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Old 06-24-2018, 12:30 PM   #1776
Melkerson
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Anyone been to Aster and have any thoughts on it?
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Old 06-24-2018, 04:27 PM   #1777
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

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Walk up to Yerba Buena gardens? The water fountain thing and quotes on the wall are a good conversation starter.
Keep in mind the park closes really early and they have a security guy walking around to kick people out, or worse yet, start conversations bc their job is really boring.

Tried a couple places recently

Fogo de Chao - All you can eat Brazilian steakhouse. Servers walk around with various cuts of meat on skewers. You get a little card thats green on one side, red on the other. If you flip it to the green side, servers keep coming up to you offering you meat, on the red side they will leave you alone. Solid but not great cuts of meat, and the concept is very fun.
The meat is very heavily seasoned (salted) so I think the pro move is asking the server to come back after they've cut off the first layer, it will be a bit more rare and you'll avoid being over-salted. Picanha and flank were the best items, don't waste yourself on chicken or pork.
Somewhat pricey for not super fancy food, but could see myself going once a year or so. All-in without drinks came to $80.

In Situ - Inside SF Moma, very classy design, and most of the dishes are taken from different restaurants/chefs around the world, true to the museum concept. Menu is split into small, medium and large dishes. Didn't get any small dishes. The only medium dish we got was the wasabi lobster, tasty but had about 2 bites to it, at ~$30 I'd suggest sticking to the large dishes. One of the medium dishes was carrot tartare for $28, based on the waiter's explanation it sounded like simply raw ground carrot that the chef presents directly to you, obviously didn't order that - sounds completely ridiculous.
The large dishes were all excellent, not particularly hearty so make sure to come for the experience, you're not going to leave stuffed. Got the Lamb Carrot, mushroom risotto, and beef lettuce wraps to split between 3 people. Didn't take any pictures but don't think you can go wrong with any of those dishes, beef cups were the consensus winner among the entrees.
Paired everything with the Cab, don't generally care for wine but this was just really smooth, I'd recommend trying it especially if you're mixing dishes.
For dessert we got the cheesecake and brownie. Cheesecake is maybe 3 inches in diameter, but so rich you should definitely plan on splitting it. Looks and feels like a wheel of brie, and it comes with little crackers for spreading. And then it tastes exactly how cheesecake should taste. Strong recommend. Brownie is just a standard tasty brownie, good sized portion which is rare here so go for it if you're still hungry.

Definitely a spot you need to go at least once but don't see myself going back for several years or for a special occasion. $100 per person which seems very reasonable for the quality.
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Old 06-24-2018, 04:39 PM   #1778
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Looked up the other two posts itt about In Situ. My Wasabi Lobster looked nothing like Amoebas. I'm also shocked at how his cheesecake looked, mine was just slightly less melty than ElDs. Pretty interesting that the dishes aren't as cookie cutter as you'd expect based on the concept.

I guess it's also worth mentioning that the waiter spilled a decent amount of wine on the table when pouring the first glass. Didn't get anything comped or even a fresh bottle. Didn't bother me that much but maybe a bit surprising.
Also, I tried getting a res for 6:30 but the closest opentable had was 5:45. The place was 90% empty which is also a bit of an odd experience.

At fogo we got moved tables when it got busy, and the hostess comped our desserts and sent over cocktails.
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Old 06-24-2018, 05:37 PM   #1779
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Ibav,

Re: in situ, note that they’re always rotating dishes. The cheesecake, wasabi lobster, and cuttlefish cappuccino are the only three dishes on the menu now that were there when I went. I agree it’s more of an experience type place, I’ll prob go like once a year when I see some really interesting sounding dishes.

I like fogo fine, service is very good and food is fine. Terrible cocktails though. Overall, I definitely prefer Espetus. Same price and better quality meat in my experience.
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Old 07-01-2018, 05:26 PM   #1780
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Went to Local Edition on Friday and tried my date's Mother Superior cocktail, which is a good counter data point to El D's argument that their cocktails aren't great: https://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/loca...N5Lk8hlq5ouc3A

Some subtle note in it rocked my world, not sure if it was the form of citrus or something else. Wound up drinking most of hers.
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Old 07-01-2018, 09:53 PM   #1781
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

My favorite cocktail in sf is the steph curry at dosa. Curry and bourbon and temperanillo is just perfect for me
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Old 07-02-2018, 02:26 AM   #1782
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Probably can't ever order it with that name.
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Old 07-08-2018, 01:11 PM   #1783
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

going to SF with my boys (12 and 14) for a few days. Plan right now is heavy on outdoor stuff, probably spend a day hiking from the wave organ all the way around to ocean beach and then maybe through golden gate park, probably visit twin peaks and/or Mt. Davidson, and obv some time around fisherman's wharf, see the seals and musee mechanique, etc.

I wanted to do alcatraz, but tickets are way sold out and I'm not really that into it that I would go stand in the standby line at 4:00AM.

Any other recommendations? my kids are into hiking but are also pretty nerdy, I might do the exploratorium?

Things on my "maybe" list:

* Magowan's Infinite Mirror Maze (plus all the other touristy **** on pier 39)
* Lombard street (obv)
* Cable car museum?
* Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory (this seems like it would be really cool or ultra lame)
* Academy of Sciences (seems like a bunch of other places we've already been to, not sure if it's really worth it)

What about restaurants? Most of my (business-heavy) SF experience is centered around downtown (market street/union square/moscone areas) or south beach around AT&T park. Probably going to avoid most of those areas on this trip. Looking for recommendations in the FW area, Presidio area, Ocean Beach area that would be OK for teeners. They're moderately adventurous when it comes to food but they'd probably appreciate some burgers/pizza type stuff as well.

Places I've already starred on my google map:
* Tony's pizza
* golden boy pizza
* sam's burgers & pizza
* bob's donuts
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Old 07-08-2018, 01:13 PM   #1784
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

BTW, just to contribute back, I stopped in David Rio Chai Bar on my last trip (Market and 6th), and this place is legit. I travel a lot and try to hit up different coffee/tea houses, and this was the first place I visited twice in the same trip in as long as I can remember. Absolutely perfect.
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Old 07-08-2018, 09:24 PM   #1785
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Couple of other instant trip reports from my last SF trip a couple of weeks ago:

* The Bird (previously mentioned ITT), stopped in for a breakfast sammich (I was giving a training class at the W) and was very happy.

* Equator Coffees and Teas - great cuppa, surprisingly empty at 7:00 AM on market street.

* Fang - went with a very large group (~20 people), sat downstairs, excellent service and the food was fantastic. Lots of veggie options (we had a couple of vegans in the group) that were satisfying for the meat eaters as well.

* Reveille Coffee - cool location catty cornered from the Sentinel building, espresso was on the bright side which I'm not a fan of.

* Thirsty Bear - had a team party here, meh, beer was ok, the food was pretty disappointing
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Old 07-08-2018, 09:28 PM   #1786
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Pvn,

When are you visiting? I have a number of friends with kids plus I’m pretty immature myself, so I have some recs for you. PM me if I don’t respond here before your visit.
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Old 07-08-2018, 10:15 PM   #1787
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

I'm a huge fanboy of Tony's and I bet your kids would love it. Make sure to get there early, waits are really long at prime time and they make a limited quantity of each pizza so if you go late you might not get your first choice.

EDIT: On second thought, where are you visiting from? As much as I love Tony's I dunno if I can recommend pizza to someone visiting SF from the northeast.
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Old 07-09-2018, 02:02 AM   #1788
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

pvn,

Cable Car Museum is worth it. It’s free, can be done fairly quickly and should be pretty interesting for 12-14 year old boys.

If you’re looking for more hiking you may want to consider Angel Island. No need to reserve the ferry tickets in advance.

A good place for food by Ocean Beach is the Beach Chalet. More for the views than the food but there’s not a lot to choose from out there anyway.
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Old 07-10-2018, 11:08 AM   #1789
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Going to Alcatraz today. Lined up at 5:50, 50th in line and got tickets at 7:30 for 8:15 boarding. Hard to tell but it looks to me like even people who came at 7:30 got tickets.

They sell you coffee and donuts while you wait and you're allowed to leave to the bathroom.
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Old 07-10-2018, 11:51 AM   #1790
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Pvn,

Quote:
Originally Posted by pvn View Post
going to SF with my boys (12 and 14) for a few days. Plan right now is heavy on outdoor stuff, probably spend a day hiking from the wave organ all the way around to ocean beach and then maybe through golden gate park, probably visit twin peaks and/or Mt. Davidson, and obv some time around fisherman's wharf, see the seals and musee mechanique, etc.

Any other recommendations? my kids are into hiking but are also pretty nerdy, I might do the exploratorium?

Things on my "maybe" list:
* Academy of Sciences (seems like a bunch of other places we've already been to, not sure if it's really worth it)

What about restaurants? Most of my (business-heavy) SF experience is centered around downtown (market street/union square/moscone areas) or south beach around AT&T park. Probably going to avoid most of those areas on this trip. Looking for recommendations in the FW area, Presidio area, Ocean Beach area that would be OK for teeners. They're moderately adventurous when it comes to food but they'd probably appreciate some burgers/pizza type stuff as well.

Places I've already starred on my google map:
* Tony's pizza
* golden boy pizza
* sam's burgers & pizza
* bob's donuts

Absolutely don’t go to the aquarium at fisherman’s wharf, it’s terrible.

Academy of Sciences is awesome, I highly recommend it, and I’ve also been to lots of places like that.

The exploratorium is cool but I don’t think it’s that great for their age. It’s really designed for younger kids (I’ve been there a lot with my niece and nephew who are now 4 and 7).

Haakee’s angel island rec is great.

Not sure if you listed Muir Woods, but they are great.

A bit of a drive, but you could drive up the coast a bit to bodega bay or someplace like that.

Don’t go to Golden boy pizza. Tony’s is a good spot. If they like deep dish, capo’s or little star.

Sams is fine if you’re around there, but def don’t make a special trip. And if you’re around there, I’d prob recommend getting some Chinese at yuet Lee or pizza/Italian/sandwiches in north beach instead.

For burgers I’d prob recommend stopping in for fancy fast food at either super duper or popson’s. Lots of burger options wherever you are. Here’s a good burger list: https://sf.eater.com/maps/best-essen...-san-francisco

Chinatown is pretty fun to wander around. Dim sum for lunch might be fun? For the overall experience I’d prob recommend New Asia.

Are they into baseball at all? Baseball tickets are cheap on apps like stubhub/seatgeek/gametime.
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Old 07-10-2018, 03:21 PM   #1791
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

I don't go to that type of place a lot, bit I thought the academy of Science was excellent. Well maintained but not crowded. Albino alligator is probably a pretty unique thing to see.
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Old 07-10-2018, 10:39 PM   #1792
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

El D totally nailed it, as expected. Although IMO the exploratorium is cool for all ages though if they're into science. Lots of great burgers - my favorite sit down burger so far has been at causwells, for fast burgers there are great ones all over the place depending on where you are but I would add Gott's and Roam to the list.

Academy of sciences is worth the visit plus its in the park so if the weather's nice you have a whole day in the same area. Lands End is also a nice hike that you don't have to leave SF to do, and I find it's a good distance for almost all ages.

Plan either of the two above for a sunday before or after off the grid in the presidio is a great way to cap off a weekend too.
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Old 07-10-2018, 10:55 PM   #1793
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Pvn,

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my favorite sit down burger so far has been at causwells, for fast burgers there are great ones all over the place depending on where you are but I would add Gott's and Roam to the list.
JL prob knows this, but the place popsons I mentioned is the causwells burger - their burger was so popular they opened a burger joint based on it. I agree with roam, but don’t think gott’s is all that good anymore.
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Old 07-11-2018, 12:31 AM   #1794
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

I do have to mention that I think gott's is far better outside of SF, and I'm starting to feel the same about super duper too. Have been underwhelmed by both in SF, and really blown away in north bay but lots of wine might be the reason.
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Old 07-11-2018, 12:57 AM   #1795
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Thanks guys, that's a big help.

I had just typed up a big response and of course this ****ing loaner computer I'm using has a hyper-sensitive touchpad and I accidentally closed the tab.

Muir woods is something I had been thinking about. I am not planning on renting a car, it seems like it might be cheaper to just rent one for the day than to take uber out there and back or pay for a dumb tour bus, right?

Also, thanks for the tip on the Alcatraz standby tix. May give it a shot.
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Old 07-11-2018, 01:04 AM   #1796
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

100% better to rent a car for the day, or to download getaround or turo (airbnb for cars) before you come out. Muir woods requires reservations now due to limited parking: https://www.nps.gov/muwo/planyourvisit/reservations.htm
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Old 07-11-2018, 01:06 AM   #1797
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Any opinions on:

* Wave Organ
* Musée Mécanique
* Infinite Mirror Maze
* Long Now Foundation
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Old 07-11-2018, 02:05 AM   #1798
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Have only been to musee mechanique of the four, only stayed for about fifteen minutes, wasn't my thing.

There are also quite a few escape rooms popping up in sf if you think that would be interesting
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Old 07-11-2018, 04:10 AM   #1799
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

Quote:
Originally Posted by pvn View Post
Any opinions on:

* Wave Organ
* Musée Mécanique
* Infinite Mirror Maze
* Long Now Foundation


Wave Organ is dependent on the tides and not worth a special trip anyway.

Musée Mécanique is very close to Fisherman’s Wharf and it’s free. If you are at the wharf you should definitely go. If it’s not your thing you can just leave. I’ve been many times and I’d think it would be interesting for boys around your sons’ ages although maybe they’re slightly too old.
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Old 07-11-2018, 08:41 AM   #1800
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Re: San Francisco Bay Area: Your favorite things to do or places to go

I think it will be more interesting to me than to the kids FWIW.
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