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what about these restaurants?

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arizona
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what about these restaurants?

Getting excited about our upcoming visit Dec 18-22. Family with two boys, 10 and 13. We'll be doing the Exploratorium, Ferry Building, Cal. Academy of Sciences, Alcatraz, etc. and staying in Nob Hill. Will have a car, also CityPass for bus/cable car rides.

I've been happily researching restaurants, and here's what I have so far:

By the Exploratorium: Had a hard time with this, only found Lucca Delicatassen. Anything else nearby if we want to break for lunch then go back ? (Not interested in themed restaurants like Johnny Rockets.)

By California Academy of Sciences: Chow, Gordo Taqueria, or the Academy Cafe in the museum.

Ferry Building:

Slanted Door or Mijita or just get picnic items

Others that look good:

Sotto Mare

Colibri Mexican Bistro (happy hour looks yummy, too)

Sanraku

Tartine Bakery

Bi-Rite Creamery Ice Cream

McCormick & Kuleto's (happy hour looks great...okay to take kids, too?)

Any of these too dressy for jeans? Do any restaurants close completely the week of Christmas? Any comments/suggestions appreciated!

Thanks for your help!

azislandgirl

Bloomington, Indiana
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1. Re: what about these restaurants?

Here's a thumbs up on Gordos. May make more comments later.

San Francisco...
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2. Re: what about these restaurants?

For your Exploratorium break, head to Chestnut Street. It's not too far of a walk, especially nice on a good day. From Palace of Fine Arts, I really like the walk up Beach Street, taking a right on Mallorca Way (you'll think you're in Europe), then a left on Chestnut. There are lots of restaurants and shops - both along Chestnut and also along Fillmore (once you cross Lombard).

I may be alone in my dissent, but I find Mijita to be expensive and not good. It's an odd Mexican food. It's not trashy like Taco Bell, but it's also not authentic like the Mission. It's kind of a weird hybrid of healthy Mexican-ish. Better Mexican nearby can be found at Mexico DF on Spear Street, a short walk from the Ferry Building.

You also won't find McCormick & Kuleto's at the top of any foodie lists - but for a tourist joint, it's fine - and your kids won't have a problem there.

All of your choices are fine for jeans.

san francisco
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3. Re: what about these restaurants?

You're on the right track with your research. Luckily for you, virtually nowhere in SF is too dressy for jeans! Also, I highly doubt anything will be closed the week before xmas.

Some suggestions:

Exploratorium:

Lucca's delicatesson is on Chestnut street, where there are literally dozens of restaurants up and down the street. Sushi, steak, Indian, Mexican, Korean, you name it. Tacolicious (http://tacolicioussf.com/) is a relatively high-end taqueria worth a look. Also one more block up on Lombard is another cornucopia of dining options. Amici's pizza is a solid family choice.

Academy of Sciences: All of the restaurants (e.g. Chow) are a few minutes walk outside of the park, but again they are on a street (Irving) that has more restaurants in a 3 block radius than you can saple in a month. Chow is a good choice but I wouldn't limit yourself by chosing ahead of time; rather have a wander and see what speaks to you. Don't eat at the museum. Don't waste a meal in a great food city.

Ferry Building: The Slanted Door is a classic. If you're there on a farmer's market day there will be a gaggle of delicious food stalls. There is also some very good fresh seafood inside.

Other places: Suppen Kuche (http://www.suppenkuche.com/) - great German place with wooden tables and a festive atmosphere.

La Taqueria: SF's best taqueria (which says a lot), on MIssion and 25th.

For some real dim sum in Chinatown: Golden Mountain (restaurantslive.com/Restaurants/GoldMountain…). This is classic dim sum where they walk around the restaurant with all sorts of stuff and you point at what you want.

Lots of good sushi everywhere if you guys are into that.

Espetus (www.espetus.com/locations/san-francisco/) - a brazilian bbq where they just keep bringing you meat.

Have a great trip!

arizona
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4. Re: what about these restaurants?

Thanks for the input! Good to know there are lots of choices on Chestnut and Fillmore. And I didn't realize McCormick & Kuleto's was considered a tourist joint, so thanks for that.

Espetus sounds good, too! My husband and I went to a similar place in Brazil once--it would be fun to go with the kids. Do you know the cost? (Website doesn't say.)

We do like sushi, very much! So any suggestions for that would be great.

Thanks so much!

san francisco
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5. Re: what about these restaurants?

Unfortunately, Espetus ain't cheap. It's a flat rate $50 or so (maybe more) a head for adults (not sure if they do kid pricing).

As for sushi, I will leave that to the other experts; I am too easy to please and they will laugh at my suggestions. All I can say is ask around for advice -- everyone will have an opinion -- you will be nowhere withouth a sushi restaurant around the block.

San Francisco
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6. Re: what about these restaurants?

In place of Colibri, Mijita, and the like, you might try Don Pistos in North Beach. Incredible food- especially their chips and salsa. It's become my favorite for non-taqueria Mexican. www.yelp.com/biz/don-pistos-san-francisco-2

Lucca Delicatassen is great, but it's strictly to-go only, tiny place with no seating. I'd definitely take a walk along Chestnut and see what appeals to you. Pacific Catch is a good one.

If you decide against Gordo's, take a look at Park Chow, across the street. Very kid-friendly place and easy on the budget too.

As for sushi, I'm still at a loss of where to go myself. I've found most places in the downtown area somewhat disappointing.

Sotto Mare is a good choice, same goes for Tartine, Bi-Rite, and Ferry Building. Great list thus far!

Edited: 04 November 2010, 16:29
Corona del Mar, CA
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7. Re: what about these restaurants?

I really like McCormick & Kuleto's, much to the disdain of the foodie types, but I've eaten at McCormick's in a dozen or more cities, including Scottsdale, and never had a bad meal. Their fish is incredibly fresh.

Also be aware that Sotto Mare is 90% seafood, they do have a couple of pastas that don't have seafood in them.

Slanted Door is amazing, but your boy's might appreciate Gott's Roadside more.

I would also hit Sears Fine Food for breakfast. My boys used to go through their pancakes like you can't believe.

If you get to Fisherman's Wharf, your boys might also enjoy Boudin Bakery At The Wharf. It is part museum, part working bakery, part restaurant.

arizona
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8. Re: what about these restaurants?

Thanks for the input!

tdubb: I checked and Espetus does lunch for $24 weekdays and $33 weekends; it's 1/2 price for ages 5-11. So it's still a possibility...

bellagreen: Mmm, Don Pistos sounds great. Park Chow was already on my list, so thanks for the thumbs up.

scottca: thanks for the ideas, I'll check them out. I do want to do Boudin Bakery, even though it's touristy. My oldest loves sourdough and my youngest loves clam chowder...and I know they'd like to see the bakery.

Also looking at Dottie's True Blue Cafe for breakfast, or maybe Honey Honey Crepery? Any other favorite breakfast spots?

San Francisco
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9. Re: what about these restaurants?

For the Exploratorium, there is a cafe inside which serves sandwiches, hot dogs, popcorn, pizza and a couple of hot entrees. Also, you may want to consider walking along the Marina towards Fort Mason and have lunch at Green's.

10. Re: what about these restaurants?

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