Friday, May 7, 2010

San Francisco 2010 trip recap

Spent a whirlwind weekend in San Francisco where there was lots of tasty food, good shopping and dear friends.  I wish I had taken more pictures of all the wonderful sights at the Farmer's Market, Japantown and Union Square but I guess I was too busy walking, talking, shopping and eating.  I did manage to get pictures of most of the food (surprise surprise) --although that was on the iphone and so quite blurry as I was in a hurry to dig in and eat!  I am proud to announce that I did achieve my goal of seafood at every meal.  Here's a look:

We left the Austin airport in the wee hours of Friday morning and after our 5 hour flight (including a stopover in DFW), we made it to San Francisco just in time for lunch.  A drove up from LA, picked us up from the airport and whisked us away to lunch at the Brickhouse located in SOMA.  I had a fish sandwich with chips.  The lightly battered fish sat on a bed of lettuce and the soft ciabatta bread was slathered in homemade tarter sauce.  Seafood meal #1--a perfect start to the trip!

We then went for some Trader Joe's shopping and after that checked in at the Palace Hotel.  This hotel was conveniently located off Market Street.  It was built in 1909 and is very traditional, ornate and elegant.  And the beds were so comfy it was tough to wake up from naps!

Here is Mr Waddle on his very own four poster bed:

The view of Market Street from our room:

The Garden Court located in the lobby area (most beautiful place to have tea in SF--that's on my to do list for the next trip!)

So after a short nap, we freshened up and headed out to explore the many shops in Union Square--aka shoppers' paradise.  We chose the Westfield Mall for dinner.  Their food court consists of many gourmet restaurants with every type of cuisine possible: California Mexican, steak and potatoes, Japanese, Italian, Chinese, Thai, Indian, Korean, you name it!  I went for my tried and true meal at the Korean restaurant Sorabol Korean BBQ.  I got the mackerel and salmon plate with rice, chapcae (noodles) and a little salad plate with a variety of vegetables.  Seafood meal #2--acchieved.

After dinner it was dessert (cream puffs from Beard Papa), more shopping, and then a very comfortable bed back at the hotel.

The next morning, we were up bright and early (California time) to hit the famed Farmer's Market at the Ferry Building.  We took a bus up Market St and then walked the rest of the way.

Here's where I really regret not taking more pictures!  This bustling farmer's market is a treasure trove of delicious sights, sounds and smells.  The produce in California is amazing and we immediately picked up a basket of fresh sweet strawberries to snack on while we wandered.  There are a lot of prepared food vendors at the market as well and this brings us to seafood meal #3: an open face smoked salmon sandwich.  I have been dreaming about this sandwich since my visit last year and it did not disappoint!  The salty and thinly sliced smoked salmon rests on homemade cream cheese and the world famous Acme sourdough bread  and is topped with meyer lemons, pickled red onions and capers, along with a sprinkle of lavender sea salt (from one of the vendors at the farmers market).   I could spend the rest of my life talking about this sandwich--it's that good.  Let's have a moment of silence for this sandwich.

**Adding this new picture that Jill just sent me of some cute garden animals at one of the booths at the market

A view of the Bay Bridge from the front of the Ferry Building

After stuffing ourselves silly at the farmers market, we then did more shopping at See's Candies and Heath Ceramics before heading to Japantown.  We browsed the bookshelves at Kinokuniya and bought quirky Japanese goodies at the supermarket (green tea Kit Kats anyone?).  Then it was on to seafood meal #4 at Kushi Tsuru.  I had a couple of nigiri sushi including Tamago (cooked egg omelet), Hamachi (fresh yellowtail) and Tobiko (fish roe/eggs). 

After Japantown, there was a bit more shopping, napping and then finally getting ready for dinner.  For our last meal F (our host) chose Fog Harbor Fish House on Pier 39.

Sunset on the pier

We were seated at a great semi circle booth which faced floor to ceiling windows with a direct view of the water.  During dinner, we had the opportunity to watch the sun set over the harbor.  Dinner was full of laughter, stories and fabulous food.  And I am proud to introduce the final seafood meal #5:  Seabass with lemon sauce, wild rice and sauteed vegetables

And just for fun, here are our desserts: a warm molten lava chocolate cake with whipped cream and vanilla ice cream

And an apple crisp with vanilla ice cream

A perfect ending to a wonderful trip.  Not only have I left a piece of my heart in San Francisco, I'm pretty sure I left my appetite too!


  1. Your hotel looks so fabulous! Great recap! It made me hungry and made me want to visit SF again soon.

  2. ahhh yeah! good times.. fo so' :)

  3. love all the food photos!! I can't wait to go! I still need to go to Austin!

  4. Thanks for the trip recap. I can live vicariously through you, S. Good job on the seafood mission. Though I think my favorite food pictures are those desserts!

  5. you found green tea Kit Kats! so jealous...