San Francisco Here We Come!


Happy Anniversary to Me and C! Isn’t he the dreamiest? Four years of wedded, ahem, bliss. To celebrate, we’re packing up the kiddo and taking a road trip! First stop: Meemah and Papa’s house. Next stop: FREEDOM!

Remember I told you about our tradition of Unromantic Valentine’s Day? Well the price C pays for that is a Romantic Anniversary, which he must plan. And from what I can garner he’s done it up right! Three days in San Francisco – where we both lived in college (same school even!) and never met. It’s going to be great fun to head back there together – I can show him the baby gap & clinique counters that put me through school and then we can cross the bay bridge to Berkeley and he can show me the dorm he got kicked out of for setting a girl’s doorknob on fire.

So, with no set plans (other than some fancy eats) I think we’ll be doing some walking, some shopping, and some museums for sure. I might even drag him to alcatraz because i love it so much. So do we have any bay area readers? Any new crafty spots pop up in the last ten years that I shouldn’t miss? Delicious grub that we must consume? Please let me know in the comments. You might even win that awesome fat quarter up there on the left!

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36 Comments

HereWeGoAJen

How exactly do you set a doorknob on fire? On purpose, I assume?

Sadly, I haven't been to San Francisco in the last ten years. I remember that there was a good sushi place…but I can't remember where it is or what it is called. If you find it, let me know.

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Jacinda

That sounds like so much fun! I also went to the great sushi place when I was there 10 years ago. You should totally go there.

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Jacinda

PS. Pyromaniac Carleton Curtis is looking sexy in his rugged plaid shirt. There's a great dirty comment about lighting knobs on fire in there but I can't pull it together.

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Anita

I live in the east bay, so I don't get to SF too much. I've seen people blog about Crumpet and Crown, I believe it is in Ghiradelli (sp?) square http://www.crownandcrumpet.com/. Stone Mountain and Daughter and New Pieces both in Berkeley are great fabric stores – worth visiting. Have fun, the weather should be nice. It has been warm here but may a little on the cool side in SF this weekend.

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Bonnie Michelle

Congrats! We're celebrating our 4th anniversary in October and we might head to San Francisco. We live near Sacramento so it's only like a 90 minute drive but we never go!! I hope you find some awesome stuff to do and share it so that we can do some great stuff too πŸ™‚
Have fun!

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Leanne

Happy anniversary to you !! Today is also my 4 year wedding anniversary! I guess we shared a special day. Enjoy your trip πŸ™‚

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kekubski

I have lived in the city for the last two summers and I must say the one thing you need to do it get a bowl of clam chowder soup and crab salad sandwich from the Warf! Another amazing discovery I made this summer with my friends who have lived in the city all their lives (they didn't even know this existed!) was the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge. There is the big tourist area where everyone goes to take pictures of the bridge, but if you drive through their lot and under the little bridge next to the parking lot you will end up near a deserted lot just past it. There the bridge is so much more beautiful (I feel) as well as isolated. Only two other locals were on the path with us and there is a prairie with beautiful flowers that over looks not only the bridge but huge rock formations and NO PEOPLE OR CIVILIAN LIFE!!. If you explore enough you will also find a deserted army training building from either the first or second World War. It is my favorite spot in the world, I hope you have fun in the city, I'm jealous!!!!!!

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Stitchify

Britex!!!!!!! It's 3 stories of fabric, THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS of gorgeous buttons, not to mention fun accessories and yarn. Have a great time!

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April

If it sunny head to 'The Ramp' it's our fav for breakfast. It's off of 3rd Street by the new UCSF and Ballpark, the area is a bit dodgy but I'm sure you two will love it's charm, plus it's prefect for brunch and your fav Mimosas! They also have tasty Bloody Mary's and the food it pretty good too, but only go if it's nice b/c it's an outdoor place right on the water hence the ramp. You can take the new light rail if you don't want to drive but there is plenty of parking in that area. Also, check out the Farmers Market on Saturday at the Ferry Building … it's the best, plus you can load up on treats for your boat ride to Alcatraz. Drive through the Presido, there is a art installation in the trees surrounding the area that is supposed to be really great.

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Kayla

I highly recommend House of Nanking in Chinatown. Let the owner (or his wife) take your menus and order for you…the best food I've ever had and so fun to have the surprises just keep coming!

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jen at paintcutpaste.com

oooh, just another thought. go to crissy field and check out the warming hut. great, cozy spot for coffee and treats with creative, green, earthy gifts… you can stroll along a beach and overlook the golden gate bridge and the water.

happy anniversary! i know 3 people who are having their 4 year anniversary today– must have been a good day to get married! πŸ™‚

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Megan

I"ll second the Ferry Building for all kinds of great food- Blue Bottle Coffee and Recchiuti Chocolate are musts. Bi-rite Creamery is delicious. Get a sundae or the Snickerdoodle ice cream sandwich with Balsamic Strawberry. Or a cone, or all three.
My favorite fabric store in the city is a teeny tiny near Golden Gate Park. The owner is really nice and fits an amazing amount of fabric in the tiny store. She has a great eye and has all the best prints.http://www.peapodfabrics.com/aboutus.htm
Have fun- it's the best time of year to visit.

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melissa

I miss San Fran- I lived there for almost 10 years after I graduated from college- I moved away in 2002, so the restaurants I went to are probably the same as when you were there- these were some of my favorites back then (who knows what they are like now): Tokyo Go Go for sushi in the Mission, Frjtz for yummy fries in Hayes Valley, Jackson Fillmore for a neighborhood Italian restaurant in Pac Heights, Slanted Door for Vietnamese (used to be in the Mission, looks like it's somewhere else now) and La Mediterranee for their Vegetarian Middle Eastern Plate for lunch. I'm 9 months pregnant and I am soooo craving that right now! I used to work at Fillamento on Fillmore St. and would go there all the time for lunch. There are tons more restaurants that I love but I'd better stop myself. Have a great trip!

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Alex

We celebrated our anniversary in SF last year. Highlights were super cheap and yummy dim sum, the fortune cookie factory and taking a ride in the glass elevator in the Westin St Francis.

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Ali Smith and Noah Thomas

We just went to San Francisco in early August with our one-year old and had a terrific time, stayed in Japantown at both Hotel Tomo and Hotel Kabuki and had lots of fun shopping in all of the japanese stores–specifically Ichiban Kan (basically a dollar store) and at Soko Hardware. It was great to be within walking distance of Fillmore street. We had some amazing pizzas in the Mission at Delfina Pizzeria and Flour and Water, which was so crowded on a monday night that we were grateful to nab a seat at the communal bar. Both HIGHLY recommended!! And yes, yes, yes to both the Bi-rite creamery and Humprhy slocombes as well as Tartine. Have you tried Philz for coffee? Ritual in the Mission is also great for coffee, and our daughter also loved the new kids store from Paxton Gate,http://www.paxtongate.com/seestores_kidspics_lg.aspx
While you're in the Mission, also visit:
http://site.curiosityshoppeonline.com/visit.html
And lastly, have you been to the Academy of Sciences? So amazing that we became members even though we live in LA! Have a great time!

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K. Fox

You must, must, MUST try Tataki! It's the ONLY sustainable sushi restaurant in all of California. It's incredibly delicious and suitable for a low-key OR fancy schmancy romantic evening. Seriously, it's divine. Speaking of which, my hubby promised to take me once I was no longer pregnant as a celebration of not being pregnant anymore (I was not a fan of the process though a very happy fan of the result)… that was five months ago and I still haven't gone. I may need to remind him of this and get me some delicious fish! I'm sure he'll be up for it, too, as it's his favorite place in the world.

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Mizzliz7

I'm in the south bay. I haven't been to SF in a while aside from a comedy show @ Cobb's. There is a really awesome sensory exploration exhibit at the Discovery Museum but you must make reservations. You pretty much walk through maze in complete darkness..
Also I've heard that Sal Beressi Fabrics Company and the Fabric Outlet are comparable to the Micheal Levine Loft in LA.
If you visit either shop let us know how it is!

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Sarah

You should go to Britex fabrics. It's amazing and totally overwhelming at the same time. They were so helpful and very sweet to my almost 2 year old. They would cut swatches from fabric and let her play with it while we shopped. It's a great place to shop. We always go to The Daily Grille. We love it and always have great food and service. I hope that helps. Have a great trip! Makes me want to take a day trip this weekend!

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cindy

Mocca off Union Square for a delicious lunch, and Foreign Cinema for dinner. Betty's Diner in Berkeley for a hot dog (yes, gourmet) and get the potato pancakes on the side. It may sound touristy, but the double decker buses, that you hop off and on at will, are a wonderful way to see the city, and be sure to sit on the top level. Such a fabulous, cosmopolitan city with endless possibilities. I heard more French and German in S.F. than I did English.

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mirabelle

Tartine for the croissants and coffee – definitely (and the line moves fast).
Or you can do our anniversary tradition – a nice dinner at one of our fine taquerias – I highly suggest La Taqueria or El Castellito!

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cd

Slanted Door is in the Ferry Building now and is the Warming Hut open again (it burnt awhile back πŸ™

Best Italian in the city is at Osteria del Forno in North Beach (right on Columbus) – it's a teensy hole in the wall – no reservations, no list, you have to stand in line, but I've kept people waiting with me for an hour on a winter night and had no complaints after they've had the food. Superb. (Go on the early side and you won't wait too long.)

The new Academy of Science in GG Park is supposed to be fantastic – and the DeYoung, also in the park, is great, no matter what exhibit is on. The architecture is fabulous! If you get to the park and the weather is good enough, I suggest strolling up to the Inner Sunset neighborhood and grab a picnic lunch from either Milano's Pizza (best in the city) or – probably up your alley – Arizmendi Bakery. To. Die. For. They also have a pizza of the day, a phenom cheese selection and let's not get started on the bread. Both places are on 9th Avenue (a main artery into GG Park) just south of Irving Street. (Easy access from the N Judah Muni street car). Also – the dahlia garden is blooming by the Conservatory of Flowers (can be a bit hard to find – off to the side), and both the garden and conservatory are great. The Conservatory is also nice and warm if you get some typical SF summer weather!

For upscale Italian, but still neighborhoody, hit Allegro Romano (Nob Hill). For trendy fun sushi, Blowfish in the Mission. For ridiculous cocktails in a too-cool-for-school atmosphere, the Redwood Room at the Clift Hotel.

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Nikka

Ok, to risk being smacked upside the head (by MY hubby who sits to my left)…

Yes, your hubby is quite dreamy.

I thought it just needed to be said. πŸ˜›

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Kid n Kitties

I've been reading your site for a while, and this is my first comment! I've lived in SF for many years, and these are my go to recommendations for non-touristy shops, food and sites:

Paxton Gate (they have two different stores, check them both out): http://www.paxtongate.com/

826 Valencia Pirate Supply Store:http://www.826valencia.org/store/shop.html. The proceeds from this store support a writing program for kids established by author Dave Eggers. The program center is located behind the store.

Food nearby: Taqueria Pancho Villa and Taqueria Cancun are the best in town for burritos. You can also try Ti Couz for crepes.

Floreal: The hours are kind of odd, and despite living nearby for many years, I had never been in the store until recently. I happened to walk by when they were open for the first time last weekend. It's more than just a flower shop; they have so many beautiful and odd things.http://www.yelp.com/biz/floreal-latelier-san-francisco.

Food nearby: Osha Thai, Ryoko Sushi, Honey Honey Cafe, Bite, A La Turca, Farm Table and Canteen. All of these places are great! Take a look at their profiles on yelp and you'll get a sense of what they have to offer. The location for these places is just west of Union Square and Macys (Lower Nob Hill/Tenderloin). It can feel a little gritty compared to other places in the City. It's really not that bad though. I've been in the neighborhood for years and haven't had any trouble.

Workshop opened recently, and they have a small calendar of crafty classes and prescheduled studio time: http://www.workshopsf.org/
One of my favorite places to take out-of-town visitors is the community garden in Upper Fort Mason. Each of the plots are managed by different people and it is just so breathtakingly chaotic. One plot may have vegetables next to a plot of prize winning roses next to a plot of succulents next to a plot that has been abandoned and is overgrown with weeds. If you happen to be there on a Sunday, there is a great new Farmers Market in Lower Fort Mason that just started a few of weeks ago. I haven't been there yet, but the reviews have been good. There are great views of the marina, Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz from both Upper and Lower Fort Mason. If you're up for a little hike after that, head out to Fort Point and you'll be at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge. You will see tourists and locals alike using this trail. It's quite a different perspective visiting the base of Golden Gate Bridge instead of walking across it. Although walking across the Bridge is nice too–it's the one touristy thing I still recommend to people.

The weather can change second by second, neighborhood by neighborhood. Dress in layers so you can add and remove to adjust for the weather.

I hope you have a wonderful visit to my favorite city!

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Alex

Is that a Liberty of London romper Scarlett's wearing? I bought up all the LoL (ha!) stuff Target had on clearance. My 9 month old had that romper in a 2T, a blue dress in 3T, and a yellow and pink dress in 4T (and 6 months which she outgrew). I'm sad to think of how fast she's growing up,but it's comforting to know she'll have cute clothes along the way!

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