July 30, 2014

Where San Francisco locals eat

My top 10 restaurants where San Francisco locals eat, in no particular order:

Kingdom of Dumpling:  
1713 Taraval Street, between 27th and 28th Avenue.
Neighborhood - Parkside

The name says it all.  You can't go wrong at this Chinese restaurant - I have never had a bad meal here and the best part is it's inexpensive and you leave with a full, happy stomach.   One of my favorite dishes is the beef chow mein.  Because the space is a bit tight there is usually a line out the door.

Pancho Villa Taqueria:
3071 16th Street, between Julian Avenue and Caledonia Street
Neighborhood - Mission

Don't ask questions, just go.  I'm already craving their burritos just as I'm typing this.

Ike's Place
Sandwiches, multiple locations
3489 16th Street
Neighborhood - Castro

To say that they just make sandwiches is a huge understatement.  These are not your ordinary sandwiches. They're not just stuffed to the brim with your usual condiments; they're filled with unusual "side dishes" like poppy seed coleslaw or beer battered zucchini and they actually taste good!  My favorites are the Say Hey with bacon, swiss, and pastrami and the Matt Cain with salami, provolone, roast beef, and turkey.

King of Thai Noodle House
Thai, multiple locations
639 Clement Street, between 7th and 8th Avenue
Neighborhood - Inner Richmond

Inner Richmond, particularly by Clement street was my old stomping grounds, but I still love coming here on super cold, foggy, drizzly days for King of Thai's tom yum gai.  The dishes are so inexpensive that you can eat your heart out (and stomach - I love spicy but mild can be your option if you can't handle the heat).

Park Chow:
American, multiple locations
1240 9th Avenue, between Lincoln Way and Irving Street
Neighborhood- Inner Sunset

I've been here for both dinner and brunch and it's our go-to, no-thinking-required restaurant when you're craving a hearty meal.  Don't miss the wine-steamed, garlic and herb clams as a starter and feel free to finish off that bread by dipping it in the sauce- to die for!  I also love their baked lasagna and linguini with clams, and their pizza ain't bad either.

Breakfast / Brunch
941 Cole Street, between Parnassus Avenue and Carl Street
Neighborhood - Cole Valley

Yes, the wait can be long if you don't arrive early but the wait is worth it.  There's plenty to choose from on their extensive menu.  I'm more of a French toast girl - the Pinkie Challah French toast with the orange cinnamon batter is delicious, if I want to go crazy, I step it up with the Pinkie Tahiti French toast with carmelized bananas and walnuts as extras.  Another great plate is the lemon ricotta pancakes.  One interesting thing I've noticed is that people have their wedding reception brunches here- that tells you something.

Trattoria Da Vittorio:
150 West Portal
Neighborhood - West Portal

Okay, I'm partial because this is my neighborhood, but this place is my favorite Italian restaurant, and in my opinion one of the City's best kept secrets.   Yes there's a wait but I love how it's not an hour wait to get it, and even if I was, I probably would anyway.  The owner takes care of you here and makes sure you leave happy.  I always end up getting their specials, the last being the bass with asparagus.  It was so delicious, you don't even know...

3814 Noriega Street, between 45th and 46th Avenue
Neighborhood - Outer Sunset

This is also another one of my favorite spots to escape the cold.  You get the usual small dish appetizers served at most Korean restaurants and steaming stews and dishes.  I love the kimchi fried rice and well pretty much anything with kimchi in it.  Apparently the space was converted from a garage, could have fooled me.

Genki Crepes
Dessert, Crepes
330 Clement Street, between 4th and 5th Avenue
Neighborhood - Inner Richmond

I only bothered with the nutella and banana crepe until a friend turned me on to the cheesecake with blueberry sauce and whipped creme crepe - major sugar shock but worth it.  I still perk up when I walk by and smell the crepes being made.  

Italian, Bar, Pizza
1199 Valencia Street, between 22nd and 23rd Street
Neighborhood:  Mission

This is a really great place to go with your significant other - great cocktails and lots of small plates to choose from, and the pizza is out of this world.

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