate I obsess about with hints of orange rind, a step above my favorite Orange Custard Chocolate Chip flavor from the UW-Madison Union’s Daily Scoop. The sun was shining and the wind was calm so I took my ice cream and ventured through the hills of San Francisco.

  

 

Bon Appetit to your hearts content.

Get off that Grid.

Tonight we did exactly as the title states and went to ‘Off the Grid’. Off the Grid is a collection food trucks that gather in central location to sell food to hungry foodies. Tonight and every Friday during the summer it is at Fort Mason only ten minutes from lovely Franklin Street. The weekly markets are found at various locations in the Bay Area during the week just check out their website for directions and times, http://offthegridsf.com/. There are typically about thirty different trucks that are usually the same with music playing and people chilling.

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We meandered around and then Pops and I settled on 3-Sum Eats!! This was amazing and the menu was, and I quote, INSANE! My dad chose the Rice Krispies Crusted Fried Chicken Sandwich with sweet corn and snap pea succotash along with a spirachi aioli. While I, coming straight from China only hours ago, sampled the TsingTao Braised Briskey Sandwich with truffled edamame hummus, black garlic aioli and watercress. We splurged at this truck because the line was long and the things coming out were mouthwatering. The cantaloupe, ginger, basil and mint lemonade was perfect for cleansing the palate and allowing you to end with the Miniature Crack Pie!! This desert was my favorite goodie of the night and was made with a chocolate crust topped with caramel, peanut butter nougat, and pretzels ohh la la yum yum!!

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Next up was more food… correction, more deserts!!

These are from the Creme Brulee Cart where we sampled Dark Chocolate with Grandmanier, Lavender and ‘Si, Por Favor’ a nutella and balsamic strawberry heaven!

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Drumroll please… more deserts, please no judgement until you’ve been!! Coming up next are cupcakes from ‘A Mobile Cupcakery’. Even though we were on the edge of a food coma we decided to sample three 🙂 The first was there best seller, Salted Dulche de Leche, then Ginger Lemon and also a Spicey Mexican Chocolate. SO AMAZING!

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It was now time to take the long walk home and burn off all our nummy treats but if you are ever 50 miles from San Francisco make sure to get cash and make the trek to Off the Grid, I promise you it is more than worth the trip.

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Bon Appetit on the streets.

Food as a commodity?

Here is a look at Terra Madre “an international network of food producers, cooks, educators and students from 150 countries who are united by a common goal of global sustainability in food. The “food communities” of Terra Madre come together biennially to share innovative solutions and time-honored traditions for keeping small-scale agriculture and sustainable food production alive and well.” (Collected from the Slow Food USA website, http://www.slowfoodusa.org/index.php/programs/details/bringing_terra_madre_home/).

Food has been a part of all cultures since the beginning and how has it evolved over centuries? Is food a commodity, is it losing the basics characteristics of being natural, good food? Advancements help a culture grow but what is too far?

Enjoy this video giving a glimpse of Terra Madre…

Hello San Francisco Dining.

This post is one near and dear to my heart because it’s in my stomping grounds!! I am a die-hard Giants fan and love frequenting the tasty Californian cuisine in the entire Bay Area when I visit my Dad and stepmom who have resided on the edge of the Marina and Cow Hollow.

The first ooh la la dining hot spot is La Boulange Bakery. My father and stepmother live on Franklin so our most visited La Boulange is located on Polk Street. This french bistro is filled with fresh-baked almond croissants, orange and cinnamon morning buns, various breads and many more treats. They also have a full menu for breakfast or lunch but it is always a crowded place, so give yourself some time. My favorite option is to go early and grab a fresh squeezed orange juice with the homemade granola or the fantastic french toast. The special part about La Boulange is it brings France into many of the San Francisco neighborhoods. You can follow them on twitter, @laboulange, or check out their blog, Ze Boulange Blog, to see what’s new and exciting! (photo retrieved from http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g60713-d1074228-Reviews-La_Boulange_Cafe_Bakery-San_Francisco_California.html).

Next is Blue Barn on San Francisco’s quaint Chestnut Street. This place is one of my favorites because of their “U-Pick Salad”. Here they have dozens of fresh vegetables and a variety of lettuces, you can also add your choice of proteins and dressings. The limit is six but I can’t limit myself to the fresh goodness combined in these salads. If you aren’t obsessed with salads like me then try one of their gourmet grilled cheeses. There are seven outstanding sandwiches with extraordinary cheeses from local dairy farms. If you still aren’t enticed with these options then try sampling one of their chef inspired salads or sandwiches. They have vegetarian and vegan options and everything consumed is wholesome, organic and all locally grown.

The restaurant, Lo Coco’s, has been a favorite of mine ever since I was 5 years old when my dad and I used to venture there every Friday for Pesto Pizza, a House Salad with a side of Garlic Bread and two Root Beers. By the time I was ten they knew us by name and didn’t even need to ask what we wanted to order. This Pizzeria started with two brother’s and the original is in Terra Linda, California, but we choose to drive out to San Anselmo for the atmosphere. All the Pizza’s I assume would be amazing because of the thinness of the actual pizza which leads up to the bubbly and chewy crust, however, we always stuck with classic Pesto or Cheese. After dinner in the summer you can walk to the park behind the restaurant and stay for a fun night of Film Night in the Park. (Photo retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/19934744@N00/2526383455/).

For breakfast when we were on our way to the Russian River or hoping over to Napa to visit some family we always chose to make a morning stop at Fred’s Cafe in Sausalito. This cozy breakfast joint is my dad’s favorite place because the chefs cook the eggs to perfection while the coffee is hot and the orange juice is frothy and fresh, but it also might help that he thinks it’s named after him! When you eat here you have to order some scrambled eggs, even if it’s a small side. I am not one who is big on breakfasts but Fred’s knows how to make my mouth water. My family also considers ourselves orange juice snobs and Fred’s exceeds our expectations. Finally, the close atmosphere where you sit with other joyous customers creates a delightful experience.

There are millions more I could rave about ranging from, Mamasitas for a twist on Mexican, The Grove for Sunday brunch or a weekday lunch, and  Amici’s for East Coast Pizza but this is all for now.

Bon Appetit in the California Republic.

 

Photo retrieved from http://www.platesusa.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=LPART15&Category_Code=LPART