So I guess I kinda dropped off the blogging bandwagon for a little bit here. Emotional rants were turning out to be a little more exhausting than usual, so I decided to give my feelingz and angstz a bit of a summer vacay. It's been splendid.
If you follow me on Instagram, you probably know exactly what I've been up to ;)) hashtag followmeplz hashtag instaobsessed hashtag 4eva
But for those not insta-inclined- I basically packed my life into a suitcase (again), said a weepy and frantic goodbye to Mumbai (multiple emotional rants on that coming soon to an interweb near you!!), had a solid four day adventure/coconut drinking spree/overall happiness explosion in Hong Kong, and then arrived- jetlagged and dazed into the gorgeous Bay Area. HEY BAYBAY! YOU SO DARN PRETTY!
There has been a little bit of culture shock, along the lines of- Why am i here?! Where is the nearest ship back to Bombay?! Why do all these people want me to 'have a great day'?! Why do I have to tip everyone for everything?! Why is cutlery important?! But besides that it's been really quite wonderful.
And now, after a full 10 days here, I'm headed back to beloved Squaremont this afternoon. Crazy to thunk it. (seeeee youuuu soooooon)
So now, whilst I'd love to talk about the depth and details of these past few weeks- how about we just look at some pictures, talk about some food and call it a day eh? Yeah, I thought so too.
What I've put together is basically my favorite eats/food related anything in San Francisco- all veggie/vegan/paleo/gluten free friendly and astoundingly delicious. CAN YOU IMAGINE? They're a good mix of cheap, averagely priced and expensive, with the exception of Chez Panisse which was very expensive and quite unnecessary but more on that later.
Delica - A Japanese/Californian fusion deli in the Ferry Building Marketplace with yummy fresh salads. I had the Hijiki and Soybean Salad, the Spicy Burdock and Lotus Root Salad, the Wasabi Garlic Potato Salad and the Eggplant Salad and have been dreaming about them all ever since. You can also get it all to go and then eat it looking out over the pier. Good deal.
Sushirrito - Sushi and Burritos sounded pretty gross and abominable to my snobby sensibilities, but the line for them stretched across the block and I wanted to know what all the fuss was about. Plus they had lotus root chips, and how can you ever say no to lotus root chips? So I'm glad we didn't. So much deliciousness.
House of Kombucha - I swore I would never turn into one of those Kombucha drinking hipsters. Yet, here I am, swearing by House of Kombucha's Ginger Fire and impatiently waiting to get my hands on some supplies so I can start making my own. Hipsterdom infects everyone with time, don't judge me, your time will come too.
Bi-Rite Market - Best produce and selection of pretty much everything. I love these guys, though to be fair, my mother couldn't see what all the fuss was about so this may be my hipster-infection talking. I also had to use every ounce of my willpower not to stop at their Creamery across the street. I mean, roasted balsamic strawberry icecream? Please just make it stop.
House of Nanking - Such great, lightly cooked, chock-fulla-greens Chinese food. Apparently these guys are quite the institution. Their 3 Tiered Baby Pea Shoot Salad was a big plate of happiness. And I know I say shit like that a lot, but I do try to mean it every now and then. This is one of those times.
Dandelion Chocolate - THESE GUYZ! I visited the Mast Brothers Factory in Brooklyn last summer, and since those fellows are basically the poster boys of artisanal chocolate, I figured that Dandelion wouldn't really be on the same level. Negative! I went back to their factory/cafe on Mission a grand total of three times during my stay, gulped down more hot chocolate than my body is probably equipped for, and now have their Venezuela bars stashed in all my pockets and backpack compartments. I do have mixed feelings about having to pay $9 for a rather small bar of chocolate, especially having grown up on cheap bars of Cadbury Dairy Milk. But, these guys are working with cacao farmers all over the world in a sustainable, ethical and downright inspiring manner. And their bars are just two ingredients- cacao and sugar. No soy lecithin, no cocoa butter, no shortcuts. More than I can say for my beloved Cadbury Dairy Milk, doped up on soy and iodine.
Namu Gaji - I visited Namu twice for good measure, and loved it both times. Their Oyster Okonomiyaki was the second best kind of barbecued anything I've ever consumed (with a fried egg on top, no less) after Salt Lick in Austin, TX. Lots of inventive pickles- beet greens, alfalfa sprouts, mustard greens, taro, everything! The people at Namu were also incredibly friendly and made me feel like we were all on BFF-I'll-invite-you-to-my-wedding terms and that was pretty cute.
Bar Tartine - I don't know why I'm only just writing about Bar Tartine when really, this should've been the very first place I wrote about. I don't know where to start- this was my favorite meal of all time, ever. We ordered several of their little plates, and I guzzled their ginger kefir water and I smiled the whole time and was very sad to leave, and someday I'll go back and feel whole again. There. Now you know.
Chez Panisse - I adore Alice Waters. I have never met this woman, but I have read almost every piece of writing ever written about her. I visited the Edible Schoolyard at MLK in Berkelet last spring and spent the entire visit starry eyed and smiley. I am and will always be a faithful and loyal cheerleader. That being said- Chez Panisse was a mind-boggling disappointment. The place itself, was lovely, just like the books and articles had said it would be, but the food was bland, boring and very outdated.
Daily Health - I will preface this by saying that my mother has the appetite of a lion. If you know and have seen my elf of a mother, you will find this hard to believe. But as her daughter for 20 odd years, I can assure you that this is the truth. She is constantly hungry, and needs nourishment every couple hours. One such bout of hunger hit as we were walking to the de Young Museum and it felt as though 'Daily Health' materialized like a bit of a mirage to soothe the hangry elf. They had delicious raw sushi, a killer coconut and carob smoothie and raw almond truffles. They also have no website and are run by an adorable, if scatter-brained, very reminiscent of the 70s kinda Eastern European couple. Find them.
Nopalito - The first time we ate Nopalito, they were full so we got takeout and took their carnitas, paletas and ensalada de lechuga y guisantes to Alamo Square and picnicked under the stars. My dark chocolate paleta was delicious, but the rest was pretty disappointing. So I went back for a sunny, solo lunch this week and finally got what all the hype is about. The ensalada de nopalitos was absolutely delicious, as were the fish tacos, and their strawberry-almond horchata kept my belly happy all afternoon. I liked these kids. A lot.
Freshroll - This place was also prompted by an attack of mother's grumbling stomach. Simple, big and delicious vietnamese spring rolls. Kinda like Sushirrito but with rice paper wraps and a really yummy ginger peanut dipping sauce.
Sow Fresh Juice - A lot of the food that made me happiest happened to be located in the Ferry Building or have a stall at the Ferry Building Saturday Farmer's Market. Sow's Paramour Juice (orange, kiwi, rhubarb, strawberry, kumquat, lemon and lavender) was one of them. I have all my fingers and toes crossed that by my next visit to the Bay Area, these guys will have an adorable little juicery/cafe for me to visit!