Tag Archives: San Francisco

Eat to Bites: Cheap Burger Joints and an Authentic Italian Restaurant

2 Jul

I love saying Tom Hank’s character in the movie “The Terminal”. If you haven’t seen it, it’s about this man from a fake country called Krakozhia. He’s stuck at New York’s JFK airport because he can’t enter the United States because the US doesn’t recognize Krakozhia as a sovereign nation amid a revolution that broke out just as Hanks landed in JFK. At the same time, he can’t go back because there are no flights going there so he ends up staying at the airport for many years. This is based on the true story of  Mehran Karimi Nasseri who stayed for 18 years in one of the airports in Paris, France.

Anyway, that’s where my post title comes from because in the movie Hanks has a hard time saying “Want to get a bite to eat?” when asking Catherine Zita Jones’ character out for dinner. Instead, Hanks says “Want to get an eat to bite?”.


1. Red’s Java House

Pier 30
Bryant & Embarcadero
San Francisco, CA 94107

This place is located right near the the Bay Bridge that links Oakland and San Francisco, but is ultimately located in San Francisco. Don’t worry about street noise pollution though because you can’t hear the cars whizzing by at all nor will your views of the bay be obstructed by anything.

Eggs and Chili Rancheros

Eggs and Chili Rancheros - $6.95

When I visited Red’s about two weeks ago, I was somewhat surprised that only two types of coffee are served so if you’re looking for a wide selection of coffee, don’t come here.

Hamburger on Sourdough

Hamburger on Sourdough; came with pickles, mustard, onions (no lettuce or tomatoes) - $3.42

On the other hand, if you like a place full of history – there are perhaps 50+ historic photos hung all around the inside walls – and cheap breakfast – San Francisco style – then come here. The atmosphere if anything will make up for any of the cons that you may find.

Interior of Red's Javahouse

Interior of Red's Javahouse

2. Buffalo’s Burgers Restaurant

5317 Geary Blvd
(between 17th Ave & 18th Ave)
San Francisco, CA 94121

Chicken Supreme Burger

Chicken Supreme Burger - $5.95 (I think)

Now since I live in this neighborhood, I’ve often seen this little restaurant when walking by on my way to the produce market. I never really stopped in there but I expressed my curiosity about going in to my mom several times.

One night when we were with a family friend and were at a lost of where to go, she suggested the place. I wasn’t sure if I was in the mood for burgers, but I was willing to go anyway. Eating at a new place is always exciting.

Mixed Vegetable Terriyaki Bowl

Mixed Vegetable Terriyaki "Bowl" - $6.95 (I think)

Little did I know that I didn’t have to be worried about the lack of choices. Of course this is a burger place, but Buffalo’s offered chicken breast sandwiches/burgers, fish-n-chips, chili, buffalo shrimps (delicious!), and terriyaki chicken and veggie bowls. Oh, and there’s salads too.

Best of all, everything is cheap. Cheap,cheap,cheap!

It’s such a deal, seriously. The staff are friendly, the food is good, and the cost won’t make a dent into your wallet. I suppose the only thing that may be overpriced is their buffalo shrimps since it’s 1/2 lb for $6.95, but they’re still delicious.

Buffalo Shrimps with Fries
1/2 lb Buffalo Shrimps with Homemade Fries – $6.95 Buffalo’s also has a great tangy buffalo sauce. They sell it in containers just by itself.

Italian Cuisine

1. Mescolanza Restaurant

2221 Clement Street
San Francisco, CA 94121

I saw this restaurant featured on Check Please! last year I think. Like with Buffalo’s Restaurant, I never got around to actually going there until last week.

Polenta al Funghi

"Polenta al Funghi":roasted polenta with assorted seasonal mushrooms - 8.75

And let me just say, if you like thin crust pizza you must go here. And if you like vegetable pizza then you must try the Eggplant pizza called “Pizzetta Melanzane”. Pizzas only come in one size (8 slices). If you’re hungry, then you can finish it as a single diner. Also, the pizza is decently priced.

"Pizzetta Melanzane" (mozzarella, grilled eggplant, pesto, tomato sauce)

"Pizzetta Melanzane": mozzarella, grilled eggplant, pesto, tomato sauce - $13.95

The crust is cracker thin, the cheese on the Melanzane is not too overpowering, and the spices are tastefully used. (There aren’t too many.) I also suggest trying the desserts because they are divine!

"Pizzetta Mescolanza" (mozzarella, gorgonzola, prosciutto, artichoke hearts, tomato sauce)

"Pizzetta Mescolanza": mozzarella, gorgonzola, prosciutto, artichoke hearts, tomato sauce - $13.95

My mom and I told the waiter it was our first time there so he was very helpful. When I asked him if he preferred the tiramisu or “Cioccolata Con Amaretti” (chocolate flan with amaretto and crushed amaretti cookie), he told me the Cioccolata. No problem so that’s what I ordered.  My mom ordered the “Frutti de Bosco” (mixed European berries on cream in a shortbread crust).

"Frutti di Bosco" (a medley of European wild berries floating on a cream filling in an all butter shortbread crust)

"Frutti di Bosco": a medley of European wild berries floating on a cream filling in an all butter shortbread crust - $7.95

"Cioccolata Con Amaretti" : chocolate flan with amaretto and crushed amaretti cookie

"Cioccolata Con Amaretti" :chocolate flan with amaretto and crushed amaretti cookie - $7.95

When the desserts came out, he had three plates.

“This is the Tiramisu. It’s on the house,” he explain.

"Tiramisu": espresso, Marsala soaked lady fingers layered with mascarpone,  chocolate and Italian cream 	 - $7.95

"Tiramisu": espresso, Marsala soaked lady fingers layered with mascarpone, chocolate and Italian cream - $7.95

My take on the desserts? The tiramisu and chocolate flan are delicious! Get these. The tart was okay but the berries were kind of tart. Nice crust though.

Also, you should dress a little nice. Otherwise if you wear jeans (like we did) you’ll stick out like a sore thumb. However, if you don’t mind then you won’t be scoffed at by the patrons or staff. The staff were incredibly nice!

More thoughts…

So with all the restaurants that I review, I’m thinking about creating another tab next to ‘On the Shelf’. What do you think? Would this be easier to find my previous reviews?

Bake Sale – Phase 1 Completed

14 Jan

So I’ve been working on my gingerbread project. You know, the Painted Ladies ones. And it’s been going pretty well. I have ended up only doing four though because the base board is too small to fit all.

But I’m here just because I’m really excited to say that I’m organizing a bake sale at my school! It’s really not that big but I’ve been doing the legwork all by myself – talking to adminstrators, fulfilling requirements/”legalities”, and even making fliers and announcements. It’s been somewhat of an overload but it’s all worth it.

I’m most excited about selling my biscotti in the teacher’s lounge. I don’t know of any other student who has thought of targeting the “teacher market” yet so I might be the first!

I’ve decided that I’m going to make the capucchino, almond/pecan, vanilla, and chocolate dipped varieties. Everyone I know who has tried them loves them so I’m hoping that they weren’t lying (har har) because if the biscotti are actually as good as people say they are, then I might get an awesome turn out.

As for the students, I’m baking tons of cupcakes. I’m thinking red velet, vanilla, chocolate, lemon, and anything else I have a recipe for. My friends Tina, Danielle, and Michelle were even nice enough to volunteer to make cookies or brownies. And my other friends Carolyn, Naomi, and Shanelle are helping sell.

I’m super excited at the idea that this fundraising event that I iniated could turn out well!

Gingerbread Houses Were Made for December

17 Dec

The blueprints and gingerbread house

In the words of my college counselor, I am taking a “university level Great Books” class, also known as Senior Seminar. In this class, I am given 100 hours to do something interdisciplinary that I have never done before. I originally thought of:

a) Making a telescope with real glass
b) Making a miniature, but human-sized planetarium
c) Making kites of different materials in different geometric shapes
d) Constructing a famous SF structure out of gingerbread

Well, when I factored in money, time, supplies, knowledge – and well, reality? – I ended up crossing out the first two:

a) Making a telescope with real glass
b) Making a miniature, but human-sized planetarium
c) Making kites of different materials in different geometric shapes
d) Constructing a famous SF structure out of gingerbread

And then when I factored in my REAL interest, the list looked like this:

a) Making a telescope with real glass
b) Making a miniature, but human-sized planetarium
c) Making kites of different materials in different geometric shapes
d) Constructing a famous SF structure out of gingerbread

And that was how I came up with my final plan: construct something out of gingerbread!

But what exactly? Ah, that question was easily answered: San Francisco’s Painted Ladies.

So, that’s what I’m going to be doing during December – making three of the houses – because January won’t give me enough time with schoolwork and all that.

I think the best part of the project is going to be holding a baking class for De Marillac Academy students, who if you don’t know come from San Francisco’s under-served neighborhoods. These students attend the middle school for free because their parents cannot afford to send them to school. My high school is technically the sister school, so I thought that I would follow in the Lasallian and Vincentian footsteps and help the middle school students out. After all, baking is an art and art is important to a child’s development.

Since I don’t have all the financial means to buy all the supplies and ingredients, I’m writing letters to Safeway, Lucky’s, possibly Trader Joe’s, and possibly Sur la Table. (I’ve taken several baking classes so maybe they would be willing to donate supplies to a worthy cause?) Anyway, I’m hoping this works out because this would be a great opportunity for these kids. They deserve it.

Anyway, since this is officially my last school day of 2010 – as someone reminded me the other day – I am now out for Christmas Break. Life’s good. :)

La Mar Restaurant and then to Neverland!

6 Jun

Pee-tah! Pee-tah!

Just one of the funny lines in the San Francisco 360 degrees Theater at Ferry Park. I know it doesn’t seem very funny, but just picturing a grown woman with pigtail braids playing a young Wendy Darling in a nightgown saying this in a British accent.

Peter Pan Tent SceneI’m not too sure how purposely comical the performance was supposed to be, but there were for sure some elements that were quite funny because of the character’s dialogue/asides. Some of the other funny aspects came from the lack of traditional technological and theatrical elements. In order to dramatize the fight scene between Peter Pan and Captain Hook, the actors literally faked slow motion while the slow-mo music played in the background. The entire audience underneath the white tent was laughing. So instead of a climax of suspense, it was almost an anti-climax. But, I’m getting too technical here.

The added 360 degree surround sound and backdrop was a nice. It was definitely different than what I am accustomed to having watched numerous Broadyway musicals over the years – Beauty and the Beast, Annie, Jersey Boys, Grease, A Christmas Carol just to name a few. I did find the performance to be home-y and more private as if the actors were more engaged with the audience. I also enjoyed being up close (row D) to the stage. Though the props were simple and used variously for different scenes as new pieces, I enjoyed seeing the actors’ facial expressions. Not that I expected less, but each actor was in-character the entire time whether or not the spotlight was on them. That, I found, was very professional of them.

Of course, my evening in Neverland would not have been complete with seeing Tinkerbell. This, however, she was not the cute green lady-like character Disney protrays her as. Instead, the theater company had an actor play Tink as a grungy fairy with a whole lot of attitude. Her hair was curly and tied awkwardly on top of her head. Her cute green fairy outfit was instead a dirty white tank with a spewing, rough-looking pink tutu with lights. I had to say that she was definitely entertaining as she spat out, “You [Peter], silly little ass!” when Peter could not understand what Wendy truly thought of him.

Unfortuntely, I do not have any pictures of the actual set. The security was very tight. But here are the links to the site where they have ample videos and pictures.

For  official Peter Pan website and pictures, click here.

The Pre-Pan Dinner at La Mar Restaurant, Pier 1 1/2

While I do not have pictures of Neverland, I do have pictures of the mouthwatering seafood at La Mar Restaurant, which is conveniently located right across the street from the Ferry Park. La Mar is known for their Peruvian fusion cuisine, fresh seafood, and diverse menu.

Check out La Mar’s website for their gastronomic dictionary here.

I found the whole experience at this restaurant unexpectedly casual. It’s definitely a casual dressy place, but the waitress assigned to our outdoor table was very nice.  As my mom pulled out her printed out menu of La Mar, the waitress exclaimed, “We love your kind of customers! You’re here for the food and you know what you want.” She was even quite shocked to find out that my mom and I were, well, mom and daughter. With cow eyes, she looked at my mom and asked, “What’s your secret?” My mom laughed and replied, “I don’t drink or smoke”. And to that, she laughed and said, “Well, that’s out of the question for me!” But besides being the great conversationalist, she was an attentive server who returned back at the appropriate times, asked the right questions, and knowledgeably answered all of ours.

Since my mom’s business friend was technically taking us out as her “business clients”, the four of us girls ordered a ton of stuff. Just look at the pictures. I don’t even know how much the bill was – or how we ate it all.

The Appetizers

Ceviche Tasting

Ceviche Tasting: Mixto (Mahi Mahi, calamari, octopus and habanero pepper in ají amarillo leche de tigre), Chifa (Mahi Mahi with peanuts, scallion in sesame leche de tigree), Nikei (Ahi Tuna, red onion, Japanese cucumber, in tamarind leche de tigre with avocado), Classico (California Halibut and red onions in habanero pepper leche de tigre) --- There were about four more varieties available.

Tiradito Nikei

Tiradito Nikei - Ahi Tuna in Nikei sauce with passion fruit and honey leche de tigre

Empanada Sampler

Empanada Sampler: Chicken, Beef, Corn, and Seafood

The Entrees

Arroz Jugoso

Arroz Jugoso - Prawns, clams, mussels, calamari, octopus, white fish and vegetables in a juicy arborio rice with a blend of Peruvian ajis

Special of the Day: Whole Red Snapper

Special of the Day: Whole Red Snapper

Special of the Day: Tiger Prawns, Farro, Beans with Seaweed Foam

Special of the Day: Tiger Prawns, Farro, Beans with Seaweed Foam

Arroz Norteño

Arroz Norteño - North Peruvian seafood combination with mussels, shrimp, octopus, and fried rice with cilantro and Huancaína sauce (like Paella)

The Desserts

Sorbetes Caseros

Sorbetes Caseros - exotic homemade sorbets

Suspiro Limeño

Suspiro Limeño

A Hidden Gem in Mill Valley: Mountain Home Inn & Restaurant, reviewed

13 Aug

Today was just so full of surprises. And I don’t think I’ve mentioned this before, but I don’t like surprises, not from most people at least. Only certain people know exactly what I want and can surprise me real good. However, this time, it was a pleasant surprise.

I made plans to have lunch with my Uncle today, but we had agreed to go a new local Bay Area favorite (Seal Rock Inn Restaurant) that I had found that served good food that was well-priced, had plenty of free parking, and was located near the Ocean Beach. I was prepared to go there, but when my Uncle showed up today, he told me that he had decided to take me to a new place near his home in Mill Valley. At first, I wasn’t too thrilled about it because I had been ready to try the Turkey Burger at the ocean favorite.

Halfway into the drive, my mind wasn’t about to be changed either. It was a nice view of beautiful trees and a view of the bay and ocean, but I was still sulking about the Turkey Burger and the convenience near my home. I didn’t let on though because my uncle was super excited to bring me here. He started talking about all the different hikes and backpacking trips he’d been on when he was in his 30s.

Mountain Home Inn

810 Panoramic Hwy
Mill Valley, CA 94941

Once I saw the restaurant (and you’ll know when you see it because it’s the only restaurant in the area), I was completely surprised – in a good way. It looked like a modern cabin though I knew for sure that it was not a new place because my uncle had eaten there 10 or so years ago. I was quite astonished.

The restaurant inside was small with a bar a about two small areas with tables, but the best place to sit outside on a sunny day like today was outside on the deck. Since it was a clear day, we had a beautiful view of the bay near Mill Valley on one side and another view of beautiful trees in the state park (not sure which one) near Mt. Tam on the other side. I was impressed (and relieved because I was starting to get a bit dizzy from the winding trail we took), but not quite won over yet. The restaurant could be as picturesque as it was, but serve crappy food.

The view of the front of the inn from the deck
The view of the front of the inn from the deck
The view of the bay and trees. I angled it badly, but from other tables you can see the bay better too

The view of the bay and trees. I angled it badly, but from other tables you can see the bay better too

The one-sided menu was simple and straight ford with a bits of variety here and there. There was about 3 different kinds of salads from your classic ceasar to an asian pear salad to their house salad. For lunch, the menu seemed to focus on their Niman Ranch hamburgers that, for extra, you could add bacon, sauteed mushrooms, or even onions. The hamburger starts off at $12 with fries so it’s up to you to add anything else. Here’s their lunch menu, but this is actually slightly different from what they had today.

We were served water in a beautiful wine bottle with a mint leaf in it. I’ve never seen anything like it.

Mint Water served in a wine bottle

Mint Water served in a wine bottle

Mint Water Leaf Close-Up

Mint Water Leaf Close-Up

I ended up ordering their Soup of the Day: Corn Chowder and their Turkey Club (not on the online menu above).

Corn Chowder -- $7
Corn Chowder — $7

Turkey Club Sandwich (comes with cole slaw and house potato chips) -- $10
Turkey Club Sandwich: served on thick, toasted Texas toast; comes with cole slaw and house potato chips; house salad for extra $2.5— $10

My uncle decided to order their Niman Ranch Burger with french fries. I didn’t try the burger, but it looked so good with the grilled cross-lines on it and everything! Take a look!

Niman Ranch Burger with fries, fruit, and pesto mayo --- $12

Niman Ranch Burger with fries, fruit, and pesto mayo --- $12

If you’ve read the description of the Niman Ranch Burger, then you’ll realize that I said “pesto mayo”. You may find that interesting or just plain disgusting. If that’s so, then you’ll be glad to know that this is not their usual mayo. For those of you who love pesto mayo or who’d like to try it, then you’ll be glad to know that you can ask for it. The waiter will tell you that they don’t serve it, but that they have their homemade pesto sauce and that you can mix it with the mayo on the side. Do this and you’ll get a lovely pesto mayo.


the experience at the Mountain Home Inn was a pleasant surprise. Their lunch was very good. All of this for $28 including tax. I couldn’t believe the price (after experiencing three bad sandwiches and two desserts at Mel’s Drive In for $68; no, I didn’t eat it all myself either :] ). The menu was simple but definitely satisfying. It embodied all the essential parts of any menu. It’s like a fancy restaurant menu stripped down to the bare – but delicious – core.

The drive is only 25 minutes from the city part of Mill Valley and about 45 minutes – 1 hr away from Sea Cliff and Outer Richmond in San Francisco. It’s also an inn obviously hence the name “Mountain Home Inn” and if you stay, you get a complimentary breakfast too! So, if you’re looking for great food, hiking near Mount Tam, or a romantic weekend getaway, go here.

Eatting Out Asian Style: “On the Bridge”, “Balboa Teriyaki”, and “Pagan Restaurant”

24 Jul

If you’ve been reading my other posts, you’ll realize that the other two restaurants (Caffe Italia and Perry’s) are Italian and American. “Where are the Asian restaurants?” you might be asking. And well, here you go. :)

After a tired night of working, my friend and I decided to eat out in SF’s Japantown on the bridge at the “On the Bridge” restaurant. (I do love the name, don’t you?)

On the Bridge (Literally)

SF Japantwon


Not my photo, from yelp.

It’s fun and ‘hip’, but good for all ages. The chairs are all different neon colors, Japanese comic books line one of the walls, Japanese stuffed animal sit on the back counter, and Japanese movies (with subtitles) always playing on the tvs overhead. Counter seats and tables for two and four are available.

What We Ordered:

Well, the food always come in great presentation. See more photos here.

Grilled Plate: Vegetable Saute – $9.95

Served on a sizzling hot plate with rice.

Mhm…Yummy… :)

Vegetable Curry with Rice – $10.95

Basically the same ingredients as the sizzling vegetable saute, but with a medium spicy Japanese curry sauce. If you’ve never had a Japanese curry, I’ll try to explain. it’s a mild curry compared to Indian and Thai curries; it’s more mild, but there are different levels of spiciness. Medium is best. Mild is good for young kids. There is no strong smell and no strange after taste. The best curry to me.

This is one of my favorite places to go. I’ve been going here since I was four.I don’t think I’ll be stopping any time soon. :)

But honestly, it’s a pretty good price for the amount that you get. There was no curry leftovers, but there was for the sizzling plate. Good service, very friendly and prompt. Cute ambiance and good selection of foods like Japanese pastas (Neapolitan spaghetti and salmon roe noddles, I think) some kind of Japanese pizza, Au Grains, and traditional Japanese selections. I’ve yet to try the Au Grain and Pizza, but I’ve heard it’s good. I love the menu.

Balboa Teriyaki

The Outer Richmond’s Version of Japanese Cuisine

I call it fate or perhaps even destiny that the next day my other friend – who was also taking the summer school course earlier with me – wanted to go have lunch at a Japanese place. I wanted to laugh over the phone when she asked me because I couldn’t believe my luck. However, when she suggested Balboa Teriyaki I knew that I had nothing to fear.

Recently under a new management, this place has only gotten better. With the new management, the menu was the same with the addition of more sushi, don buri, and bento box options. The outside changed too; there’s now a lit picture menu like at the McDonald’s Drive Thru menu. This was slightly strange to me, but as long as the food is good, then it’s fine with me.

Japanese style booths are available as well as tables for four. Japanese decor and the uniforms of the waitresses too. Good for dates, I suppose. But not a fine dining restaurant.
Ambiance: 4/5

Wonderful! We were given their Spicy Tuna Roll, Fried Shrimp Skewers, and Edamame (soft-shelled Japanese beans) for free! The waitress was nice and very accommodating too. I’ve gone here before and gotten free green tea ice cream for our party of three. This time, it was a party of 6. The more people you bring the bigger free items you get…so I hear. :)
Service: 5/5

What We Ordered:

Edameme Beans

Shrimp Skewers

Bento Box: Chicken Teriyaki + Beef Teriyaki – $8.50

Ha..Ha.. Why’s the chicken and beef naked? Well, that’s my fault. I don’t like sauce so I asked for it on the side. Otherwise, the presentation would have looked a lot better.
The bento box comes with your choice of two items, four California rolls, a salad, and miso soup, all for $8.50 at lunch time.

Chicken Katsu – $7.95

From Balboa Teriyaki

Unagi Don – $7.95

Try comparing this to the On the Bridge’s Unagi Don pictured above.

Spicy Tuna Roll

Go here. And quickly. Run! The food is great, service is wonderful, and you never know what kind of free food they’ll give you. Decently authentic Japanese food. Good portions for price.

The bad thing I noticed was that my chicken and beef were pretty scrawny if you look at it.

I’d expect for meat please!

Pagan Restaurant
(at 3199 Clement Street, SF)

This is another good Outer Richmond restaurant. It’s like a hidden gem in this residential neighborhood. On the more quieter side of Clement Street, this restaurant is located on a strip of Clement that has two other small cafes, the Lincoln Golf Course and Playground, and a few other shops and restaurants including a belly dancing restaurant. It can be said that in time, this once quiet street will be bustling with tourists and others from all over the city as this restaurant is discovered.

The dress is casual, but it still feels like a nice restaurant. Definitely good for dates and groups 12 people or less.

There is a big room (shown) and smaller, more private area too.

What We Ordered:

Ginger Salad (Thai) – $7.95

When the salad comes to the table, all the ingredients are separated and the server will explain each one and then toss it right in front of you. Seeing the swirls of colors go ’round and ’round are quite the crowd pleasers, but the taste is exquisite. This particular salad has dried soy beans/edamame beans, peanuts, fried ginger, and fried garlic slices. It’s a very “crunchy” salad with a ginger flavor that doesn’t overpower it. — 5/5

Chicken Thai Fried Rice

Tasty and delicious. It’s not too oily, but this is fried rice so it’s not completely out of the ‘oil’ woods. However, definitely not too much oil. I have no complains. –4.75/5

Spicy Eggplant w/Beef, Bell Peppers, Basil, Garlic -$8.25

Simply the best thing that night. This paired with the rice was great. All the Thai spices with the beef, eggplant, bell peppers, green chilis – you can ask for mild – and the basil make a wonderful dish. —- 5/5

Low Carb Pad Thai – $7.95

The only difference between this dish and their regular Pad Thai is the noodles. I’m not how to explain it, but I’ll try. These seem like the same “glass noddles” that are in the Filipino pancit bihon noodles. But anyhow, if you’re not picky about your noodles, then the dish is basically the same; nothing else has changed.

Personally, I like Pad Thai, but sometimes there’s just too much oil used in the general process. Here is no different but there’s not a large amount either. It’s your typical oil amount.

Good prices for the amount. For all those dishes plus two hot teas, the bill was about $46 (not including tip). I have yet to explore the curries and other appetizers like the platha. (I have tried the samosas which is good. No photo though). With a separate Thai menu and Burmese menu, there is a whole lot to try. Great for all ages.

For dessert, they also have a typical fried banana with coconut ice cream. ($4.50)

I hope this helps you when you go out to eat “Asian style” in San Francisco. Overall, my favs were On The Bridge and the Pagan Restaurant though the freebies from Balboa Teriyaki wasn’t too bad either.

Walking + Friends + Perry’s Restaurant = Great Day

20 Jul

I seem to have so much energy, don’t I? How do I get myself into these things? Haha. Yesterday I’m with my friend touring UC Davis and now today, I go participate in the annual Aids Walk. Between the two days, I’ve walked about 10 miles. I’ve got a blister on my foot now and a mean suntan to prove for it. I think I’ve gotten more exercise in the last two days than the last month and a half I’ve been at school. But no problem, today was so much fun.

I was a part of a team that raised over $900 for the Aids Walk. We had been planning to do this walk ever since April so we were excited for today. I unknowingly placed the two “walking” days together, but I’m still alive so all is well. I managed to survive the walk with all the volunteer cheerers and freebies – ice cream, fruit, granola bars, croissants, hot dogs, and hamburgers – all the way as well as afterwards. I don’t have any photos of the trip (I’m sorry!) because I forgot that I had brought my camera. All I can say is that it was a fun event and worth the stupid blister on my foot.

After leaving Golden Gate Park, about four of us decided to go get some lunch on Union Street near Filmore Street. It’s a cute area with endless boutiques, restaurants, cafe’s, and salons. The perfect “yuppy” area, I suppose. My friend recommended a place that she used to go to before: Perry’s. Apparently there was another Perry’s in the city at a hotel, but this was the original.

From the outside it hardly looked any different from all the other stylish cafes in the area so this made me wonder how it managed to stay in business. In fact, I wondered how any of the cafes stayed in business as each cafe and restaurant looked so good and appealing. My thoughts were confirmed as I saw at least one “For Lease” sign every block. However, I was sure that if Perry’s managed to survive a long time even during the drooping economy, it was must something special.

Perry’s Restaurant on Union Street, SF

Ambiance: Nice and quirky, much like like Caffe Italia. Cool historic San Francisco pictures and iconic figures like James Dean and sports related artwork. There is a outdoor seating, a bar inside with some tables in that room, a small hallway that leads to the back where there are more seats and a small outdoor area lit by sunlight. That’s where we sat. There’s a small upstairs for a few more seats and the restrooms. Definitely charming.

My friend claimed that it had been there for 40 years, and it was confirmed when we came to the table.

What we ordered:

Perry’s Club Sandwich – $10.95

roasted turkey with Hobbs bacon; plus a side of fries or sweet potato fries

The Baby Spinach Salad – $8.95
with pears, candied walnuts, goat cheese and balsamic vinaigrette

Side of Sweet Potato Fries -$4.50
Seriously, you need to try these. Instead of bland french fries, you get a sweet and slightly salty treat. Good for Perry’s, it served the fries without all the extra grease. These were so crispy!
The Grilled Portobello Mushroom Sandwich – $10.75
with green and red peppers, slices of yellow squash, and mozzarella cheese, and pesto sauce (versus mayo)

Reasonable (especially for the area), but definitely not cheap or what I consider a “bargain”.


Good place to eat. But I’d like to check out the other cafes in the area as well.