Love this unique spot!
Love this unique spot!
4505 Burgers and BBQ is run by chef and artisan butcher Ryan Farr. Ryan formerly was executive chef at Fifth Floor. He teaches butcher classes and serves up food at the San Francisco Ferry Building Farmer’s Market. We saw them at the Eat Real festival in Oakland and on other occasions the Ferry building. They create homemade relishes, multi-national ’Zilla sauce, and even bacon-dressed chocolate desserts. They have since setup on Divisadero in SF’s Nopa neighborhood.
The San Francisco Bay Area has been on shelter in place since March 16, 2020. Restaurants are only allowed to serve to go take out meals. Many have laid off staff and are in danger of closing. 20-40% of restaurants may close.
Where does a San Francisco Foodie eat in Thailand? Follow our journey and learn from our experiences.
Here is a compilation of more casual restaurants, snack places we visited during our 2020 Asia trip. Our goal was to find good eats at reasonable prices, primarily restaurants where locals go. We have no interest sampling cuisine that is done better at home in the San Francisco Bay Area. This is challenging on an expensive ‘island’, full of pricey tourist traps.
Where does a San Francisco Foodie eat in the Singapore? Follow our journey and learn from our experiences.
Here is a compilation of more casual restaurants, snack places we visited during our 2019 Asia trip. Our goal was to find good eats at reasonable prices, primarily restaurants where locals go. We have no interest sampling cuisine that is done better at home in the San Francisco Bay Area. This is challenging on an expensive ‘island’, full of pricey tourist traps.
Better soup dumplings than Din Tai Fung?
McDonalds opened this Next Generation store in Hong Kong in 2016, making it the only one of its kind in the world. Sleek modern black interior, self ordering kiosks, special Create Your Taste customizable burgers, special make to order salads, special items, table service, wireless chargers in the tables and more! They are open 24 hours. We returned to this location in 2020.
Last Update: 2020
Foodnut travels, eats, and tells. We’re based in San Francisco but have flown all over the place. We love Chinese food and find some of the best in Hong Kong.
Vegan – Gluten Free Heaven
Santa Ramen has a new owner in 2020.
Santa Ramen is a very popular Japanese noodle Ramen restaurant in San Mateo. Mr. Kazunori Kobayashi sold this location in 2020 but continues to be the proprietor of nearby Ramen Dojo and Parlor. Located in a small shopping mall with a Diddams Ninja Japanese supermarket, Party Supply and JoAnn’s Fabric, the restaurant has achieved a legendary cult following and has long lines at both dinner and lunch times. We have eaten here many times with our last visit in 2020.
Why did we dine here? – B. Patisserie is a new bakery from Belinda Leong. She is a veteran of Gary Danko and Manresa. We couldn’t wait to give her place a try.
Last Update: 4/19/2019
Where does a San Francisco Foodie eat in New York? Follow our journey and learn from our experiences.
Why did we dine here? – Far better Pho than San Francisco! The SGV (San Gabriel Valley) is home to some fine Asian cuisine. We passed by Pho Filet on our last trip and ate there in 2018. Only 3.5 stars on Yelp, but way up there in our books.
Last Update: December 2019
Chicken Rice is a legendary dish at Singapore’s food hawker centers. It consists of chicken cooked in pork and chicken stock, rice with chicken stock, and some vegetables. Dipping sauce is usually a hot chili dip or soy sauce with ginger. Occasionally they throw in a bowl of soup. We read several articles that state that this is the number 1 thing many people miss when they leave Singapore. Chicken Rice is a National dish for Singapore.
We arrive skeptics, but left believers.
We love pizza and finally made the trek to Chicago to find what ‘real’ deep dish pizza tastes like. We find San Francisco’s best cannot compare..
Since 1892, this has been America’s oldest and largest public market. A perfect place for breakfast, lunch or a snack. Get exposed to Amish and Pennsylvania Dutch. A must visit for anyone into food and history! Some vendors close early, so beware. A lot more history to this food market than our Ferry Building.
Our Favorites stores:
Last Update: 2018
Foodnut travels, eats, and tells. We’re based in San Francisco but have flown all over the place. We love Mexican food and find some of the best in Cancun.
We recently finished up our latest culinary tour of Cancun in 2018. Other reviews farther down are from previous trips. Cancun is a world class destination full of great food. Most of the Mexican food was superior to that in the San Francisco Bay Area. The service is on another level here.
Hanoi Vietnam is known for its dynamic street food scene. The language and culture are definitely big barriers to going it on your own. A street food tour was definitely a must.
We took our hotel’s Street Food tour to sample the local restaurants in the Hanoi Old Quarter. This was a fun and useful tour. We dined at several places that we would have been scared to approach ourselves. The guide explained the different types of local food and asked us about specific items we wanted. It lasted about 3 hours, cost $30/per person and included all food and drinks. Cheaper than other tours we saw.
Shanghai Flavor Shop is an inexpensive restaurant in a second rate strip mall. This diamond in the rough is located in sleepy Sunnyvale, and specializes in Shanghainese Chinese cuisine. To the right of this restaurant is the popular Indian Buffet: Sankranti
Pearl’s Deluxe Burgers Post St, San Francisco
Rave Burger is a burger joint that opened October 2008 in downtown San Mateo. We were walking by and decided to give it a try to see how it rated. The provide sit down service in addition to to go food. They serve hamburgers, vegan burgers, hot dogs, and salads and a lots more now. We have been to Rave Burger several times over the years with our last visit in 2019.
We like dining at McDonalds at different countries around the world. What interesting items will we find. Our last trip was to Spain. We checked out the local McDonalds in Barcelona and found some interesting items.
Zachary’s Chicago Pizza is a popular pizza restaurant in the San Francisco East Bay that serves Chicago style pizza. They have been packing them in for over thirty years. They serve select individual slices (Sausage, Pepperoni, Vegetarian) and whole pizzas, both thin and stuffed (thick) crust. The thick crust has filling between the layers. They also have half-baked pies and gluten free pies for sale. Our last visit was in Fall 2018.
Last Update: 7/20/2017
Travelling? Here is a Foodie research into Boston.. A list at the bottom shows other restaurants we would try next.
Best Ramen in San Francisco. Why did we dine here? – Mensho Tokyo SF is first USA outpost of Mensho, an acclaimed Tokyo ramen chain. They have 7 locations in Tokyo and are usually on the short list for top ramen in Tokyo. We waited for the 2-hour lines to die down, before dining here.
We sought to find the Best Croissants in San Francisco. Time to line up bright and early. Ah somebody has to do this right? Here are the top candidates for your consideration..
Why did we dine here? – Shockingly Good! Xian Famous Foods was made famous when Anthony Bourdain featured it on this TV show, No Reservations. The restaurant was recommended to us, so we had to add it to our NYC hit list. They have several locations in New York and Flushing, so we decided to eat at the Chinatown location as we were touring the city. In 2019 we ate at the West Village location.
Taqueria La Cumbre Mexican Restaurant has a location in San Francisco and San Mateo. We tried the one in San Mateo, located near Caltrain. They have everything from burritos to tacos to caldos to plates. The San Francisco location has lines often times. Our last visit was in 2017. The great thing about his place is the parking lot!
There always seems to be a line here! Tartine Bakery, San Francisco serves up legendary freshly baked bread every Tuesday through Sunday at 430 PM. After the Tartine Manufactory opened in 2016, bread is available all day. They are also know for their great pastries and sandwiches.
The Chairman (Formerly Chairman Bao) is a San Francisco food truck that serves Chinese steamed and baked buns with a variety of fillings. These are offshots of Taiwanese Gua bao or bun sandwich. When we were in Taiwan, it was difficult to find this old school dish. Our only Gua bao was ironically at the ritz Shin Yeh, Taipei 101.
Why did we dine here? – Kingdom of Dumpling is a small Chinese restaurant specializing in dumplings. Being large dumpling fans, we decided to finally give this place a try. There are few restaurants with this variety of dumplings on the menu. The place has been featured on Check Please, so it has become busier over the years. Lots of to go orders. Our last visit was in July 2016.
Why did we dine here? – Pizzeria Mozza is a popular Southern California Italian restaurant with Chef Nancy Silverton in partnership with star chef Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich. We had it on our short list for our recent trip after a great meal previously at Osteria Mozza.
Best xiao long bao in Shanghai?
Jia Jia Tang Bao (佳家汤包) is a small but popular Shanghai steamed dumpling or Xiaolongbao shop in Shanghai. Our first visit was in 2010, our last in late 2014. In 4 years, the facade outside has improved, but we swear the interior is exactly the same.
Why did we dine here? – Fu Chun is well known as one of the most authentic Xiao long Bao restaurants in Shanghai. They have been in existence for many decades. They have many locations around the city, (10 stores, mostly in shopping centers) we chose the one that was the closest to our hotel near People’s Square. Note: this location is slated to close as a new high end shopping center is displacing it. More progress.
Why did we dine here? – Da Chun is an old school Sheng jian bao restaurant. We love Yang’s Dumplings (Xiao Yang) and try to eat there everytime we visit Shanghai, but made sure we visit the harbinger of this genre. This restaurant has several locations, yet we chose the Da Shi Jie outpost as it is supposed to be the best.
Dumplings worth flying across the Pacific Ocean for…
Yang’s Dumpling – Chinese name: 小杨生煎馆 or xiao yang sheng jian guan – is a small but popular fried dumpling shop serving pan fried pork bun or Sheng jian bao, a Shanghainese Chinese dish. It was formed in Shanghai in 1994 by Mrs. Yang, who still keeps her recipe secret. They have over 20 locations in Shanghai and are opening another more all the time. We dined at the closest location to our hotel near People’s Square.
The Shihlin Night Market in Taipei, Taiwan is a must visit for food loving travelers. It is obviously located in the Shilin District of Taipei, just a couple blocks from the Jiantan MRT subway station. (Not Shihlin Station) This is the largest and most famous night market in the city and typically starts up around 4pm in the afternoon.
Jeffrey’s Hamburgers is a popular burger joint in downtown San Mateo open since 1997. They also have a location in Menlo Park. They serve American fast food including burgers, hot dogs, fish and chips, salads, fries, and shakes. Seems like every town has a place like this, San Francisco has its Mel’s Drive in..
Fenton’s Creamery has been around since 1922 in Oakland. They produce their own ice cream and toppings batch by batch on site. They serve breakfast, sandwiches, burgers, salads, but the main draw is of course, ice cream. Their creations are simply huge. Even the kid’s ice creams are huge. Our last visit was to the Nut Tree Vacaville location in the spring of 2015.
By Arnold Chan
Lai Hong Lounge Restaurant is a Cantonese Chinese restaurant on the outskirts of Chinatown. They have been around since the Lichee Garden closing, 2012. They are pretty popular for lunch, but it was much more quiet at dinner. We were in the neighborhood so we decided to try it out, being big Chinese food fans. This restaurant appears to be related to Hong Kong Lounge.
Why did we dine here? – Lot 10 Hutong has more than 30 of the country’s best eateries in the ground floor of a Kuala Lumpur shopping center, right in the heart of the city. Each needs to have been around for at least 40 years. This is the only heritage hawker center of its kind in Malaysia.
After having dined at a fancy restaurant, Bijan, which was very good but full of tourists and business folks, we felt it would be fun to a place like this to try lots of different foods. No need to taxi and walk all over town to sample all sorts of food.
Why did we dine here? – Chabaa Thai is a Thai Restaurant in San Francisco’s Sunset District. We happened to be in the area, shopping at the great produce store next door. Looking on Yelp, nearby Marnee Thai and Chabaa are both rated four star for Thai. This restaurant does a lot of to-go business. Be sure to try Kin Khao.
Rudy’s Can’t Fail Cafe is a diner in Emeryville, near the Home Depot shopping center, serving American food till 1am. Big breakfasts, salads, burgers, and sandwiches. Breakfast is served all day. It is owned by Billie Joe from rock band Green Day.
Why did we dine here? – Turtle Tower is a popular Vietnamese restaurant in San Francisco with several locations. Hà Nội Style Vietnamese Cuisine is their focus. We dined at the original, located in the heart of the gritty Tenderloin District of San Francisco. It moved down the block and reopened in June 2013 and added banh mi sandwiches. Our last visit was in February 2014.
Why did we dine here? – Dumpling Empire is a new Chinese dumpling shop in South San Francisco, right off Grand Ave. It reminds us of Town of Dumpling in San Mateo. Simple, small (10 tables), family run, reasonable prices, plain decor.
Big Bubbas Bad BBQ is a food concession that appears at some of the country’s largest State Fairs, Nascar Races, and Livestock Shows since 1996. You will find them in California, Colorado, and New Mexico. We have eaten their food several times over the years and found it to be pretty good. Our last visit in 2013 was during the Maker’s Faire in San Mateo.
Prather Ranch Meat Company is a boutique firm that raises grass fed and pastured cattle in North California’s Mt. Shasta area. Their focus is on high quality, sustainable, humanely raised meats in support of a whole-animal sales model. Founded in 2003, they made a name for themselves as one of the first merchants in the Ferry Building.