Smoked fish isn't difficult to find in San Francisco—as long as you're willing to settle for prepackaged stuff hanging in the refrigerated section of supermarkets. But if you want beautifully translucent slices or a custom cut, there are a few options in town that trump the vacuum-sealed packet.
Paulie's Pickling, a sandwich and pickle shop in Bernal Heights, sells great quality lox that they hand-slice paper thin. While you're there, be sure to pick up Paulie's excellent cream cheese. And in the Mission, Wise Sons Deli does special orders on lox (pictured), according to sugartoof.
Windy says that Bi-Rite Market and Swan Oyster Depot both sell sliced-to-order cured salmon. Bargain shoppers will want to hit up Russian and Eastern European groceries like New World Market and Europa Express for smoked fish at the best prices.
Paulie's Pickling [Bernal Heights]
331 Cortland Avenue, San Francisco
Wise Sons Deli [Mission District]
3150 24th Street, San Francisco
Bi-Rite Market [Mission District]
3639 18th Street, San Francisco
Swan Oyster Depot [Polk Gulch]
1517 Polk Street, San Francisco
New World Market [Outer Richmond]
5641 Geary Street, San Francisco
Europa Express Deli [Inner Sunset]
1342 Irving Street, San Francisco
Discuss: Paper thin sliced lox
Photo of smoked salmon on a bialy from Wise Sons