where i went: san francisco

required reading: cool grey city of love: 49 views of san francisco by gary kamiya 

where i ate & drank:

  • revelry bistro – an intimate and cozy french bistro. the wine and charcuterie plate was just what i needed after a long flight.
  • blue bottle coffee shop – the cold brew was the perfect jolt i needed to start the day. my brother and i both got the ham baguette; it was perfect simplicity. the barista was really friendly and showed us how he does his latte art.
  • the irish bank – this is a quintessential irish bar. we got there right when they opened and the bartender made me a double bloody mary that was the perfect precursor to a day of shopping and walking around the city.
  • hops & hominy – we naturally found ourselves a restaurant that serves food with a southern flare.
  • white rabbit – fun bar in the marina. i can highly recommend their red bull with vodka and having conversations with 23-year-olds who work in tech and are dead in the eyes.
  • zam zam – bar on haight street. it’s a cash only hole in the wall, but i saw somewhere the anthony bourdain liked it, so i had to check it out. my brother, our friend and i spent hours there talking with the bartender, simon. there is no menu; either order a respectable drink or tell simon to make one for you if you’re not sure what you want. simon taught us that a vieuxcarre is a better version of a sazerac. i also learned that fernet doesn’t have to suck. there are about 10 seats around the bar. there are tables but it’s a no no to sit at them. zam zam has a ton of history and is a true gem. i will definitely be back there.
  • honey honey – my brother coerced me into going to an early morning orange theory class (i actually really enjoyed it) but afterwards i was absolutely starving. we went to honey honey and i ordered a bagel with cream cheese and their california sandwich. neither disappointed. both were essential. we got our food to go, but it looked like a good spot to post up for a casual brunch.
    dragon beaux restaurant – DIM SUM. enough said.
  • mijita concina – fresh tacos, mexican coke, chips and salsa. in the ferry building.

where i explored:

  • twitter headquarters in the tenderloin area
  • fisherman’s wharf – yes, it was very touristy. but i wanted to see the sea lions. sue me.
  • ghiradelli square – see above. i wanted to see it because it was my first time to SF.
  • chinatown
  • little italy
  • the ferry building
  • union square

where i stayed:

  • at my brother’s house in laurel heights. make a reservation in advance.

favorite bookstores:

  • i barely scratched the surface of exploring bookstores in SF, but i went to city lights bookstore and the booksmith. both were fantastic and i could have spent hours in them.