18 March, 2009

Eating San Francisco

My weekend in San Francisco was certainly a success! Lauren and I had so much fun! Our afternoon tea at the Crown and Crumpet was scrumptious.

I need to start making cucumber sandwiches at home. They're so yummy and simple - just cream cheese and cucumber. I really have difficulty thinking of things that are not improved by the addition of cream cheese.

The tea was really tasty too. We had two pots - a black tea and a white tea. The black tea was called After Seven Fifty Nine. It was like a thin mint, all chocolatey with just enough mint. Unfortunately, the caffeine in black tea always makes me a little bit cracked out - like I've spent a few hours in an opium den - so I could only have one cup of this tea. It was great with some milk and sugar. The white tea we had was the Fig de Blanc. It was fruity and...figgy. Delicious too.

The place was super cute. I really like these cool tea canisters and the weird little cupboard of dolls. If you live in the San Francisco area and like girly things, it's essential to check this place out. It's located in Ghirardelli Square. There are so many cute little shops there these days.

We found a little macaron shop called Paulette, located in Hayes Valley. Good God, these things are good. I only had one, and I could kick myself for not buying more to bring home with me. They have a Beverly Hills location, but that's such a pain in the butt to drive to. I had the Violet Cassis, and it was perfect. I've got a thing for macarons, and I haven't found any that I thought were worth eating in yearrrrrs. These are perfect. I can't wait until I have a chance to eat more. And more. And more. Lauren and I were both thinking of doing them for Christmas presents next Christmas. You can buy two and have them wrapped in a cute little box for $4. We thought this was a sweet, little, inexpensive gift. I know I'd be excited to unwrap some next Christmas.

I also had an opportunity to try Bluebottle Coffee. This place totally lived up to its reputation. They make each cup of drip coffee individually. This makes such a difference. Their coffee is so smooth, flavorful, and drinkable. I know drinkable sounds kinda weird, but some coffees just aren't (ahem...Starbucks!). I've turned into a bit of a coffee snob...don't mind me. Luckily, I brought a half pound home for Levi for something new to put in the french press. It's a nice coffee to wake up to.

I just realized that I've only been writing about food in this post....that theme is going to continue because I am getting to the most delicious part!

Dinner at the Nob Hill Cafe. Ugh [this is me groaning]. This place was ridiculous. The service was great, and the food was even better. The prices weren't bad either. We ordered the Insalata Misto (basic mixed green salad with lemon herb dressing and grated parmesan cheese) and the Tortellini to split. After ordering, they brought us a basket of bread that was so good I can't stop thinking about it. This bread was like the densest brick of a bread I've ever tried. It was warm and chewy. When I bit into it, my teeth left an indentation, like they had taken the loaf out of the oven right before it was all the way cooked. It was just doughy enough. Mmm. It had some rosemary in it, and it almost had a cheesy flavor too. It was, literally, the best bread I've ever eaten. Our salad was huge. They split it up for us into two separate bowls, and each half should have been a serving in itself. They gave us just the right amount of time to enjoy our salad and a bite or two more of the bread when our entree came out. This too had been split onto two plates for us (such a nice little touch when you're sharing at a restaurant). This was the best pasta of my life thus far. It was tortellini with creamy pesto garnished with pine nuts. I really am not all that into pesto. It's alright, but a lot of places just don't know how to make it. It usually comes out bland and boring. This pesto was so flavorful and sweet and creamy. I kept licking the back of my fork so I could get more of the sauce all by itself onto my tongue. I was tempted to grab a spoon and just starting eating it as if it were soup. I didn't. Neither of us were able to finish our halves. The portions were so huge. The pasta dish was only about $13...not bad for the best pasta of my life. After we'd finished up, our waitress asked if we'd like some coffee or dessert. I am such a sucker for dessert. I really can't resist it. I asked her to bring her favorite. It was a chocolate ganache. It was creamy and thick, like frosting that had been kept in the fridge. Two mini scoops were served in a martini glass over fresh whipped cream with a garnish of thinly sliced strawberries and a sprig of mint. We shared this over espressos and couldn't stop eating it. Both of us were so full, but it was just too good. It wasn't too sweet or too dark. It was perfection. The entire meal was too good. It has ruined me. I don't think I will ever have better bread or pasta or CHOCOLATE.

Needless to say, I really can't wait for my next trip back to San Francisco. It's the best city to gorge yourself in. You have to walk up so many hills to get anywhere that you burn off more calories than you'll consume during your meal. Guilt free eating in a city full of gorgeous buildings, shops, restaurants, and people is my idea of the perfect vacation.


  1. btw, i love making cucumber sandos at home! and boy, i miss visiting the in-laws in sf. love your bloggity blog blog. yeah. i do.

  2. i just found this old post- i love the way you described the bread at nob hill cafe! that is my favorite restaurant in the city and i'm SO glad you've been there.

    next time you come up here we are hanging out and eating through this city together!


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