Best Places to Dine in San Francisco

San Francisco is heaven to many foodies, and there’s a good reason why. The creativity and authenticity restaurateurs put into their hole-in-the-wall businesses make the city special to today’s hungry traveling millennials.

You might have seen my post about how I traveled to the City by the Bay. These are just some of the places I dined at while I was there.

Cafe UB | 3902 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94114
This cute coffee shop located near the Castro offers a variety of breakfast pastries and lunch food items. They also serve a variety of coffees and teas. It’s small, but cozy, and the service is extremely neighborly. You are guaranteed to feel like a San Franciscan here.

I had the Norse bagel with salmon, which is just a bagel (wheat or white), house cured salmon, cream cheese, tomato, capers, cucumbers and red onion. I pared my bagel with their chai latte. There are a ton of vegetarian options offered as well. it was not so friendly to my wallet, since it cost about the same as if I went to Einstein’s for my bagel or Starbucks for my latte, but the food was really good.

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Macy’s Rooftop Cheesecake Factory | 8th Floor, 251 Geary St, San Francisco, CA 94102
The only special thing about this particular Cheesecake Factory is that it overlooks Union Square. It sits on the eight floor on top of the famous seven-story Macy’s. When I first saw it, I honestly could not believe my eyes! How could a Macy’s be so big? But then when you see the view from the top, you understand why they’d put a Cheesecake Factory on top. The cherry on top of the Union Square cake.

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View from the top of Macy’s in Union Square

Garaje | 475 3rd Street, San Francisco, CA 94107
Garaje is a local favorite in SoMa (South of Market). I went on a Thursday night and it was still jam-packed. I honestly could not find a place to sit! I had one carnitas taco ($4) and it was by far the best taco I’ve ever had in my entire life. I still have dreams about this taco, and how absolutely delicious it was. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the chance to go back for more, but I definitely will the next time I’m in the Bay Area. If you decide to visit Garaje when you go to SF, make sure you bring cash. They do not accept card!

I didn’t have the chance to take pictures. The first two are from their website.

Mr. Holmes Bakeshop | 1042 Larkin St, San Francisco, CA 94109
Don’t go to the Tenderloin, they said. So we went to the ‘loin. And the field trip to the Tenderloin of San Francisco was well worth the baked goodies we ate from this fine, small establishment. We really came for that famous sign that reads “I got baked in San Francisco.” If you come early enough, you will be able to snatch one of their famous “cruffins” which is a croissant muffin. Unfortunately, we did not get up early enough to grab one, but we had a couple of pastries and a donut for the two of us (Jasmin and I). We took our baked goods to-go and at them in Union Square. The weather was perfect.

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Pumpkin Apple Danish and the Mr. Holmes Bakehouse box that landed us a round of applause when we finally figured out how to close it flat.
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Le Donut 2: Mint Chocolate Doughnut – The mint actually tasted like mint leaves, definitely different from what I’m used to.

Plentea | 341 Kearny Street, San Francisco, CA 94108
Plentea is a tea shop located in China Town near the Financial District that is known for serving their milk teas in glass bottles. Actually, that is the reason why I chose to venture out to this particular tea shop, for the souvenir bottle! Also, if you reuse the bottle, you also get 10% off your tea. The tea is made fresh, the shop in small and cozy and the price is the same as everywhere else. This has actually made it to the top of the list of my favorite places to get boba tea. There is only one location in SF, but they are expanding to Berkeley. Hopefully Las Vegas is next on their list!

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Shanghai Dumpling King | 3319 Balboa St, San Francisco, CA 94121
This authentic Chinese cuisine restaurant has absolutely no frills. It has the look and feel of a typical hole-in-the-wall restaurant. They mainly focus on dumplings (of course), but they offer a variety of menu items. It was my first time trying dumplings and potstickers and they were actually pretty amazing. The environment of the restaurant is small and cozy and perfect for a quiet dinner between two people or a family celebration.

Southside Spirit House | 575 Howard St, San Francisco, CA 94105
I had to check out some of the bar scene when I was in San Francisco, so what better place to go to Southside Spirit House, recommended by a San Franciscan!? This particular bar had a more tavern-feel. It was woody, and there was dim lighting. They are well known for their IPAs. I ended up getting the Dogfish IPA myself. This place is perfect to watch any Golden State Warriors game, but it is also suitable for small talk between friends. I would come back again.

 

I hope the next time you’re in the Bay Area, you’ll visit any one of these fine establishments! If you’re looking for a different take on SF dining, take a look at this post by my fellow blogger and best friend, Jasmin. Make sure you let her know I sent ya!

Let me know of any other places you liked to eat or drink so I can add it to my list the next time I visit San Francisco!

-D


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