"East is east and West is San Francisco."-O. Henry
It's no wonder people leave their hearts in San Francisco. A trip to SF is filled with scenic beauty, amazing food and fabulous shopping. On a recent trip, we spent a lot of time at the tourist draws like the Ferry Building and biking the Golden Gate Bridge, but one of my favorite parts was exploring some of the cool neighborhoods that give SF its unique vibe. At the top of my list was the hipster neighborhood of the Mission. Named for the Mission Dolores, San Francisco's oldest surviving structure, the area is a mix of hipster gentrification and Latino-owned shops. I wish I could do the whole Mission district justice with a complete list of cool spots, but I'll just focus on the Dolores and Valencia corridor. Be sure to explore all of it and report back. Some noteworthy must see spots in that section include:
The famous spot doesn't even need a sign to spot it. Just look for the line (at any time of day) at 18th and Guerrero. It's almost as delightful to just stare at the pastry cases as it is to taste one of the French-inspired delights or a savory sandwich made with some famous Tartine bread. You can try some of the famed recipes with the bakery's two books Tartine Bread and Tartine.
Beretta will always have a special place in my heart as the the place I fell in love with burrata cheese. There are no words to describe the creamy delight that is mozzarella's chic sister. Try Berreta's amazing margherita pizza (yes, I am recommending a margherita pizza as lame as that sounds) with burrata. Other must-tries: the potato hash with pork sausage and gorgonzola as an antipasti.
This popular hotspot is one of the few Indian restaurants in SF that specializes in South Indian fare. If you are a fan of the dosa or just a fan of food, this is a must.
We actually didn't make it inside, but this cute eatery gets rave reviews and came highly recommended for its atmosphere and comfort food. Also, it's named after my favorite eating utensil.
Foreign Cinema could serve cardboard for dinner and it would be worth it for the unique atmosphere. Foreign films are played nightly. They are projected on the wall of a lovely enclosed patio complete with string lights above and ivy growing on the walls. There is just something dream-like about the ambiance. The food is also amazing.