1. Have had a great meal out
2. Love to try new places to eat
3. Can recall a memory of a meal shared with a friend or family member
You probably raised your hand to all three, right? Now raise your hand if you can tell me something about the history of your favorite dish, or an anecdote about your favorite restaurant or a personal story about the chef who owns it?
Ah ha—not as many hands. Luckily you’ve stumbled onto the right book.
More than just a travel guide, Unique Eats and Eateries of San Francisco is about all of these things: good food, making memories, and the curious and sometimes funny back stories and histories that simmer behind some of San Francisco’s iconic dishes, historic restaurants, artisanal shops, and other dining destitations. With more than 100 addresses and types of food to check out, Unique Eats and Eateries of San Francisco will not just fill you up on some of the best food in the city, it will also leave you with delectable souvenirs such as:
-Why the twelve-time World Pizza Champion of Tony’s Pizza Napoletana only makes 73 of his prize-winning pies per day
-Which San Francisco institution makes more than 2,000 of its specialties per day
-How Hangtown fry got its name
-What mystery still flutters around The Maltese Falcon at John’s Grill
-The owner stories behind the country’s oldest dim sum restaurant and the country’s oldest Italian restaurant, plus where to find them. Hint: in San Francisco!
-How an abandoned historic building was transformed into the Beach Chalet Brewery and Restaurant based on the owner’s master’s thesis
And many more morsels from around the city.
For me, the author, San Francisco is a place where food and people are inextricably linked. It’s Zuni Café, where my husband, my best friend, and I laughed for hours one afternoon over their famous roast chicken. It’s the local taqueria I stop into on the way home from the airport after weeks of traveling. It’s gathering friends around my dining room table piled with fresh Dungeness crab each New Year’s Eve. And it’s the fresh pasta and sauce I used to buy from Lucca Ravioli so I could impress my visiting Italian in-laws. It’s hundreds more meals and memories like this, and if you ask any San Franciscan, he or she will have a numinous devotion to an equally worthy list. Indeed, San Francisco is full of enthusiastic and dedicated diners, too, most willing to wait an hour or more in line for their favorite bowl of ramen, fresh oysters, or brunch. Just stop by Brenda’s French Soul Food or Swan Oyster Depot on any given weekend day for proof. How can I not be intrigued by a city that buzzes at this level of culinary velocity and curiosity?
Unique Eats and Eateries of San Francisco is not a “best of ” book, though each entry certainly can stake its claim to the superlative. This book is a cross section—an appetizer if you will—of what dining here is all about: the gutsy chefs and benevolent restaurateurs; the revelatory food; and the classic dishes and iconic restaurants that have stuck around for centuries, all of whom make San Francisco the textured, three-dimensional, unpretentious, and world-class dining destination that it is.
Pull up a chair and crack open Unique Eats & Eateries of San Francisco. Whether you’re from San Francisco (yes, even residents have found a few surprises), love to travel, eat, learn, or just like to drool while you read, this tasty guide is seasoned with all you need for an unforgettable edible exploration of one of the country’s most food-savvy cities!