Tuesday, April 22, 2014

TABLE FOR ONE: EATING SINGLE IN THE BIG CITY...COFFEE SHOPS

"Another Saturday and I ain't got nobody.." isn't that how the lyrics to the Cat Stevens song go? And here it is a Saturday or Tuesday or Friday or any night of the week. All your friends have plans or need to "wash their hair." You are totally bored and hungry and want to get food but don't want to order in Chinese or pizza....again. What's a person to do? Now is the chance to take your first opportunity to step out on your own and grab a bite to eat by yourself. That's right--ALONE. Folks seem to have this innate fear doing most anything by themselves in public as if it will brand them a loser or something, but I disagree and think more people should take the chance and eat out solo. I mean this probably won't be a regular occurrence with you but with everyone having seemingly hectic lives and work schedules it's hard to coordinate all the time. Thus the need to eat with yourself. As part of the learning process for those who are not used to such a thing let's start small and easy. One type of place that makes it easy for people to grab a bite for themselves is the coffee shop.


Sunday, April 20, 2014

YOUR WEEKLY DIGESTION OF FOOD NEWS TO CONSUME

Fish and sweet potato fries at AT&T Park. At only $10 it's one of the few "bargains" at a SF Giants game and it was pretty good. 

Friday, April 18, 2014

STUFFED HAVE THEY GOT A PIEROGI FOR YOU!

When you think of pierogi, and well who doesn't, you don't normally think "oh, let's go down to the Mission and get one!" Not to mention going deep 'hood at 24th and Mission, but that's exactly what me and the SO did one late Saturday afternoon because...why not. Our destination was Stuffed (they don't have a website, just a Facebook page). But what is a pierogi you say? It's a dumpling of unleavened bread with a filling that is boiled and then either baked or fried in onions and butter. Think of it as the Eastern European version of the pot sticker. And it was this little item that brought us to one of the more unique corners of this town.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

TABLE FOR ONE: EATING SINGLE IN THE BIG CITY

No one likes to eat alone, or at least that is what most folks will tell you. I know from personal experience it's not always the funnest thing in the world. I mean it is nice to have a fellow conspirator to enjoy (or complain) about the food or restaurant you are trying. It can make the evening go by faster and sometimes it can influence how you though about a certain dish by having a different take or set of tastebuds weigh in. But in this crazy busy, time compressed world we live in, sometimes it's hard to mesh schedules with cohorts and SO's in order to have dining companionship. For all the places I've eaten, there is a large majority I ended up going to alone and it is something I've gotten "used to" and actually don't mind it. Plus, long before I had an SO I had quite a number of single years and spent many a night eating out by myself, just because I wanted to get out of the house and more importantly, because I could. It's not a sad thing and I don't think it should be stigmatized, in short it really should be empowering and of course you kind of have to like yourself enough to do it. Isn't that what all those self-help books say--in order to like others you have to like yourself first--or something empowering like that. I mean in this day and age when ever we go out to grab a bite we are seemingly still connected to people and things with all the technology of phones, laptops, etc, it's like we are never really alone (or unplugged) are we?

Sunday, April 13, 2014

YOUR WEEKLY DIGESTION OF FOOD NEWS TO CONSUME

Glazed bacon brittle brioche donut from A Spoonful of Sugar in San Francisco. At $4 a pop it's kind of pricey, but it was bigger than my hand, definitely fluffy, cakey and tasty. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

FOOD TRUCK QUICK BITE: THE BONEYARD

BBQ meats are the new trend in San Francisco. Over the last year everything from brisket to pulled pork has been showing up on menus from high end to low end restaurants. Being a fan of meat, I'm not only okay with it, I'm also willing to try out all the incarnations to see whether any of it is worthwhile. Food trucks were some of the original places to jump on this new bandwagon and fortunately ones that serve up the goods can be found at most all of the locations chow wagons congregate. So it was on another Friday finding myself at Off The Grid and hitting up a meat truck, this time The Boneyard.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

THE RAMP IN SAN FRANCISCO SUNS OUT BRUNCH OUT

With the advent of spring comes relative sunshine and as seen recently some spectacularly warm days. On the heels of that, folks in San Francisco emerge from foggy hibernation to participate in one of their favorite weekend activities--having brunch outside. A fair number of places have a few tables outside their establishments, but there are some which have large outdoor patios to accommodate patrons wanting fresh air and food all in one. A popular off the beaten track option for this is The Ramp located near Pier 66 in China Basin, it's a go to choice for folks who live in SOMA/Dogpatch neighborhoods.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

YOUR WEEKLY DIGESTION OF FOOD NEWS TO CONSUME

Red Velvet Cake from The Grove in SOMA. It's a decent version of the classic cake, though could up the red color a bit. 

Friday, April 4, 2014

PAPALOTE MEXICAN GRILL IN THE MISSION IT'S A BURRITO THING

I'm on a random Sunday stroll through the Mission, because it's good to get out of the house sometimes. I usually have no particular direction or goal outside of just wandering around to see what's new, still the same or totally forgotten about. On this particular walk I reach the outer edges of the Mission around 24th and Valencia, a few blocks before it becomes Bernal Heights or something and start to turn around when I see folks heading into this small blue tiled place on 24th Street. Piqued, I walk over and see it's Papalote Mexican Grill.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

PIZZETTA 211 TINY SPACE BIG FLAVORS IN THE RICHMOND DISTRICT

Boredoom...it can drive one to do lots of things, like get on 2 different Muni buses to make my way out to the Richmond District of San Francisco. My goal on this slow day was to just get out of the house and do something. Hit up Green Apple Books and maybe grab a quick bite to eat. Fortunately for me my friend Miss O works out this way and her BF lives nearby also so after browsing without luck at the bookshop I last minute texted her to see if they were up for food while I was in the hood. She said sure and after tossing out some ideas we settled on Pizzetta 211.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

YOUR WEEKLY DIGESTION OF FOOD NEWS TO CONSUME

Coqueta along the Embarcadero. If you are luck you might catch a glimpse of Michael Chiarello chopping up some octopus there. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

FOOD TRUCK QUICK BITE: LOBSTA TRUCK IS ALL BUTTERED UP

Food trucks come and go in San Francisco on a regular basis making it difficult to get out there an try everyone of them, though I do try. I'm always on the lookout for new ones to the area and sometimes they pop up with lots of fanfare, such is the case with the Lobsta Truck. Hailing originally from down Southern California way I'd seen several online food news outlets highlight its arrival to town and it was because of this that I grabbed my friend Elena and we made the arduous cross town journey to the Friday night Off the Grid at Fort Mason to give this hot new truck a try. We got there right when the event was starting but the Lobsta wasn't quite ready yet so we wandered around till they started serving. During that time a line had formed at the truck, it seems we weren't the only ones who wanted to give them a try.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

TAPAS PLUS MICHAEL CHIARELLO EQUALS COQUETA

Restaurant life along the Embarcadero has been a hit or miss affair over the years, though recently it seems places have been able to make more of a foothold and garner both good reviews and paying clientele. See Epic Roasthouse, Waterbar, La Mar and the latest addition Coqueta a mostly tapas style  place utilizing local ingredients to create Spanish style dishes. They've taken over the old Lafitte space after Chef Russell Jackson decided he wanted to be more celebrity than chef and headed to New York and the Food Network. And in a strange quirk the person who heads up Coqueta is Michael Chiarello, who's already done the celebrity thing and is now throwing himself back into the actual food. It's always been a small space but they've managed to make it feel bigger even with all the dark wood, the high ceilings really help.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

YOUR WEEKLY DIGESTION OF FOOD NEW TO CONSUME

If you ever need a princess cake, Schubert's Bakery in the Richmond is the place to get it. 

Friday, March 21, 2014

AND THE KNOCK-OFFS KEEP COMING..MORE CROUGHNUTS AND CRONUTS FROM UNLIKELY PLACES

Like the seven heads of Hydra the specter of the fad that is the cronut (and several other spellings) continues unabated with new places releasing their knock-off versions to an unsuspecting world. I mean even the originator of the fad is moving on to other new and interesting dessert creations--milk and cookie shot glass anyone? While we await the arrival of our version of that, I continue to run across the variations of the cronut in unexpected places around town and elsewhere. On a recent jaunt to the Bayview District to hit up a soul food festival me and the SO stumbled across a corner restaurant called CDXX that I vaguely remember hearing about somewhere. We wandered in to just peruse the menu and on this weekend day they were only serving brunch which looked interesting but what caught my eye was the listing for a croughnut. Well, we weren't planning to eat here but we did decide to get a couple of the croughnuts to go to snack on while we walked around. Here it is......

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

HUMPHRY SLOCOMBE ICE CREAM FOR HIPSTERS IN THE MISSION

I've never been a total fan of ice cream as a dessert, the SO loves it, it's one of his 4 food groups. For me I can usually take it or most often leave it. I like my desserts to have heft to them, like cake or pie or donuts--they are both filling and satisfying when good. Ice cream can often feel like Chinese food to me, after eating it I'm still a little hungry and my sweet tooth doesn't feel totally satisfied. Still I was willing to give Humphry Slocombe a try as I'd heard many good things about over the few years it's been around. Plus we were only a few blocks away strolling through the Mission, it was hot and something different to do. It's a small place tuck on a side street off the 24th Street corridor, which has become a new hotbed of trendy hipster foodie places that draw people there specifically to eat.