for most people, it’s 100 Things To Try Before You Die. sadly, i don’t have that much time. as of today, i have just about four weeks until departing for the east coast and then london, so it’s time to start working on some stomach stretches to fit all 100 meals in. apparently small asian women are really good at competitive eating (and also good at naming themselves the black widow when they’re awesome at something usually done well by fat white dudes, like the black widow of competitive eating and the black widow of billiards). anyway. going through the list now to see what i’ve already done and to get a sense of how much eating i’ve got in front of me. items in bold are those i’ve eaten.
1. Roast chicken and bread salad at Zuni – been here for drinks, but need to return for the chicken
2. Coffee-rubbed pork shoulder at Range – had one of my best SF meals here, but didn’t try this dish.
3. Carnitas taco at La Taqueria – yup. favorite tacos in the city.
4. Spicy crab and grits at the Front Porch – tasty, but not unforgettably holy-fuck amazing.
5. Chasu ramen at Katana-Ya – excited for this…ramen is one of my favorite foods in the world.
6. Burger with fries at Slow Club – been here, but haven’t tried the burger
7. Shaking beef at the Slanted Door
8. Morning bun at Tartine Bakery – fuck yeah. these are like crack.
9. Tofu soup with kimchi at My Tofu House
10. Baja-style fi sh tacos at Nick’s Crispy Tacos
11. Pork sugo with pappardelle at Delfina – mmmmmmmmmmm.
12. Salt-and-pepper squid at Yuet Lee
13. Soup dumplings at Shanghai House
14. Beef brisket at Memphis Minnie’s – i see why this made it to the list because there aren’t that many good BBQ spots in SF, but the BBQ i had in kansas city beats it by a mile.
15. Oysters on the half shell at Swan Oyster Depot
16. Katsu curry from Muracci’s Japanese Curry & Grill
17. Tea-leaf salad at Burma Superstar – this dish is so unique it’s worth the crazy wait. sure it’s mad hyped, but when’s the last time you ate at a really good burmese restaurant?
18. Salumi misti plate at Perbacco
19. Tuna tartare at Michael Mina
20. Chicken pot pie at Liberty Café – i think this place closed…:(
21. Pizza margherita at Pizzeria Delfina – all their pizza are fucking ridiculous.
22. Vietnamese roasted pork sandwich at Saigon Sandwich
23. Beer sausage with sauerkraut and grilled onions at Rosamunde Sausage Grill
24. Blue Bell Bitter from the cask at Magnolia Pub
25. Loaf of bread straight out of the oven atTartine (bonus: sliced while still warm and slathered with Brillat- Savarin cheese from Bi-Rite, down the block) -i have i mentioned that this bread is good? good does not even begin to describe the ecstatically perfect texture of this bread, from the soft, chewy, moist perfectly salted interior to the crusty, hard, shell. i hope my heaven serves tartine bread.
26. A classic gin martini at Bourbon & Branch
27. Papaya salad with salty crab at Sai Jai Thai
28. A Gibraltar at Blue Bottle Café
29. Spaetzle at Suppenküche
30. Laughing Buddha cocktail at Cantina
31. Pan con chocolate with sea salt and olive oil at Laïola
32. Pupusas at Balompie Café #3 – yeeeaaaaah i love pupusas. making your own is fun too.
33. Prime rib at House of Prime Rib – on the whole, i’m anti places that begin with ‘house of’, but some of the best steak i had in buenos aires was served at a place called ‘king of french fries’, so it’s not really fair to judge.
34. Yellowtail collar at Oyaji
35. Salted-caramel ice cream at Bi-Rite Creamery – it’s awesome and yet not really surprising how many of these top 100 items are within a block of my apartment.
36. Dry-fried chicken wings at San Tung
37. Rotisserie chicken at Limón Rotisserie – just had this tonight, thanks to my friend kwame! totally delicious, fall-off-the-bone juicy, and jus you wanted to lick off the plate. came with these awesome arancini-like deep fried rice balls with an amazing cilantro aioli type sauce.
38. French fries at Hayes Street Grill
39. Pierna Enchilada torta at La Torta Gorda
40. Cheeseburger at Taylor’s Automatic Refresher
41. Pho ga at Turtle Tower
42. Fried-shrimp po’boy at Brenda’s French Soul Food
43. Mint julep at Alembic
44. Cannelé at Boulangerie Bay Bread
45. Galapagos cocktail at Absinthe
46. Chips and salsa at Papalote – the chips here are solidly meh, but the salsa i could drink by the bucketful.
47. Ceviche at La Mar Cebichería Peruana
48. Angels on horseback at Anchor & Hope
49. Ginger snaps at Miette
50. Giant pretzel with mustard at The Monk’s Kettle
51. Maccaronara with ricotta salata at A16
52. Fried brussels sprouts at SPQR
53. Garlic soup at Piperade
54. Spiced-chocolate doughnut at Dynamo Donut with a Four Barrel coffee
55. Milk-roasted pork at L’Osteria del Forno
56. Caponatina with burrata at Beretta – this dish is amazing, although pretty much anything topped with extra creamy fresh mozzarella is going to be amazing.
57. Goat stew at Kokkari Estiatorio
58. Absinthe daiquiri at Jardinière
59. Huarache with cactus salad at El Huarache Loco
60. The Brass Monkey at Little Star Pizza
61. Crab soufflé at Café Jacqueline
62. Shrimp-and-chive dumplings at Ton Kiang – this is my favorite dim sum item
63. Meatballs with grapes at Aziza
64. Paper masala dosa at Dosa
65. Crispy eggplant at Jai Yun
66. Pig parts at Incanto
67. Sand dabs at Tadich Grill
68. Irish coffee at the Buena Vista Cafe
69. Licorice parfait at South
70. Omakase menu at Sebo
71. A Fernet at R Bar
72. Arancini at Ducca
73. Popovers with strawberry butter at the Rotunda – mmm this sounds awesome
74. Corned-beef sandwich with Gruyère at the Sentinel
75. Fried green beans at Coco500
76. Chicken hash at Ella’s
77. Eggs benedict on the back patio at Zazie – ate these inside the restaurant, but counting it anyway.
78. Chilaquiles with a fried egg at Pastores
79. Onion strings at Alfred’s Steakhouse
80. Apple fritter at Bob’s Donuts
81. Chicken curry at Punjab Kabab House
82. Fried chickpeas at Piqueo’s
83. Sweet-potato fries with banana catsup at Poleng Lounge
84. A margarita at Tommy’s Mexican Restaurant
85. Pulled-pork sandwich at Roadside BBQ
86. A cheese slice at Arinell Pizza – this is the only place that approaches the ultimate pizza of my childhood, pino’s pizza in cleveland circle.
87. Fresh spring rolls at Out the Door
88. Buckwheat crepe and a French cider at TiCouz – we’ll give this one a .5 for not having had accompanying cider.
89. Lamb schawerma at Truly Mediterranean – a delicious mediterannean burrito
90. Slow-cooked egg at Coi
91. Albondigas soup at Mijita
92. Bacon-wrapped hot dog from a cart in the Mission (preferably when you’re drunk) – oh man…walked by this so many times, and even though i’ll eat the greasiest bacon-wrapped anything, i still can’t bring myself to ingest this mouthful of lard. someday…
93. Seven courses of beef at Pagolac
94. Mango with chile, lemon and salt at Doña Tere’s cart – not sure who or where this is, but i’ve bought plenty of street mangos. i always debate going with the chile and salt, but the fresh ones are so delicious just straight up…
95. 3 a.m. bowl of caldo verde soup at Grubstake
96. Baby-coconut ice cream from Mitchell’s
97. Sesame balls at Yank Sing – ok, shrimp and chive are my favorite savory dim sum item…
98. Basil gimlet at Rye
99. Clam chowder at Hog Island Oyster Co.
100. Cheese course at Gary Danko
i’m at 22/100. a few of these places may be out of reach until i meet that super hot sugar daddy who wants to whip out his black amex at gary danko for me, but a bunch have always been on my list to try. an impending departure date just gives me a kick in the ass to get it done.
some more i’d add…
al pastor burrito at taqeria cancun (tastest best drunk at 1am with a corona in hand listening to a crazy band with a plastic pickle tub)
ham and cheese croissant from tartine. yes, i realize tartine is all over that list (probably the only establishment with two items) but seriously, if this ham and cheese croissant were a man, i would pledge my love until death did us part.
the king trumpet, triple fried potato, charred scallion homemade flatbread at mission street food
secret breakfast ice cream at humphrey slocombe
new orleans iced coffee at the blue bottle stand at the ferry building
dark chocolate caramelized graham crackers by kika’s treats from la cocina
the kickass grilled cheese sandwich from hog island oyster co. at the ferry building
baked mussels at sushi zone
maguro salad at deep sushi – whatever crack they put in their dressing is the most unctuous, buttery, savory flavoring i’ve ever had.
cap’n mike and sally’s salmon sandwiches at the ferry building, particularly the albacore tuna with roasted golden beets, toasted walnuts, and pickled onions, served on acme sourdough with sally’s homemade cream cheese. (wanna know why i know that so well? come to the ferry building some saturday in march and say hi…)
heirloom tomato martini at absinthe. only available seasonally, and the best cocktail i’ve ever had.
god, i’m going to miss eating in sf. however, the nice thing about not being dead is that you can always come back and eat more.