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Swan Oyster Depot

On a sunny Saturday morning, I rubbed a dollop of sunscreen onto my cheeks and prepared to trek to the number one spot on my Chomp List: Swan Oyster Depot. This journey was 4 years in the making, and I was mentally prepared to spend the next 1.5 hours waiting outside to get in. We…

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Burma Superstar

Stepping through the front door of Burma Superstar, the intense aroma of Burmese curries and spices instantly warmed us. The smell, which was so potent that it felt as if it were the reason for our warming bodies, was the perfect antidote for a bitterly cold day in the City. Flashing a giant, welcoming smile,…

Chomp List 2014

February. It’s that time of year when the taste buds wake up from their tryptophan-induced comas and start craving some bold, winter warming flavors. Here’s my 2014 Chomp List, a compilation of the top places that have caught my attention. Cheers to a year full of good company and happy taste buds. Now let’s eat.…

Chocolate Lab

Beakers, test tubes, and whimsical glass objects are scattered throughout the little space. Aromatic liquids boil and gurgle in the back corner. I’m in a lab, but I’m not here for class. I’m here to eat. Chocolate Lab, a chemistry lab in a sense, develops decadent, edible concoctions. I was always a periodic table geek…

Darwin Cafe

I speed walked down Brannan Street, narrowly avoiding traffic and sidewalk-hogging pedestrians. I had one thing on my mind: the roast beef sandwich from Darwin Cafe. This is the kind of sandwich that would knock most vegetarians off the bandwagon. It’s that good. The problem is that the sandwich loves to sell out. Or, I…

Eat Real Festival 2013

We walked into Oakland’s Jack London Square, where at the edge of a crowded parking lot, a collection of colorful food trucks sat under a blazing sun that beat down on their metallic roofs, causing everyone to slide on sunglasses and bare those vitamin-D deprived shoulders. Today was the Eat Real Festival, 2013, and I was one giddy lady. This was going to be a fabulously sweaty, food-filled day. Learning from the last few years, we had our top spots already mapped out. We snagged up a few beef pho rolls at the entrance, topped them with some fish sauce,…

Cordon Bleu

In San Francisco, every neighborhood has its culinary icons. Casual and consistent, these spots become the go-to places for the neighborhood people, venues to catch up with friends, or somewhere to grab a quick meal. Some are eclectic coffee shops, others corner bodegas with great delis, and, in Nob Hill, it is an unpretentious and…

Chicago Eats Well

The minute I bit into the giant Kobe beef rib on my plate, my small innocent crush transformed into a full blown love affair. That’s right San Francisco: you will always have my heart, but Chicago and I just had a wonderful week away. Now, the weather, is another story but all summer sweatiness aside,…

Italy Eats Well

Italy is most famously known for its copious amounts of delicious gluten : pizza, pasta, eggplant parmesan, breadsticks, and everything else wheat-filled. Gluten is the lifeblood of the country. Gluten is also my papa’s mortal enemy. His kryptonite. “Sono celiaco… senza glutine.” These are the only four words of Italian that my papa knows. But…

Marla Bakery Pop Up

Sunday morning marked the coming together of two beautiful and delicious things: Marla Bakery and State Bird Provisions. Marla is a stellar SF bakery that does all things baked, brined, and pickled, and State Bird Provisions is, well, State Bird Provisions. For the last month, Marla did pop ups in State Bird on the weekends…

Hard Knox Cafe

Maybe it’s just the mac and cheese, but people always seem happy in soul food restaurants. Hard Knox Cafe is no exception and owner, Tony Hua, strives to “feed your appetite and feed your soul.” We sat at the bar and the bartender flashed us a big smile and said: “I’m Anthony. I’m in charge…

Miss Ollie’s

Fried chicken has officially infiltrated the Bay Area. Popping up on menus across the Bay, it is becoming as entrenched in San Francisco culture as mustaches and fixies. It comes in all varieties, each place adding their secret touches to spin off on the traditional. Miss Ollie’s in Old Town Oakland has a fried chicken…

Citizen’s Band

The friendly waiter placed a steaming cup of coffee down in front of me. The cup read “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas.” I smiled as I sipped the strong stuff, it was 75 degrees outside and I had shorts on, a rarity in San Francisco. We were seated on metal stools at…

Good vs. Evil

The show opened with Eric Ripert nervously laughing and muttering answers to a demanding Anthony Bourdain. Eric sat center-stage, hunched over on a folding metal chair, and watched Anthony circle him like an authentic detective. The questions were harsh and Anthony was relentless and, ten minutes in, he questioned Eric on a very sensitive topic:…

Disposable Film Festival

At the J. Rusten Furniture Studio, the table saws were quiet. That Friday evening, justice was served. Literally. Films goers and local foodies arrived at the tiny furniture studio hosting The Disposable Film Festival, a film festival centered around films created with consumer electronics. Just Food: Dining with Justice Dinner and Screening, highlighted the current…

Wayo Sushi

I like my sushi like I like my men. Refined, fresh and honest. Save the bacon wrapped crunchy roll drowning in spicy mayo and eel sauce for the “all you can eat” joint down the street. I have a major restaurant crush on Wayo Sushi, the tiny 16 seater on Van Ness. It’s like the…

Ramen Shop

Stepping through the glass door into Ramen Shop is like stepping into a back alley in some forgein country. A large painted fish stares down at you from the rafters, overlooking the front bar, and hangs next an intricate wood paneled wall that separates the restaurant into two distinct areas. Up front is a large…

Mission Cheese

The population of San Francisco seems to double when the sun is out. While the thick fog and a constant temperature range of 55 – 65 for most of the year add to the charm of hilly city, hot sunny days are fully embraced by every San Franciscan. Blinded by the sunlight, people flock out…

State Bird Provisions

Peg boards and colorful yarns are common staples in almost every kindergarten class. State Bird Provisions, the year old SF eatery, does peg boards and yarn better than any kindergarten class that I have ever encountered. This tiny restaurant’s colorful yarn artwork starkly contrasts the exposed concrete wall on the opposite side of the room.…

The Four Food Groups

A pair of vintage train engines spew steam as they carry heavy loads of over-sized lemons and giant celery stalks. A passenger-less cruiser bike flies past towering skewers of steak and floating prawns. Fresh milk is carefully poured into large vats that fuel cheese delivery trucks. Springy noodles playfully interweave between big impressive ships and…

Boot and Shoe Service

A weathered sign out front reads Boot and Shoe Service. But don’t let the name fool you—Boot and Shoe Service fixes food cravings, not worn leather soles. Its name pays homage to the original tenants, which is pretty cool considering today’s world of trendy restaurant tags (sorry 21st Amendment). Charlie Hallowell, the mastermind behind Pizzaiolo…

Good Food Awards

Every Saturday morning, the iconic Ferry Building in San Francisco turns into a bustling hub of farmers, foodies, and coffee connoisseurs alike. Hundreds of tables are filled with colorful produce, geometric cheeses, fresh meat, and fragrant flowers. A couple of weeks ago, on a Friday evening, the Ferry Building hosted the Good Food Awards. The…

Tank 18

My heart broke a little last year when my wine club, Cellar 360, closed their tasting room. I’d spent many great evenings with friends drinking wine and telling stories while looking out Cellar’s backroom windows toward a fog-drenched Alcatraz Island. The volume of talking and laughter directly correlated to where we were in the tasting…

Namu Gaji

In the Mission district, inside Namu Gaji, we placed our jackets in the canvas bags underneath our short bar stools and sat at the chef’s counter. I glanced up and caught the friendly but focused eye of a chef tending a skillet of octopus sizzling over an open fire pit. The orange bill of his Giants hat looked like an extension of the fire he intently tended. From that moment, I knew that these guys meant business. Passionate, delicious and flavorful business. I think the chef’s counter is the place to be at Namu Gaji, watching the chefs and sommelier…

Chomp List 2013

As some of you know, I am a woman of lists. My little black notebook is packed with them, all kinds of them, usually a hodgepodge of grocery items to purchase, people to catch up with, letters to mail, bills to pay, photos to edit. But one list has been missing since the first of…

Kirimachi Ramen

Nestled between strip clubs and well stocked liquor stores on Broadway is a tiny pop-up restaurant called Kirimachi Ramen. Nothing fancy, just ramen. Damn good ramen. It had been a painfully long week at work and I was in need of some hot ramen and cold beer. I’m sure you know the feeling. We sat…

Samovar Tea Lounge

On a winter Friday morning, rain pitter-pattered against the iconic San Francisco trolley tracks outside my window. I was in my bed, still half asleep, listening to the soothing sound of the falling rain drops. This was nice. I had no desire to change a thing. But then I was reminded I had no choice. My phone began to vibrate and scream like a hormonal hen. Alarm clock. Reality check. Time for work. I snoozed the alarm and read the weather. 7 straight days of rain. Major bummer for what was going to be an action packed weekend with my…

Edible Selby and Blue Bottle

Todd Selby is a character. One of those characters that you want to have as a close friend. Not only is he an amazingly talented photographer but he is also a wonderful storyteller. I’ve been a fan for years and when I heard he was going to have a book signing with James and Caitlin…

My Tofu House

My Tofu House is your tofu house. Or at least it should be. In the foggy Richmond District of San Francisco sits a Korean restaurant called My Tofu House, where you are engulfed in the smell of fried fish and kimchi as you open the front door. I’m usually so hungry from waiting that I scarf…

Pickles and Popsicles

If you’ve ever ventured to the Eat Real Festival in Oakland you’ve found yourself surrounded by hundreds of tasty little bites in the center of Jack London Square. Indian street food, Vietnamese spring rolls, steaming cups of ramen and slow cooked meat all beg to be consumed as you patiently (depending on your hunger level)…

Utah Eats Well

Green Jello is the state food. No lie. Despite this somewhat humiliating and comical fact, Utah does eat really well. Our one week trip back to my home state consisted of many back porch BBQs, farmer’s market meals, and local beer. I may be a bit biased when I say this but there is something…

Gather Journal

Semi-hipster and increasingly trendy food publications are sliding into magazine racks everyday. This warms a little part of my heart because I have always had a soft spot for print. I was browsing one of my favorite magazine stands in the Mission one Saturday morning and a big juicy, violet plum caught my sight. Gather Journal. With it’s bold white border and vibrant front cover, I knew I was hopelessly hooked. Each page is full of stunning photography and thoughtful design, thanks to the journals creators, Michele Outland and Fiorella Valdesolo. Gather’s first edition was full of challenging but scrumptious…

Chez Panisse

“Take a picture of that butter.” Maybe we were just caught up in the moment but even the butter tasted better than average butter. Is that possible? I have always wanted to eat at Chez Panisse, despite Anthony Bordain’s friendly gripe about the restaurant’s founder and head chef, Alice Waters. Personally, I think Alice is…

Guerilla Cafe

Holy moly, I’m in love. I’m usually not much of a breakfast fan but yesterday morning changed my anti-breakfast views. Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley lives up to the hype. Great coffee selection, scrumptious ethnic food, and a vibrant atmosphere. As we strolled through the front door and into the loud, colorful cafe, my early morning…

New Lucky Peach!

It’s that time again for all those foodie nerds to catch up on a little reading. The fourth Lucky Peach is out and just as ripe as usual. Shout out to SF classic Swan Oyster Depot. Check it out. Say no to crack please.

Radius

The city is bustling with even more pink boas and rhinestone heels than usual. Pride 2012 is in full swing. I had been preparing myself all week for the weekend festivities and with my rainbow outfit finally coordinated, I was ready. Pushing through the crowd, we found ourselves starving and ready for a mid-afternoon cocktail.…

Food From Yesterday

Yesterday I ate. And before I ate, I took a picture. I guess I am, and have always been, one of those insanely annoying people who snaps pictures of every crumb of food they consume. But it’s what I do, what I love to do. Sure I’m a hypocrite but, truthfully, I shoot my meals…