Monday, October 21, 2013

San Francisco

flowers

Leaving New York kind of sucked. After running late to the airport and the slowest crawl through security ever, I finally made my flight to SFO. Halfway through I was woken from a nap to find that the man sitting right next to me was having a seizure. There was a doctor on board but it lasted over 30 minutes and he couldn't work out the cause. The pilot had no choice but to divert to Chicago, where an ambulance met us on the tarmac and took him away for tests.

I was a little rattled, having been pinned in the window seat all that time! And I could hardly believe that I had two 'only in the movies' flying experiences within one week. I'm a little ashamed to say it, but I spent the first entire day in San Francisco in a funk, wishing I was still in NYC. I didn't even have a coffee, I didn't eat, I didn't leave the apartment. I sat on the balcony, skyped with a friend and waited for Denea to arrive.

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golden gate bridge

It's a very different experience exploring a new place solo vs with a friend. We had two days and no real plan. Our first stop was the Golden Gate Bridge - mostly covered in fog. The weather was also a surprise. The first day was clear and sunny, but then the weather turned chilly, windy and very foggy, which our host said happened every summer in the Bay.

ferrybuilding1

Ferry Building Markets


If you haven't already noticed, I loooove a farmers market. We were lucky enough to make it down to the Ferry Plaza Markets just before they shut up shop. After wandering around picking up some beautiful fresh produce (eggplants and okra for dinner), we definitely needed a coffee. I'd heard amazing things about the Blue Bottle Coffee Co, so I was thrilled to see their coffee cart outside, and also picked up a bag of coffee beans to bring home.

blue-bottle-coffee
ferrybuilding2
mushrooms

As everything started to close for the day we ventured inside to find a lot more deliciousness. Mushrooms from Far West Funghi, incredible artisan cheeses from Cowgirl Creamery, and the most delicious sandwich, the 'Mess Piggy' from Boccalone Salumeria, with pulled pork and spicy pickled peppers. Their tagline was 'tasty salted pig parts' - I mean how could we not!

And then we took a selfie.

boccalone
bay-bridge
ferry building

Boccalone on Urbanspoon

Ferry Building Marketplace, 1 Sausalito - San Francisco Ferry Bldg, San Francisco, CA 94111, United States
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tartine bakery, sf

Tartine Bakery


I've been long obsessed with the Tartine Bakery cookbooks, so visiting the bakery was definitely the #1 thing on my list to do in San Fran. The bakery itself was actually a lot smaller than I imagined, and the queue snaked out the door and around the corner. Probably for the best because I got massive dessert-related indecision while lining up, and couldn't decide what to order. 

tartine bakery, sf tartine bakery, sf

In the end, I had to get the Tres Leches cake, one of their most famous. Accompanied by a couple of glasses of Prosecco, of course. It was sweet, creamy, beautifully textured cake with a layer of pastry on top instead of the usual whipped cream or frosting. Definitely trying this recipe from the cookbook soon! I wish we'd had the stomach space to try one of their amazing looking croissants!

tartine bakery, sf

We arrived just after 4.30pm, which meant that their fresh breads by genius baker Chad Robertson were available, so we also picked up a small loaf of sourdough. We ate it with the epic truffled goat's cheese that we picked up from Cowgirl Creamery earlier and a few glasses of champagne. It was actually one of the best loaves of sourdough I think I've ever had, so I'd definitely recommend it if you're visiting. But be quick, they sell out!

tartine bakery, sf
Photo by Denea

Tartine Bakery on Urbanspoon

Tartine Bakery, 600 Guerrero St, San Francisco, CA 94110, United States
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IMG_6886mission-cheese
mission cheese

The Mission District


After visiting Tartine, we wandered around the colourful Mission District, which was a highlight of the whole trip, and definitely somewhere I'd like to explore more one day. Mission Cheese was a fabulous looking wine and cheese bar serving up daily changing cheese flights, charcuterie and sandwiches.

dandelion chocolatedandelion chocolatedandelion chocolate

Another awesome looking place we stumbled across was Dandelion Small Batch Chocolate, where we sampled a few boutique chocolates made from bean to bar locally and try some bitter raw cacao. It was very interesting to see a little more of the chocolate-making process.

pirateshopmission wisdom

Unfortunately the Pirate Store was (quite) closed. We loved this sign! Wise advice on the streets of the Mission District. Another thing I wished we'd got to do was try some Mexican food. I've heard it's particularly amazing in this area.

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I loved exploring the city with Denea and looking forward to visiting San Fran again one day soon. There is so much more to see - hopefully with slightly better weather next time! Stay tuned for the LA recap very soon xx

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