Comes And Goes

Today was the first run I missed in my training plan. I felt bad for about a minute but then picked myself back up because I realized I had way more fun today instead of canceling plans just to make sure I stuck exactly to my schedule.

So what did I do instead?

I had a date with Jacq where we had needles poked in us. 😉

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She FINALLY came back from her African safari honeymoon! This girl saw over 1.5 million Wildebeest and followed the great migration for two weeks with her new husband.

Her being back in San Francisco means that we can continue our weekly acupuncture sessions and chatter over a meal. We sure do get hungry after our 45-minute adult nap time. 🙂

Eating lunch at the same place twice is boring in this foodie city and we already tried everything in the immediate area, so we drove over to The Little Chihuahua on Divisadero to attempt something new.

Note how foggy it was in this picture. When we left a few hours later, it was so sunny I thought we were in SoCal.

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Somehow we ended up making it there exactly at 11:00am. I promise we weren’t hawking out in front, glaring at the cashier to make him open faster. 😉 I actually walked in first while Jacq was parking her car and he made a joke about how I should get a prize for getting there right on time.

Since this guy had joke for days, I made him take a picture of us.

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Everyone talks about how delicious The Little Chihuahua is so I was really excited to try their food. Jacq got the Fried Plantain & Black Bean Burrito which looked amazing. I didn’t take a picture because I’m sure you know what a cylinder of foil looks like, ha.

I ordered the camarones y pollo asado tacos. They were good but I wished I ordered something a little more special to understand the hype of the restaurant. I just couldn’t take down a huge burrito at the time and simple tacos seemed the most appealing.

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We were so engrossed in our conversation that two hours passed by without us even noticing. Jacq had to leave for work and we still had so much to cover. Love her!

I ran some errands before hurrying home to get ready for a going away dinner planned. What better place to round everyone up but Cha Cha Cha?

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Junior is like the brother I never wanted and I’m going to miss him! He’s going back to Santa Barbara to take over the family business. Clearly, this picture is focused on the skills of the gentleman skateboarding behind us. It’s actually pretty funny when you open up Lightroom and notice this while trying to hurry up and edit all the pictures. Not.

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A clearer picture of some of the girls that made it. I know it’s going to be a good day when I see Abby more than once in a week. 🙂

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I already have a post on Cha Cha Cha, but these pictures show the worthiness of the food a little bit better. I am not the biggest seafood fan, but I will indulge on these mussels steamed in a saffron broth.

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My favorite type of fungi, cooked with sherry and herbs. I wasn’t going to share this picture because it’s already in my other post, but I wanted to balance out the ratio of selfies and actual food.

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Adios Junior! See you when you come up and fix the hole in the wall. 🙂

Tomorrow is an exciting day for me, I will make sure to tell you all about it on Monday!

Do you like mussels? (I’m actually so turned off by the texture I have to eat the little slimy part with a huge chunk of bread). What’s in store for the weekend?

Out-Of-Towners

I’ve been feeling like the days are getting shorter since my summer started. The days quickly come into a end before I feel like I’ve done anything productive. It might be the new Arrested Development episodes that I have been sneaking in throughout the day, or the catch-up naps from the extremely long days from last semester.

This week zoomed by, I couldn’t believe that it was already time to write my Friday post when I opened up Ecto this morning. Chi and I had friends visiting from Alaska (no, not these Alaskans), so it’s been fun taking them around San Francisco and catching up with them. Every time we have guests in town and show them around, I feel so humble to live in SF and try not to take it for granted. It is truly a beautiful place to live and I’m so lucky I got the opportunity to grow up and do so.

Last night, a group of us went to Cha Cha Chas and had the ultimate feast. So much delicious sauce and bread, even though there was so much food I was still hungry when we left!

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It inspired me to write today’s Friday Five: The 5 Places To Bring Out-Of-Town Guests In San Francisco.

With over 5,000+ places to eat in San Francisco, it’s really hard to pick one restaurant to bring your guests when you come to this little city. I even have trouble picking somewhere to eat for brunch because I have so many options. I read an article in Huffington Post that explains why San Francisco is the best place to live; also how SF blows any city out the ballpark regarding restaurants per capita!

1. Cha Cha Cha

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Cha Cha Cha is a tapas bar that is great for medium to big groups. I have brought so many people here and nobody has ever complained, no matter how picky or food critic-y they are! The Sangria is some of the best and I could honestly eat here once a week. It never gets old!

Make sure to get the: Cajun Shrimp, Sauteed Mushrooms, Mussels and Chicken Paillard

My post about Cha Cha Chas here.

2. Beretta

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Beretta is a contemporary Italian restaurant that serves some of the best thin crust SF pizza. They also have many fun and original cocktails and great appetizers.

Make sure to get the: Gnocchi, Beef Carpaccio, Broccolini and Hot Salami Pizza

My post about Beretta here.

3. Patxi’s Pizza

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If thin crust is not your thing, then Patxi’s deep dish might just do it for you! I’ve never been a fan of thick crusts but Patxis is my exception. They have a few locations across the city for easy access and a great selection of specials if you’re feeling stuck on how to order!

Make sure to get the: Meatballs, Chopped Salad and Special/Spinach Pesto Pizza

My post about Patxi’s here.

4. Toma

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Shameless plug, but what would a San Francisco visitors guide be without a Mexican restaurant? Stop by Toma in the Marina before or after hitting the bar scene for fresh, authentic Mexican food.

Make sure to get the: Steak and Mushroom Tacos, Fajita Burrito or the Tara Burrito (not really on the menu, but chicken and steak with avocado, pinto beans, rice, cilantro and onion with Rico’s sauce on the side)

My post about Toma here.

5. Mamas

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Mamas is thee absolute must place you have to take your guests, or even yourself for brunch. There is a reason this small, cozy restaurant tops almost every must-eat list in San Francisco. The only thing I have to say besides try it is to be prepared to wait 2 hours+ during peak hours (read: almost every hour that it’s open). The line is crazy, but there must be a reason people will stand for this food. I haven’t been here for over a year, but I always keep a sweet memory in the back of my mind for this place. Maybe I will go back soon, since I have so much time on my hands now.

Make sure to get the: Prosciutto and Grilled Tomato Benedict, Northern Italian Omelette and Kugelhopf

Photo credit here.

There you have it! All these restaurants are awesome and great to bring guests to share and experiment. There’s tons of other restaurants in SF that are just as great, but you’ll need to live here for a few months to get a real taste of our food scene!

If you have any particular cuisine you would like to try, please e-mail me or leave a comment and I will give you a few recommendations.

Last weeks Friday Five: 5 Things To Get At Toma Restaurant

Where would you bring guests in your city? Is anyone else craving french toast after seeing that picture?

Public Works

I finally received all my admissions decisions and happy to say I got into four out of five schools I applied to, with two of them being the ones on top of my list! I was driving home on Thursday after a long day of lab, when I opened my e-mail at a red light and saw the beautiful words:

“Congratulations, we are excited to welcome you to our school for the Fall 2013 Nutritional Sciences/Dietetics program!”

I did an embarrassing happy dance in my seat all the way home. The schools I applied to aren’t anything close to Ivy League, they were just State schools. However, California has such a budget problem with universities and all schools are so impacted. I thought I wasn’t going to get into any of them even though I worked my ass off the past 2 1/2 years. Now I have to choose between staying in San Francisco and going to a slightly less ranked school or moving down to LA to go to a more recognized school.

My day grew exponentially better when I came home to find out that Public Bikes was having a weekend sale! The bike I was lusting over was on sale for $200 less, it almost seemed like a sign from above that I had to go and buy it. I had a few days to decide, so I thought really hard if it was a smart decision to buy the bike and decided to just check it out on Saturday to see if I loved it in person.

After I got off work on Saturday, I dragged my poor boyfriend (who worked for 26 hours the day before) along so we can use his truck to bring my bike home if I ended up buying it. This was my second time going bike shopping since we went two weeks ago.

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Don’t mind if I do! Public shares it’s Valencia home with a cute furniture store. They were really busy with the overload of sale loving customers, so I looked around before I was helped. I ended up chatting with the founder of Public, it’s nice to see him still hanging out and helping customers.

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I decided on which bike I wanted, but didn’t get to bring it home. I had a minor surgery the week before that didn’t allow me to test ride any of the bikes, so we couldn’t figure out which size worked well for me. I ended up just paying for it to lock in my price, and will come back next Saturday to pick up my beautiful new bike. Swoon

After we were finished, we drove down to SOMA and ate at Holy Grill for tasty burgers.

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I’ve never heard of this place, but Chi’s friend owned it, so I figured I’d give it a shot. All the burgers are religious-inspired names, mi gusta!

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I ended up getting the Trinity, to much deliberation. When I opened my box, I must admit I was a little bit startled. This burger was huge!

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I should of put a quarter next to it for size proportions. It came to a surprise to both of us when I finished the last bite, I never finish burgers. This vanilla shake helped wash down all 1000 calories of that bad boy.

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Chi started getting cranky so we went home and I put him down for a nap (just kidding, babe) for two hours until it was time for dinner! My mom and her husband were in San Francisco during a seven hour layover from Oregon -> Hong Kong/Thailand, so it was great to see them before they leave out of the states for two weeks. We picked them up at my grandparents house, and took them to Cha Cha Cha‘s (on Mission St) for tapas.

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We got parking right across the street (!!). I feel like I always mention parking, but for anyone who has ever lived in or visited San Francisco, you know it absolutely makes your day when the parking gods are on your side.

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I love their exposed brick and hope to have it in my future house one day.

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Cha Cha Cha’s is a definite San Francisco staple, I haven’t met anyone who hasn’t heard or visited this restaurant before. They are famous for their Cajun Shrimp, which is a FAOT (Food and Other Things) must try! I could come here and just dip my bread in their cajun sauce all day and all night long. I found the recipe online, but I’m afraid to attempt it at home, fearing that it won’t come out as good.

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My second favorite tapa, the mushrooms. These are sautéed in some sort of white wine sauce. Excuse the blurry picture, the lighting in Cha Cha Cha’s is beautiful to hide a red face from their delicious Sangria, but horrible to take pictures in.

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My third favorite, the calamari, which my mom’s husband states is the best calamari he has ate in a long time. Let’s keep in mind that he is a fisherman, and has had his fair share of calamari.

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The chicken paillard, which also boasts a delicious sauce, comes in a close fourth. I never thought I would write so much about sauce, but each of these dishes seriously has amazing taste. Bread and sauce, baby.

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Last but not least, the spanish rice and beans.

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We got them to the airport in time, and Chi and I finished the night off with D’Jango Unchained. This movie continues to prove why Quinten Tarantino is my favorite director of all time.

PS: I randomly checked my RSS feed and saw I got my first subscriber sometime last week! So whoever you are, thank you so much for subscribing! It’s such a small accomplishment, but it seriously made my day 🙂

Hasta miércoles!

If you ride, what kind of bike do you have? What’s your favorite hometown restaurant?