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Book Passage, in the Ferry Building, is Tan's favorite bookstore in the city. The independent chain has hosted more than 6,000 authors in 30 years.
Book Passage, in the Ferry Building, is Tan's favorite bookstore in the city. The independent chain has hosted more than 6,000 authors in 30 years.

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Sunday, January 21, 2007

GETTING THERE: Numerous airlines fly to San Francisco or to nearby Oakland from all three Washington area airports. Round-trip coach fares begin at about $320.

WHERE TO EAT: Hayes Street Grill (324 Hayes St., 415-863-5545) specializes in seafood. Dinner entrees are $17.50 to $24. On weekends, the restaurant sets up a stall at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market with oyster po' boys, crab cakes and other sandwiches. Ton Kiang (5821 Geary Blvd., 415-752-4440) has a wide menu of classic Chinese dishes, including Hakka specialties, and great dim sum. Most entrees are $10 to $16, with lobster and crab dishes around $25. Dim sum is a few dollars per dish, or nine dishes intended to be shared by two for $35.

Yank Sing (101 Spear St., 415-957-9300, and 49 Stevenson St., 415-541-4949) serves traditional dim sum and small, dim-sum-style portions of entrees such as Peking duck. A plate of dim sum starts at about $5, or buy some as single portions so you can try more things for about $1 each. Quince (1701 Octavia St., 415-775-8500) is an elegant French and Italian restaurant that uses organic, local and seasonal ingredients. Dinner entrees are $25 to $39. Zazie (941 Cole St., 415-564-5332) is a lively, casual dining place with exposed brick walls. Three-course prix-fixe dinners are $19.50; dinner entrees are $10 to $19. Plan to get there early or be prepared to wait for weekend brunch, when most entrees are less than $10. The Slanted Door (1 Ferry Building No. 3, 415-861-8032) offers fabulous views of the bay and upscale "new fusion" Vietnamese food. Most dinner entrees are $15.50 to $29.50, with vegetarian entrees closer to $10.

In Sausalito: Poggio (777 Bridgeway, 415-332-7771) for pizza and Italian dishes. Dinner entrees are mostly $13 to $20, with a few up to $30.

Caffe Trieste (1000 Bridgeway, 415-332-7660) on the waterfront serves pastries and great sandwiches indoors and outdoors for less than $10, and there's live music on weekends.

WHERE TO STAY: For a chic boutique hotel in a great location overlooking the bay, try Harbor Court Hotel (165 Steuart St., 866-792-6283, http://www.harborcourthotel.com/). Double rooms begin at about $179. Hotel Nikko (222 Mason St., 415-394-1111, http://www.hotelnikkosf.com/) is a luxury hotel in central downtown with bright, modern Japanese-inspired designs. A double room starts at $179, but occasional weekend rates dip as low as $149. If a hostel will do, a bed in a dorm at the Fisherman's Wharf Hostel (415-771-7277, http://www.hiusa.org/) is $29; a private room is $75.

INFORMATION: San Francisco Convention and Visitors Bureau, 415-974-6900, http://www.sfcvb.org/.

-- Cindy Loose


© 2007 The Washington Post Company


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