Devil’s Teeth Baking Co.
Just before you crash into Ocean Beach, in far Outer Sunset, a bakery will emerge from the fog. Named for the jagged Farallon Islands 27 miles off the coast, Devil’s Teeth serves lacquered cinnamon rolls, savory scones and homemade sourdough loaves. But the star is the special breakfast sandwich: scrambled eggs, pepper jack cheese, bacon, avocado and lemon garlic aioli on a fresh-baked buttermilk biscuit.
BTW: Take your haul a few blocks west and eat it while watching surfers ride the notoriously rough waves.
Devil’s Teeth Baking Co., 3876 Noriega St. San Francisco, Calif. 94122
If you worship at the altar of carbohydrates, this is your temple: a bright, airy East Mission spot where Chad Robertson and Liz Prueitt have grown their beloved bakery into a three-meal restaurant. At breakfast and weekend brunch, that means eggs coddled with trout roe and sandwiched with porchetta, layered seasonal tartines and a case full of pastries. Get the frangipane croissant, the morning bun and the poppyseed coffee cake, then take away an entire country loaf, a celebrity sourdough with a recipe that spans 38 pages.
BTW: The restaurant shares a building with Heath Ceramics, where you can snag a bowl or mug from the Bay Area’s favorite potters.
Tartine Manufactory, 595 Alabama St. San Francisco, Calif. 94110
El Gallo Giro
In the land of the nap-inducing burrito, opt for tacos. Perpetually parked during lunch at the corner of Treat Avenue and 23rd Street, in the traditionally Mexican Mission District, this local truck serves classic street tacos for $2.50 a pop. There’s no bad order among the proteins, but we’re partial to the carnitas: fall-apart pork with crunchy ends topped with onion, cilantro and a dousing of house-made salsa. Grab a folding chair and a pile of napkins; you’re going to need them.
BTW: For a post-lunch pick-me-up, head around the corner to Bay Area original Philz Coffee and order a mint mojito.
El Gallo Giro, 23rd Street and Treat Avenue San Francisco, Calif. 94110
Mario’s Bohemian Cigar Store
Plenty has changed in the 47 years since this North Beach institution opened — it hasn’t sold a cigar in decades, for one — but the important things endure. It’s still a family-run restaurant, now in the hands of Mario’s son, Paul. It still boasts a roster of regulars and it still serves oven-baked sandwiches on Liguria Bakery focaccia, loaded with meatballs or eggplant with Swiss and marinara. Grab a seat at the bar and eavesdrop on the local banter. Just beware the pepperoncini; they bite.
BTW: Walk off your meal with a climb up the stairs to Coit Tower.
Mario’s Bohemian Cigar Store, 566 Columbus Ave. San Francisco, Calif. 94133
At Rich Table, in Hayes Valley, husband-and-wife chefs Evan and Sarah Rich turn out refined international comfort food that’s earned a Michelin star. One block away, at this fast casual spot, they do simple dishes at a fraction of the price. The common theme here is roasting: moist buttermilk-brined chicken and vegetable sides that are more decadent than virtuous. Don’t miss the Brussels sprouts Caesar. It’ll change how you think about salads — and sprouts.
BTW: For post-dinner festivities, head to Martuni’s, on Valencia Street, an open-mic piano bar that goes heavy on show tunes and martinis.
RT Rotisserie, 101 Oak St. San Francisco, Calif. 94102
Hometown chef Brandon Jew’s first solo restaurant is an ode to Chinese American cooking and his San Francisco childhood, set in the thick of the country’s first Chinatown. Nods to California peek out across the menu in the sourdough scallion pancakes, Dutch crunch pork buns and Monterey squid wontons. But don’t order so many small dishes that you’re too full for the main event: roast duck with shatteringly crisp skin, served with a peanut butter hoisin sauce that’ll be your new favorite condiment.
BTW: Wander the area before dinner to absorb the sights, smells and story of this historic neighborhood.
Mister Jiu’s, 28 Waverly Pl. San Francisco, Calif. 94108
(Courtesy of Paul Dyer/The Ice Cream Bar)
Ice Cream Bar
Dessert shops don’t come more charming than this Cole Valley ice cream fountain. There’s the vintage wooden bar, the bowtied soda jerks and the couples sharing caramelized banana splits. If it weren’t for the Instagrammers capturing photogenic treats, you would swear it was 1935. Everything is made in-house, from the sandwich brioche to the creme fraiche ice cream to the original sodas.
BTW: Try the Dublin Honey: Guinness stout, Valrhona chocolate syrup, caramelized honey ice cream and a float of Graham’s 10-year tawny port.
Ice Cream Bar, 815 Cole St. San Francisco, Calif. 94117
Look for the unmarked red door at the corner and Linden and Gough streets, and you’ll find it: a tiny chef-owned den of drinking that feels like being in on a secret. The square footage keeps things intimate — eight seats and a bit of standing room, usually filled by locals sipping cocktails from a menu split between “spirituous” (read: boozy) and “seasonal” (read: fruity). If that sounds pretentious, don’t worry; the vibe is less like an exclusive club, more like a friend’s very cool living room.
BTW: If you like Linden Room, check out chef/owner Kim Alter’s tasting-menu restaurant Nightbird next door.
Linden Room, 292 Linden St. San Francisco, Calif. 94102