Saturday, March 5, 2011

San Francisco Foodcation

In the Summer of 2010 we visited San Francisco where we discovered a number of great delicacies on the road. Our trip began with a visit to the bay where a local farmers market was under way. Farmer's markets are a great way to eat locally and support local food producers. This particular one had a beautiful selection of fresh fruits and vegetables.

We were advised to skip the 'tourist trap' seafood restaurants and find the shops where the local fisherman sold their wares. We strolled along the piers until we found a bank of food bars serving freshly caught seafood.

The seafood rolls these folks served up were incredible. Sweet crabmeat and juicy shrimp rolled in creamy mayonnaise were ladled in a soft buttery roll. 

We found a really groovy ice cream parlor called 'Bombay Ice Creamery'. An Indian owned shop, this desert bar had standard flavors like vanilla and chocolate but also featured unique flavors such as cardamom, lavender and rosewater.

As one who loves Asian cuisine, I have always wanted to eat my way through Chinatown. And on my birthday, I got the opportunity to do just that! Like most places, there is 'tourist' food and then if you know where to look for it, a more authentic scene.

Our first stop was at a small market where an elderly lady prepared fish balls and rice. The fish were small round white portions of fish meat simmered in a garlicky liquid soup.

We found visited several small shops and cafes that prepared steam pork buns, red bean cakes and various dim sum 'small dishes'.

Some shops featured delicious soups and hard to find delicacies like shark fin soup.

We settled on eating lunch at the famous 'Gourmet Delight BBQ'. Gourmet Delight is famous for their Chinese barbecue dishes. They feature such classics as barbecue spare ribs, roast duck and chicken feet.

Chinatown is filled with a number of delightful bakeries and sweet shops. Our friend Luanne turned us on to Green Tea Cake. It was sweet, tart and melted in your mouth.

Before leaving the West Coast behind us, we had to try the famous 'In and Out' burger. Our friend and tour guide Luanne suggested ordering the fries 'animal style' which includes melted cheese, sweet grilled onions and creamy thousand island dressing. It was to die for!

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