San Francisco Bay Area rss

Restaurant recommendations, new openings, and highlights from the SF Chowhound community.

Hapa Ramen’s Taco Pop-Up: Why San Francisco Is Still Fun

Everybody’s writing about San Francisco: our tech boom (different from our tech bubble, unless it isn't), our Google Buses, our restaurants people mistake for Google Bus, the lessons of Tosca and $4 toast. They’re saying San Francisco is the new New York, or maybe it’s the old Easthampton (I get confused), that it’s gentrifying beyond anything anyone knew and loved in 1979, or 1993, or 2011, or whatever year you dropped your cat carrier and your backpack on the stained carpeting of your first-ever San Francisco apartment and felt the warp-shift of destiny over the phone when you said to your old roommate in Philly or Fresno or wherever it is you started that morning, Holy crap, I’m actually here. READ MORE

Colcannon: Awesome Irish Potato and Cabbage Hash

Like boiled dinner, milky tea, and Guinness, colcannon is pure Ireland. Traditionally on Halloween, a pot of potatoes mashed up with kale or cabbage and onions landed on the table for everyone to dip in with spoons, hoping to find the lucky ring or thimble buried in the mash: fun, definitely filling, but from a textural standpoint, boring. It occurred to me that colcannon had been around since at least the 18th century, long before there were food mills or even proper sieves in most homes—there must have been a much more rustic way of doing it back then. I was going for something much more like hash: melted, buttery onions, cabbage that retained some of its crunch, and crispy caramelized potatoes. You’ll never see a colcannon recipe that does this—that smashes the potatoes so that they’re chunky, exposing the interior so that as much of the surface as possible gets crispy, and that caramelizes them in two stages. READ MORE

In SF, Incanto’s Countdown to Closing

Incanto, the Noe Valley Italian restaurant where Chef Chris Cosentino proved masterful at preparing (and popularizing) offal, has announced that their last dinner service will be March 24. The space will reopen as Porcellino, a casual restaurant and market with lunch service and takeout. Make reservations now, if you still can, for the famed Quinto Quarto offal tasting menu.

Oakland Restaurants for the Older Set

Grandma and grandpa need to eat, too! When a Chowhound posted a tongue-in-cheek request for restaurant recommendations for older diners in Oakland (with reasonable sound levels just as important as great food), here's what surfaced.

In the Bay Area, House-Made Bagels Are on a Roll

A fresh, well-made bagel is a thing of beauty, and across the Bay Area you can find small batches of bagels prepared by bakeries that don't specialize in bagels. A recent Chowhound conversation begins to compile a list of these spots, including 20th Century Café and Marla Bakery in SF, Downtown Bakery in Healdsburg, and the café at Santa Rosa Junior College's Culinary Arts Program.

SF Coffee Roaster’s New Outpost Is Buzzworthy

Sightglass recently opened a new space in the flourishing gourmet ghetto on 20th Street in SF's Mission District. The 1,200-square-foot spot is much cozier than the warehouselike roasting facility and shop on Seventh Street in SOMA. An enterprising early visitor filed a report praising the design of the coffeehouse but left unimpressed with a taste of the floral but fading Guji Yetatebe Ethiopian pour-over.

Petaluma’s Central Market Is Back

Petaluma's Central Market has reopened. Early Chowhound reports have a bit of advice for anyone within driving distance: Go. Sounds like the chef's tasting menu is a good first stop, for "incredibly fresh and tasty" dishes accompanied by wines from an interesting list heavily stacked with Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir.

A Woman in SF Is Barrel-Aging Sriracha, and It’s Awesome

Lisa Murphy (above) came to CHOW's offices in San Francisco last year to show off some delicious ketchup she’d been making under the name Sosu. She was leaving soon for Southeast Asia—to do sriracha research, she said, eventually to produce some with a Sosu label. Lisa drifted back to my inbox last month, to tell me about her Kickstarter campaign and with something new to taste: barrel-aged Sriracha, the result of her vision quest in Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos. READ MORE

Olive Oil Finds in Wine Country

During a trip to the wine country north of San Francisco, stop by one of the olive oil producers in Sonoma or Napa to find fine-quality oils that may be difficult to purchase elsewhere. Chowhounds have their favorite oils, from the Meyer lemon version at DaVero's tasting room outside Healdsburg to the estate oils at Napa's Round Pond, which sets up tours and tastings.

A Taste of the Caribbean in the Bay

Caribbean food reflects a melding of cultures in the islands, with touches of African, Spanish, French, and other cuisines. In the Bay Area, try the grilled dishes at Suya African-Caribbean Grill in Berkeley and Oakland, curry goat at Back a Yard in Menlo Park, and mod Caribbean dishes from a Barbados-born chef at Miss Ollie's in Oakland.